Angie's List is now Angi. Learn more

Angi How To Tackle Soap Scum!

Date Published: Nov. 12, 2019

Time: 30 Minutes

Soap scum is difficult to clean partly because it's hard to define. It's a mixture of mildew, mineral deposits, hard water, soap talc and body oils. Soap scum often builds up on showers, tubs, shower curtains, faucets and more. Learn how to remove this gross glaze from your bathroom.

Get quotes from up to
3 pros!
Enter a zip below and get matched to top-rated pros near you.
Zip Code
1 To remove soap scum, spray lemon juice liberally on the film and let it sit for about a minute before scrubbing.

The acid from the lemon will break-up the scum so it's easier to wipe away. Rub the lemon-scented soap scum with an abrasive sponge, and the film should come right off.

2 Another option for removing soap scum is white vinegar.

Vinegar is a simple and cheap acidic cleanser. Dip paper towels into white vinegar and stick them to the shower walls. Let them sit for 30 minutes. The vinegar should break up the scum. Remove the towels and use a brush to scrub it away.

3 Also, wash your shower-curtain liner in the washing machine with a mild detergent.

Even vinyl and synthetic liners can be machine-washed.

4 To prevent soap scum in the future...

...consider switching from bar soap to liquid gel cleanser.

5 Open your bathroom windows and...

...doors to decrease moisture levels and increase air circulation.

6 Always pull the shower curtain closed.

Mildew grows quickly in the dark moist folds of your curtain.