21 Wonderfully Unexpected Ways to Use a Magic Eraser

magic eraser
credit: Amazon

With a name like Magic Eraser, expectations are set pretty high — but somehow, Mr. Clean's miraculous sponge manages to exceed them. The simple white pad is made of melamine foam, a material that for decades has been used for insulation and soundproofing; however, its super porous, styrofoam-like texture is as abrasive as sandpaper, and with a little water, it becomes very flexible too, making it great for cleaning tight spaces. The Magic Eraser doesn't contain bleach or any other chemicals, but it's safe to use with your favorite cleaning products — otherwise, just add water and it's ready to go. The Mr. Clean brand sells its Magic Eraser in a standard sponge size or in thin, square sheets, but generic versions work just as well. You can always cut or tear the pads into smaller pieces to suit the task at hand — and as this list makes clear, there's very little the Magic Eraser cannot do.

Gluey sticker and price tag residue will rub right off with a slightly damp square of magic sponge.

Unlike acetone, the Magic Eraser will clean up nail polish spills on furniture without removing the paint or varnish underneath. And get this: It also works on carpet.

Use a damp Magic Eraser to gently polish tarnished silverware until it sparkles!

Say goodbye to food, dirt, ink, and dye stains and scuffs on leather furniture, luggage, and other accessories with a damp Magic Eraser.

With a few swipes, the sponge will also make unsightly scuff marks on walls, floors, baseboards and doors disappear.

Use a damp Magic Eraser to clean your bathroom mirror: The next time you take a hot shower, it won't fog up!

You can also use the sponge to wipe away soap scum, mildew, and mold from the bathtub, shower curtain, bathroom tile, and grout.

Remove food stains from Tupperware. Pasta sauce, curries, Kool-Aid, and other intensely pigmented foods that are stored in plastic containers are guaranteed to leave a stubborn stain behind. A wet Magic Eraser will do what your dishwasher can't ...

... and that's also true for cleaning cups and mugs stained by coffee, tea, and wine. But remember to wash with regular soap and water afterwards.

Clean a greasy stove and oven. Put down the steel wool — stuck-on food, grease stains, burnt liquid residues, and rust buildup are easily wiped away with a Magic Eraser (or two, for really big cleanup jobs).

Keep the whites of your sneakers looking brand new. Use a small piece of Magic Eraser to regularly rub off grass stains, dirt, scuff marks, and whatever else is muckin' up your Chucks (Taylor, that is).

Prevent wall scuffs. You know how hanging, adjusting, and reconfiguring artwork and framed photos can scuff up your walls? Eliminate that problem with Magic Eraser: Cut the (dry) sponge into small triangles or strips, and use double-sided mounting tape to stick them to the corners or along the edges of whatever you're hanging on the wall, creating a buffer in between. No more scuffs!

Wipe down dirt left by fingers and hands on doors and doorways. (We find the sponge is especially helpful in rooms where you apply makeup — which always seems to leave an orange-y tint on doors over time.)

Clean hair appliances. Hairspray and other product buildup on appliances like curling wands and flat irons can prevent them from working as well as they should. Wipe them down with a damp Magic Eraser (don't forget to unplug first!) and they'll be as good as new.

Refresh a dingy dry erase board by removing marker residue with just few swipes of a wet magic sponge and a bit of rubbing alcohol.

Kids don't often color inside the lines — or even within the boundaries of their paper. Luckily, Magic Eraser will remove marks left by crayons, Magic Markers, pens, fingerpaint, chalks, and pastels from just about any surface you can think of.

The Magic Eraser is also highly effective on permanent marker and other ink stains.

Wipe away the greasy fingerprints and food residue mucking up your laptop keyboard and trackpad using a slightly moistened Magic Eraser.

Clean window blinds (and screens). Soak the sponge in water so it's pliable and pinch it around each slat, sliding from one end to the other to clean both sides at once. You can also use the Magic Eraser to wipe down dingy window screens.

Use the Magic Eraser to clean just about every surface of your car, including tires and hubcaps, cloudy headlights, grimy grill grates, dusty dashboards, and icky steering wheels and gearshifts.

You can even count on the Magic Eraser to remove paint scratches on your car from minor fender benders!


Amelia McDonell-Parry

Amelia McDonell-Parry

I'm a freelance writer and reporter for outlets like Rolling Stone, the Village Voice, BUST, Nylon, Woolly, and the Appeal, a podcast host for Undisclosed, and once upon a time, I was the founding editor of The Frisky.