January 25, 2011

Thrifty Discovery: Homemade Magic Eraser

Like any parents, Hubby and I are prone to forgetting things at inopportune times. Take a Sunday afternoon a few weeks back. We'd just gotten back home from church. The girls were in a hurry to get out of their dresses, have lunch, and head off to bed for their nap.

Okay, so maybe it was Hubby and I who were anxious for that last one, but anyway.

We laid the diaper bag we'd carried with the coloring books and crayons we'd carried to keep them busy throughout the sermon on the end of the couch where it would be easily retrieved on our way back out the door that evening, completely forgetting about the easily obtained crayons within. As is our habit, we went to quickly change out of our Sunday best before attempting to wrestle the girls out of their dresses and into their pajamas.

You guessed it. When we returned not five minutes later, it was to find our youngest, little innocent looking, two-year-old Sneak had gotten her bag of crayons and "decorated" the kitchen, living room, down the hall, and her room in red and blue trails of wax and pigment.

I've been getting a box of magic erasers off and on since, trying in vain to scrub the walls clean of doodles. The erasers work well enough, but they don't hold up to a lot of elbow grease. Mean Green would work, but it would also strip the paint off our walls, so I've avoided it.

Then this morning, I was mixing up the baking soda and dish washing liquid soft scrub to deep clean the tubs the same as I do at the beginning of every week, and I wondered. Would it work? So I took a wash cloth, dampened on one end, and tried just a bit on a particularly hard spot the eraser didn't work on yesterday.

The soft scrub took off what the "magic eraser" left behind.

I'm going to need a couple boxes of baking soda and another bottle of dish washing liquid, but all in all, the $3 for that is a whole lot cheaper than the four or five boxes of magic erasers I would need to finish cleaning the mess.


  1. Does it have to be soft scrub dish washing liquid or can you use any brand?

    1. Any brand of dish liquid should work so long as it does not contain bleach or bleach alternative because those can cause some issues with fumes. I usually just grab whatever's least expensive. When it comes to household cleaning, soap is soap.

  2. How much baking soda and how much soap do you use? Any water needed?

    1. It really just depends on the size of the area you're cleaning. For a small spot, a couple of tablespoons of baking soda will do. For the tub and shower, I use about half a cup or so. Just add enough soap to make a paste. You won't mix water into the paste, just use a damp cloth.