Do You Believe in Magic {Erasers}?

magic eraser

Well, do you?? :-)

I actually had never given it much thought. I thought the whole concept sounded weird…and just never thought to try one out.

I can’t remember what it was that prompted me to buy a couple of Mr. Clean Magic Erasers…I think it was an email suggestion. But basically the two erasers I bought have been sitting under my kitchen sink for a couple of months now…never seeing the light of day. That is until a few days ago when No. 2 son was looking for something to clean his golf shoes with. I wasn’t really sure what to tell him and then I remembered the magic erasers under the sink and told him to try one of those. Wow! It really WAS like MAGIC!

Since then I’ve been looking into other uses for these little rectangles of wonder and have discovered a whole PLETHORA of uses that I can’t wait to try out.

My favorite so far is SCUFFS ON WALLS AND BASEBOARDS! I have them all over this house! And I just figured I needed to set aside a weekend and REPAINT all of them. Au contraire! My baseboards (at least the ones I got to before the 2 erasers I had disintegrated) look practically brand new! There are a few chips here and there…but those will be infinitely easier to take care of than an entire re-paint job.

magic eraser

magic eraser

magic eraser

As excited as I was to learn what I could CLEAN with these magical bars….I was equally interested in just HOW these babies work??  How come they seem to perform MAGICAL acts of cleaning??

The answer was pretty darn interesting. I will attempt to explain as simply as I can, some of the “science” behind the “magic”.

“Magic” erasers are actually made of Melamine foam which has been used for over 20 years as insulation for pipes and ductwork, and as soundproofing material for studios, and sound stages.

About 10 years ago someone discovered that this melamine foam was also an effective abrasive cleaner.  (Not sure how they discovered that.) Apparently, when melamine resin cures into foam, its microstructure becomes almost as hard as glass — causing it to act like a SUPER-fine sandpaper on stains. But what REALLY gives it “magical” powers is the open microstructure of the melamine foam which literally pulls the dirt that has been loosened into the open spaces and traps it there. MAGICAL.

About the only drawback I found with regards to these erasers is that much like PENCIL erasers…they will break down and fall apart as they are used.

Like this:

magic eraser

Now, if you’re worried about whether melamine foam is SAFE to be using in your home….wonder no more.

Here are the facts.

  • The ingredients in Magic Eraser have been safely and commonly used for many years in a wide range of household products and are considered non-toxic.
  • No ingredients are subject to any health-related labeling laws in North America or in Europe.
  • Formaldehyde is not and never has been an ingredient in Magic Eraser. One ingredient in Magic Eraser (formaldehyde-melamine-sodium bisulfite copolymer) contains the word “formaldehyde” in its chemical name. However, this ingredient is not formaldehyde and poses no health or safety risks.
Now that we’ve covered all the hows and whys and what to’s and wherefore’s……here is a list of just SOME of the “magic” that can be performed with these cleaning erasers:

  • Remove marker, pen and crayons off the walls and furniture
  • Remove sticker and label residue.
  • Cleans notoriously hard-to-clean fiberglass shower floors.
  • Silver polisher. Removes tarnish from jewelry and silver utensils.
  • Cleans residue off dry erase marker boards. (Even when someone accidentally uses a permanent marker on them!)
  • Removes scuffs, pen marks and dirt build up on leather couches, shoes, purses and luggage.
  • Cleans granite countertops and other finished stone surfaces
  • Removes spray paint from vandals (or mischievous 3 year olds!)
  • Safely cleans keyboards, monitors, flat screen TV’s.
  • Soap scum from shower and glass door.
  • Stains on clothing!
  • Tile grout!
  • Cleans stovetops.
  • Coffee stains, koolaid stains, etc. on counter tops
  • Micro fiber couches!
  • Cleans up scuffs on shoes and scuffs LEFT from shoes on the floor.
  • Cleans your plastic and metal patio furniture
  • Great for car interiors and exteriors. Works well on wheels and paint scratches.
  • RV’s and Boats….inside and out.
  • Removes stuck on bugs from cars, house siding, etc.
  • Remove ink and paint stains from hands
  • etc……………………

I literally could go on and on. There are pages and pages and pages of comments from consumers on the Mr. Clean website extolling the virtues of this versatile sponge. I spent a LONG time (too long!) reading through them and didn’t make a DENT! So if you’re bored someday and contemplating what you can try your magic erasers on next….there’s plenty of material there!

I personally can’t wait to go buy some more sponges today and continue my baseboard project.  How crazy is that?? :-)


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  1. says

    They are great, however I did notice that on flat painted wall you can tell where you erased when looking closer. After I tried Mr. Clean we gave the ones from the Dollar Store (I believe you have Dollar Trees in the US?) a chance, way cheaper and work just fine for our purpose. They are great on cleaning old kitchen cabinets inside (unknown stuff left by previous owner of the house, yucky!) and also the SS kitchen sink.
    Have a sweet rest of the week,

      • sara m. says

        I disagree. The ones at the Dollar Tree are $1 for 2, as opposed to $1 for 1 (on Amazon) like the Mr. Clean brand, using no coupons at all (which is dumb anyway). But they do not work at all like the brand name erasers! I’m not sure why, but I have to scrub a lot harder and a lot longer with the Dollar Tree erasers just to get things HALF as clean as I get them with the Mr. Clean eraser. If you think they are the same, then I dare you to try them side by side on a tough job, like rust or permanent marker!

    • Barbara says

      I agree that the ones from the Dollar Tree are not quite as good, but I still like them and use them for the small jobs that will mess up the good (Mr. Clean) ones and allow them to fall apart before I get back to use them again.

  2. Brynn says

    since it is just melamine foam I read somewhere that you can order melamine foam in bulk from amazon and its the same thing as the mr. clean magic eraser just without the genie-looking bald guy on the package. The way i understood it was it was just like the regular eraser not any of the specialty ones (kitchen scrub ones etc.) It also should come in the “bars” just bigger and cut to size.

  3. Jenn says

    Also these stretch a lot further if you cut them in to small chunks and use them until they dissolve completely instead of stopping when they’re unsightly. I cut off about an in of the bar at a time and use that one by 2.5″ piece until it’s literally gone. Using them that much can lead to some dirt residue coming back out of the sponge, but a damp cloth is plenty to wipe that back up.

    I used to work at a retail counter and we used these miracles to clean the registers, phones and copiers back to new in a heart beat. Even counters with years of pen marks even GooGone couldn’t remove, looked like they’d just been installed after we cleaned with these. LOVE THEM! Man it’s good not to feel guilty for using them any more! I was sure these must be some horrific chemical concoction. Thanks for the quality intel :)

    Finally, these work great on colored walls too (not just white like above) but go very lightly they start by taking the dirt off but can quickly start taking paint if you get over zealous. A good tip for painted walls is, one or two light passes on a spot with the eraser then a swipe with a damp cloth to clean up any loose dirt the eraser didn’t pick up so you don’t accidentally over clean.

    • Heather Capitelli says

      Love this idea! I’m a cheap-skate, and anything to save money on a somewhat expensive product is right up my ally! I have purchased these in the past, but my thrifty mind has avoided more purchases because they do seem to fall apart too fast. Great idea. Thanks Jillee and Jenn for inspiring yet another cleaning adventure! I love it!

  4. Katie says

    You can also rip off a small corner, toss into your toilet, let it sit overnight, and your toilet will be clean the next morning. This only cleans where the water sits in the toilet bowl, but it works really well!

  5. Merry says

    Please don’t be over zealous with finished wood trim. I cleaned up a mess on oak stained trim and ended up having to re-do the sealer over the wood. Otherwise, I use for everything here. And it’s great for cleaning the inside of the washer, the dog bowl, bird bath and anything that water may leave a tiny film.

  6. Amanda says

    I had a little boy use black crayon on my brand new laminent wood floors, a keepsake toy box, and the side of his dresser. I was ready to cry when my husband got the magic eraser and got all of it off with no damage to any of it! We also just finished reprinting the house and I touched the stained baseboards on a couple of spots and wouldn’t you know the erasers will take that paint off too! But be advised it is just like the paint, don’t scrub to hard or you can start to remove the stain!

  7. says

    I love magic erasers and also do the ‘old cut them in half trick’ – doesn’t cleaning your baseboards make your whole house feel clean! I know it does at my house.

  8. says

    Dude, use a magic eraser when you’re cleaning your tub with that vinegar/dish detergent stuff. You’ll weep with joy. For srs.

    • Kristen says

      Dude, I love everything about your comment! EVERYTHING! For srs, Lillian… I call everyone dude lol!

    • Lori says

      Magic Eraser & the vinegar/Dawn mixture is awesome on the shower. Also great for the nasty grout stains. Spray on the cleaner mixture let it sit for a minimum of 30 min but sometimes I will let is sit overnight & scrub away that nasty grout goo.

  9. Stacey says

    I used Magic Eraser on my flat top stove. I had some really burned on “overflow” from cooking. Put some vinegar on it and let it sit for a while, then scrubbed it with the eraser. Like magic, it all came off, with no scratches to the ceramic top.