Have you ever had that chore that, while you try to ignore it, just keeps nagging at you and getting under your skin? It hangs there waiting for you to address it. Poking at your shoulder sometimes as if to say “I’m waiting.”
Mine was my master bedroom shower. It’s the room we copied almost identically from a luxury hotel room where we stayed for a wedding in Florida a few years back. We took that room, the room with a glass enclosed shower with the chrome fixtures that sparkled like sunshine, the brown and white marble wall and brown tumbled floor tile and the raindrop shower head, and made it our own. It was the one place during our home renovation I could not wait to get finished so I could have my own oasis.
But now it was bugging the crap out of me. Because every time I took a shower, it was there.
The greenish blue stains that had over time absorbed into my beautiful tiles. I couldn’t quite figure out what they were. I googled “green and blue bathroom stains” many times. I got many different answers. Copper. Magnesium. Hard water. But one thing I did find out that really stunk was how to get rid of them.
Because the marble was so porous and unique, more than likely, the old trusty internet sites said, I could not get rid of them without using something called a “poultice” that I would lay over the tiles for a day or so that would absorb the stains from the marble. Whatever they were. And maybe, just maybe, the stains could be removed. But it would be time-consuming and costly.
The room was not even five years old and I didn’t want to take a chance at ruining my beautiful, not to mention costly, bathroom marble I had so painstakingly picked out.
So, I just left it. And it proceeded to get worse and bug the hell out of me.
Until I decided to take a leap of faith with one of my all time favorites: baking soda.
So after I showered one recent morning, while the floor was still wet, I decided to try pouring on some baking soda and leaving it there to see what would happen. I took maybe six or nine of the 2×2 floor tiles and sprinkled baking soda on them. And left.
By the afternoon, I was too impatient and felt oddly guilty that I was probably ruining the tiles and would be in a lot of trouble when my husband got home. So I went upstairs to see if maybe, just maybe, the baking soda had miraculously turned green. It hadn’t.
Well, the floor was dry and the baking soda was still white. The green stains were still there. I hadn’t ruined anything. Yet.
So I thought why not give it a teensy little scrub with a nail brush just to see. Well, to my very happy surprise, as I started to put a little elbow grease onto the baking soda-covered tiles, the green disappeared. Just like that. A little scrub by a mild and natural abrasive and bam! Good as new.
What! I had been told by the people at the tile store NEVER EVER scrub marble. It is too abrasive and you will ruin the marble. So for years, I didn’t scrub. I used the lavender-scented castile soap and watched the green mucky muck take over. And then hang there over me while I ignored it and hoped one day the Green Bathroom Muck Fairy would just come and take her stuff back.
I am not sure really what the moral of this story is. Don’t be afraid to try something new? Listen to the little voice in your head when it says baking soda? I don’t know.
(I am sure you are all like Hello? You haven’t blogged in forever and now you are giving us baking soda?) Sorry. I just wanted to share. To document this time that I feel victorious. Even if it is only bathroom tiles.