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Prevent Mildew Build

May 26, 2023

Bathmats are a bathroom essential that keep us safe from slipping when we hop out of the shower, as well as absorb excess water as we dry off. But these helpful bathroom accessories are also absolute magnets for mildew and mold. That's because while the bathmat can feel pretty dry to the touch even after just being wet, all of that water settles to the bottom of the mat. Pressed against the floor of your bathroom, the water has nowhere to go, which creates a perfect breeding ground for nasty growths.

Regularly laundering your bathmats is a helpful way to prevent and treat mildew and mold; but, depending on whether you have in-unit laundry or have the time to run a load of bathmats each week is another story. Take a note from hotel housekeeping and don't keep your bathmats on the floor at all times. Instead, after a shower, just hang your bathmat from a clasping pant hanger and suspend it from your shower curtain rod. This hack works for both cloth bathmats and rubber grippy mats for bathtub surfaces.

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By keeping the mat off of the ground, it is far easier to stop water from collecting at the bottom, in part because it gives the mats proper time in between uses to dry fully, and allows quicker dry times. Just like you wouldn't want to leave your wet towel balled up on the floor, your bathmat should receive the same treatment. Just hang the bathmat from a trouser hanger over your shower rail or towel rack/hook after you have had a shower.

Using a hanger is preferable to a bathtub side or shower door because it allows both sides of the mat to breathe fully, without any unnecessary folds or bends. Additionally, your door or tub's surface may still be wet, which can compound the water buildup issue. If you don't have a shower curtain rail, you can also hang it on the outside of your shower door or on your clothesline. Just place the mat down before your shower; and, once you're fully dried, put it back on the hanger. This will also stop debris from collecting on the mats in case you track any dirt on your shoes or feet. And that's all there is to it: Hang it when it's not in use, and just be sure to give the mat time to dry in between showers.