Home Care

How-To: Cleaning Hardwood Floors

Bring out the natural tones in wood with this secret solution that's hiding in your kitchen

Photography: (Main Photo)

It's safe to say that finding the wonder cleaner for hardwood is an endless journey. You need to find something that will get the dust and stains out without ruining the finish of your floors.

If you've been on the hunt for a while, we've got good news for you—we've found the solution and it is black tea! Tannins in tea add a light tint and bring out the wood's natural warm tones while preventing microbial growth with its natural antioxidants. 

Interested to try out this cleaning routine? Check out the step-by-step guide below:

What you need:

  • 1/2 gallon of water
  • 8 bags of black tea
  • Mop bucket
  • Mop
  • Rag


  • Before anything else, make sure that your floors are clean. If you can, find time to deep clean them by vacuuming to pick up every last bit of dust.
  • Next, you can start prepping the mixture. Boil around a gallon of water in a large pot, steep 8-10 bags of black tea for 10-15 minutes. Press out any remaining liquid from the bags into the pot before removing them. Let it cool.
  • Once the mixture has cooled, dip your rag into the solution and wring it out, use this to test a small area on your hardwood floors. If you see that it is working just fine, continue wiping down the rest of the space going in the direction of the wood grain.
  • Work the solution into any scratched areas as the tea will help “stain” it and camouflage the flaws.
  • To soak up any excess liquid on the floor, quickly go over the entire space with a dry mop. Leave it overnight and enjoy the results in the morning! 

NOTE: This routine works best when done sparingly. Do it once or twice a month to avoid any permanent damage. 

SOURCE and PHOTO: Apartment Therapy—How To Clean Hardwood Floors with Black (Main Photo)

More on

3 Ways You're Unintentionally Ruining Your Hardwood Floors

Unusual Floor Patterns You Never Knew Existed

Here's Your Handy Wood Stain Guide


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