How to Clean Marble: Countertops, Floors, Showers and More 

Updated June 29, 2022
Woman Hand Cleaning Marble Surface

From marble showers to marble floors, marble looks beautiful in every area of your home. But cleaning it is a bit more complex than other types of surfaces. Get the dos and don'ts for how to clean the marble in your home. Get tricks for dealing with specific stains without harming the surface of your stone.

Dos and Don'ts of Cleaning and Caring for Marble

Marble is a gorgeous and durable stone you can use all around your house. But just like a lot of natural stones, marble has some specific instructions for cleaning and caring for it. Get the dos and don'ts when cleaning and caring for marble.

  • Don't use harsh cleaners and chemicals on your marble: avoid abrasive or acidic cleaners like white vinegar and lemon.
  • Do clean up spills immediately. This can stop them from sinking into the surface of the stone.
  • Don't allow dust and dirt to build up on your marble. Dirt, even fine dirt, can cause scratches.
  • Do stay on top of dusting and sweeping marble. Make sure to use mats and coasters when possible to avoid scratches.

How to Clean Marble

Now that you know what not to do when cleaning marble, it's time to look at what you should be using for the different marble surfaces around your home. For these cleaning solutions, you'll need a few different cleaners.

How to Clean Marble Countertops or Tables

Cleaning kitchen quartz countertop

When cleaning marble countertops, reach for a mild dishwashing detergent. That's really all you need. You can also use a cleaner specifically for marble surfaces.

  1. Mix warm water and a few drops of dishwashing detergent.
  2. Dip the sponge in the mixture.
  3. Wipe down the area using circular motions.
  4. Buff dry with a clean towel.

Easy Ways to Clean Marble Floors

Clean Marble Floors

The key to keeping your marble floors looking like new is prevention. You must clean floors of dirt often and wash them about once a week to keep on top of dirt and grime.

  1. Dust mop the entire floor to remove any loose dirt.
  2. Add a few drops of a dishwashing detergent to warm water.
  3. Wet a mop with the solution.
  4. Wring it out well.
  5. Mop the entire floor.
  6. Buff out stains with a bit of hydrogen peroxide on a cloth.
  7. Rinse the entire floor with water.
  8. Dry with a clean towel by pushing it across the floor.

Be sure not to get the mop too wet when mopping the floor. Having standing water can create stains.

How to Clean Marble Fireplace and Surroundings

Clean Marble Fireplace

Do you have a beautiful marble fireplace or mantle? Cleaning it is a breeze.

  1. Mix warm water and a few drops of dish soap.
  2. Use a cloth to give the marble an overall cleaning.
  3. Scrub any stubborn residue with a soft bristle brush, dipping in the soap water.
  4. For tight nooks, bust out the toothbrush and scrub.
  5. Rinse everything down.
  6. For stained areas, mix a 1:1 ratio of hydrogen peroxide and water. (You can also use ammonia and water.)
  7. Scrub down the stained area with the bristle brush.
  8. Wipe everything down with a damp cloth to rinse.
  9. Dry the marble with a towel.

This method also works for many marble statues you have in your home as well.

Cleaning a Marble Shower

Marble Shower

Cleaning a marble shower is a daily affair. After taking a shower, you'll want to grab a dry microfiber cloth or squeegee and wipe down the water. This prevents it from getting water spots and soap residue. You'll also want to give the shower a good overall cleaning once a week.

  1. Mix water and a few drops of dish soap in a water bottle.
  2. Starting at the top of the shower, spray and wipe down the walls.
  3. Wipe down the floor of the shower.
  4. Tackle hard water stains with a bit of hydrogen peroxide.
  5. Put a bit on a cloth and leave it on the stain for 5-10 minutes.
  6. Scrub with soapy water to remove any peroxide.
  7. Turn on the shower and rinse everything down.
  8. Buff every area dry with a clean cloth.

Quick Methods to Clean Marble Stains

Marble is a fairly delicate material. Therefore, you need to act fast when spills happen (and spills will happen). Depending on the stain, what you need will be a bit different. But, you should have a few different cleaning agents on hand.

  • Ammonia
  • Mild dishwashing detergent
  • Flour or cornstarch
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Plastic wrap
  • Sponge
  • Baking soda
  • Scrub brush
  • Polishing powder

Oil Stains

If you spill a bit of Italian dressing or oil on your countertop, you might notice a darkening of the stone. In this case, you want to grab the ammonia.

  1. Create a soapy water mixture and add 3-4 drops of ammonia.
  2. Apply directly to the stain.
  3. Wipe away.
  4. For stubborn stains, make a paste of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide.
  5. Apply to the stain.
  6. Cover in plastic wrap.
  7. Let it sit for an hour or two.
  8. Gently wipe away with a cloth.

Organic Stains

Sometimes a party with friends leaves red wine and coffee stains on your table or floor. These organic stains can don't have to become part of the decor. Get rid of them with a bit of flour.

  1. Add 2 tablespoons of dishwashing detergent to a cup of water.
  2. Mix in enough flour/cornstarch to create a thick paste.
  3. Apply the paste to the stained area.
  4. Cover it with plastic wrap.
  5. Let it sit for at least an hour. (Overnight is better.)
  6. Pull off the plastic wrap and wipe away.

Ink Stains

Another offender to mar up your magnificent marble is ink. Say a pen explodes or leaks on your light-colored counter. Reach for the hydrogen peroxide.

  1. Add a bit of hydrogen peroxide to a cloth.
  2. Put it over the ink stain.
  3. Allow it to sit for 5 or so minutes.
  4. Rinse and repeat until the stain is gone.

For darker-colored marble ink stains, you might want to try acetone since it doesn't have a bleaching agent like hydrogen peroxide.

Rust Stains

Did you leave a few nails on the counter and forget about them? Now you have some nice little rust marks staining your marble. You can try the flour or baking soda mixture to remove the stains. For fresh stains, you might get rid of them with a bit of scrubbing.

  1. Add a bit of soap to a soft scrub brush.
  2. Scrub the stain gently.
  3. Rinse and repeat.
  4. Rinse the area completely once the stain is gone.

Buffing Scratches or Etch Marks From Marble

The reason that you don't want to get white vinegar or lemon juice on marble is because of the acid in them. The acid can work to etch the marble, allowing stains to get in. Before you buff anything, you'll want to remove the stain first. You can then use a polishing powder to buff the area.

  1. Apply a bit of buffing powder to the etched or scratched surface.
  2. Use a damp cloth to buff the powder into the stone.
  3. Allow it to dry.

How to Clean Marble the Right Way

Learning how to clean natural stone like marble is crucial, especially if you plan to invest in it as a building material. Marble is not cheap, so knowing how to maintain its integrity will help you preserve your investment.

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How to Clean Marble: Countertops, Floors, Showers and More