How to Clean Glass Shower Doors

A glass shower looks amazing — when it’s photographed for a magazine or catalog. In real life, your glass shower might not look so hot, thanks to soap scum build-up and hard water stains.

Knowing how to clean glass shower doors can help improve the appearance of your bathroom. While your shower might not end up as sparkling clean and shiny as the glass showers you see in a photo spread, it will look a lot better once you figure out the best way to clean shower doors.

Getting your shower doors clean — and keeping them that way — does require a bit of elbow grease and regular maintenance on your part. Whether you need a deep clean or just a touch-up, here’s how to clean glass shower doors.

How to Clean Bathroom Shower Doors – Daily Maintenance Tips

When it comes to knowing how to clean glass shower doors, the most critical piece of advice you’ll get is this: a bit of daily cleaning is a lot better than having to scrub a neglected door.

Sure, wiping down the shower after each use is going to seem like a pain. That is until you skip it repeatedly and end up spending a beautiful weekend day cleaning the accumulated hard water stains and soap scum off of the glass.

So, take it from us, spending a few minutes cleaning your shower doors every day is worth it. Here’s what to do.

How to Clean Glass Shower Doors: Get a Squeegee

If you have glass shower doors, you need a squeegee. For those of you who have no idea what that is, a squeegee features a rubber, horizontal bar that’s attached to a handle.

According to Houzz, you can find squeegees that match your bathroom decor, or you can purchase a basic, run-of-the-mill squeegee. They should all be the same regarding function.

To use a squeegee, you drag the rubber part of it across the glass of the shower door. The rubber scrapes up any water from your shower so that it doesn’t have a chance to dry on the door, leaving behind spots.

If you want to make sure you (and others in your household) use the squeegee after showering, the best thing to do is leave it in or near the shower.

Spray Your Shower Doors Daily

You’ve probably seen daily shower sprays hanging out for sale in the bathroom cleaning products aisle. Investing in one and spraying down your shower doors after each use is a great way to keep the glass cleaner between deep cleanings.

Using a daily shower cleaner and a squeegee won’t eliminate the need for the occasional deep clean, but it will mean that you spend less time scrubbing away when you have to clean the doors.

While you can easily buy daily shower cleaner, it’s also pretty easy to make your own at home, with a few simple ingredients.

Making your cleaner means you know exactly what’s in it. It also means that you have more control over the fragrance of the cleaner.

Here’s what you need to make glass shower cleaner:

  • Spray bottle
  • Measuring cup
  • Water
  • Distilled white vinegar
  • Dish soap
  • Essential oils (optional, but give the cleaner a fragrance)


Mix 1 cup water, 1/2 cup vinegar and a squirt or two of dish soap in the spray bottle. Add up to 20 drops of essential oil (you pick the scent).

Swirl the bottle to mix the ingredients, then put the lid on. To use the shower cleaner, spray on the glass doors after use, then use the squeegee to dry the doors.

How to Clean Soap Scum from Shower Doors

If you have hard water and you use traditional bar soap when you shower, you’re going to end up with soap scum.

Soap scum looks like a layer of white/gray film on the glass surface of your shower doors.

The scum forms thanks to a reaction between the soap and the calcium and magnesium particles found in hard water, according to the Royal Society of Chemistry. Scum is insoluble, meaning it doesn’t dissolve in water.

Its insolubility is what makes it so difficult to get rid of. Water won’t break it up — instead, you’re going to need to use something that’s a little tougher.

Enter distilled white vinegar, everyone’s favorite all-natural, easy-to-find household cleaner.

While water won’t break up soap scum, vinegar’s an acid. Its one job in life is to help you clean your home by breaking things (like soap scum) down.

There are a few different ways you can use vinegar to clean soap scum off of your shower doors. Here’s what to do.

How to Clean Glass Shower Doors: Vinegar Method 1

You’ll need:

  • Spray bottle
  • Distilled white vinegar
  • Dish soap
  • Cloth
  • Squeegee or towel


What to do:


  • Mix the vinegar and dish soap. Pour 1-part vinegar and 1-part dish soap into the spray bottle. Swirl to mix.
  • Spray the glass doors. Spray the doors all over (or at least, where you can see the soap scum) with the vinegar/dish soap mixture.
  • Let the mixture sit. Leave the mixture on the doors for at least 30 hours, if not an hour.
  • Scrub away the scum. After 30 minutes or so, use a cloth to scrub away the vinegar/soap mixture and the soap scum.
  • Dry the doors. Use the squeegee or a towel to dry the glass completely.


How to Clean Glass Shower Doors: Vinegar Method 2

You’ll need:

  • Small bowl
  • Baking soda
  • Distilled white vinegar
  • Sponge or cloth


What to do:


  • Sprinkle a handful of baking soda into the small bowl. Add vinegar, just enough to make a thick paste.
  • Let the mixture bubble and fizz. It’ll stop soon enough.
  • Put some of the baking soda/vinegar paste on a cloth or sponge. Apply the paste, using the sponge or cloth, to the glass door. Coat the entire door.
  • Let the paste sit for about 15 minutes. Use a clean cloth to wipe the paste off of the glass door after 15 minutes.
  • Rinse with water. Dry the glass very well so that new spots don’t form.


How to Clean Glass Shower Doors with Hard Water Stains

The thing about soap scum is that it only forms when traditional soap is used. If you use a body wash or other type of detergent in the shower, you don’t have to worry about it.

But you might have to worry about hard water stains. Here’s how to clean glass shower doors that have hard water deposits.

Vinegar will help to get rid of hard water stains from glass doors. How Stuff Works recommends spraying the stains with a mixture of one-part water and one part vinegar.

Let the mixture sit on the stains for a few minutes, then wipe away with a cloth. Dry the glass.

How to Keep Glass Shower Doors Clean

Short of investing in a water softener and switching from bar soap to body wash, is there anything you can do to keep your glass shower doors clean?

The best way to keep soap scum and hard water stains off of glass shower doors is to prevent them from forming in the first place.

Creating a barrier between the glass and the soap or mineral deposits will help to keep the doors clean. Furniture polish can be a surprisingly effective ingredient to use for this purpose.

Here’s how to clean clear shower doors with some preventative measures.

What you’ll need:

  • Furniture oil
  • Soft cloth


What to do:


  • Deep clean your shower doors using one of the methods described above.
  • Dry the shower doors.
  • Soak a cloth with furniture oil. Use the towel to apply the oil all over the surface of the glass door.
  • Wipe excess oil away with a clean cloth. Even after you wipe away the excess, a thin layer of oil will remain, which will keep soap scum and hard water stains from building up.


Final Thoughts on How to Clean Glass Shower Doors

You invested in glass shower doors because you liked the look. But showers should be more about function than form.

Cleaning your shower doors involves a mixture of preventative maintenance, the occasional deep cleaning and protective measures. It might seem like a lot of work, but it’s worth it.

Knowing how to clean glass shower doors means that you’ll get to use your shower for what it was intended for while keeping it looking as good as new for as long as possible.