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5 tips for cleaning your shower curtain in the washing machine

These tips will make your shower curtain just like new without ruining it.


Close your curtain to keep it fresher, longer.

Alina Bradford/CNET

Resist the urge to toss your shower curtain when it becomes grimey. Clean it without lifting a scrub brush by tossing it in the washing machine.

But be sure to follow these tips if you want to prevent your shower curtain from coming out of the machine in shreds (been there, done that):

  1. Never use cold water to wash your plastic shower curtain. Many plastic shower curtains can become brittle in cold water, making it more likely to shred. Always use warm water for the best clean. Even if you are just washing a fabric liner, still opt for warm.
  2. Do use your regular detergent. Use enough for a medium-sized load.
  3. Don't use fabric softener. Fabric softener can add a layer of film to your shower curtain that can attract grime.
  4. Set your washer to Normal cycle. It won't take much to get the grime off of your shower curtain, so no need for heavier cycles.
  5. Don't put it in the dryer. As soon as your shower curtain is finished washing, hang it back on the rod and let it air dry. Your dryer can melt or distort certain fabrics.

Now keep it clean

To keep your shower curtain fresh, make sure to close the curtain when you get out of the tub or shower so it can air-dry properly. 

Also, make sure the curtain doesn't bunch up on the floor of the shower or tub. If it does, hang the rod up high enough that there is a small gap between the floor and the curtain. If the rod can't go any higher, trim the bottom of the plastic curtain with a pair of sharp scissors.

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