How To Clean An Old Mirror with Proper Steps & Tips

Revive old mirrors with gentle cleaning for renewed brilliance and clarity.


By: Shuvo Das

How To Clean An Old Mirror

Many people have old mirrors at home, but they are forced to throw them away because they do not know how to clean them properly. Also, due to use for many days, dust, sand and dirt accumulate on the mirror, and the coating wears off. As a result, the new mirror looks old even though it is new. Also, we use various bad chemicals to clean the dirt regularly. Overuse of these harmful chemicals discolors the mirror, making the new mirror look like the old one. Also, all these chemicals create harmful effects on mirror glass. So follow our tips below to revive your old and damaged mirror.

Table of Contents

Materials you'll need:

Lint-free cloth or microfiber cloth: When cleaning the mirror you should take a lint-free cloth that will work to leave the lint behind.

Mild water mixture with a small amount of glass cleaner or vinegar:

  • Choose a commercial cleaner without ammonia because cleaners containing ammonia can damage the mirror’s reflection.
  • Mix enough white vinegar with water to make a vinegar mixture.


1. Remove Dust and Debris

Brush gently to remove loose dust on the mirror. Use a soft bristle brush or microfiber cloth for cleaning.

2. Prepare the Cleaning Solution

Follow label directions if using commercial glass cleaners. If you want to use vinegar products, use a spray bottle of equal parts water and distilled vinegar.

3. Apply the Cleaning Solution

Lightly spray the water and vinegar solution onto the mirror. Be careful not to allow excess liquid mixture to enter the mirror because it can damage the reflection behind the mirror.

4. Wipe the Mirror

Now, gently wipe the mirror using a lint-free cloth or microfiber cloth. Wipe in a straight or circular motion from top to bottom.

5. Focus on Streaks

If the stain remains after cleaning, wet a corner of the cloth and mark the area. Wipe the mirror again with a dry cloth to remove moisture.

6. Check the Edges

Look closely at the mirror to see if the liquid is seeping into the corners or edges of the mirror. If liquid gets in, wipe it up quickly.

7. Polish if Necessary

If you want extra mirror shine, lightly polish with a soft cloth or microfiber cloth.

8. Avoid Harsh Chemicals

Avoid excessive scrubbing and harsh chemicals, as they can damage the mirror backing.

9. Inspect for Damage

If you notice any peeling or discolouration on your mirror after cleaning it, talk to a professional.

5 tips to keep old mirrors clean

Keeping old mirrors shiny is a very difficult task. However, if you follow some tips or tricks, you can keep your mirror transparent and elegant.

Mild Cleaning Solution

Mix equal amounts of white vinegar and water in a spray bottle. This mixture does not contain harmful chemicals, so it will not damage the reflective side of the mirror.

Soft, Lint-Free Cloth

Use a soft, lint-free cotton cloth to wipe the mirror clean. This type of cloth prevents scratches on the top surface of the mirror and maintains the transparency of the mirror.

Circular Cleaning Motions

Wipe in a circular motion while cleaning the mirror. It helps remove stains, dust and dirt very easily.

Avoid Harsh Chemicals

Always avoid harsh chemicals and abrasives because these things destroy the mirror coating. As a result, the overall quality of the mirror will deteriorate.

Regular Maintenance

Try to keep your mirror clean regularly. Create a routine for mirror cleaning and maintenance if necessary because regular cleaning and maintenance will enhance your mirror’s aesthetics and functionality.


Better not to use harmful cleaners. But you can use glass cleaner without ammonia if you want. All are best cleaned with a mixture of white vinegar and water.

Take a cotton cloth and soak it in a corner for a while. Then, wipe over the lines or spots. If the stain doesn’t come off, try a non-abrasive mirror polish.

In this case, we do not advise you to use paper towels because many times, paper towels leave lint or scratches on the mirror. Use a cotton cloth to clean the mirror.

How often you clean your mirror depends on how dusty your mirror gets. If you want, you can take it lightly once a week. Clean thoroughly after 3-6 months.

Clean your frame upside down with a soft brush or cotton cloth to clean the dust. If the frame is not clean, talk to an Elson professional.

Water is not a harmful substance. But it is necessary to avoid moisture on the back of the mirror. Due to the use of water, water can sometimes remain behind the glass, which is harmful to the mirror.

 If your old mirror is damaged or deteriorated, be sure to consult a professional or expert.