Written by Stacey Kelleher. Reviewed by Sean Busch.
If you're not scrubbing your bathtub regularly, you might be sharing your bath with uninvited guests like dead skin cells, soap scum, bacteria, fungus, and yeast.
But you don't need to break out the caustic ingredients: With our natural tub cleaner – and eight easy methods – you'll keep things squeaky clean.
How Often Should I Clean a Bathtub?
If your home only has one bathroom or hard water, you might need to deep clean your bathtub every week. For tubs used less often (or in guest bathrooms), a monthly routine might suffice.
8 Natural Ways to Clean a Bathtub
You only need a couple minutes and a handful of products to get a cleaner bathroom. Try these eight natural ways to clean a bathtub.
1. Take Everything Out of the Tub
Before you start cleaning, remove all toys, products, washcloths, and caddies (you can clean those later). Recycle empty product containers, wash/replace washcloths, and toss out small bits of soap.
2. Wipe Down & Scrub Walls
Using your showerhead or a bucket full of warm water, remove any visible dirt and hair. Spray the walls or tiles with our Natural Surface Cleaner, then wipe them down with a clean, dry microfiber cloth.
3. Clean Grout
Create the best cleaner for bathtub grout by combining a small amount of water to baking soda until it forms a paste. Apply it to the grout and spray with distilled white vinegar. Once it stops foaming, scrub it with a brush and rinse with water. While scrubbing grout, pay extra attention to especially grimy areas (e.g. corners) where water tends to pool.
4. Check the Drain
If it takes a while for the water to drain after showers or baths, there's probably a clog. And it's probably hair (GROSS!). Unscrew the plug then remove any clumps. If it's deeper down, try using a deconstructed wire hanger to pull it out.
Pro Tip: For a natural drain cleaner, pour ½ cup of baking soda and ½ cup of white vinegar down the drain. Run hot water for a few minutes to break up clogs.
5. Start Scrubbing
Spray the bathtub with your multi-surface cleaner and let it sit for 1-2 minutes. Working from top-to-bottom, wipe it down with your microfiber cloth. Finish up by rinsing remaining residue with the showerhead or a clean bucket of water.
6. Tackle Build-up
Now it’s time to focus on any stubborn stains like soap build-up, hard water stains, mold, and bottle rings (which may require a bit more elbow grease). Spray them with Puracy Natural Stain Remover and leave it for at least 15 minutes. Scrub with a paintbrush, auto detailing brush, or toothbrush, then rinse away any loosened grime.
Pro Tip: Auto detailing brushes are our favorite tools for cleaning grout and loosening tough stains.
7. Make It Shine
Once the scrubbing is out of the way, give your tub a final dry and shine. Even a few swipes with a clean microfiber cloth should leave your bathtub clean, bright, and ready for use.
8. Clean Items Before Putting them Back
Bacteria in your shower is definitely hanging out on your shower items. Be sure to wipe down bottles before putting them back.
To clean children’s tub toys, you can use natural dish soap, equal parts vinegar and water, or toss them on the top shelf of the dishwasher (make sure they’re heat-safe!). To inhibit mold growth, let them air dry afterwards.
Author's Note: When’s the last time you replaced your loofah? Throw them in the dishwasher every week and replace them every month. Or just switch to a washcloth.
Can I Clean a Bathtub With Vinegar?
The cleaning and disinfecting power of distilled white vinegar comes from the antifungal and antibacterial properties of acetic acid. This helps break down substances like mineral deposits, grease, wax buildup, and bacteria.
- Plug the drain and pour three cups of white vinegar into the tub.
- Fill the tub with water and let the solution soak for several hours.
- If your tub has jets, ensure the water level is at least three inches above them. Run for about 15 minutes then drain the tub.
- Wipe down the entire bathtub with a damp microfiber towel. Stains, soap residue, and mildew should come off far more easily.
Avoid using vinegar on marble bathtubs, showers, vanities, and tile (or any other semi-porous materials. Use our Natural Surface Cleaner instead!
How to Disinfect a Bathtub (Without Bleach)
Though it's considered the ultimate germ-fighter in bathrooms, there are plenty of reasons to avoid using bleach.
Developed to clean, sanitize, and disinfect home surfaces, our Disinfecting Surface Cleaner utilizes hydrogen peroxide to kill more than 99.9% of germs. Thoroughly spray your bathtub until it’s wet, let it stand for 10 minutes, then wipe it clean with a microfiber towel. Since it’s naturally biodegradable, it's safe for greywater and septic systems.
Pro Tip: Just like vinegar, we don’t recommend this hydrogen peroxide disinfecting spray to be used on porous surfaces like soapstone, marble, and wood.
How to Prevent Tub Stains
Cleaning the bathroom is no one's idea of a fun afternoon, but you can make the process much easier by preventing bathtub stains before they happen.
Choose Higher-Quality Personal Care Products
All of Puracy's biodegradable, plant-based personal care products are formulated to leave zero residue behind. This limits the amount of scrubbing in your cleaning routine.
Invest in a Better Water Softener
Water softeners help reduce hard water stains, but did you know they make soap lather better? That means less time spent cleaning and less money spent on personal care products.
Take a Shower Before Bathing
Just like you'd rinse off before getting in a pool, taking a quick shower can help keep oil and dirt from sticking to your tub. And when you’ve finished bathing, rinse the tub with fresh water.
The Best Cleaner for Tubs – and the Entire Home
You don’t need a bucket full of products to clean a tub. Our Natural Surface Cleaner provides everything you need to tackle literally every non-porous surface in your entire home! No caustics, no fumes, and grime left behind!