How To Polish a Stainless Steel Sink with Flour

Open Slideshow

A few years ago, I learned a trick that changed my life. No, seriously, it was a complete game changer in the care of my kitchen sink. This is a tip you’ll shrug off and then eventually grudgingly try. And then you’ll say: “Oh man, that was so easy and awesome! Why didn’t I do that sooner?!”

The key, my friends, to the most shiny and luxuriously polished stainless steel sink, is very cheap, very simple, and very weird: Flour.

Watch me go to town on my sink in the quickie video above!

Why Polish the Sink? Why Not?

Why would one polish your sink? I can hear the angry mobs now: “I’m just doing good to get my dishes done and the sink empty! Why would I ever imagine polishing it. Isn’t that like the brass on the Titanic?” Well, technically, yes — it is. But, still. Sometimes a little polishing is good for the soul.

This very satisfying trick is an essential when moving into or out of an apartment, when important company is coming over, or on an afternoon when you’re really into the cleaning vibe. It’s simple, easy and really makes things look the best! Pull out your flour and let’s see how to turn this pantry staple into a cleaning workhorse.

How To Polish Stainless Steel with Flour

What You Need

Supplies & Equipment
Kitchen cleaner OR hot soapy water
Kitchen towel
Paper towel OR soft rag


  1. Wash the sink thoroughly: Clean the sink with a spray kitchen cleaner or hot soap water. (See our tips here for cleaning stainless steel with vinegar, too.)
  2. Dry the sink: Buff the sink dry with a clean towel. Do not skip this step! It sounds silly, but any water left in your sink will turn into instant goo and not end well. Don’t forget the sides of the sink and the top of the drain.
  3. Sprinkle the sink with flour: Cover half or one side of your sink with a thick dusting of flour. (Yes, this will feel intrinsically wrong.)
  4. Buff the flour: Using a paper towel or soft cloth, buff the flour into the sink like you are waxing a car. Keep buffing and don’t forget the drain, rim around the top of the sink, handles, knobs and little grooves where dirt likes to hide. You’ll see bits of food start to disappear and things begin to get shiny.
  5. Repeat and buff: Buff and remove excess flour.
  6. Forbid anyone from using it: Just kidding!

In my own home, I use this trick once a month. The flour buffs the micro-grooves in the sink’s surface and also pulls out residual dirt and grime that your basic sponge and soap can’t get to. It just makes things feel extra special. This is the trick to bust out when your mother-in-law comes to visit (or that friend from high school who’s always one-upping you). Or just your average Tuesday if you’re feeling up to it!

Want more smart tutorials for getting things done around the home?
See more How To posts
We’re looking for great examples of your own household intelligence too!
Submit your own tutorials or ideas here!