How to Clean Your Toilet Properly

Just last week have I finally gotten our new house on a good cleaning schedule. It only took me 4 months. **SIGH** But I’m right on point today. Just finished cleaning a toilet, actually! 

Granted, we have had quite a few changes during that time. New house, and all the unpacking fun. I quit my job to stay home with the twins. My husband switched jobs. We got hit by a hurricane. The usual, right?

Any way you look at it, I’m thrilled to finally be on a good cleaning schedule! The house stays clean and I get to keep my sanity! (Well…at least my sanity that is related to a clean house, HA!)


So when Suzanne from Better Bathrooms contacted me to share a post on cleaning toilets, at first, I won’t lie: I wrinkled up my nose. I mean, really? Ewww. But then I thought better of it. I mean, we all have toilets, right? They all need to be cleaned, correct? So why not make sure we all know how to do it RIGHT! Let’s see what her recommended procedure is!

While no-one actively enjoys cleaning the toilet, it has to be said that the more often it’s done, the easier it is as stains, mess and smells simply don’t get any chance to flourish or take hold. If you’ve just got your new toilet from Better Bathrooms and you’re wondering how to keep it clean and pristine, look no further than this step-by-step guide.

Take everything from around and under the toilet away

There’s always splashes – water, detergent and bleach – involved when you’re cleaning the toilet, so remove anything that you don’t want to get in the way, like bath mats, toilet rolls and so on. You should also remove any items that are on top of the cistern so that they don’t get knocked in by accident.

Flush the toilet and then add your first cleaner

It’s best to flush with the lid down so that you don’t get sprayed. Once you’ve flushed, lift the lid and apply your gel cleaner to the bowl, starting at the rim and get as close as possible here. Then leave it to work for 10 minutes or so.

Clean the outside of the toilet

While your gel cleaner does its thing, you can start on the outside surfaces of the toilet, as well as the floor around it. Work from the top down with a spray cleaner – the tank, the handle and underneath the tank first, then the outside of the lid, then the outside of the bowl. Finish up by cleaning the bottom of the toilet, where it touches the floor, and the floor itself.

Clean the toilet seat

The seat is the part of the toilet that comes into the most contact with people so it must be cleaned carefully and thoroughly. Lift the seat and spray it, as well as the inside of the lid and the rim of the bowl. Leave the cleaner on for a minute or two before wiping it all down, including the hinges of the seat and the area underneath the hinges.

A modern looking toilet with a fuzzy, orange toilet seat cover.

Go back to the inside of the bowl

Starting from the top down, get scrubbing with a (preferably disposable) toilet brush. Aim for the rim first, as grime and bacteria accumulate here first, especially if you have hard water. Then you should scrub the bowl itself, before moving onto the parts underwater. Flush once more (with the lid down) and carefully place the brush in a plastic bag for disposal.

Clear up any spills

If you see any spills or splashes, clean them up before putting your cleaners and any tools away. Put back all the items you removed before you started the task and gaze at your squeaky-clean toilet.

Handy tips

You might want to wear latex or nitrile gloves for this task as it does have the yuk factor and it also involves harsh detergents and other chemicals.

Always flush with the lid down, as this prevents bleach from being sent up into the air in a fine, aerosolised spray.

Sponges are the worst thing you can use to clean a toilet, unless you throw them away after each use, as the huge surface area, water and countless air spaces make for bacteria paradise! You should use paper towels, ideally, but if you prefer reusable cloths, put them through a hot wash (60C at least) immediately after you’ve finished.

Thanks so much, Suzanne! This is a great plan for the toilet! I myself like to use Method’s Antibacterial Toilet Bowl Cleaner when I’m killing nastiness in our toilets.


I get it from Grove Collaborative, along with lots of my other cleaning supplies. If you’d like to try it out, CLICK HERE, and you’ll get $10 in free products just for using my affiliate link! Enjoy!

How do you sike yourself up for cleaning YOUR toilets?

Due to the amount of comments from all of my wonderful readers, it is not always possible for me to respond to each one. However, I absolutely do read them all, and if you’d like to address something specific, or have a question for me, please don’t hesitate to email me at I will respond to your email as soon as possible! Thank you for visiting the blog!

22 thoughts on “How to Clean Your Toilet Properly

  1. Flushing before you start seems so obvious, but I know I had to suggest it to a friend. Bought a non name brand cleaner at Walmart – it had no stickability and just slid down the side of the toilet – and it came in a two pack, what a waste.

  2. One of my least favorite chores to do is cleaning the bathroom in general. Not just the toilet. But we have extremely hard water so getting the iron stains out is ridiculous at times and I am constantly having to use harsh chemical products to get it to work. I’d love to find something not as harsh on my hands or the environment but 14yrs here and so far no luck!

  3. I haven’t tried the Method cleaner for my toilet. I prefer to get the cling toilet cleaners that slowly go down and clean without too much scrubbing needed. Toilets are my thing to clean all the time. I just can’t stand a dirty one.

  4. It’s not a job I can convince any one else in the family to take from me, so cleaning toilets is my job. Need to step up my game here.

  5. I am one to clean the whole toilet, just the bowl isn’t enough, I think a lot of people will skip a part and if you leave it uhh gross!

  6. I have read your article very attentively. This is very effective tips for properly cleaning our toilet. Healthy toilet bowl cleaner is very need for our bathroom because it keeps our home chemical free environment.

  7. I have also found that letting the cleaner soak in the bowl for 10 minutes really makes the job easier. I’m horrible at multi-tasking, it seriously never occured to me that I could be cleaning the outside of the toilet while I waited.

  8. I’m really appreciate thanks for your sharing !!!!!
    Toilet cleaner is very important issue for our daily needs.Natural cleaning product is perfect for for kitchen, bathroom and also floor cleaning.

  9. Very great post. I simply stumbled upon your blog and
    wished to mention that I’ve truly enjoyed browsing your weblog
    posts. After all I’ll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you write once more
    very soon!

  10. I really appreciate your advice to try and get everything off of the cistern of your toilet, that way you won’t run any risk of having anything fall into the toilet. My wife and I recently moved into an apartment together as newlyweds, and I have never had to clean a toilet before. I will be sure to get anything off of the top of the toilet before I clean it so I don’t knock any of my wife’s stuff in the toilet!

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