Mr. Clean Magic Eraser – is it good magic?

Mr. Clean Magic Eraser – is it good magic? post image

Many people think the Mr. Clean® Magic Eraser® is wonderful for every cleaning job imaginable. Just browse the forums and tip sites, and you’ll see it as a recommendation for cleaning everything. It’s not new, it’s been around for years, but TipBusters is taking a look at it because everyone says it’s magic, incredible. You say magic, I say modern materials manufacturing, with a little chemistry thrown in (tomato, tomahto)

So is it good on everything? Should we throw out our other cleaners?

The answer is no.

It works very well on hard surfaces (Mr. Clean® claims that it is so powerful that each swipe removes more grime than the leading bleach all-purpose spray cleaner); however, on surfaces that can be easily scratched, or are painted or polished, you can do some damage.

Why is that?

Proctor & Gamble’s Magic Eraser® is made of a melamine resin foam called Basotect® (manufactured by BASF). On curing, the melamine resin becomes almost as hard as glass, which allows it to act like extremely fine sandpaper as the foam eraser rubs the particles of dirt from the surface. Basotect® remains soft and supple due to the structure of the foam created by adding water. When water is added, the very fine airy structure (that you can only see under a microscope) creates a surface that makes the dirt stick to it.

So it works 2 ways:

1. The foam eraser acts like extremely fine sandpaper and rubs the dirt from the surface.
2. The nature of the foam makes the dirt stick to it.

And, like a pencil eraser, the foam gets used up as it’s used.

Here’s why you should be careful.

Anything that works like sandpaper will not only rub the dirt from the surface, but with a soft surface that can be scratched, it will also damage the surface. I tested the Magic Eraser® on walls painted with eggshell latex paint. Yes, it took the dirt away. It also took the sheen from the paint surface. It also took some of the colour from the paint surface. High gloss latex paint? It removes the gloss. Varnished surfaces? Don’t even think about using it.

Here’s our advice:

1. Only use the Magic Eraser® on a non-scratchable surface. Better yet, try it on an inconspicuous spot first. And if you try it on a wall, be aware, it may not look like it has done any damage; however, look at the wall from an angle where the light hits it – see if the sheen is any different.

2. Break off a little piece to use on a little spot. Yes, you can break little pieces off the big eraser, and they will work just the same as the big eraser. Everywhere the eraser rubs will be abraded. So if you have a tiny spot, just break off a tiny piece. Two benefits to this:

1. A smaller surface area will be affected by the rubbing, and
2. Your eraser will last longer. Much longer.

In a nutshell: the Magic Eraser® works well on really hard surfaces; just be aware of scratchable, or high-gloss surfaces or surfaces with a sheen (including walls!). And break off the tiny amount that you need to use for little marks. You won’t waste the whole eraser, and you won’t abrade the area around the mark.

Then you’ll have good magic.

45 comments… add one

  • Is there anything that can be done if you used a magic eraser on Vinyl car interior which caused white abrasion

    Reply
  • From reading your comments it sounds like magic erasers are bad for everything. How about a list of safe things to use them for.

    Reply
  • Is it safe to use on pots and pans?
    Thank you

    Reply
  • excellent points altogether, you simply gained a new reader.
    What may you recommend about your publish that you made a few
    days in the past? Any positive?

    Reply
  • Hello blogger, i must say you have hi quality articles here.
    Your page should go viral. You need initial traffic only.
    How to get it? Search for; Mertiso’s tips go viral

    Reply
  • Thank you all for warning us about your unfortunate mishaps. You have saved many readers from costly permanent damage to their home interiors.
    Sharing to Facebook!

    Reply
  • Maid service used Magic Eraser on my stone tile bathroom floor. The sandpaper like effect ruined the tile surface and took color out of the tile in spots — it cleaned the grout well by sanding the surface down below the level of the dirt that had accumulated. Really did not clean but sanded the dirty grout away.
    Now I have to retile the bathroom.

    Reply
  • Don’t use it on corten steel (leaves behind a white residue)
    and don’t scrub to hard on your granite or quartz benchtops, it can leave a scuff mark

    Reply
  • Is there any safe cleaner that can be used for scuffs on walls?

    Reply
    • 50% vinegar/50%distilled water on a microfiber cloth. Gets most scuffs. Not as instant as a white eraser but a lot less damaging.

      Reply
  • I want to remove some old woodstain out of a floorboard before it is varnished. Do magic sponges leave any chemical residues that could affect the varnish we put on?

    Reply
    • Kari:

      There are no chemicals in the Magic Eraser unless you but the cheap Chinese knock-offs. There will be a residue left behind when the melamine foam is used. It works by breaking down – and will leave a small amount of residue. Sponges made from the IDENTICAL material as the Magic Eraser can be purchased online for as little as $0.29 per sponge at http://www.spongeoutlet.com – with free shipping! These are not cheap – potentially dangerous Chinese melamine knockoffs. They are made from the EXACT same material right here in the U.S?.

      Reply
      • Ummmm, everything in the physical universe contains chemicals. Sorry.

        Reply
        • Well, if there’s nothing ‘in the sponges’ then there’s no chemicals ‘in’ it. Unless you are going to claim that even ‘nothing’ contains chemicals.

          The sponges work by the material that the sponge is made of, not due to something in the sponge. They are made from melamine foam that when water is added to it, scrapes off the stain by abrasion and then absorbing whatever is scraped off.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Melamine_foam to find out more about this interesting material.

          Reply
  • Eraser sponges made from the IDENTICAL material as the Magic Eraser are available online at http://www.spongeoutlet.com for as little as $0.29 per sponge – and shipping is free! These are not cheap, potentially dangerous Chinese knock-off sponges. They are the exact same material!

    Reply
  • I read that Magic Eraser will remove rust (this one contains Dawn Dish Liquid)…so I tried it…nothing…it did take off some other stains from the tub but no rust…then I sprayed the tub with Vinegar and scrubbed with the sponge…well the damn thing fell apart! First one piece and then in half and pieces!

    Worst thing ever…don’t use it…waste of money…and when I tried to contact them by email they put me through so many hoops I decided to eat my 2 bucks…couldn’t recognize my bar code…then it went downhill from there…terrible product!

    Reply
  • O my gosh. I wish my builders knew that you should not use magic eraser on vinyl floors, walls, my shower stall, touch pads on microwave oven, stainless steel, ice machine, and the list goes on and on…. I just threw out all of bonus box I just bought! It is sandpaper and it leaves a scratched, hazey etc. results. and you can’t fix that. Wondered why my painted walls look awful. It does take spots out but it dulls the area. Please don’t make the same mistake the builders and I did! Normally I don’t leave comments but I think home owners need to know this.

    Reply
  • Used a magic erasure on Ceasar Stone… bad, bad, bad, bad, bad idea. Don’t even consider it. Don’t even test it. Ruined. NOT fixable.

    Reply
  • I have tried these and many other products on my acrylic shower doors. They are smooth to the touch but dry to a white foggy haze. I have hard water and do squeegee them dry after showering. Suggestions?

    Reply
    • Try using CLR cleaner to remove the hard water residue on the doors. It should work well.

      Reply
  • Hello,

    Do you recommend use Magic Eraser works for eliminate paint transfer (scratches) in a car?

    Reply
    • Don’t let it rub on the finish of the car! You can try breaking off the tiny bit and rubbing only on the transferred paint, but any more will damage the car’s finish.

      Reply
  • Sponges made from the identical material as the Mr. Clean Magic Eraser are available online for as little as $0.29 per sponge and shipping is free! These are not cheap, potentially dangerous, Chinese knock-offs – they are made from the same material as the Magic Eraser

    Reply
  • Can I clean non shiny flat paint walls?

    Reply
    • Do not use Magic Eraser on flat paint walls. I live in an apartment and used it to try and get black marks off the wall after move in and it dulls the wall. Will now have to use touch up paint to remove the smudge from rubbing.

      Reply
  • Can you clean fake marble shower stalls or countertops.

    Reply
  • I am happy to collect poeple from Gatwick or the station (Lewes is best & only 30 min from the airport.) I live in Lewes which is 8 miles from Brighton & have a spare double mattress. I ll be catching the train into Brighton for the funeral which is very easy- 12 min .Siou x

    Reply
  • Eraser sponges at http://www.spongeoutlet.com are made from the identical material as the Mr. Clean Magic Eraser and are available online for as little as $0.29 per sponge and shipping is free! Spongeoutlet eraser sponges are not cheap Chinese knock offs which have been tested and may contain dangerous chemicals. They are identical.

    Reply
  • Thanks for the tip. About to clean up a painted wall and Id figured Id give this a try but it was good to do a little research first.

    Reply
  • Eraser sponges at http://www.spongeoutlet.com are made from the identical material as the Mr. Clean Magic Eraser and are available online for as little as $0.29 per sponge and shipping is free! Spongeoutlet eraser sponges are not cheap Chinese knock offs which have been tested and may contain dangerous chemicals. They are identical.

    Reply
  • Help! I used the Me. Clean Dry Eraser on a painted Woiden surface to remove scotch tape residue. It made the surface dull. What can I do to revive the sheen or get the original finish back??

    Reply
  • I have newer vinyl windows that our painter “accidently” got paint on. Do you recommend trying Magic Eraser to remove the paint? If so, what is the process? I do not want to ruin the vinyl windows.

    Reply
  • Magic Eraser is now being advertised as perfectly safe on all kinds of finishes. Those of us who have impetuously used them everywhere know the sad truth–on any surface which should be shiny (like your countertops or stove tops, the gloss will be removed and there is no cure for these spots; they will actually collect more dirt after using the Magic Eraser than the dirt you tried to wipe off in the first place. For glossy surfaces, use window wash (like Windex) and a paper or cloth towel (don’t use the super towels made of bamboo; they scratch, too) to clean shiny surfaces. I speak from sad experience!

    Reply
    • Sorry about your sad experience. I hope to make yours better:
      In my experience, I find Windex smells poisonously bad (and is poisonous) and is overpriced for what it is, and can leave glass & shiny surfaces cloudy. Paper towels are expensive, and like cotton cloth, leave dust fibers behind.
      Save money and be eco-smart: use distilled water, about 25% rubbing alcohol, vinegar, or vodka in a spray bottle with an eyedropper-size-drop of dish soap. Spray your glossy surface, and then wipe with a microfiber cloth. Your glossy surfaces will be safe and shiny, and you’ll save money and reduce your carbon footprint all at the same time.

      Reply
      • P.S. Vinegar is only for glass, porcelain, walls, hard plastic or metal surfaces. Never use vinegar on stone or manufactured stone – it can etch!!! Use alcohol or vodka only in your spray for glossy stone!

        Reply
  • HELP,
    Just opened a vet clinic using wood grain vinyl laminate flooring. I’m afraid an employee used the magic eraser swiffer because I can’t get this dusty haze off the floor. Thats the only thing I can think it can be. The floor isn’t supposed to have a gloss finish, its a matte. BUT throughout the clinic is this white haze that makes the floor look dusty or worse dirty. Please don’t tell me my floors are ruined…any suggestions. The laminate has a small amount of texture, its not smooth, and you can see whiteness in the texture. Please help!

    Reply
    • Yes I think it is permanent. Not fixable.

      Reply
    • Sorry to hear of your cleaning mishap!!
      Just renovated the entire house and I was wondering about spot cleaning with Magic Eraser on my new vinyl plank flooring. Thank you for the warning!!

      Reply
      • For plank flooring whether or wood or plastic, use the vinegar-mix spray I mention above, not the alcohol mix Some varnishes can’t tolerate alchohol, they all tolerate vinegar. And you can use less vinegar. 10%-15% is fine on floors. Wipe a second time with water if you don’t like the smell of white vinegar.

        Reply
  • Magic erasers are a god-send…but beware of plexiglass and similar plastics, stoves and dishwashers with a glossy background (i.e., the area behind burner knobs, dishwasher control buttons, etc.), linoleum floors (takes the dirt out of the tiny holes but also takes the shine right off too). Best bet is if you aren’t sure, test a tiny inconspicuous area first, then look at it from all angles with all different lighting.

    Reply
  • I think the Magic Eraser took the finish off my kitchen congoleum floor. It is now dangerously slippery. I have loved the Magic Eraser for counter tops.

    Reply
  • If someone does use magic eraser on a painted wall and it leaves what looks like grease marks, is there anyway to make it look better without repainting?

    Reply
  • I used it on our hardwood floor before I knew it was like sandpaper. It totally took the finish off.

    Reply

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