The Only Way I Was Able to Clean My Stained Porcelain Sink

updated May 1, 2019
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(Image credit: Lisa Diederich)

My house is more than 250 years old. My sink is definitely not as old, but it almost looked like it. When my husband and I bought the place, it came with a white kitchen sink. At least it was supposed to be white, but it was mostly yellow — all around the bottom of the sink.

(Image credit: Lisa Freedman)

The yellowing was a result of, what I assume was, just years and years (or even a decade or two) of hard water hitting and sitting on the surface. (If there are other reasons it’s so yellow, I’m choosing not to think of them.) When we moved in, and many times after, I tried using my beloved Mr. Clean Magic Eraser, which usually works on everything. It helped a little, but this yellow stain remained. Other cleaners gave me the same non-results.

Don’t get me wrong — the sink was clean and germ-free. I cleaned it and disinfected it daily. But I still never felt like I could eat food that had touched the surface. Not only was the color not fun to look at, but it also kinda turned my tummy when I thought about it.

So when I started talking to Sharon Franke, one of our amazing contributors, and she mentioned a household cleaner that I had never heard of, my ears perked up. See, I try and write about lots of cleaners for Kitchn and I really thought I’d heard of them all. But I’d never heard of Cameo.

Turns out, Cameo makes a stainless steel cleaner, which Sharon loves for her pots and pans (see: The $8 Product That Totally Transformed My Cookware), and a copper, brass, and porcelain cleaner. As soon as I learned this, I ordered a container on Amazon and couldn’t wait for it to arrive two days later.

(Image credit: Lisa Freedman)

I shook a bunch of powder to cover the yellow stain, waited a few minutes, and used a wet, soft bristled brush to get scrubbing. It definitely took some elbow grease, but the stains started lifting! After I did a pass on the whole area, I turned on the water and worked a little more. Then, I added another coating of powder and scrubbed again. Faint yellow stains remain (and those scratches!), but it’s still nearly a million times better! I’m going to keep working at the stain and hopefully keep this sink for 250 more years to come.

Have you used this stuff before? Got any other success stories to share with us?