How to Properly Clean Your Mirrors | Maid4Condos

How to Properly Clean Your Mirrors

How to Properly Clean Your Mirrors
February 13, 2020

Of all the surfaces to clean in your home, the shiny ones are the most finicky when it comes to creating a perfect sheen. Mirrors are tough to clear of fingerprints and smudges without smearing everything around and making it worse.

There’s nothing quite as bad as spraying and wiping a mirror, only to revisit it moments later and see streaks where the cleaner touched it. So, what can you do as a homeowner to eliminate these problems and create the perfect streak-free mirror you deserve?

At Maid4Condos, we receive this question often, and while we truly believe nobody cleans a mirror quite like us, we’re happy to share some tips and tricks for the DIY’ers out there.

How to Properly Clean Your Mirrors

Pre-Cleaning Your Mirror

It sounds like overkill, but before you get to the polishing and shining of your mirror, you should focus on the actual dirt and residue living there.

The most difficult mirrors to clean are those situated in the bathroom or over a bedroom vanity. These mirrors receive a generous helping of toothpaste splatter, makeup particles, and hairspray residue.

But, isn’t that what the glass cleaner is supposed to take care of? Not exactly. Glass cleaner removes dust and smears but doesn’t penetrate anything more substantial than the oil from your fingertips.

Before you get to polishing invest in some cotton balls and rubbing alcohol. The cotton balls offer the perfect amount of texture to break apart stuck-on gunk without scratching the mirror.

The alcohol penetrates even the thickest hairspray and weakens its bond to the glass. This makes it much easier to wipe away. Alternatively, a combination of 1:1 vinegar and water does the trick.

Polishing Your Mirror

With deep mirror clean tips out of the way, it’s time to tackle the surface with a good polishing technique. The best cloth is a microfiber with a flat weave, and the best cleaner is any glass cleaner or home-made vinegar spray.

An important part of this process is applying an even yet minimal spritz of cleaner. Too much cleaner and you’ll be left with drip and streak marks. A light misting is best.

When wiping, begin at the top and working your way down so that as you wipe, residual cleaning solution drips down and is caught up in the next swipe across the mirror. Begin at the left corner and glide to the right. Repeat again and again as you move down the mirror. By the end, you should be able to wipe the cloth across the bottom of the mirror, leaving a perfectly clean space.

Sometimes, spots get missed and splotches occur, even when you’ve taken care to clean evenly. If you notice one or two small spots where the sheen is uneven, try gently rubbing a dry microfiber cloth over the spot. So long as the spot wasn’t caused by oil or grease, the area should buff clean in a few swipes.

If it is some form of grease or residue, the spot will need to be cleaned by your vinegar solution again before trying to buff it out.

Mirror Cleaning Tips to Avoid

Now that we’ve covered the most rewarding methods of mirror cleaning, let’s visit the mirror clean tips you should avoid. Some of these cleaning faux pas are based on folk tales, while others are just common sense to avoid.

Most leave your mirror worse than they started and cost you time and supplies you could save by using more of the above mirror remedies

1. Paper towels

It’s an easy staple to grab and go with, but paper towels are full of tiny paper particles, which leave a dusty-looking residue on the surface of the mirror. The result is a powdery, chalky visual through which you can’t see yourself clearly.

2. Newspaper

Your grandmother and her grandmother before her probably all used newspaper to clean their mirrors.

Unfortunately, the ink and paper we use today are very different from newspaper products of yore. Now, you’re likely to see ink transfer and other issues crop up, making the surface murkier than it already is.

3. Bath towels

Wiping a steamy mirror always produces a perfect looking sheen. Only until the mirror cools, the condensation subsides, and the steam fades. Then, all you’re left with is the smudgy outline of where your bath towel touched the mirror.

4. Multi-surface cleaners

Windex and other glass cleaners are almost always the best options for a squeaky-clean mirror. Non-glass cleaners tend to leave a residue behind, sometimes greasy in appearance. This is because of the chemicals inside which are designed to treat specific surfaces like wood or ceramic.

5. Abrasive cleaning tools

It might seem obvious, but some people aren’t sure which tools are good to use on glass and which aren’t. To polish a mirror, all the best mirror clean tips suggest a microfiber cloth with a flat weave. These soft cloths detract from the chance of scratching.

Hopefully, this list of don’ts is just as informative as our list of dos.

If you’re interested in learning more about mirror cleaning, call Maid4Condos at 1-647-822-0601 or contact us here.

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