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The Most Blissfully Simple Mop You’ve Never Heard Of

cuban mop

I recently received an email from a reader asking about techniques for using a Cuban mop. I had never heard of such a thing before, but when I mentioned the email at a team meeting, our shop assistant Jessie shed some light on the subject for me.

Jessie said that when she was in high school, she was over at the house of a boy she was dating and noticed that his mom was using a mysterious “t-shaped stick” to mop the floor. When Jessie eventually married that same boy, her new mother-in-law made sure she had a Cuban mop of her own, and Jessie has used it ever since!

After hearing this story, I knew I had to get one and try it out for myself. I also knew I had to write a post on the subject to pass the information along to you, and that’s what I’ll be doing today!

cuban mop

What Is A Cuban Mop?

Cuban mops are made from two wooden poles that form an upside down T shape. In addition to being used in Cuba, this style of mop is common in other parts of the Caribbean, along with Latin America and even parts of Europe.

This type of wooden mop is so simple you can make one yourself, or you can buy one online, like this one from Amazon. To use it, you just drape a towel around the end of it—use a wet towel for mopping, or a dry one for dusting.

cuban mop

You can use just about any rag or cloth with a Cuban mop as long as it’s large enough to wrap around the mop head. I’ve had great results using my microfiber cleaning cloths, which I’ve found do a better job of scrubbing compared to the average kitchen towel.

cuban mop

For your mopping solution, hot water with a drop (yes, just a drop!) of Dawn dish soap will leave your floors squeaky clean, or you can add a splash of white vinegar for added germ-killing power. (If you have hard wood floors, use one of the solutions here listed under “Which Cleaning Solution Should I Use?”)

cuban mop

What Are The Advantages Of Cuban Mops?

The very first time I used this mop, I was struck by how lightweight it is. My steam mop does a great job of keeping my floors clean, but it can be kind of heavy and unwieldy when the tank is full of water. The Cuban mop is light and not at all hard to carry around with you.

And because you can use almost any towel or rag as a “mop head,” you’ll never have to worry about whether you have the right mop pad or cleaning solution. Plus, you’ll never experience any mechanical failures either!

It’s also one of the more aesthetically pleasing mops out there, not to mention the most eco-friendly by far. So there are plenty of pros to using a simple wooden mop like this one!

How To Use A Cuban Mop

cuban mop

Wet your cloth in your preferred cleaning solution, then squeeze out the excess liquid and lay the towel on your floor with one of the longer sides facing you.

cuban mop

Set the mop near the center of the towel, then fold the bottom corners of of the towel up and away from you, then fold the top corners down and towards you.

cuban mop

To use it, push the mop along the floor without lifting it off the floor. When one side gets dirty, flip the towel over and use the other side.

cuban mop

Once both sides are soiled, remove the cloth and rinse it out. Re-wet the cloth with cleaning solution, squeeze it out, and rewrap it over the mop.

cuban mop

The Takeaway

If you’re the type of person who likes to keep things as simple as possible, I can’t see how you could not love a Cuban mop. It’s old-school, but charmingly so, and you don’t really need to buy anything other than the wooden handle to use it. It’s a great option to consider!

Have you ever used a Cuban mop?

Jill Nystul Photo

Jill Nystul (aka Jillee)

Jill Nystul is an accomplished writer and author who founded the blog One Good Thing by Jillee in 2011. With over 30 years of experience in homemaking, she has become a trusted resource for contemporary homemakers by offering practical solutions to everyday household challenges.
I share creative homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make your life easier and more enjoyable!

About Jillee

Jill Nystul

Jill’s 30 years of homemaking experience, make her the trusted source for practical household solutions.

About Jillee

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Homekeeping Tips

  • We’ve never used one. A few years ago my sister got my mom started using a rubber maid mop system. You fill the bucket and there’s also a lever to ring it out. She likes it. I’ll have to show this to her. I don’t know if she would even use the Cuban mop . She has her own way of doing some things.

  • I’m 70 and born in Key West. Cuban mops were what I grew up with. Best thing ever to clean the infamous terrazzo floors most 50’s and 60’s homes had/have. My husband and I moved away in 70’s and I never could find a T-mop anywhere and had to wait till I got back home to buy one. Keep in mind this was long before you could have just about anything delivered to your door by Amazon.LOL. Same thing true for my favorite Cuban foods and staples. Now I can get black beans (dried or can) and bijol (for yellow rice) just about anywhere.

  • When we lived in South America a few years ago, I saw that they use a simple cloth over a broom. It is similar to the Cuban Mop, but more simple. You use your broom instead of buying a pole with a stick on the end. When I got home I cut a towel into the right size square, put a hole in the middle to slide over the broom handle, and mop my floors so easily. When I’m done I throw the towel section into the laundry. So simple and so cheap!

  • I use a similar process for mopping with my rubber mop. Without the cloth, the rubber mop is amazing for picking up pet hair, even from carpet – yes, I do a quick rug sweep with it while sweeping the rest of my floors. It has rubber bristles, screws onto any broom handle, and has a squeegee on one side.

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