How to Clean Your Mirrors and Keep Them Shining
Doing grocery shopping, washing laundry, cleaning the dishes, and doing the housework is exhausting. We don’t know about you, but somehow those mirrors that always seem to streak after you’ve just cleaned them can be just as frustrating!
We understand the pains of having to ensure that your house is hygienic – and beautiful – and we are here to help you. Reading about keeping your mirrors shining, we hope you can learn some helpful tips in the process.
To Know Beforehand
Before you start cleaning the bathroom mirrors, here are a couple of things to note. You may have heard that the best time to clean your bathroom mirrors is after a hot shower when the mirrors are steamed. This is, unfortunately, not true. The ideal conditions to clean your mirrors are when the room is cooler and the mirrors are out of the sunlight. This should save you a lot of hassle in the future, so keep this in mind.
Thinking carefully about your cleaning materials and products is a step many people miss. You may be taking for granted what part of your cleaning equation is missing, but by simply replacing a product or one material, you’ll find that everything works perfectly well.
So first, we will take a look at your products, materials, and any application tips relating specifically to these. Then we will walk you through the actual cleaning process. This might be how you find what wasn’t working before and how you could make some small changes to avoid streak marks.
If you’ve always bought soapy cleaning products from the store, you might be disappointed
to learn that the more soap in your cleaning products, the bigger problem you’re likely to have with streak marks. Many people aren’t aware of this, but the fatty-acid tail in soaps causes an oily residue to build up and cause your streaking issues.
Using store-bought cleaners is totally fine if you keep in mind to buy a window-specific cleaning product, such as Windex or Glass Plus. If you’d like to make your natural cleaning products at home, it couldn’t be easier! Mixing equal parts of vinegar and water creates the perfect window cleaner. Adding a few drops of your favorite essential oils is sure to give your bathroom a lovely refreshment.
Additionally, your application of products matters. It is recommended that you lightly spray or mist your mirrors, avoid over-applying and soaking. Excess products will drip down to your mirror corners, creating unnecessary grime you may not be able to reach. The extra spray will also be more time-consuming to clean.
There are two materials that are commonly used for wiping mirrors, but they tend to cause problems: paper towels and newspaper.
Some people swear by paper towels, but they accumulate lint and can often leave more of a mess to clean up afterward! While you can use scrunched-up newspaper, the ink that is used nowadays easily leaves marks on your mirrors. If you want to use newspaper, ensure you only wipe with black and white pages (not colored), and the newspaper ink should have been left to dry for some weeks before use. This will ensure no ink residue is left after cleaning.
The materials you use to wipe and dry your mirror are essential, as they can make the difference between shiny or streaked mirrors. So it is advisable to use microfiber – and preferably a flat weave cloth for cleaning your bathroom mirror, as terry cloth is too thick, the accumulation of grime will contribute more to streaking. Microfiber cloths can be folded multiple times for more wiping surface areas. And it’s advised that the cleaning product is applied directly onto the cloth (not the mirror), to avoid liquid dripping down into the unreachable mirror corners.
Pretreat Your Mirrors
To prepare your mirrors for your cleaning products, you may target some stubborn marks. Scrubbing problem areas removes build-up and will save you having to keep checking whether your cleaning products have cleaned sufficiently. Fingerprints, toothpaste marks, and hairspray warrant taking a cotton pad and applying rubbing alcohol to those spots.
If your mirror is dusty, it’s a good idea to wipe it down with a wet cloth before you apply your products. And after all oily spots are cleaned, you’re ready to get spraying!
Time to Get Cleaning
Lightly spray your chosen cleaning product onto your cloth and make zigzag or “S” shapes back and forth as you move down your mirror, continuing until you’ve moved across and completed the mirror. You may be surprised to hear that circular motions should be avoided, as they re-deposit dust and debris you’re your cloth. Using one swift movement each time you wipe the mirror from the top will help you minimize streaking.
After the mirror is done, you can use a toothbrush to clean the grime from the corners. For build-up, it’s best to apply rubbing alcohol and wet the toothbrush directly before you do this step.
The last couple of steps after your main cleaning is complete, is to check for streaking. You can take an ever-slightly damp cloth and use it in a similar zigzag motion to wipe some unsettling streaks. And lastly, it is essential that you clean your mirrors regularly. An extra word of caution should be made regarding mirror corners.
Our bathroom mirrors are exposed to damp, varying degrees of humidity, and too commonly
prone to poor ventilation. As irregular cleaning can lead to bacteria overgrowth, mildew and mold can build up. Not only are these black spots unsightly, but mold can also become incredibly dangerous to one’s health. Therefore, regular cleaning – and careful attention to those corners – is needed! If you’ve chosen to use a vinegar-containing cleaning product, this will help kill the existing bacteria, as well as prevent the re-growth of unwanted bacteria and grime.
The longer you wait between each clean, the more likely it is that debris will build up. This will not only impact your mirror finish but will become increasingly more difficult to clean properly. Be consistent with your cleaning and enjoy your cleaned space!
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