How to clean a toilet without retching 

Launder the loo, bathe the bog, polish the porcelain, cleanse the commode — all in the name of love

How to clean a toilet

Ah yes. We’ve all gone to use the toilet in our house, peered into the bowl, and wondered if it’ll can ever be clean again. And maybe even considered it so far gone that it might be time to invest in a new one – (toilet, that is; and definitely not the family member/housemate responsible).  

Toilet cleaning is a part of life and cleaning the toilet that your loved ones use is almost as powerful an act of love as getting down on one knee and popping the question. 

So, from what to use to clean a toilet, to how to clean a toilet bowl – here’s how to show the power of love. Via the medium of a toilet. 

What to use to clean the toilet 

What you’ll need

  • Rubber gloves
  • Toilet bowl cleaner
  • Toilet brush
  • Plenty paper towel
  • Generic bathroom cleaner
  • Bucket


If you’ve got kids that are too young to help with toilet cleaning, show them how to wipe up any misdirected wee or accidents themselves. They’ll learn to develop good hygiene habits, and it’ll make toilet cleaning much easier for everyone else!

1. Prepare the area 

Before you start toilet cleaning, put your rubber gloves on (make sure they don’t have any holes in them) and clear the whole area around the toilet, including any toilet paper, cleaning products and anything you might have on top of the cistern. This is to prevent gross toilet water from the toilet brush dripping on anything. 

2. How to clean a toilet bowl 

If you’re wondering what to use to clean toilet bowls that seem to be permanently stained, you’ll want to get your hands on some specially designed toilet cleaner. Lift the toilet seat, place the nozzle of the toilet bowl cleaner beneath the rim and apply the cleaner around the bowl. Make sure the entire bowl is coated and let the magic happen.  

3. How to clean toilet rims and seats  

While the toilet cleaner is dissolving the bacteria in the bowl, spray the area above the rim with a bathroom surface cleaner. Leave it for a minute or two before using a moistened piece of kitchen towel to wipe it clean. Repeat the process for the underside of the toilet seat until it’s significantly less brown/yellow. 


Plenty is strong even when it’s wet, so it’ll hold together for wringing, wiping and scrubbing those hard-to-reach corners (and keep your fingers from breaking through the paper when you least want them to).

4. How to clean a toilet bowl: brush and flush 

After about an hour, use the toilet brush to scrub the toilet bowl clean, before closing the lid of the toilet and flushing away the gross toilet grime. The toilet bowl might never be completely spotless, but if you think it needs another go at it then go for it. 

Wondering what to use to clean toilet bowls if they are still stained? Try adding half a cup of vinegar to the bowl and leave it to sit for 30 minutes before flushing and brushing again – the results will be worth it! 

5. How to clean toilet surfaces 

The body of the toilet, especially the top of the cistern, can attract a lot of dust, lint, and old magazines, so give it a good clean with a spray of bathroom cleaner and a piece of moistened paper towel.  Wipe the flush handle first before moving to the top of the toilet and then the rest of the body of the toilet. Then, throw away the paper towel in a bin instead of flushing them. 

6. How to clean toilet brushes  

Once your toilet cleaning is complete, remember to clean the toilet brush. Fill a bucket with hot water and bleach (always follow the label’s instructions) and leave the toilet brush to soak for 30 minutes. Rinse the brush with hot water in the toilet bowl and place it back in the brush holder ready for your next deep clean.  

And remember, sometimes the biggest acts of love aren’t being whisked away on holiday or cooking a 12-course meal – sometimes you can say those three magic words through the form of a clean toilet bowl. That’s true love. Now for the rest of the bathroom…  

Did you find this article helpful?Thanks for your feedback!