How to Clean Tiles and Grout with Toothpaste

toothpaste tiles grout cover

Dirty tiles and grout may be more than just unsightly; they can also be dangerously unhygienic. That’s why it’s so important to keep both your tiles and grout clean! 

Before we get into how to clean them, though, let’s first take a minute to discuss exactly what both tiles and grout are.

Tiles are made up of ceramic or porcelain and come in just about every color imaginable. They’re incredibly durable too, making them a great choice for any room in your home—especially bathrooms and kitchens!

Grouts, meanwhile, are the material that is used between each tile. They’re usually made of cementitious materials and they generally come in only two colors: white or gray. The main purpose of grouts is to fill the gaps between each tile so that water won’t seep through any cracks or crevices onto the floor below.

In this article, I’ll teach you how to clean your tiles and grout with toothpaste. Give this cleaning method a try. The result may surprise you.

Let’s get started.

What You’ll Need:

  • Toothbrush or old toothbrush (you won’t be using it for teeth again, so don’t worry about dirtying it up)
  • Toothpaste
  • Cloth or rug
  • Water
  • Bowl
  • Towel


  1. Use a soft cloth to apply a little coat of toothpaste to the tile and grout. 
  2. Let stand for 5 minutes.
  3. Use the toothbrush to scrub the tile and grout until it’s clean. Focus on any tough stains that may be lingering, use a little bit of extra toothpaste as needed.
  4. Rinse with water. Make sure all of the toothpaste is removed from the tiles and grout (you don’t want any slippery film!).
  5. Dry with a towel or cloth, then admire the spotless look!

Why Toothpaste Works?

Why does toothpaste work? It’s because of the toothpaste’s abrasive properties. Abrasive materials are used to clean hard surfaces by removing dirt from pores and scratches on the surface.

The cleaning action of abrasives is due to friction (the rubbing or scrubbing of one thing against another). The size and texture of the abrasive particles determine how they will work on a surface.

Can Toothpaste Damage Your Tiles?

The short answer: probably not.

But the long answer? Well, that’s a bit trickier.

Toothpaste is an abrasive cleaner, which means it works by using gritty material to scrub away whatever is stuck on your teeth—or on your tiles. While this means it’s great for getting stuff off of things, it also means that it could potentially harm your tiles if you don’t use it carefully.

First of all, if you’re cleaning with toothpaste, make sure to use plain white toothpaste and not gel toothpaste or whitening toothpaste, which often contain color and other ingredients that can damage the finish of your tiles. 

Second, avoid putting toothpaste directly onto the surface of the tiles. Instead, apply it to a rag and rub that rag on the tile until it’s clean—this will ensure you’re not applying too much toothpaste and pressure to the tile itself so you don’t risk scratching it. 

Finally, be sure to rinse the area with water after you’ve finished scrubbing to remove any residue from the toothpaste and prevent any etching that could occur later as a result.

So… should you clean your tiles with toothpaste? Definitely. But just make sure to do so carefully. 

Types of Tiles You Can Clean with Toothpaste

Most types of tiles are pretty resilient and easy to clean. In fact, you can use toothpaste on almost any type of tile, including porcelain, ceramic, and vitrified tiles. 

If you’re not sure whether it’s safe to use toothpaste to clean your tiles or not (or if you want to be extra cautious), test a small area first.

Types of Tiles to Avoid Cleaning with Toothpaste

Toothpaste isn’t the ideal choice for cleaning stone, marble, or limestone tiles. Why? Because toothpaste contains abrasive particles that can scratch the surface of porous tiles.

The same is true for ceramic tiles with a glossy finish. So again, test a small area first before proceeding.

How Often Should You Clean Tiles and Grouts?

You should clean your tiles and grout at least once a month if you don’t have pets and once a week if you do. If you notice a stain, clean it immediately.

To keep your tiles looking great, they should be professionally cleaned at least once per year.


Toothpaste can help you clean your tiles and grout. Use it to get rid of the stains and grime on your tiles and keep them sparkling. You do not need any other cleaners for this method to work.

It is an easy, inexpensive, and safe way to clean your tiles and grouts.

Did you know you can also use baking soda to clean tiles? Read my article on how to clean tiles with baking soda for another DIY method.

Thanks for reading.

-Baking Soda Guy

Image by Rupert Kittinger-Sereinig from Pixabay