Bathroom Cleaning Checklist

Cleaning the bathroom can be a daunting task. This bathroom cleaning checklist will help you tackle it one step at a time instead of feeling overwhelmed.

Gloved hand cleaning bathroom sink with sponge

This checklist isn’t just about getting your bathroom really clean. It’s about doing things in an order that makes it easier and saves you some time.

Before you start, you might want to check out some bathroom closet organization ideas. Keeping your linen closet organized can help save time on cleaning.

Declutter the Counter and Tub Surfaces

It’s much easier to clean surfaces if you get bottles and soap dishes out of the way before you start. It may sound like an extra step, but it really saves time.

I use a basket to transport everything from the counter surfaces to an adjacent room or the hallway. Just put it on the counter, put everything on the counter into it, and move it to the other room.

You can use nearly any tray, storage bin or basket for this. Designate one for it and keep it in or near the bathroom for when you need it.

Bonus Tip: 

You can make this even easier by keeping a lot of your toiletries in baskets or trays on the counter. Like these storage baskets from Amazon.

Note that you don’t have to do things in this specific order. Any order gets the job done.

Cleaners to Use

There are a ton of cleaners to choose from out there, but you basically need these things:

  • An all-purpose disinfectant or cleaner (you can even make your own disinfectant). Some people use white vinegar instead, which isn’t as disinfecting as commercial brands, but is a great general cleaner.
  • A toilet bowl cleaner
  • An ammonia based glass cleaner like Windex
  • A rag or sponge
  • A floor cleaner like Bona

Make a Basin of Cleaner

Unless you’re using a spray cleaner, you’re probably using a cleaner concentrate that you’re supposed to mix in a basin with water. The easy way to do this is: plug up your sink and pour in the water and cleaner. Come back to this to wet your rag or sponge as needed.

The Tub/Shower

Clean your tub or shower and the surrounding tile or wall panels. With most materials, you can use use the cleaner or disinfectant you use on most of the bathroom. But if you have marble, granite or certain polymers, you may have instructions on special cleaners to use.

Faucets and shower heads can also be cleaned with your standard cleaner – again, unless yours are made out of something unusual.

If you have shower doors, clean them with a glass cleaner like Windex. If you have shower curtains, wipe them down with your all purpose cleaner. They can collect a lot of soap and product scum.

If there’s any hair or buildup at the drain, pull it out and throw it away.

Bonus Tip: most shower/tub drains don’t have great stoppers for catching hair. If you have long hair, you’ll avoid some drain clogs by taking the stopper out and using a Tubshroom instead. I’ve had one for years, and it catches all the hair plus some conditioner scum.

The Vanity Mirror

Clean the mirror above your vanity with a glass cleaner.

Clean the Counters and Sinks

Now that you’ve cleared off your vanity, it’s easy to give it a quick, thorough cleaning. Clean sinks, faucets and fixtures, and the drain plug too.

Be sure to check for scum rings around the spots where toiletry bottles sit. Liquid hand soap is mostly less messy than bar soap, but for some reason the bottles often leave rings.

Clean the Toilet

Once you’ve cleaned the other surfaces, it’s time to deal with the toilet.

The first step is to spray your toilet bowl cleaner into the bowl, as per instructions. Cleaners made for this purpose have an angled spout so you can spray it right up under the rim of the bowl.

To completely disinfect, you need to let it sit for a few minutes. While you’re waiting for the toilet bowl cleaner to soak in, clean the outside of the toilet with your all-purpose disinfectant.

Pay attention to the flush handle, which is a high-contact area that gets touched by germy hands. Clean the lid, the seat (especially under the seat) and anything that looks dirty.

Now that the bowl cleaner has soaked long enough, scrub the bowl with a toilet brush. This means the entire bowl, up to the part that meets the seat. All of it can get dirty.

Any hard water stains can be removed with a pumice stone.

The Floor

Vacuum any bath mats you have and take them outside the bathroom. Vacuum the bathroom floor and then mop it with a floor cleaner like Bona.

Some people recommend putting bathroom rugs through the washing machine every time you clean, but despite what they claim in their marketing, they almost never hold up well to many washings.

So I suggest you vacuum them every time you clean, and only put them through the washer when you think it’s necessary. Which depends on how quickly your family gets them dirty.

Clean the Trash Can

You don’t need to clean the trash can every time you clean your bathroom, but once in a while is good. Using a liner can cut down on the need for this.

All you need to do is empty it and clean it with your all-purpose disinfectant and let it dry.