Do you have soapstone counters or other soapstone surface that needs to be cleaned? Are you looking for an easy and simple way to maintain the cozy look of your wood stove or countertops?
Look no further! In this blog post, we will discuss the best ways to clean soapstone without harsh chemicals. Read on to learn how to keep your soapstone looking its best with minimal effort!
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Making Soapstone Care Easy
Restore the natural beauty of your soapstone with this step-by-step guide!
1. Using a damp cloth, wipe down the soapstone to remove any dirt or dust residue. If there are any remaining food stains after rinsing, sprinkle baking soda on them and scrub the affected area gently with a damp sponge until they are gone.
2. Mix together a few drops of mild dish soap with clean water and a tablespoon of white vinegar in a bowl and dip a rag or sponge into it. You can even put the solution in a spray bottle and apply it directly on your soapstone surface using circular motions.
3. Gently scrub the surface of the soapstone with the soapy sponge or rag. Make sure you wash all areas of the soapstone. A little elbow grease may be required.
4. Rinse the soapstone clean with fresh water from your faucet and dry it off with clean dry rags or paper towels.
5. Optional: Apply mineral oil using a dry cloth or paper towel and spread it across your soapstone surface using circular motions. Applying mineral oil brings out a rich charcoal color and will keep your soapstone looking glossy and beautiful. You can polish the soapstone with mineral oil every few weeks in order to protect its surface from staining or wear over time. If you are not using mineral oil, it is essential to dry any water droplets left behind after washing so that they don’t form streaks or rings on your soapstone surface.
What is Soapstone?
Soapstone is a metamorphic rock that’s often used for countertops, sinks, and wood stoves.
Often referred to as “steatite,” Soapstone is a soft, natural stone that has a high talc content, among other minerals such as quartz, micas, chlorite, and magnesite.
This natural stone requires special care to maintain its shine and luster over time.
However, this also means it can be difficult to clean, since most cleaning agents remove some of the stone’s protective surface layer.
If you learn how to properly clean soapstone surfaces, you can keep them looking their best with minimal effort.
Why Is Soapstone So Popular in Homes?
Soapstone’s nonporous structure makes it a popular choice for these uses because its density resists staining and doesn’t absorb moisture.
This natural product is also incredibly heat resistant, making it a perfect choice for counters and wood stoves.
Soapstone’s heat tolerant nature means no need for potholders or trivets. Your hot pan can sit right on the stone’s surface without causing damage.
Soapstone is so resilient that it will not burn, retain stains, or be damaged by acidic foods. This combined with it’s tolerance for water, makes soapstone an excellent choice for kitchen or bath areas.
In fact, you can even use natural vinegar based cleansers on your soapstone surface.
Soapstone has a beautiful light gray color, which is partly what makes it so sought after by homeowners. Your natural stone surface will develop a lovely patina through a natural darkening process, or it can be oiled to a deep sheen.
Our soapstone surface is on our wood stove. The benefit of a soapstone wood stove is that it is extremely efficient. My engineer husband loves that word. Efficient.
A soapstone wood stove heats more evenly while keeping heat and emitting heat much longer than other stove types.
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Tools You Will Need To Clean Your Soapstone
You will need:
- 3 – 5 Clean, dry rags or paper towels
- Warm Water (amount depends on the size of your surface, I used 2 cups for a 2 square foot surface)
- 1 Teaspoon of Mild Dish Soap
- 1 Tablespoon of White Vinegar
- Optional: Mineral Oil or Linseed Oil
How to Clean Soapstone, A Step-by-Step Guide
Start With a Clean Slate
Thoroughly wipe off the entire surface of your soapstone with a clean rag dampened with clean water. This will remove any loose dust or surface dirt.
Wash with Mild Soap, White Vinegar and Water
Start with a homemade natural soapstone cleaner made of: 1 teaspoon of mild dish soap, a cup of warm water, and 1 tablespoon of white vinegar mixed together and applied to your soapstone countertop. A gentle dish detergent will usually do the trick. Do not use any harsh cleaners, abrasive cleanser, or powdered chemicals, as these types of cleaners will damage the surface over time. Use a soft rag or sponge when cleaning the countertop — avoid using an abrasive scrubber, as this can also cause surface scratches and dullness. Gentle circular motions are the best method.
Use Mineral Oil for Shine
Once you have cleaned your soapstone countertop with mild dishwashing detergent, you can follow up with a mineral oil treatment on the entire surface once every couple of months in order to seal it from moisture and give it added protection from staining. Application of mineral oil should be done by wiping in a circular motion. Mineral oil is a great option to keep your stone looking bright & shiny without giving it an unnatural appearance like certain sealers might. Just be sure to wipe away any excess oil with a clean rag.
Keeping Your Soapstone Surfaces Beautiful
Now that you know how to properly clean the soapstone areas in your home, regular cleaning and maintenance will keep them beautiful for many years to come.
This simple system for cleaning and protection of these natural stone surfaces is a quick and easy method. One that will easily integrate into your current cleaning routine.
So do not be intimidated by these natural type counters, sinks, of wood stove surfaces. They are easy to clean and keep up with, and now you know how!
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