The Homemade Way to Clean Glass and Mirrors

I am always tinkering with homemade ways to clean my home.  I don’t like the expense and chemical overload associated with conventional cleaners, so more often than not I turn to old-fashioned staples like white vinegar and baking soda to get a job done. For a while now I’ve wanted to make a homemade cleaner for windows, glass and mirrors.  A quick internet search offered hundreds of recipes, but I thought there had to be an easier method…

So, I filled an empty spray bottle with plain white vinegar, sprayed some on our bathroom mirror and wiped.  At first, it seemed like the vinegar would leave streaks. But, within a few seconds it dried, leaving behind nothing but a clean mirror.  Success!

Check out the yuckiness it picked up from a big window I had neglected to clean all winter:

For wiping, I don’t use paper towels – I don’t keep paper towels in the house because they are beyond wasteful and entirely unnecessary.  To clean windows and glass I use a resuable Method brand shammy I bought at Target several years ago.  I’ve heard old cloth diapers work well, too.

The best part about this homemade, healthy and inexpensive window and glass cleaner? Its safe enough for my daughter to use. Cleaning mirrors might be a mundane chore for me, but for her it is an absolute thrill!


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12 Comments for this entry

  1. danielle sell says:

    Old men’s undershirts work AWESOME for dusting and cleaning around the house. Cut the arms and upper chest off of them, then cut in half or into quarters. We use ours to dust (still using Pledge though, need to try your suggestion for homemade dusting spray) and to clean up messy dog paws. Totally free (since we would have thrown them away after my husband couldn’t use them anymore) and super convenient!

  2. Nicole says:

    I just have to say I am loving your blog and I am trying to get back to the basics myself! I did the same thing to my windows and mirrors the other day! 🙂 I am wondering if there is a good way to clean carpet with those harsh carpet cleaners! I hate our carpet! I would love to rip it up but that’s not an option right now! Any ideas?! Thanks

    • Maureen Smithe says:

      Welcome to Homemade Mothering, Nicole! Unfortunately, I do not have a recipe for a homemade carpet cleaner because we only have carpet in our bedrooms and it is a very forgiving material and color. From experience, however, I’ve learned that the best way to avoid a stain is to tend to it immediately.

      I’ll ask the Homemade Mothering community for some input as well. If you haven’t already, join me on Facebook to watch for responses:!/homemademothering

    • Sharon E. says:

      Hi, I read that using a HOT Steamed Iron, 1/4 c. viniger 3/4 c. warm water…..Mix 2 liquids in a spray bottle soak “set-in” stain take a clean white cloth/towel Steam Iron over stain about 3-4 minutes, remove the towel and scrub the stain until clean (few minutes) I used 1/2 c. vin. to 1 c. of water solution…it worked! Becareful tho because rug stain is very hot and i kinda burned my fingertips….just sore and use elbow grease (scrub hard). Have fun! The outcome is worth it!!

  3. Andrea says:

    I have been doing this, too. I use warm water, white vinegar and a drop of Dawn dish soap. I use a sponge or an old rag to clean, then wipe dry with the fine microfiber cloth. My windows and mirrors are cleaner than ever and streak-free.

  4. Jacob says:

    I like your blog as well, lol- but I’m a guy 🙂 I actually use a microfiber cloth? And it works very well using only water. I’m not sure if it’s made with a polyfiber or not, but- it does work very well, and no harsh chemicals necessary. Machine washable. Your method, however, sounds good too 🙂

    (I originally came on her for your laundry detergent recipe 🙂 )…

  5. Erica says:

    I grew up using newspaper for cleaning glass and mirrors. We don’t get the newspaper but my in-laws do so every once in awhile I raid their recycling can for an old paper. It leaves no streaks, film (paper towels, ugh), and it has a bit of grit to get it really clean.

  6. jennifer says:

    A few years ago I came across a microfiber cloth that is THE answer to cleaning windows! It is called Mystic Maid and it is the absolute best thing! I just use really hot water and the Mystic Maid in a bucket. You just need to wring out the cloth really well, until it’s just slightly damp. You can machine wash it, but hang to dry only. No streaks ever…just amazingly clean windows! I have recommended this to many friends and they all swear by it too! It’s priceless.

  7. Michelle says:

    Club soda also works wonderfully for cleaning windows! I found your site when looking for homemade laundry detergent recipes (am washing my first load in it right now – hope it works on my hubby’s FILTHY work clothes) and am loving all the back-to-basics ideas! Thanks for a great site!

  8. Cory Waltmathe says:

    Homemade products are really affordable and safe! I can totally agree with that. However, there are some who are not comfortable with using vinegar as a cleaner, do you have any other tips for that? In any case, this is a very easy DIY cleaning procedure to follow. Keep it up!

  9. Alexis says:

    I tried vinegar on one if my mirrors and no amount of either vinegar or polishing with anything from newspaper to microfiber will remove the finger prints. Good old fashioned finger prints. What is the reason for this anomaly? Thanks

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