I Tried This Stainless Steel Cleaner I Found on Amazon — And All I Can Say Is “Wow”

published Apr 24, 2022
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Credit: Lauren Kolyn

Over the years, I’ve learned so many things from readers’ comments on articles I’ve written. I heard about the YNAB app from readers who chimed in on a budgeting article I wrote years ago. I learned that Windex can actually void the warranty on glass cooktops. And, most recently, I discovered a stainless steel polish through a reader’s tip.

After testing and writing about five methods to clean stainless steel appliances, one reader wrote in explaining that Sheila Shine has been an effective solution to cleaning her fridge. Always on the hunt for new-to-me solutions, I was intrigued! I quickly did some research and found out that Sheila Shine has been around since the ’60s, when a successful Miami businessman and World War II vet launched the company.

I decided to order my own container of the delightfully named Sheila Shine on Amazon. At $24, I crossed my fingers it would work as well as the reviewers claimed it would. Some of the praise included comments like “This stuff works miracles,” and “Absolutely amazing.”

Credit: Shifrah Combiths

When the one-quart can arrived, it looked like some heavy-duty stuff. I’m glad it came wrapped in plastic because it did leak a little in transport. The lid is childproof, and if nothing else, it made it clear that this wasn’t stuff to mess with. There’s another metal lid under the childproof one that’s stamped with directions to cut it. I opted to pierce it with scissors so I’d only have a small hole to pour out of. This turned out to be a good choice. 

Credit: Shifrah Combiths
Here goes nothing! Trying Sheila Shine out.

I used the microfiber cloth that came with the product and dribbled a bit of the Sheila Shine, which was runny, onto the rag. Following the package’s instructions, I buffed it into the stainless steel and made sure to wipe off any excess. 

So, how well did Sheila Shine work? My experience with it can be summed up in the two wows I received from my husband when he walked into the kitchen. 

Credit: Shifrah Combiths
Look how shiny my fridge is! No more smudges.

The first wow was about the fumes. It’s true. They were powerful and noxious. Honestly, they had me feeling a bit woozy a few minutes into my trial run of the product. I definitely wouldn’t want to use it around my kids. We quickly went around and opened windows and doors and turned on the oven vent to air out the fumes. Next time I use it, I’ll be sure to do all of that beforehand. Also, wear gloves.

The second wow came when my husband caught sight of the freshly cleaned fridge. I didn’t even need to prompt him to look. It was so shiny, he noticed on his own! Then I pointed out the faucet that I had also polished, which was more mirror-shiny than I’ve ever even seen it. I polished the stainless trim on the microwave and the oven and the front of the dishwasher, too. 

Credit: Shifrah Combiths
Even my faucet is looking pretty good!

My stainless steel appliances are now gleaming. Light glints off of them. And it’s true what the product claims: It seems to repel future smudges, fingerprints, and water marks. I’m amazed at how well Shelia Shine shines. It should also be noted that I did not pre-clean my appliances. The product cleaned, polished, and gave them a protective coat in one fell swoop. I also love that it’s not a wasteful wipe (so many stainless steel cleaners are wipes!).

Credit: Shifrah Combiths
A close-up detail of my faucet.

I wouldn’t use this product for routine cleaning because of the strong fumes. But for infrequent deep cleaning to restore the luster of stainless steel and to keep it looking good between cleanings, I love this stuff. I’m going to put it on a high shelf so no one can access it easily, and every few months on days when I can air out the house, I will let Sheila Shine shine. (Oh, and best of all, I’m pretty sure this one can will last me just about forever.) 

What do you use to spiff up your stainless steel appliances? Tell us in the comments below.