Tile & Grout – How to keep it clean the easy way

Cleaning tile and grout can be a nasty job, but it doesn’t have to be! I am going to share with you a simple secret on how to clean tile and to keep it that way.

I’m all about using non-toxic and natural cleaners in my home and have done so for many years. You don’t have to use powerful chemicals to get things clean and sanitized. The KEY is…PREVENTIVE MAINTENANCE!

Here’s the deal, when it comes to shower tile & grout; you can’t wait for weeks between cleaning it. If you do, hard water deposits, soap scum, and even mold will start to accumulate. Now you have a nasty job ahead of you, and one that most likely you’ll procrastinate until it gets REALLY bad. I don’t think anyone likes scrubbing their guts out on tile, I know I don’t. It’s exhausting!

This is how you keep your tile and grout clean

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So what is the big secret? I got this cool SQUEEGEE and I use it every day! Doing this one simple thing has made my life so much easier! When we added the new master bath onto our house, I swore that I would keep the tile clean from the get-go. I haven’t had to do a major scrub job yet and we have had the new shower for almost four years now.

This squeegee is the bomb! Most shower squeegees are not very wide and are made of plastic that really just smears the water around. This bad boy is wide (makes the process much quicker) and really grabs the water. LOVE IT!

It doesn’t come with a handle, but you can use any handle. You can cut a piece of 3/4 inch dowel 6 inches and you are good to go. I haven’t seen anything like it anywhere but on Amazon. I have one in each bathroom. Get a suction holder to hang it on.

What do I use to clean my tile and grout?

I make my own cleaner. I have tried several types of store-bought “natural” cleaners over the years only to be very disappointed. They just didn’t do the job. So I started tweaking recipes I found online until I found something that really works.

I have a few cleaner recipes that I like. The first one is a basic tub & tile cleaner that is good for the tub, tile, toilet, and sink.

The other one works really well if you have a lot of built-up water deposit residue, and mold going on. It’s not a totally green recipe, but so much better than using serious chemical cleaners like Lysol or Clorox.

Blue Magic Dawn Cleaner

This recipe is pretty common in the Pinterest world. It uses only two ingredients; Dawn dish cleaner and vinegar.  Many of the recipes on Pinterest call for much more soap, but I find them WAY too sudsy. You spend too much time getting rid of the soap slime.

  • 1/4 cup Dawn Dish Detergent
  • 2 cups hot vinegar

I like to recycle my Mrs. Meyers dish soap bottles for my cleaning products. The label works great for a measuring guide. (the bottom edge of the label is 1/4 cup).

Fill the rest of the bottle with hot (microwaved) vinegar.

Shake well and squirt on shower tile, toilets, and sinks.

Turn on the fan, because it does smell quite strong!

Let it sit for about 5 minutes. It really works like magic.

I looked up the rating for Dawn on EWG’s website and it scores a D for being toxic to the environment.

If you wanting to know what cleaners to avoid and what ones are safe, EWG has a great article. It gives you a list of 10 cleaners to avoid and 10 of the best ones to use. You can find it here.

My recommendation

  • Get your tub, tile, and toilet clean with the Dawn recipe (if they are bad).
  • Maintain the tile by squeegeeing after each use.
  • Clean the toilet and sinks weekly using the tub scrub.
  • Monthly clean the tile with the tub scrub. (It is a snap if you’ve been squeegeeing)!

If you are getting overwhelmed with all that it takes to keep your house clean, you may find this cleaning system helpful.  This is a fun way to spread out all the tasks so they are doable.

If you enjoy my tutorial videos, please be sure to “LIKE” my Youtube videos and “FOLLOW” me, so you don’t miss out any new upcoming tutorials.

Remember, cleaning does not have to be a pain. Unfortunately, it IS something that inevitably needs to be done, one way or the other, but we can “choose” to make the process a joy!

Happy cleaning!




I like to recycle my Mrs. Meyers dish soap bottles for my cleaning products. The label works great for a measuring guide. (the bottom edge of the label is 1/4 cup).

Jan Howell

Jan Howell

Whether it’s a new recipe, a fun craft, or some handy tips for your garden and home, I hope to empower and inspire you with skills that you can use to create joy, improved health, and to do it in a simple way.

Read More

How to Maintain a Clean, Orderly Home – the perfect cleaning system to keep you from going insane

cleaning system
Now the days are longer, are you ready to do a little SPRING  (summer) CLEANING? I sure am. Before you put on your rubber gloves and cleaning aprons, stop and think about how you handle all the tasks that need to be done around your house. Do you have a cleaning system? Or do you randomly dive into a job here and there only to find yourself going in circles?
Do you have a tendency to get all gung ho and attack too many projects at once, leaving you feeling OVERWHELMED and FRUSTRATED? I used to until I created a cleaning system for myself and my family that allows us to get things done a little at a time.
I have purchased and tried other lists and cleaning systems, but none of them really fit my lifestyle and didn’t quite jive with the tasks that I needed to be done at MY house. The pre-formatted lists would never get completed and  I would find myself feeling like a failure, overwhelmed again by all the things that were not getting done.

This Keeping House Cleaning System that I have put together really works because you can adapt it and customize it to the needs of your home and those who are helping out around the house. What I love is that EVERYONE in the family knows exactly what, when, and how to do their chores, because you will have created a custom chart just for them.

cleaning system
If you are the only one keeping house, you will have a plan. You won’t find yourself wandering around all morning wondering what you should do or where to begin. If you stick to it, you will get things done. And when things get done, you feel fabulous because you have completed something!

The challenge will be, to NOT do more than is on the list. Seem crazy? This is what usually happens. You get all excited about cleaning, then you have a little time to do a little more and then a little more.

Before you know it, you’re burned out for the day and you don’t want to do anymore the next day. Sound familiar?

The key is to do a little at a time, at a steady pace and you will find magic happen in your home.

If you stick to your list, you will find yourself having MORE TIME to do the things you really want to.

Setting up the cleaning system will take a little time at the first, but will be well worth your time in the long run!

Here is the cleaning system process

Analyze each room and determine exactly what tasks need to be done and how often.
Make a schedule. Decide which days would be the best to accomplish these tasks.
Split up the tasks with others in the family and create personal chore charts.
Create a tickler file for the bigger, not-so-frequent tasks.

6 different editable PDF files are included in the cleaning house system. The forms will help you set up your system so you can create chore charts for each member of the family. 

Family dynamics and schedules will change. No worries.  Saving your files will allow you to tweak and make adjustments. That’s the beauty of the editable PDF files!

My daughter just moved out, therefore I had to rearrange and distribute her tasks, which was easy because of the alterable forms I had saved.

cleaning system
The printable pdf forms allow you to type in whatever information you want, customized to your needs.
cleaning system
Create a cute tickler file for the bigger, not so frequent tasks
cleaning system
Adding one or two of these cards at a time to your schedule will keep you on top of the BIG jobs.
cleaning system

After you complete the task, write the date on the back.

(If your kids are doing the task, it helps to put their initial). This will show accountability!

When the task is complete, put that task card in the back of that file section. As a result, this will help rotate tasks and help you eventually work through all the tasks.

cleaning system

Keep some empty cards handy in your cleaning apron to jot down those jobs you don’t have cards for yet. I love my keeping house aprons! If you sew, the pattern is available here.

Where do you get the Keeping House Cleaning system?

You can purchase the printable files here.

Happy Cleaning and remember………cleaning is a JOY!

Jan Howell

Jan Howell

Whether it’s a new recipe, a fun craft, or some handy tips for your garden and home, I hope to empower and inspire you with skills that you can use to create joy, improved health, and to do it in a simple way.

Read More