Fact or Fiction: Does This Viral TikTok Cleaning Trick Really Work?

Find out if this hack for clean, fog-free mirrors lives up to the TikTok hype.

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It’s no secret that the TikTok algorithm gets to know your interests pretty well, and as an editor for that means my feed is filled with cleaning content. #CleanTok, as the niche interest is called on TikTok, is teaming with folks decanting supplies in aesthetically pleasing storage, sharing reviews of the trendiest cleaners, and using globs of products to show off their favorite cleaning hacks.

Up until now I’ve only been an observer of these oddly satisfying videos. For me, when it comes to cleaning I’ve remained a loyalist to trustworthy brands and classic cleaners, like vinegar and baking soda. But after scrolling through promises of easy tricks and unbelievable results, I decided it was time to put #CleanTok to the test.

The Shaving Cream Mirror Trick

As a #CleanTok amateur, I was only ready to dip my toe into the world. I wanted to test a hack that had the usual elements of the genre—unconventional, extreme, and a gratifying result—but one that wasn’t going to make a bigger mess for me if it turned into a disaster.

As I scrolled through videos of intense deep cleaning and oddball tips, I stopped on one showcasing “3 Home Cleaning Hacks Using Shaving Cream.” With an upbeat pop song playing in the background, I watched as a woman’s hand buffed shaving cream onto a mirror for a streak-free shine and to prevent fogging, spread it across an appliance to remove fingerprints, and polished a diamond ring with it. I don’t have stainless steel appliances nor jewelry that needed shining, but my bathroom mirror was calling for a cleaning. I searched “shaving cream cleaning hacks” to see if anyone else was using this toiletry on their mirrors and sure enough there were! I found my cleaning hack to test.

Getting Down To It

In all the videos I watched, most used traditional shaving cream. I had shaving gel on hand, but bought a can of regular shaving cream for a fair experiment. I would use the gel on one half of the mirror and the cream on the other half. In some videos people applied the shaving cream with a microfiber cloth and in others people smeared it with their hands; again, I would test both methods.

Photo: Katie Nolan

So many #CleanTok videos show people using an excessive amount of product. While I’m typically more cautious, this seemed like an opportunity to get a little crazy. I squirted about a golf-ball size of gel onto the cloth, which then grew bigger—it was way more than I needed. While I knew it was too much, I went ahead and applied it across the mirror. I left about a third of the mirror untouched as a control for the defogging component.

Then I switched to the traditional shaving cream and disposed it right onto my hand. I tried to learn from my previous mistake of using too much with the gel, but I still ended up with excess. I went ahead and smeared it onto the mirror in a circular motion.

With the mirror nearly covered in shaving cream, I took a clean microfiber cloth to wipe it all away. In the videos it looked like folks used the same cloth that they used to apply the shaving cream, but mine was too messy. This took a few minutes longer than the videos showed, but I attribute that to using too much product. The side with the shaving gel left a hazy coating that required extra work to buff away, but it did eventually clear. Before I made any judgements, I turned on the shower and let the room fill with steam to see what would happen.

Did The Shaving Cream Trick Work?

So was I left with a shiny, fog-free mirror? Well, yes and no. My mirror definitely looked cleaner than when I started, but it didn’t look better than the times I had cleaned it with Windex. However, the trick did prevent the mirror from getting foggy. As the bathroom filled with steam, the part without shaving cream immediately got cloudy while the other portion remained mostly clear.

As for which shaving cream worked better? The classic shaving cream was the way to go. The side with it never required extra buffing, looked cleaner, and really didn’t fog up at all.

Photo: Katie Nolan

Final Thoughts

While this TikTok hack wasn’t a total bust, I’m not ready to add it to my cleaning routine. Using shaving cream was messier than a spray cleaner and it had less impressive results. While it did prevent fogging, that is not a concern of mine. It is an okay alternative if you’re in a pinch and don’t have your usual cleaner on hand. Overall, it was a good foray into #CleanTok and it has inspired me to tackle some of the other cleaning trends on the app.