Clean Plastic Chrome to a Buff Clean Plastic Chrome to a Buff

Among various kinds of household surfaces, plastic chrome is among the most challenging of surfaces to clean if the proper approach is not followed. Plastic chrome refers to a synthetically-established chrome finish that is applied via the vacuum-metalized process. Plastic chrome exudes the appearance and feel of real chrome but it costs much lesser and is a lightweight, durable option.

Cleaning Plastic Chrome Explained

Plastic chrome can be cleaned through various approaches explained below:

1. Tips for Cleaning & Polishing with Household Supplies

This is the easier and inexpensive way to clean plastic chrome. Plastic chrome used in household appliances/surfaces can be cleaned with:


Most of the commercial toothpastes contain certain active chemicals that have a slight, oxidation effect. Thus, when you use a thin layer of the conventional, creamy toothpaste, it reacts with the grime settled on the plastic chrome surface and loosens it. The ideal approach is to spread the toothpaste evenly on the plastic chrome surface and leave it for about 10 minutes. Follow this with thorough rubbing of the chrome surface with a soft cloth. You can also use a soft-bristled brush for this purpose.


You can use apple cider vinegar or the extract of citrus fruits like lemon or orange for this purpose. Even distilled form of white vinegar is ideal for household cleaning. To clean with vinegar prepare a mixture containing vinegar and water in a ratio of 2:1. For preparing the cleaning solution with citrus extracts, ensure that the solution isn't too diluted, i.e. the citrus extract bits should be clearly visible, floating within the solution. Fill a spray bottle with this cleaning solution. Spray the solution on the plastic chrome material and rub it with a clean, dry cloth.

Baby Oil Polishing Tips

Baby oil is useful for polishing the plastic chrome once it has been thoroughly cleaned by using any of the above suggestions. Baby oil of any brand can be used for this purpose.

  • Baby oil is free from chemical additives that pose the risk of reacting adversely with the plastic chrome surface.
  • You should rub the cleaned surfaced with a sponge dipped in a few drops of baby oil for best results.
  • If you find some grime deposits along the edges, use a small piece of aluminum foil to edge them out. The presence of baby oil ensures that any scratches caused by the foil aren’t retained on the surface.

2. Tips for Cleaning & Polishing with Retailed Products

You can use any of the branded cleaners retailed for cleaning glass, laminates, synthetic wood or even polystyrene surfaces. These cleaners contain chemical compounds that help to loosen the debris/grime from the plastic chrome surface. Some tips for cleaning with commercial cleaning solutions:

  • Ensure that the cleaners are meant for household use. Many cleaners are marked with an ‘industrial-strength’ tag—these should be avoided.
  • Always rub the cleaning surface in a gentle way—in a swirling action. Never rub hard or press upon the surface. This can impact the chemical compounds within the plastic chrome surface that may induce tarnishing in the near future.
  • Don’t use hard scrubbing pads—this can permanently scratch the cleaning surface.
  • To maintain the effectiveness of the cleaning solutions, don’t dilute them beyond the packaged instructions.
  • For polishing the plastic chrome to a buff, use a solution containing an all-purpose car cleaner and water in a ration of 3:2.

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