How to Clean Marble Countertops


Marble countertops are a popular material, but they need special maintenance to look their best. Like any other surface, marble can become etched or stained over time.

To clean effectively, using a safe and effective product that won’t harm the surface is essential. This includes products containing acids like vinegar, lemon juice, or citrus-based cleaners.

Soap and water

Soap and water are efficient, cost-effective way to clean marble countertops. They offer a safe and economical alternative to more expensive cleaning products.

Soap helps break oil molecules into smaller, dispersible units that can be dispersed in water. These tiniest oil particles, known as micelles, help break up giant oil molecule structures.

These micelles consist of polar hydrophilic (water-attracting) groups on the outside and lipophilic (fat-attracting) groups inside.

Soap helps dissolve insoluble oil or fat found on counters, then separates dirt and grime from this insoluble part of the oil or fat.

Hydrogen peroxide

One popular method for eliminating stains from marble countertops is hydrogen peroxide. This chemical can eradicate various colors, such as ink, mildew and moss, oil spills, and wine spills.

Poultice can also eliminate rust stains from metal surfaces, which are notoriously difficult to clean up. Mix one teaspoon of hydrogen peroxide with a tablespoon of flour until you form a thick paste, apply it directly onto the stained area, and cover it with plastic wrap for protection.

This process should be repeated several times until the stain is completely gone. If it persists, use acetone or a 20 percent hydrogen peroxide solution for further assistance.

Baking soda

Sodium bicarbonate, commonly known as baking soda, is an all-purpose cleaner that successfully eliminates hard stains from marble countertops. However, it should only be used sparingly.

Baking soda is not an acid but cannot be very polite. This means it may leave behind scratches on the surface of your marble counters and residue that dulls their shine.

Thankfully, other methods exist to clean your marble counters without damaging them. For instance, using mild dish soap mixed with water daily will do the trick.

Steel wool

Steel wool can gently polish away scratches and stains on marble countertops. Before beginning any removal process, test it in a small area to ensure it won’t harm the surface.

Quality steel wool with an 0000 rating should work for light scratches and nicks. However, you may need to call in a professional for deeper scuff marks and etching.

Prevent stains on your marble by cleaning them promptly. If the spots are caused by acidic liquids such as lemon juice, vinegar, or tomato juice, try scrubbing the counter with a non-abrasive cleaner.

You can use a soft liquid cleanser with drops of ammonia or mineral spirits to draw out the stain for oil-based stains from cooking oils, milk, cosmetics, and peanut butter. For organic stains such as coffee, tea, fruit, and wine, try using a 12 percent hydrogen peroxide solution with some drops of ammonia added.


Marble is a popular countertop material, but it requires special care. Marble is susceptible to acidic substances, damaging and dulling its finish.

General cleaning requires only a pH-neutral soap mixed with water; add some ammonia to the solution and scrub gently with a soft cloth for deep cleaning.

Avoid placing bottles of acidic liquids directly on marble counters in the kitchen, as this could etch the stone. Instead, store these items on a tray or somewhere else in the kitchen.