Eggshells as a natural bleach and cleaning agent

Eggs are a common household staple, used in all sorts of cooking and baking. But did you know that the humble eggshell itself can be a powerful natural cleaning and bleaching agent? That’s right – those leftover eggshells you might typically just throw away can be repurposed into an effective, non-toxic cleaning solution.

From whitening laundry to scrubbing away stains, eggshells offer a myriad of uses around the home. In this article, we’ll explore the science behind why eggshells make such a great cleaner, share some practical DIY recipes and methods for using them, and discuss the benefits of choosing this natural alternative over harsh chemical cleaners.

Eggshells as a natural bleach and cleaning agent

The Science Behind Eggshells as Cleaners

Eggshells are composed of around 95% calcium carbonate, along with small amounts of other minerals like magnesium carbonate and calcium phosphate. This unique mineral makeup is what gives eggshells their cleaning and whitening powers.

Calcium carbonate is a mild abrasive that can effectively scrub away dirt, grime, and stains without being overly harsh on surfaces. The abrasiveness comes from the tiny porous structures and jagged edges of the shell fragments. When used for cleaning, these microscopic “scrubbers” help lift and remove stubborn buildup.

Additionally, the alkaline nature of calcium carbonate makes eggshells a natural deodorizer and disinfectant. The alkaline pH helps neutralize acidic odours and kill off bacteria, mould, and mildew. This makes eggshells especially useful for cleaning smelly areas like drains, toilets, and the inside of the fridge.

Beyond the essential cleaning properties, eggshells also contain a small amount of natural bleaching agents. Specifically, the calcium and phosphorus content can help whiten fabrics, surfaces, and even teeth when used properly. This makes eggshells a great non-toxic alternative to harsh chemical bleaches.

Practical Uses for Eggshells Around the Home

With their cleaning, whitening, and deodorizing capabilities, eggshells can be utilized in a variety of ways around the home. Here are some of the top applications:

Laundry Whitener

Crushed eggshells can be added to your laundry as a natural bleaching agent. Simply grind up the clean, dried shells into a fine powder and add a tablespoon or two to your regular wash cycle. The calcium and phosphorus will help lift stains and whiten fabrics without the use of chlorine bleach.

For an even more effective laundry booster, you can try the Eggshell Laundry Booster from Eco-Friendly Cleaning Co. This pre-made powder combines crushed eggshells with baking soda and essential oils to naturally whiten, deodorize, and soften clothes.

Sink & Countertop Scrub

Make a gentle abrasive scrub by mixing crushed eggshells with a little water or castile soap. Use this paste to scour sinks, countertops, pots, pans, and other surfaces to remove built-up grime and stains.

For a ready-to-use eggshell scrub, check out the All-Purpose Eggshell Scrub from Green Goddess Cleaning. This sustainable scrub is made with crushed eggshells, baking soda, and essential oils to tackle tough messes.

Toilet Bowl Cleaner

For a natural toilet bowl cleaner, drop a few crushed eggshells into the bowl and let sit for 30 minutes before scrubbing clean. The abrasiveness will help tackle tough stains and rings.

You can also try the Eggshell Toilet Bomb from Eco-Chic Household. These fizzing toilet cleaning bombs combine crushed eggshells, baking soda, and citric acid to deep clean and deodorize.

Fridge Deodorizer

Placing a bowl of crushed eggshells in the refrigerator can help absorb odours and keep things fresh. The alkaline properties of the shells help neutralize acidic smells.

For an easy fridge deodorizer, check out the Eggshell Fridge Freshener from Zero Waste Essentials. This reusable pouch is filled with crushed eggshells to naturally eliminate odors.

Carpet Deodorizer

Sprinkle some ground eggshells onto carpets, let sit for a bit, then vacuum up. This will help deodorize and freshen carpets naturally.

Rust Remover

The acidity in eggshells can help dissolve rust stains. Make a paste with crushed shells and white vinegar, then scrub onto rusty areas.

Facial Exfoliant

Finely ground eggshells make for a gentle, natural exfoliant. Mix with a carrier oil or cleanser and gently massage onto the face to slough off dead skin cells.

For a pre-made eggshell facial exfoliant, try the Eggshell & Honey Facial Scrub from Handmade Skincare Co. This gentle yet effective scrub combines crushed eggshells, raw honey, and essential oils.

Homemade Cleaning Sprays

Eggshells can be simmered in water to create a natural cleaning solution. Strain out the shells and use the water for surface cleaning, window washing, and more.

How to Collect and Prepare Eggshells for Cleaning

Collecting and preparing eggshells for cleaning is a simple process. Here are the steps:

  1. Save Eggshells: Whenever you use eggs for cooking or baking, carefully rinse out the shells and set them aside to dry. You can collect them over time in a container.
  2. Clean the Shells: Make sure the eggshells are completely clean before using them for cleaning. Rinse off any remaining egg residue and allow to fully dry.
  3. Crush the Shells: Once dried, use a mortar and pestle, rolling pin, or food processor to crush the eggshells into fine powder or small bits. The more finely ground, the better they will work for scrubbing and exfoliating.
  4. Store Properly: Keep the crushed eggshells in an airtight container in a cool, dry place. They can be stored this way for several months.

Tips for Using Eggshells Effectively

When using eggshells for cleaning, there are a few tips to keep in mind:

  • Start with a small amount and test on an inconspicuous area first to ensure the abrasiveness doesn’t damage the surface.
  • For scrubbing, mix the crushed eggshells with water or a gentle liquid soap to create a paste-like consistency.
  • Avoid using eggshells on delicate surfaces like antique furniture or soft metals that could be scratched.
  • For laundry, add eggshells to the wash cycle, not the dryer, to avoid potential clogging.
  • Store crushed eggshells in an airtight container to prevent moisture absorption, which can affect their effectiveness.

The Benefits of Choosing Natural Eggshell Cleaners

Switching to natural eggshell-based cleaners over harsh chemical products offers several benefits:

  • Non-Toxic: Eggshells are completely non-toxic and safe to use around kids, pets, and the environment. No harsh fumes or residues to worry about.
  • Budget-Friendly: Making your eggshell cleaners is extremely cost-effective since the main ingredient is free. You likely already have the shells from your cooking.
  • Sustainable: Using up leftover eggshells for cleaning is a great way to reduce household waste and be more eco-friendly.
  • Versatile: Eggshells can be used for all kinds of cleaning tasks, from laundry to scrubbing to deodorizing. They’re a true multi-purpose cleaning agent.
  • Effective: The natural abrasiveness, alkalinity, and whitening properties of eggshells make them surprisingly powerful cleaners, often outperforming harsh chemicals.
  • Safe for Surfaces: Eggshell cleaners are gentle enough to use on a wide variety of surfaces without risk of damage or discolouration.

Overall, eggshells offer a wonderful natural alternative to commercial cleaning products. By harnessing the power of this common kitchen byproduct, you can save money, reduce waste, and enjoy a healthier, more eco-friendly clean around the home.

DIY Eggshell Cleaning Recipes to Try

Ready to get started using eggshells for cleaning? Here are a few simple DIY recipes to try:

Eggshell Scrub Paste


  • 1/2 cup crushed eggshells
  • 1/4 cup water or castile soap


  1. In a small bowl, mix the crushed eggshells and liquid until a thick, spreadable paste forms.
  2. Use the paste to gently scrub sinks, countertops, pots, pans, and other surfaces.
  3. Rinse thoroughly.

Eggshell Laundry Booster


  • 2 tbsp crushed eggshells


  1. Add the eggshell powder directly to your washing machine during the wash cycle.
  2. Let the cycle run as normal.
  3. The eggshells will help lift stains and whiten fabrics naturally.

Eggshell Toilet Bowl Cleaner


  • 1/2 cup crushed eggshells


  1. Sprinkle the crushed eggshells into the toilet bowl.
  2. Let sit for 30 minutes to an hour.
  3. Scrub the bowl with a toilet brush and flush.

Eggshell Deodorizing Spray


  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup crushed eggshells


  1. Bring the water to a boil in a saucepan.
  2. Remove from heat and stir in the eggshell powder.
  3. Let steep for 30 minutes, then strain out the shells.
  4. Pour the eggshell water into a spray bottle.
  5. Spray onto fabrics, carpets, or in the fridge to deodorize.

Eggshell Facial Exfoliant


  • 2 tbsp crushed eggshells
  • 1 tbsp carrier oil (coconut, jojoba, etc.)


  1. Mix the eggshell powder and carrier oil until a spreadable paste forms.
  2. Gently massage the exfoliant onto clean, damp skin.
  3. Rinse thoroughly after 5-10 minutes.

Get Cracking on Eggshell Cleaning!

With their impressive cleaning, whitening, and deodorizing abilities, eggshells provide an excellent natural alternative to harsh chemical products. From laundry to scrubbing to exfoliating, this common kitchen byproduct can be repurposed in all sorts of clever ways around the home.

Not only are eggshell cleaners effective, but they’re also budget-friendly, sustainable, and free of toxic ingredients. By harnessing the power of this humble material, you can enjoy a healthier, greener clean while also reducing household waste.

So next time you crack some eggs, be sure to save those shells – they’re far too useful to simply toss in the trash. Start experimenting with eggshell-based cleaning methods and experience amazing results for yourself. Your surfaces, fabrics, and even skin will thank you!

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As the founder of Clean It Spotless, I am Melissa Walker, a leading expert in removing tough stains from fabrics, carpets, and upholstery. With over 10 years of experience in the cleaning industry, I have developed my own natural, non-toxic stain-fighting formulas that lift stains while preserving the integrity of the underlying material. My stain removal tutorials are widely read online, and I have appeared on local TV segments demonstrating my techniques. I also present popular stain removal workshops at community centers and schools.