a tiled bathroom with a brown shower curtain

2 Surprising Reasons: Why Does My Shower Curtain Turn Orange & How to Prevent It

Have you ever observed mysterious orange stains on your shower curtain, often concealed at the bottom? Not only do these stains detract from your bathroom’s cleanliness, but they can also be indicative of health concerns. If you’re experiencing this issue, it’s crucial to understand the root cause. Our article ‘Why Does My Shower Curtain Turn Orange’ offers a comprehensive insight. It not only explains the reasons behind the persistent orange discoloration of your shower curtains but also provides guidance on effective cleaning and prevention strategies to tackle these unwelcome stains.

Why Does My Shower Curtain Turn Orange?

Firstly, it’s important to know why does my shower curtain turn orange before we can figure out how to get rid of these orange stains.

One of the possible causes is that the water used in your bathroom contains iron or other metal ions. Water drops on the shower curtain while you’re showering will react with some of the materials in the curtain to make orange stains.

Another reason may be your other shower supplies in your bathroom. If you wash your body with detergents, soaps, or body washes that have dyes or chemicals in them, these chemicals will stay on the shower curtain after you rinse it and change the color over time.

In a yellow and white bathroom featuring a yellow shower curtain, one might wonder: Why Does My Shower Curtain Turn Orange?

Ways to Clean Orange Stains on the Shower Curtain

Generally, these orange stains on the shower curtain from minerals in your water and other bathroom products will look awful, but they won’t be bad for most people’s health. But for people with a compromised immune system, these orange stains can make them thick. So, you still need to get rid of these orange stains, whether it’s to keep your bathroom looking nice or to keep your body healthy.

So how do I remove this orange residue?

Use white vinegar.

Many people often ask, ‘Why does my shower curtain turn orange?’ The answer is usually due to iron from hard water. You can use some white vinegar to clean these orange stains. The method is very easy. You just need to mix equal parts distilled water and white vinegar and put them on the stains. Let the shower curtain soak in the mixture for a few minutes. Then you can rub off the stains lightly with a brush. Finally, rinse the shower curtain with water and let it dry.

Wash orange stains in the washing machine with baking soda.

If you don’t want to clean a dirty shower curtain by hand, you can clean the shower curtain in the washing machine. But don’t wash it directly! You need to add a cup of baking soda to the laundry detergent you usually use. Baking soda can remove the stains and soap scum, but mold remains on the shower curtain. Then choose a low temperature and gentle washing mode. To keep the shower curtain from twisting, you can also wash one or two light-colored towels together.

If you see orange stains on the shower curtain, remember to clean them right away. Don’t wait for the stain to turn into black mold or darker mildew, which will be difficult to deal with.

yellow bathroom curtain with yellow shower curtain

Pink Mold on My Shower Curtain

Sometimes, you might also find some pink mold in your shower curtain or shower walls. Actually, it’s not a mold but a bacteria called Serratia marcescens. Pink mold is not exactly pink, but orange or reddish.

Why is there pink mold on my shower curtain?

Serratia marcescens needs moist, warm temperatures to grow. People often call the pink stuff in the shower in the bathroom “pink mold.”

Soap and other cleaning product leftovers frequently remain in showers, which helps these vermicelli bacteria grow. When there is too much moisture in the air, pink shower mold is more likely to spread widely through the air.

So now, do you know why there is pink mold on your shower curtain?

How do I get rid of pink mold on my shower curtain?

In humans, Serratia marcescens can infect the urinary tract, the respiratory tract, wounds, and even the eyes in some cases.

So how do we get rid of the pink mold on the shower curtain?

Like orange stains, when you see pink mold on your curtain, deal with it instantly. You can use some chlorine bleach because it can kill the mold and remove the pink stains.

  1. Getting a pair of rubber gloves ready before you start cleaning will keep your hands safe from the bleach and Serratia marcescens.
  2. Mix 1/2 tablespoon of baking soda with a cup of laundry detergent and a small amount of water to form a flowing paste.
  3. Dip the brush into the paste and rub the pink mold on the shower curtain slightly. But don’t use too much force; some shower curtains can be easily washed.
  4. If you want to be sure that the mixture is gone, rinse the shower curtain with water more than once. Then just let the shower curtain dry.

Tips for Preventing Orange Stains on the Shower Curtain

Take some strong steps to stop these pink molds from growing on the shower curtain or the pink molds that grow on the shower accessories that are caused by iron in the water. Here are some tips for you, and I hope they are helpful to you.

a bathroom with a brown shower curtain, tiled walls and baskets, color blocked

Clean your shower curtain regularly.

You need to clean your shower curtain regularly. Depending on how often you use the shower curtain, create a cleaning plan. In general, you should clean your shower curtain every 1 to 2 months to reduce stains and bacteria growth. Remember to clean your shower curtain with the right products and the right cleaning solution.

Dry your shower curtain after every shower.

Remember to dry your shower curtain completely after each use. This can help prevent the growth of mold and mildew on the curtain. Don’t let your shower curtain be exposed in a damp environment. A wet curtain can attract dirt and soap scum more easily, making it more difficult to keep clean. If you dry your shower curtains completely between uses, orange stains will be less likely to form and they will be easier to clean.

Ventilate your bathroom.

If you can, open a window while you’re in the bathroom to let in more fresh air. Fresh air comes in and carries away moist air, helping to maintain good air quality. Installing an exhaust fan is another option. This is the most common and effective way to get air flow in the bathroom. Turning on exhaust fans before you take a shower can get rid of damp air in the bathroom, which keeps it from building up and gets rid of mold and mildew.

Use an automatic water softener.

The purpose of using a water softener is to remove hard substances from the water. Minerals like these are found in higher amounts in hard water, which can cause scales and deposits. By softening hard water with a water softener, you can reduce the orange stain on the shower curtain. Also, cleaning products like soaps and detergents can work better when you use softened water.

How Should I Clean the Shower Curtains and Liners?

Regularly cleaning your shower curtains and liners is important.

A woman, puzzled by her orange shower curtain, loads it into a machine, asking, 'Why Does My Shower Curtain Turn Orange?

How do I wash a shower curtain?

1. Take the shower curtain off the rings and put it into the washing machine.

2. Choose the gentle wash cycle and warm water setting of the washing machine.

3. Add a few teaspoons of detergent, some white vinegar, and a cup of baking soda.

4. Start the washing machine cycle.

5. Hang your plastic or fabric curtain on the rod to air dry after finishing washing.

Noted: Some shower curtains can only be washed by hand.

How do I wash shower curtain liners?

1. Take the shower liner off the rings.

2. Turn on the washing machine and choose the delicate cycle and hot water setting.

3. Place the liner into the washing machine.

4. Add a few detergents and bleachers to the washing machine.

5. Start the cycle and air-dry the shower liners after washing.

Noted: You can clean your plastic shower curtain liners by washing the machine or by hand.


It’s not hard to remove orange stains from the shower curtain. Baking soda, vinegar, or lemon juice are all natural ways to clean that work just as well as special cleaning agents for getting rid of stains. Cleaning your shower curtain regularly is important to keep it clean, stop germs from growing, and make it last longer. Don’t forget to clean the shower curtain covers either. If your shower curtain is too dirty or badly damaged, don’t use it again and replace it with a new one! I hope you have a nice and healthy bathroom environment.


Why does my shower curtain always turn orange?

Because your bathroom water has iron and other minerals that stain things with rust, your shower curtain will turn orange. Soap residue, toiletry products, and pink mold can also cause the color to turn orange.

How can I remove orange stains from my shower curtain?

You can wash your shower curtain in the washing machine with vinegar or baking soda. These things can help remove orange stains on the shower curtain. If the stains are difficult to remove, you can also use bleach, but remember to wear a pair of robber gloves.

Should I throw the shower curtain away when I discover the orange stains or pink mold on it?

Not always. When you find orange stains on your shower curtain, you can clean it immediately. It will be hard to get rid of the orange stains if you let them get darker and stickier. If your shower curtain is too dirty or worn out, you can replace it with a new one.

How often should I clean my fabric shower curtain?

It depends on the frequency of your shower. Generally, you need to clean your shower curtain every two or three months. But if you use the bathroom frequently, you can clean it every month. Remember to let your shower curtain dry completely after each use.

How do I keep my shower curtains from getting moldy?

You can regularly clean your shower curtains and liners. Remember to open your bathroom doors and windows. You can also install an exhaust fan in your bathroom to promote air circulation.

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