How to Clean a Bath Mat

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It is a good habit to clean your bathtub, toilet, shower, and bathroom at regular intervals. But, in the process, you do miss out on the bathmats that are also an integral part of your bathroom. They can spread the most unhygienic bacteria, mildew, and fungi around the bathroom, through your feet.

At times, these mats are the reason your bathroom starts to stink. It is because, generally, what is underfoot, is mainly neglected or replaced when the damage is noticeable. But a cleaning approach can help these mats last longer.

How to Clean a Bath Mat?

The moisture and warmth that your bathmat experiences at all times are the reasons for bacteria build-up over it. If you have a dirty mat in your bathroom, then you are walking onto the pool of bacteria and mildew every day after your shower. And you spread it around your house!

Therefore, you need to consider cleaning the bath mats or rugs in the bathroom. If you are unaware of how to clean a bath mat, then this guide is here to help you with home remedies for the purpose. Follow till the end to learn the ideal steps and methods to clean the bath mats. 

Method 1: Hand Washing of the Bath Mats

People use bath mats that are made up of natural fibers, such as jute or bamboo. They are fragile but are very appealing to the eyes. Therefore, it is better to wash them with hands, as machines would destroy them. And here are the steps for you to wash the bath mats by hand:

Brown slippers on a rainbow colored bath mat

Step 1: Prepare the Bath Mats for Cleaning

  1. Take the bath mats out to the open space. If they are wet, then let them dry first. 
  2. Shake them out to get rid of the loose dirt, dust, and debris. 
  3. If possible, you can make use of a vacuum cleaner hose to vacuum clean the dust more efficiently. 
  4. Get all the bath mats in your bathrooms to clean at once. Hence, this will save you time and energy. 

Step 2: Prepare the Cleaning Solution

  1. You will need 1 cup white vinegar, 1 cup water, and two tablespoons of Dawn. 
  2. Mix it up well in a bowl or container to prepare the solution. 
  3. If you have a spare spray bottle, you can just fill the solution in it. 
  4. Run some test sprays to ensure that the spray pump is good to go. 

Step 3: Spray the Solution Over Bath Mat(s)

  1. If you have any stains over the bath mat, then spray the solution over them. 
  2. Use a clean cloth to scrub those stain surfaces after spraying the solution. 
  3. Continue the scrubbing process to ensure that the stain is out from the surface. 
  4. If you see the stain is still intact but lighter than before, then just respray the solution, and repeat the process. 
  5. Continue with this until the stains are out. 

Step 4: Prepare the Tub of Detergent Solution

  1. Make arrangements for a big tub with full water in it. 
  2. Now, add a few tablespoons of detergent to the tub. 
  3. Stir it well with a clean stick to mix the detergent with water. If you intend to mix it by hand, then you need to wear gloves to do that. 

Step 5: Scrub the Bath Mat(s) With Water & Detergent Solution

  1. Use this solution to scrub the bath mat gently. 
  2. You can prefer using a sponge for scrubbing purposes. 
  3. Please do not submerge the bamboo mats entirely into the tub; instead, you should submerge the sponge into it. It will ensure that most of the solution is being used for scrubbing the bath mat. 
  4. You can then rinse the bath mat with clean water to wash away the solution remnants. 
  5. Go ahead and dry the bath mat on a rope under direct sunlight. 

Method 2: Cleaning the Bath Mats in Machine

Some types of bath mats that consist of nylon, polyester, and cotton are more durable in comparison with natural fibers. Therefore, they can be used in the washer or washing machines without any problem.

A bathroom with a bath mat beside the bathtub

But, you need to follow certain specific requirements in order to clean the bath mats safely in a machine. The steps are as follows: 

  1. Take out the mat to open space. 
  2. Let it dry if it is wet. 
  3. Shake it well to get rid of the loose dust, dirt, and debris. 
  4. Now, fold the bath rug or mat in half. 
  5. Place it inside the washer or machine. 
  6. Remember, you should not have any other mat, towel, or cloths within the machine while washing the mat. 
  7. You need to wash each of the bath mats, one by one, if you opt for machine washing. 
  8. Add some detergent solution onto the machine as per recommendations. 
  9. Let the machine do its work, and you can sit back now. 
  10. When the washing is over, you can straight away dry the bath mat in the dryer or hang it outside under direct sunlight to dry. 
  11. It might take a couple of hours to dry when you place it outside. You can then place it back again where it belongs. 

Method 3: Cleaning Plastic Bath Mat That Has Suction Cups in It

Bath mats that are made up of plastic have suction cups in them. And they need a different approach for cleaning them by hands and homemade solutions.

Plastic bath mats are home to mildew and mold growth when they are not clean over time. Therefore, you need to disinfect them with an ideal cleaning approach.

Here are the steps for you to get an idea of how to clean bath mats that come with suction cups: 

  1. Take the plastic bath mats out for the cleaning process. 
  2. Keep it flat on the surface, and ensure that the suction cups are facing upwards. 
  3. Now, you need to fill a tub with warm water.
  4. Submerge the bath mat entirely in the tub of warm water. 
  5. Now, add two cups of hydrogen peroxide to the tub. If you have bleach, you can consider using it as an alternative to hydrogen peroxide. 
  6. It would be best if you let the mat settle down in that solution for around 30 minutes. If the staining is really bad, then let it settle for few hours. 
  7. You will need a bristle brush for the scrubbing purpose. 
  8. Scrub the mat and the suction cups while it is still in the tub. 
  9. To get into the tough corners of those suction cups, use a toothbrush. 
  10. After you are over with the cleaning process, you can rinse it with clean water again and place it back in the bathroom space. 

Method 4: Cleaning the Bath Mat With Vinegar Solution

When you talk about home remedies for cleaning purposes, especially for bathroom cleaning, vinegar is always an effective solution. If you intend to learn more about the benefits of vinegar aside from cleaning hacks, then you can check this informative resource that explains it briefly.

But, first, you need to understand the consumption amount for the vinegar to use for cleaning your bath mats. So, here are the steps for you to follow:

  1. Fill the sink of your bathroom with water by blocking the drain pathway. 
  2. Now, add 1 cup of vinegar to it. 
  3. Stir it well to mix the vinegar and water solution. 
  4. Submerge the bath mats into the solution. 
  5. Let it settle for around 30 minutes or an hour, depending upon the toughness of the stain. 
  6. You will need a clean bristled brush to scrub the mat while it is still in the sink. 
  7. When you are over with the cleaning process, you can then rinse it thoroughly with clean water. 
  8. Now, let the bath mat dry completely before you can use it again. 

Check out this YouTube video to get a better idea of how you can carry out the cleaning methods for the bath mats.  

A bathroom with wooden floor and black bath mats

Frequently Asked Questions

How Often Should I Clean My Bath Mats?

It is better to clean the bath mats once every 3 to 5 days. It depends upon how many people are using the same bathroom. If two or more people use that bathroom, consider cleaning the mat in 5 days. But if more people are there, then clean them every three days. 

Can I Clean My Rubber Bath Mat in a Dishwasher?

Yes, you can clean bath mats in a dishwasher on the top shelves. The mat materials that are durable and feasible to be used in machines are the ones that can go well with dishwashers.

So, make sure you mark that. And if you wish to explore what other things you can clean in a dishwasher, then you can just go through this link.


So, from now on, when you are planning to clean your bathroom, bathtub, toilet, and other essentials, count on cleaning the bath mats or rugs as well. Also, don’t forget to clean your carpets, if you have them too.

In fact, they need your attention for your own good! So, do it all by yourself with these methods, without spending a penny on hiring professionals.  

Allen Michael is the Founder and Editor of Home Viable, a website that he started to provide readers with tips on home efficiency and automation. He draws on his engineering background combined with his family-of-four experiences for his articles.