5 Tips for A Clean & Healthy Shower

  • 01 of 05

    Scrub & Fix Less, Enjoy More

    Marble Clad Bathroom
    Fuse/Getty Images

    There might be a few folks who thrive on the work involved in keeping a shower space pristine. I'm not one of them. It isn't just that the wiping, squeegee-ing and spritzing of harsh cleaners is tedious, time consuming and possibly toxic; it's that this routine needs to be repeated EVERY SINGLE DAY, possibly more frequently if several household members use the same bathroom. Then, there's the maintenance: if the water slows to a dribble or the drain backs up, you'll need to...MORE make repairs, and that just doesn't strike me as a relaxing shower experience.

    If you're embarking on a bathroom remodel, you can opt for some smart choices now that will reduce your future clean-and-fix routine. But if you're making the best of the shower you've got, don't worry: check out these tips to minimize the drudgery, avoid the nasty chemicals and keep your shower clean, happy and healthy:

    The sleekly sophisticated shower above features Kohler's "Margaux" hardware.
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  • 02 of 05

    Choose Easy-Care Faucet Finishes

    American Standard Hampton shower fixtures in satin nickel finish
    "Hampton" satin nickel shower hardware by American Standard.

    Matte and oil-rubbed hardware lend drama and sophistication to a bathroom design. But textured finishes like these also tend to hold on to stains and mineral buildup. If you're replacing your showerhead and faucets, consider an easier-to-clean chrome or satin nickel style, such as the Hampton fixtures pictured above.

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  • 03 of 05

    Minimize the Grout

    Sleekly modern master bath design by ID by Gwen, Seattle, WA. Photo © ID by Gwen

    Do you get really grouchy when you have to clean the grout between your shower tiles? Perfectly understandable. It's a tough job, and scouring like mad with abrasive cleaners can make it worse, eroding the grout's surface and creating cracks that trap icky mold and dirt. Give your grout a little TLC by tossing out the chemical cleaner and switching to baby shampoo mixed with some water and applied with a soft nylon brush. And if you're remodeling your bathroom, you might want to...MORE reconsider those penny tiles for the shower. Opt instead for a stone or solid surface with minimal seams, or large-scale porcelain tiles set very closely together.

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  • 04 of 05

    Hands Off the Drain Cleaner

    Linear Quartz shower drain by ACO
    ACO Quartz linear shower drain

    While commercial drain cleaners are good at clearing plugs, the fumes are nasty and repeated use can damage your pipes. You can mix up a homemade alternative that is both safe and effective.

    Installing a new shower? You might want to consider a linear shower drain, such as the one pictured above. These modern-looking styles not only pair well with large tile, but there's also less grout to clean.

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  • 05 of 05

    Go With the Flow

    Moen's "Envi" eco-performance rain shower

    Does your shower seems a little sluggish? Before you blame your plumbing, take a look at the showerhead itself. If you live in an area with hard water, there's a good chance that mineral deposits are gunking up the spray jets. Before you reach for a chemical cleaner, you might want to try this kitchen cupboard solution first.

    If it's time to replace your showerhead, choose one with a WaterSense label and a finish that won't tarnish or show spots.