How to Keep Your Pole Clean

Is your pole dirty and slippery? Struggling to remove those stubborn stains? Fear not – we have the answers right here! Keep your pole looking shinier than shiny with

The Pole Exercise Modern Girl’s Guide to Cleaning Your Dance Pole

Why your pole needs cleaning

The short answer is it’s because of you – we shed and regrow our outer skin cells every 27 days, and some of this skin will inevitably end up coating your pole. You’ll also transfer a share of the grease and grime you’ve picked up during the day, along with creams, moisturisers and other beauty products. All of this combines to form a dirty and slippery residue on your pole.

How often should you clean your pole?

This depends heavily on how intensively you’re using it, but usually I’d suggest cleaning the pole once before you start, again mid-workout, and finally giving it a good wipe down at the end of your session. In my school I typically wipe down the poles every 20 minutes, but quite a few students carry their own towels too if they are working on challenging new moves.

Stop your pole getting mucky

There are a few things you can do to help keep your pole cleaner for longer, though most of the answers aren’t quick fixes unfortunately.

Keeping your pole clean

For a quick clean, just grab an old tea towel, towel or even t-shirt and rub the pole down. Anything made of cotton or a synthetic mix usually works well, though try to avoid fabric that’s too fluffy as this often leaves a residue of its own on the pole.

Quite a few people use special polishing cloths give their poles that special showroom shine. Personally I’ve always felt that this buffing time could be better spent spinning round my pole, but if you do decide to get one make sure it’s not impregnated with wax or polish.

Cleaning products for your pole

After an intensive pole dancing session, you may find that your pole needs a little more attention to restore it to its former shiny, grippy self. There are a number of cleaning products that can help, though do make sure they won’t damage your pole first. I’ve used most of these without any problems on my poles, but Vertical Leisure, for instance, advise against using acetone on their X-Poles.

  • Water – Water is always a safe option, and usually pretty effective too. Dampen part of a cloth and wipe firmly down and around the pole. Dry the pole off again and you’re good to go!
  • Acetone – When my poles are in high demand during busy classes I often use acetone (nail polish remover) to help clean the poles. Because it’s a solvent, acetone is usually a lot more effective than water for cleaning a greasy pole.
  • (It’s also great for removing grease and creams from the body – I normally /2007/04/20/5-ways-to-beat-sweaty-hand-syndrome/”>use a small amount to dry my hands at the start of a session, and some of my students have even used it to clean moisturiser off their inner thighs!)
  • As with water, apply a small amount to a cloth and rub your pole down. Make sure you give the pole a quick wipe to remove any excess acetone before jumping back on again.
  • Alcohol – You can use alcohol on your pole in exactly the same way as acetone, though some people prefer it as it evaporates more quickly. Of course if your pole manufacturer recommends you don’t use acetone this may simplify your choice…
  • Baby Wipes – Quick, clean and supplied in handy packs, baby wipes are great for getting grime off your pole. Baby wipes contain alcohol, which is what actually does the hard work of cleaning your pole. Do check they don’t contain moisturiser, or you’ll end up with a much more slippery pole than when you started!
  • Glass cleaner – Some of my students swear by this to clean their poles. I’ve never used it myself though – do leave a comment if you have to let me know how you got on.

Do you know of any other good products to clean a pole? If so please add a comment below and let us know what you use – we’d love to hear from you!

Fun links

  • How to be a Good Wife – From a home economics high school text book (1954) and the inspiration for the beginning of this post. (Possibly fake)
  • Skin Self-Study Module – Did you know that beards are the fastest growing hairs on the human body? Some facts about skin from the Canadian Association of Wound Care.


28 Responses to “How to Keep Your Pole Clean”

  1. For some reason I’m reluctant to use acetone; glass cleaner is fast and effective. I spray a cloth, wipe the pole and my hands as well for good measure.

  2. I use a mixture of 50% water and 50% isopropyl (rubbing alcohol). The one caution I got from my instructor was to get the 70 proof stuff, not the 99 proof, as it has a higher chance of reacting with the metal of the pole. I just mix it in a spray bottle I got from the dollar store and I use an old Tshirt that I’ve ripped up as it doesn’t leave an icky mess of lint on the pole. Good on your hands too- just make sure you have no open cuts or cracked hands cause it STINGS!

  3. Glass cleaner is amazing. All you have to do is spray on a small amount and wipe waith a towel or whatever. It cuts through the grease leaving your pole shiny and more grippy. I should be in the advert I think!!

  4. I like glass cleaner, it leaves the pole very clean. They use alcohol and my studio, but I like glass cleaner better :)

  5. Thanks for the tips ladies – do keep them coming!

  6. If you have an X-pole, glass cleaner is recommended on their website and the instructions. I like it because it’s so easy! Cheaper than some other options too.

  7. Great tips, keep them coming , at times my pole can be very slippery and i struggle,

  8. We tend to use the glass cleaner too. I can’t recommend using baby wipes though, I’ve always found that slimey residue inhibits getting a good grip. There’s nothing worse than trying to heng upside down and hold a position when you know you’re slowly going floorwards! LOL

  9. I use vinegar to clean my pole. It is a natural and more effective alternative to glass cleaner. It does a really good job of cleaning and drying out the pole. Plus, I just love the smell of vinegar. I wouldn’t recommend using acetone. Although we use it on our nails, it is actually a carcinogen. It it very bad for your health, both to breath it and absorb through your skin.

  10. I have not danced for about 10 years, but recently got back into it. I realize that it’s going to take a few weeks – mths before I can perform the moves I used to, but I feel that my pole is part of the difficulties I’ve been having. It’s stainless steel and I don’t feel like I’m getting a good grip with it. Is it just part of my relearning or is stainless steel not good? I’ve only danced w/brass in the past…

  11. Hey ladies,
    Great tips! Glass cleaner is very popular along with vinegar and even vodka (although that’s rather expensive to upkeep!)

    Lori, sometimes a change of metal can throw people especially if they are used to using a brass or steel in the past.

    The stainless steel will get easier, just carry on with it, and make sure its cleaned really well as the steel tends to collect more residue than the brass poles.


  12. Hi ladies,

    The best combintion to clean the pole I discovered is the following – vodka – very wet towel – dry towel.

  13. I have used vodka and baby wipes (but I’m too scared to use acetone on my beautiful x-pole!) but I’ve found that by far the best is glass cleaner!!! I always keep a bottle of it in my room along with a fluffy tea towel, a couple of sprays and a wipe over with the tea towel and my pole is shiny and grippy and lovely!! i love it!!

  14. I have an x pole and have tried a variety of things for cleaning including alcohol, water, glass cleaner, clorox bleach wipes, and Green Works cleaner by clorox. My pole is gorgeous and I don’t slip! Don’t use the generic version of the Clorox wipes though, they left a residue when I was trying to save a buck.

  15. I have used glass cleaner on my pole and it does work GREAT!Shiny like new!I luv it!

  16. Hi there ,

    are there any tips for things that you can pu ton skin to help you grip with legs and hands .Also i like to look tanned especially when pole dancing !!! are there any fake tans out there that wont leave a residue on the pole ,or has any one got any tips on how to look tanned .

    Cheers xx

  17. there is a product i used called Grrrip spray when I first started, but you don’t want to rely on it. As far as tanning, everything leaves a residue if you do it the same day that you will be on the pole. I usually spray tan the day before, shower the next morning, and then pole it up!

  18. we use neat methylated spirits on a tea towel in our class, so ive used that on my xpole aswel but its not grippy enough for me…wich is why im looking this up.
    ive seen girls dance in comps where the poles look like their covered in powder… do u know any products like this?
    il try the glass cleaner thats gr8!

  19. i use to clean the pole dance with vodka and in hot days to avoid a slippery pole just spray it with hair spray and leave it to dry doesn,t matter how sweatty u can be u will have the right grip

  20. Nurse Mouse 15 June, 2010 at 7:27

    I found alcohol hand gel, like you find in a hospital is good for cleaning the pole, and for using on hands if like me you suffer badly from sweaty hands.
    Some people might find it an expensive option, but as I can get hold of it for free it works.
    Also sonsidering trying latex examination gloves for when practicing new moves that require a lot of grip until i’m confident I get positioning right and the feel for it.

  21. I use a mixture of alcohol and water, and I love it. I spray some on my hands and thighs, and it always works great. I also have to admit that I’ve used rubber kitchen gloves to help keep from slipping in new tricky inverts ;)

  22. Hi,
    I have a chrome pole & i use vinegar to clean my pole down. Just put a small amount on the end of a cloth then wipe it down with the a towel. So clean & so much easier 2 grip on. Very shinny aswel. I love it. I also use an alcohol hand gel before i start aswel :) it helps me

  23. Hey guys :) the dance class i go to uses glen 20 to kill germs and help make the pole sticky! i think its great! i have a pole at home also and use it when my pole doesnt seem to stick anymore! also i use gloves and ankle supports with grip to help me in new moves! just make sure you dont rely on them all the time!

  24. Hi guys!
    Great tips, must try thr glass cleaner! Been using alcohol to clean the pole but it leaves it greasy!
    Also i find shaving gel GREAT for grip and tackiness! Be careful a little goes a loooong way, when i put too much on my hands i ususlly rub behind my knees and thighs!

  25. Hey peeps… i bought an x-pole sport the other day and it was veeery slippery i was really scared to go upside down on it… however i read all the comments and tried out the glass cleaner and your right its amazing… really would recommend using it and thanks for the tips gyals xxx

  26. I bought the xpole sport too about 6 months ago and noticed I couldn’t get it as sticky as the pole in class…I can’t wait to get home and try the glass cleaner! Thanks ladies for all tips! <3

  27. Does anyone know of other ways to help with grip for girls who have dry hands? Lotions make you slip and the waxy grip I bought after awhile won’t allow me to spin because the pole gets to sticky. As a beginner I do enjoy the stickyness because it helps me with holding my body weight but I love to spin. Any help would be great! thanks.

  28. Ji, I havent use my stainless steel x pole for about a year, and I cannot clean it anymore. It has like lumps. I used alcohol but its not working. Please hepl.

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