A stained bathtub can make your whole bathroom feel unclean. Discoloration can build up over time until your tub looks filthy even after you’ve cleaned it. The good news is you can get these stains out with the right cleaner and a little elbow grease.

Before you begin cleaning, it’s important to understand what kind of tub you have so you can select the appropriate cleaner. Harsh chemicals and abrasives can damage certain bathtubs and actually promote further staining because dirt can get stuck in the scratches caused by silica quartz cleaners. Below are the most common types of bathtubs:


Most modern bathtubs are made of a plastic material known as acrylic. Acrylic is prone to discoloration and cracking, so it’s especially important to use gentle cleaners on this type of tub. Avoid using heavy duty scrub brushes when cleaning an acrylic tub.


Enamel tubs look like porcelain, but they’re actually coated metal. If your tub is magnetic, it’s an enamel tub. The enamel coating is sensitive to acidic chemicals like vinegar and bleach, so avoid cleaning with those agents. Like acrylic, enamel is also prone to scratching, so use soft sponges and cloths when cleaning an enamel tub.


Porcelain tubs are heavy and expensive. They are found in older, historic homes more so than new homes. These tubs are more durable than their modern counterparts and can handle a tougher scrub.


Cleaning your bathtub

Start by mixing Bon Ami with water to create a paste. As a mild abrasive, Bon Ami is gentle enough for most surfaces, but you’ll still want to test a small area of your bathtub just to be sure it can handle a mild abrasive. Rub stains gently with a soft cloth.

If the stain does not disappear, apply a layer of the Bon Ami paste to the stain and allow it to set and dry for 30 minutes. Return with a damp sponge and gently polish the surface clean. Rinse with warm water and enjoy your sparkling new tub.

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