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Can You Wash Plastic Shower Curtains

Of course you clean your bathroom and shower, but how often do you clean your plastic shower curtain or shower liner? If you’re like many people, the answer is not that often. You may not even be aware that it’s possible to wash plastic shower curtains, which means you probably replace them when they start to look dirty.

Good news: You can wash a plastic shower curtain and the process isn’t that difficult. Check out the tips below to discover how to get a clean shower curtain so that you don’t have to toss out every few months.

Pretreat Your Shower Curtains

Pretreating your plastic shower curtains can do wonders in preventing nasty buildup from soap scum.

When you get a new plastic shower curtain, run it through the rinse cycle of your washing machine with a little bit of distilled white vinegar. You’ll want to set the water to warm—not hot—because the last thing you want is a melted shower curtain inside of your washer. You may also want to look in on the curtain after a few minutes to check the temperature.

After the rinse cycle is complete, simply hang the clean shower curtain or liner on the shower curtain rod to dry. The pretreatment should keep your shower curtain from getting scummy as soon as an untreated curtain would.

How to Wash a Shower Curtain

There are two different methods you can use to wash a plastic shower curtain, and both are fairly painless. 

  • Method 1The Washing Machine: Wash your shower curtain in the washer using warm water combined with vinegar, baking soda or gentle laundry detergent. Note: Pick one of the three cleaners listed above. Do not use all three at once. You don’t want to cause a science experiment volcano or a nasty chemical reaction in your washing machine. Afterwards, hang your clean shower curtain back on the shower rod to dry.
  • Method 2—Handwashing: You can also wash your plastic shower curtain using baking soda and a microfiber cloth. Dampen the cloth and then sprinkle some baking soda on it. You’ll use this cleaning solution to scrub the entire shower curtain. After scrubbing, rinse with warm water and revisit any patches of soap scum or hard water stains that are left with the cloth and baking soda. Rinse again until you have a clean shower curtain. This process also leaves a nice fresh scent in the bathroom.

Summary: The best methods for cleaning a plastic shower curtain are using a washing machine or handwashing. For the washing machine, use gentle laundry detergent on a delicate cycle. For handwashing, use baking soda with sprinkles of water and scrub the whole thing down outside or in a large tub.

How Often Should I Wash My Plastic Shower Curtain?

Probably more often than you think. After all, you come face to face with your shower curtain or plastic liner on an almost daily basis. Ideally, you should be washing it once a month. At the very least, however, you should aim to clean your plastic shower curtain once every three months. When you think about it, four to 12 times a year isn’t really that often and the process shouldn’t take long at all now that you know how to wash a shower curtain.

Keep in mind that washing a shower curtain will help keep it free of soap scum, but mildew is another story. If you’ve noticed mildew on your shower curtain—be it plastic or cloth—don’t fret. Use these tips on banishing mildew from shower curtains so that you can bathe in peace.