DIY Glass Cleaner

31 May 2021 by Natanja

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  • An effective DIY glass cleaner that easily gets rid of water stains and fingerprints on windows and mirrors and leaves surfaces streak-free.

    A brown bottle filled with DIY glass cleaner on a kitchen counter

    Today’s cleaner is the DIY to start with, if you are just getting into DIY cleaning products. You only need 3 ingredients and a spray bottle of your choice to make this. Sounds easy, right? The best part about it though, is that it is made with sustainable and environmentally friendly ingredients.

    Making your own cleaners is a great way to detox your home and live more environmentally conscience – reasons enough to make the switch. However, I wanted to see if this was going to actually go so far as to save me some money. To be honest, I didn’t think it would. But then I did the math: the bottle of organic glass cleaner I used to buy amounts to € 2,69/liter. However, my DIY glass cleaner only costs me € 1,17/liter, making it the clear winner in all categories!


    • ethanol: helps the solution to evaporate quicker and thus leave a streak-free appearance. Use a high proof alcohol (at least 80%) which you can get either at a hardware store or pharmacy. However, I prefer to buy it at the hardware store since it is a lot cheaper there.
    • distilled white vinegar: removes any dirt and grease (goodbye fingerprints!) and does the actual cleaning. Can be purchased at a supermarket.
    • boiled water: for diluting the solution. Boiling the water gets rid of certain impurities and bacteria and improves the shelf life of your cleaner. While it doesn’t remove minerals, I have not had any issues with streaks and thus prefer it over distilled water to avoid buying bottled water.
    Pouring vinegar into a brown glass bottle to make a DIY glass cleaner

    Why I chose to not add cornstarch

    You may have seen a lot of DIY glass cleaner recipes out there that include cornstarch. The idea is, that the cornstarch acts as an abrasive to get rid of tougher dirt and mineral deposits on the surfaces. While I have tried this, I prefer to omit cornstarch for the following reasons:

    • I found that it doesn’t make the cleaner more effective at removing stubborn dirt
    • It settles on the bottom of the spray bottle, requiring you to always shake the bottle well before using
    • It tends to leave streaks

    Cleaning Windows Outside

    If you want to use this cleaner for also cleaning your windows on the outside, I highly recommend washing them with soapy water first. Dirt and grim that have been dried by the sun can be quite tough to clean. Therefore soap, which helps bind water molecules to oil molecules, is needed to help release the caked-on dirt. Afterwards you can go in with your DIY glass cleaner and really make those windows sparkle and remove any streaks!

    Spraying the DIY glass cleaner onto a mirror

    How to avoid streaks

    • Make sure to use high quality microfiber cloths or newspaper, to avoid getting lint onto your glass surfaces.
    • Wipe until the surface is dry again.
    • Do not clean windows on a sunny day.
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    A brown bottle filled with DIY glass cleaner on a kitchen counter

    DIY Glass Cleaner

    • Total Time: 2 minutes (excludes chilling time)
    • Yield: 1x 500 ml spray bottle 1x


    An effective DIY glass cleaner that easily gets rid of water stains and fingerprints on windows and mirrors and leaves surfaces streak-free. 


    • 120 ml ethanol, at least 70% alcohol (1/2 cup)
    • 120 ml distilled white vinegar (1/2 cup)
    • 240 ml boiled water (1 cup), cooled down to room temperature
    • spray bottle of choice*


    Add all the ingredients to a spray bottle and shake to combine. 


    *If you upcycle a spray bottle from a store-bought cleaner, make sure to not just rinse the bottle but also spray the water out several times to clean the dispenser thoroughly. This is important to avoid any chemical reaction between residue from the store-bought cleaner and your DIY cleaner.

    Do not use this DIY cleaner for laptop or other appliance screens.

    Keywords: DIY glass cleaner, DIY glass cleaner with vinegar, DIY vinegar glass cleaner, DIY alcohol glass cleaner


    Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, but these are all products I highly recommend. I won’t put anything on this page that I haven’t verified and/or personally used.

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