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6 Ways to Make Cleaning the Bathroom Less Awful

A man scrubbing the toilet in his bathroom with a cleaning brush, wearing rubber gloves.
Robert Kneschke/Shutterstock

Cleaning the bathroom is everyone’s least favorite chore. Unfortunately, it’s not going to clean itself! Here are some tips to make the process a little more bearable.

Use an App with Rewards

The reward for the effort it requires to bake an apple pie is a delicious apple pie! The reward for cleaning your bathroom is just having a bathroom that isn’t dirty. Using an app to “gamify” the experience, though, can add some fun and help you stay on top of it. You might think you scrubbed the toilet just last week, but your app says it was over a month ago. Yikes!

Apps are especially motivating if they offer rewards or points. Seeing those pile up might be just the push you need to grab that toilet brush—even if the points don’t mean anything.

Creating your own reward system is also effective, such as having a pizza night or enjoying your favorite dessert after completing this difficult chore. Use chore charts, stickers, or whatever it takes to get the job done.

If you have roommates or kids, try one of these apps to gamify your household chores. Avoid assigning the weekly bathroom cleaning to the same person all the time, though, unless they truly love it—in which case, send them our way!

Play Music

There’s no reason cleaning the bathroom has to be a boring, dreadful, lackluster event. Get a portable Bluetooth speaker and blast some upbeat tunes while you work. No one will judge you for having a solo dance party with that mop, as long as the bathroom is clean at the end.

There’s even a Cleaning the Bathroom playlist on Spotify. Rock on!

Another idea is to set your iPad or tablet on the counter and play your favorite TV show while you scrub away all that dirt and grime. Just make sure it’s a show that’s light and fun, so you can intermittently watch while cleaning.

You can also listen to a compelling podcast while you scrub, if you prefer.

Do a Little Bit Every Day

If cleaning your entire bathroom takes a huge chunk out of your day or zaps all your energy, try breaking it into manageable tasks. In theory, you can spread out these bite-sized chores throughout the week.

Here’s a general plan:

  • Monday: Clean the mirrors.
  • Tuesday: Wipe down the sink and countertops.
  • Wednesday: Empty the trash cans.
  • Thursday: Scrub the toilet.
  • Friday: Wash rugs, bathmats, towels, etc.
  • Weekend: Scrub the bathtub/shower, sweep and mop the floors, and do a deeper clean whenever necessary.

If you’re annoyed by small tasks, this format might not work for you. But if you enjoy not having to dedicate an hour or two to cleaning a nasty bathroom, this might be ideal!


If you have kids, there’s no reason why you should be cleaning the bathroom all by yourself. Yes, kids of all ages are capable of helping clean the bathroom!

First, we suggest printing off a bathroom cleaning checklist and displaying it in a prominent place. This way, you can ensure the bathroom is cleaned up to your standards.

You can also try the Cleaning Checklist app for Android or Spotless for iOS which allow you to create detailed to-do lists and share them with other family members.

Next, create a system that rotates the bathroom chore. Whether it’s a chore spinning wheel (as shown in the video above), a chart, or board, it doesn’t matter—just choose the system that works best for your family.

Lastly, make sure the chores are age-appropriate. Your preschooler can start by wiping down the inside of a tub with a sponge. Your 8-year-old can sweep and mop the bathroom floor, and your 10-year-old is definitely capable of scrubbing the toilet.

Work together as a team, play music and have a mini dance party, or offer a fun incentive for everyone to enjoy afterward.

And your teen? Well, he or she can handle the whole job! Just think of it as prepping for adult life.

Use a Toilet Bowl Cleaner System

What if we told you that scrubbing the toilet is a thing of the past? For around $12, you can hand the task over to a toilet bowl cleaner system. It’s quick and easy to install, and allows you to go months without picking up a toilet brush. That’s right, we said months!

Just make sure you follow the instructions and hook it up using the little canister and hose. If you just toss the tablets directly into the toilet tank, they’ll dissolve too quickly and create a strong chemical smell in your bathroom.

Shower Maintenance

The bathtub and shower can be a pain to keep clean, with all the mold and mildew that festers deep within. Yuck!

Here are a few tips to help you keep up with daily shower maintenance:

Staying on top of your shower’s cleanliness will make tackling a deep clean so much easier (and don’t forget about the showerhead).

Cleaning the bathroom doesn’t have to be a torturous task. It’ll never be fun, but at least you can make it more manageable with these tricks! A spotless, sparkling bathroom is worth all the effort!

Jill A. Chafin Jill A. Chafin
Jill A. Chafin is a freelance writer, aerialist, dancer, food enthusiast, outdoor adventurer, and mama, based in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Read Full Bio »
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