How to clean shower curtains in a washing machine

Updated February 21, 2017

A dirty shower curtain is unattractive and can cause your bathroom to smell. Shower curtains are going to get dirty. There is no way to avoid soap and scale build up. You may not like cleaning your shower, but cleaning your shower curtains is easy. You don't have to replace your shower curtains--all you need is your washing machine and a few supplies you may already have in your kitchen.

Remove shower curtains and store any hooks in a bag or other container.

Place shower curtains in your top-loading washing machine and toss in a few dirty towels if your washing machine is not stable or moves around if a load is light.

Pour 120 ml (1/2 cup) of washing powder and 120 ml (1/2 cup) of baking soda into the washing machine.

Wash the shower curtains on a regular cycle using warm water.

Add 240 ml (1 cup) of white vinegar to the washing machine when the rinse cycle is about to start.

Remove the shower curtains when the spin cycle is about to start. Do not let the curtains spin.

Hang your shower curtains outside on a clothesline or dry them on a drying rack. You can also hang them back in your bathroom, but make sure they are drying in the bathtub and not dripping on your floor.

Do not place them in your dryer.


To keep soap scum and build up to a minimum, wash your shower curtains frequently. Follow any recommendations on the curtains label.


These instructions work with a top-loading washing machine. A front-loading machine may not allow you to stop it before the spin cycle.

Things You'll Need

  • Top-loading washing machine
  • Washing powder
  • Baking soda
  • White vinegar
  • Clothesline or drying rack
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About the Author

Nick Davis is a freelance writer specializing in technical, travel and entertainment articles. He holds a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Memphis and an associate degree in computer information systems from the State Technical Institute at Memphis. His work has appeared in "Elite Memphis" and "The Daily Helmsman" in Memphis, Tenn. He is currently living in Albuquerque, N.M.