How To Clean Lampshades

by | Apr 13, 2023 | Detailed Cleaning

For the most, we scarcely take cognizance of our lamp shades, save when they are distinct or remarkable – or soiled and tarnished. Neglecting to scrutinize your lamp shades regularly might cause you to miss the faded hue or dirtiness that has beset them due to daily exposure. Nonetheless, should your shades have taken on a yellowish tinge, become stained, or frayed, you can be assured that guests will mark their presence like a festering wound. Hence, it is imperative that they be cleansed.

But how to go about this task? Fear not, for we are here to impart knowledge!

Whether your shades are of fabric, paper, or other materials in vogue, we shall guide you through the process of purging them of pet hair, dust, blemishes, and dinginess that may have caused them to become an affront to the eye. Prior to delving into the task, include “lamp shade cleaning” in your routine cleaning regimen. Once you have restored their former glory, simply dusting them once a week with a lint roller or microfiber cloth should suffice in maintaining their radiant appearance..

Lampshades are commonly made out of just a few different materials, including:

  • Linen and similar fabrics
  • Silk
  • Paper
  • Glass
  • Plastic

And it’s extremely important to know how to clean different types of lampshades

Before cleaning your lampshades

How to clean lamp shade

Prior to purifying your lamp shades, one may perform a preliminary dusting whilst the lamp remains in situ, so long as it is turned off and has had a chance to abate its warmth.

However, prior to embarking upon a more rigorous cleansing, one must attend to the following:

  • Disconnect the lamp and await its complete cessation of warmth
  • If feasible, extract the shade from the lamp’s embrace
  • When attending to fabric or paper shades, don gloves to forestall the transference of oils from one’s hands to the material

Pro tip: Upon completing the cleansing of your lamp shades, contemplate educating oneself on the art of cleaning blinds, lest they also suffer from neglect.

How to Clean Fabric Lamp Shades

how to clean fabric lamps

In cleansing fabric lamp shades, one must first divest the shade from its lamp, for water and cleaning agents may inflict harm upon the lamp’s finish, and the peril of electric shock ever looms. Prior to immersing the shade in water, inspect the seams to discern whether they are stitched or adhered with glue.

Should they be stitched, the shade may be safely submerged, but should they be joined by glue, submersion may result in their destruction. Nevertheless, if faced with the choice between wetting the shade or resigning it to oblivion.

This method may be employed as a final recourse.

  • Fashion a bath for your shade by filling a basin with warm water and incorporating a measure of dish soap.

  • If the shade has taken on a yellowish hue, augment the bath with a smattering of baking soda.

  • Allow the shade to soak for ten minutes.

  • Tenderly employ a soft sponge to clean the shade with the soapy water.

  • For hardier fabrics, a toothbrush and baking soda may be utilized to tackle persistent spots.

  • Rinse the shade thoroughly to remove any residual dirt and permit it to air dry.

For shades adhered with glue or fashioned from delicate materials such as silk or linen: 

  • It is advisable to employ a moist cloth and Ivory soap.

  • Commence by dusting the shade or employing compressed air to dispel dirt and dust. Soak a bar of Ivory soap in a cup of water, creating a soapy solution.

  • Immerse a microfiber cloth in the solution and gently wipe the interior and exterior of the shade.

  • Bear in mind, it is imperative to avoid excessive wetting.

  • Wipe away any soapy residue with a clean, damp cloth, and allow the shade to air dry.

How to Clean Lamp Shades Made From Paper or Parchment

How to clean paper lampshade

So you have paper or parchment lamp shades and a soiled quandary?

Stains can be a prickly predicament on these delicate surfaces, for the moisture of cleaning may leave an unsightly pallor in its wake. Yet fear not!

  • The preservation of these luminous lanterns can be a simple affair, with but a dry caress of a microfiber cloth or a roll of lint every week or so.

  • Dust with care, avoiding any intricate embellishments, and your lampshades shall shine anew.

Should the adhesive seams of your paper or bathed fabric shades unravel, despair not!

  • For a quick solution, simply pour a few droplets of white school glue onto a plate.

  • Moisten a paintbrush or cloth corner and apply a thin layer of glue along the edges, pressing the corners together until the adhesive sets.

  • To secure the bond, use paper clips or similar fasteners at the top and bottom of the seam. And voilà! Your lamp shades are as good as new.

How to clean a lampshades with pleats

How to clean lampshade with pleats

The intricacies of pleated lampshades beg for special consideration, for the interstices of the pleats hoard dust and grime with alacrity, making them a chore to cleanse. Thus, it is imperative to keep these luminaries dust-free with a flutter of a downy plume or a gentle cloth, so that the act of purifying them is simplified.

In the instance of blemishes besmirching these lampshades, a scrivener of stain removers, with a light touch, can be employed on the lighter hues, while a moist cloth, with firm fortitude, is deployed on the dour counterparts. The folds of the pleats, though, offer a cloak of invisibility to any creasing or rumpling in the fabric, thereby making the eradication of persistent spots a task that can be carried out with a robust grip.

A tip for the discerning cleaner: Utilize a sheet from the clothes dryer, for it has the propensity to attract dust and make it easier to reach every obscure nook and cranny of the pleated lampshades.

How to clean silk lampshades

how to clean silk lampshade

Silk lantern beacons, as delicate as a dream, should not be sullied with a dousing of water, for fear of marks or blots. Instead, dust them lightly with a silken cloth or whisper a soft dusting from a feather plume. For any blemish, try a brush with gentle bristles, but treat the fabric with a gentle touch, lest you cause harm.

Should a tough taint persist, mix a dribble of gentle soap with a flagon of water and cautiously rinse the marred area. Rinse it with warm water and let it bask in the air, using a fan to hasten its drying. Do not let the beacon linger damp, lest it attract mildew’s embrace.

For an alternative, you may consider using sticks of dry cleaning, but first, confirm if they are compatible with the fabric.

How to clean a glass lampshade

how to clean glass lampshade

Cleaning a glass lampshade requires the light touch of a ballerina and the precision of a watchmaker, for a single misstep could shatter the delicate crystal. Yet, with the right amount of care, you can make your glass lantern shimmer like the light of a full moon.

To scour a glass lantern, employ a dampened cloth or sponge, but ensure to wipe away all dampness with a cloth at once to dodge leaving traces. Use a glass cleaning solution or a versatile cleaner, with caution, for the shade and frame. Remember that the heat from the lamp may provoke unexpected reactions, so make certain the product is appropriate for use with lampshades.

If the glass lantern is of the immovable variety, be sure to unplug it, letting it cool completely before attempting any cleaning. Never, ever, test the waters of wet cleaning whilst the lamp still sizzles with electricity.

How to clean yellowing lampshades

how to clean yellowing lampshades

To restore the alabaster hue of your fabric lampshades, yellowed with the toll of time, one can take various paths.

Should a single patch of discoloration tarnish the pristine cloth, wield a pen filled with stain-banishing magic to vanquish the problem. However, if the entire shade is plagued with a yellowish tinge, one must resort to more drastic measures.

Embrace the process of rejuvenation by removing water stains as previously described.

Instead of a mere soapy solution, augment the bath with OxiClean or, if not available, a hefty measure of baking soda. Watch as the yellowing dissolves, revealing once again the pristine whiteness of your lampshade.

How to clean a water stained lampshade

how to clean stains

When confronted with a water-stained lampshade, a matter of urgency must be to restore its lustrous form. The sooner you blot away the moisture, the less likely wrinkling and discoloration will be. A fan set to a gentle breeze is the quickest means to a dry state.

For the stain’s removal:  

1. You must use gloves of cleanliness and wield a white cotton cloth, soaking up the superfluous liquid from the back of the shade.

2. Then, a sponge or brush of softness can be employed to whisk away any residual dampness.

3. Sprinkle the shade with a lavish layer of baking soda or baby powder. This will absorb the moisture, leaving the shade to dry in peace.

If, however, the stain remains stubborn and set, it requires more drastic measures.

1. Unmount the shade from the lamp, and if possible, its metallic frame.

2. Fill a bath or a large basin with warm water and add a modicum of detergent, just enough to provoke a frothy reaction.

3. Immerse the shade fully, using a sponge to scrub away the dirt and stains.

4. Rinse the shade with pure water, patting away the excess with a cloth.

5. Re-mount the shade (if removed) and allow it to air dry completely.

6. For even drying, use a fan or place the shade in a sunny window, and periodically rotate it, to avoid the formation of new water stains.


cleaned lampshade

With regularity, ensure the lampshade’s surface gleams.

  • Allow the shade to slumber in darkness and for it to be at peace with a cool touch.

  • Fabric lampshades should be groomed with your vacuum’s upholstery brush accompaniment, or with a paintbrush as pure as new fallen snow.

  • When cleaning your abode, paper and parchment lampshades may be blessed with a lint roller’s touch, banishing dirt from their presence.

  • Plastic lampshades and glass globes may be rinsed with a cloth imbued with moisture, but only the merest hint.

  • Once a season, partake in a thorough ablution for all lampshades, lest they accumulate dust and grime.

Call in the Pros!

call the professional cleaners

Summon the Scrubbers! At Ukraine Cleaners, our Scrubbers are aces at scouring lampshades, no matter the texture or blemish. By adhering to these Scrubber stratagems, you’ll be able to scintillate your lampshades with ease!

If scouring your lampshades is downcasting you, instead summon a seasoned lampshade scouring service such as Ukraine Cleaners.

Let us wow you with our phenomenal maid services, and relax while we take care of your home, all while knowing you are helping a wonderful cause.

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