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Don’t have a clue how to clean lamp shades, so they get ignored in a room that’s otherwise fairly clean? No judging here – I ignored my dusty lamp shades for far too long because I wasn’t sure how to clean fabric lamp shades and if I would rip or ruin them. Finally I’d had enough of those dust collectors and decided to experiment until I figured out cleaning hacks to get the job done and I can’t wait to share that with you. There are basically three methods to choose from to clean almost any lamp shade material and you won’t believe how fast and easy it is!
HOW TO CLEAN LAMP SHADES
Growing up as an only child in the house, it was my task to do all the dusting every week. Maybe it was because my Mom owned 562 lamps and they were all fabric or that we lived off of a dirt road and it was especially dusty, but I despised having to clean lamp shades. It seemed to take me forever to get them all free of dust. I’m not sure if I was being a dramatic kid but I did feel like Cinderella. I mean, she made me drag out the vacuum cleaner for heaven sakes!
OK, I am a little dramatic.
I think that’s why dusting my lamps was never on my weekly cleaning list because I avoided it like the plague. When I realized I needed to know how to dust more efficiently because of dust allergies in our home, I knew I had to find out how to clean lamp shades quick and easy too! It was time to put on my big girl britches and get to experimenting! I found out a lot and here are the deets…..
COMMON QUESTIONS ABOUT CLEANING SHADES
How do you clean stained lamp shades?
My favorite lamp shade cleaners for stains have been Dawn dish washing detergent or or shout fabric spray. Start by testing a tiny spot on the inside of the lamp if possible. Spray a tiny bit of shout fabric spray on a damp cleaning rag and scrub the stain gently. Rinse the rag and wipe the spot gently again. Let dry!
Can you wash a fabric lampshade?
Yes, I do all the time by carefully placing lamp shade in the bathtub (like fake flowers and so many other things) and giving it a good, gentle rinse with warm water. Be sure to do a test first where you wet a tiny spot on the back of the shade to be sure it won’t leave a mark. Some lamp shades like paper shades or linen shades may be too fragile so test a tiny spot and be very gentle.
What about a “yellowing” lamp shade?
Refer to the three choices of cleaning your lamp shades below according to the fabric, but if the fabric is sturdy enough, you could add a tiny amount of liquid bleach to the bath method below.
YOU MAY NEED…
HOW TO CLEAN LAMP SHADES FAST & EASY
Depending on the type of lamp shade that you have and the extent of its dustiness will depend of which method you need to choose below to get it clean. I suggest starting with #1 and working your way through if the first method didn’t work.
#1 GIVE IT A SWIPE OR TWO
As a first step, rub a microfiber cloth across your lamp shade to dust it easily and roll a lint roller across it gently to pick up any remaining particles, especially if the lamp shade is cotton or synthetic fabric. Most of the time, this is all that’s needed to get the job done!
#2 GIVE IT A WIPE DOWN
If you have a cotton or synthetic fabric lamp shade that needs a little more attention, wipe it down with a damp rag that’s been dipped in a bowl of warm water and 1/4 teaspoon of Dawn detergent! If your lamp shade is made of a parchment/thin paper material or is especially fragile, use the same method but use a delicate laundry detergent instead of Dawn. Wipe the lamp gently and then rinse and repeat if necessary.
#3 GIVE IT A BATH
This trick works for so many things in our home that get extremely dusty like artificial flowers and certain decor items that hang on walls and aren’t dusted as often. All they need are a good rinse in warm water in the bathtub, let dry, and then put back where they belong.
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Do you have any secrets you’d like to add about how to clean lamp shades? We’d love to hear from you in the comments!