How to clean glass shower doors – get rid of hard water stains and soap scum naturally

This is how to clean glass shower doors and get yours sparkling like new using baking soda, vinegar and more

GoodHome Beloya Walk In Shower Panel
(Image credit: B&Q)

Bathroom glass grotty rather than gleaming? Then you need to know how to clean glass shower doors – and pronto. After all, if you know how to clean a shower properly for a hygienic space, if your shower doors are covered in soap scrum and stains then they are just letting the side down.

The culprits when it comes to ruining the look of glass shower doors are hard water, which leaves deposits as the water dries, and soap scum. But we’ve got the remedies, including natural methods for fans of these.

We spoke with Victoria Plumbing about a streak-free hack for cleaning shower screens. They revealed how TikTok user @malsabena has a quick and easy hack to a streak-free shower screen by simply using water and a bottle of shampoo. 'First, she soaks a microfiber cloth in a solution of water and shampoo and wipes the surface in a circle like motion. She then removes it with a window squeegee.' Victoria Plumbing recommend rinsing the shower well when using this method. 'Shampoo is a detergent, but as this hack doesn’t seem to rinse the shampoo away from the shower screen, it could cause a buildup of soap scum and limescale. If you wanted to try this hack, it’d be worth rinsing the shower screen before using the squeegee to remove any drips and streaks.'

How to clean glass shower doors naturally

There are a few different natural ways to clean glass doors in a shower using vinegar and lemon. Try these options if natural cleaning is your preference.

How to clean glass shower doors with vinegar

Mix equal amounts of white vinegar and water in a spray bottle and apply the solution to the door. Wipe thoroughly using a microfiber cloth. If there are any lingering marks, pour your cleaning solution on to the cloth and use it to work on these spots. Remove with a squeegee, then buff dry. 

How to clean glass shower doors with lemons

When life gives you lemons, er, use them to clean a glass shower door. Squeeze to get around three tablespoons of juice, and mix with a cup of distilled water in a spray bottle. Spray the glass, leave for five minutes, then wipe, and dry. This one smells good, too.

It’s a fact that there’s nothing like hard water to turn sparkling glass doors into dull and grotty looking surfaces. If you live in a hard water area (that’s plenty of us), then you’ll know how quickly this can happen.

You can use the natural methods as above or try taking a leaf out of the book of those people who swear by the shower door cleaning power of white vinegar teamed with dish soap (method below). But if you want a ready-to-use rather than store cupboard solution, you can simply use your favorite cleaning product. Always check the pack instructions, but make sure you follow these golden rules: 

Photo by Jon'Nathon Stebbe on Unsplash

(Image credit: Unsplash)

How to clean glass shower doors with hard water stains

  1. Working from the top of the shower door and horizontally with your vinegar, lemon or other cleaning agent and going from left to right is the best way to tackle hard water stains.
  2. Rinse as necessary.
  3. Dry the glass with a microfiber cloth when you finish otherwise you’ll just be leaving new deposits on it which will turn into – you guessed it – hard water stains.

How to clean glass shower doors with soap scum

If soap scum is spoiling the look of your glass shower doors, then wet the shower glass then put white vinegar into a spray bottle and apply evenly all over the glass. Leave to do its work for 10 minutes – or longer if this is a job you (or the previous residents of your home) have neglected. Dip a bathroom sponge into some baking soda and use to clean the glass. Rinse when you’re done. Then dry the glass with a microfiber cloth. 

This method works with limescale, too, so you can get two nasties off the glass. Do this daily or weekly as a preventative measure for mucky shower doors also.

How to clean glass shower doors with vinegar and dawn

  1. Put one part white vinegar into a microwaveable container, and heat for 60 seconds. 
  2. Mix with one part dish soap like Dawn and let cool, then add to a spray bottle.
  3. Spray on to glass shower doors and leave for three to five minutes before wiping with a microfiber cloth. 
  4. Rinse then squeegee dry or use a microfiber cloth. 

EauZone Plus Radius-20 Enclosure

(Image credit: Matki)

How to clean treated glass shower doors

A treated glass shower door should give you fewer cleaning headaches in the first place. The coating is designed to protect the door against stains and soap scum – to which we say hooray.

You will still need to keep up with the cleaning weekly, though. Use a mild detergent as recommended by the door manufacturer applied with a microfiber cloth, and rinse and dry.

You can treat your own shower door with a barrier spray made for the job, opt for a shower door cleaner that also acts as a repellent, or use a product designed to repel water from car windshields. You’ll need to re-apply regularly, and always take care to spray only the glass.

How to clean tempered glass shower doors

Simply use your preferred method, natural or not. There’s no need to be concerned as tempered glass is simply a type of safety glass that, if it breaks, won’t fall into dangerous shards. 

How to keep your glass shower doors gleaming

If the stains and marks have really built up the best way to clean glass shower doors could be some rather offbeat ones.

A Magic Eraser: This could tackle the marks on a glass door. You’ll need to moisten it before you clean.

A fabric softener sheet: (Yes really). Once again you’ll need to wet your cleaner before using it on the door. 

When you’re using either of these on a glass shower door, wear household gloves to protect your hands. Go gently, too, to keep the glass looking its best.

How do hotels keep glass shower doors clean?

Glass shower doors in hotels are super clean, and for the same effect, we recommend the natural method using vinegar. Bear in mind, however, that these doors could have a protective coating that repels the water and helps put a stop to stains and marks. It's also likely that the glass shower doors in hotels are cleaned much more than yours – unless you, too, are doing the job daily. Regular thorough cleaning prevents build-up of grot on their doors. And finally, hotels may well have water softeners preventing the hard water deposits that make stains on glass shower doors. 

Expert tips on how to clean glass shower doors

Tiny home interiors

(Image credit: Canopy & Stars)

What do the cleaning gurus recommend when it comes to cleaning glass shower doors? Get in the know.

Queen of Clean Lynsey Crombie’s shower glass cleaning tip

For British author, blogger and Insta sensation Lynsey Crombie, the key to getting a glass shower door clean is to get a little help. ‘I use my Karcher for the doors as it’s brilliant,’ she says. Find the Window Vac on Amazon

Clean Mama Becky Rapinchuk’s shower glass cleaning tip

Clean Mama Becky swears by using a daily shower spray to keep soap scum at bay, and has her own recipe: ‘Half a cup vodka; 1 cup water; 10 drops peppermint essential oil. Mix and store in a spray bottle. Spray after showering. No rinsing necessary,’ she reveals.

Martha Stewart’s shower glass cleaning tip

America’s number one homemaker has a great strategy for restoring the shine to shower glass once you’ve removed the marks, by spritzing the surface with rubbing alcohol and then polishing it up with a clean microfibre cloth. It's that simple!

Your glass shower door cleaning essentials

Shop Better Life Natural Tub and Tile Cleaner from Amazon

Use this spray for shower glass and the rest of the bathroom. It’s safe for kids and pets.View Deal

Shop Mr. Clean Magic Eraser Bathroom Scrubber from Amazon

Sort out soap scum with this handy number.View Deal

Shop Bounce Fabric Softener Sheets from Amazon

Try them on shower glass when deep cleaning is the order of the day.View Deal

Shop Heinz Distilled White Vinegar from Amazon

This store-cupboard staple will help you keep shower glass clean – but much, much more, too.View Deal

Shop Dawn Dish Soap from Amazon

Partner with white vinegar for a homemade shower glass cleaning solution.View Deal

Shop Invisible Shield Glass & Surface Cleaner and Repellent from Amazon

This cleaner is designed to prevent the adhesion and build-up of soap scum and deposits.View Deal

So clean you could step through them! (Please don't.)

Sarah Warwick
Sarah Warwick

Sarah is a freelance journalist and editor writing for websites, national newspapers, and magazines. She’s spent most of her journalistic career specialising in homes – long enough to see fridges become smart, decorating fashions embrace both minimalism and maximalism, and interiors that blur the indoor/outdoor link become a must-have. She loves testing the latest home appliances, revealing the trends in furnishings and fittings for every room, and investigating the benefits, costs and practicalities of home improvement. It's no big surprise that she likes to put what she writes about into practice, and is a serial house revamper. For Realhomes.com, Sarah reviews coffee machines and vacuum cleaners, taking them through their paces at home to give us an honest, real life review and comparison of every model.