Mr. Clean Magic Eraser

Detail therapy - must be magic

I don't know about you, but there are entire weeks where I wonder if I'll manage to get through with my sanity intact.

Trying to shoe-horn into my already overburdened schedule the endless minutae of readying a 100-year-old house for winter, not to mention doing the same for my neglected fleet of elderly vehicles, it's not surprising that the little things fall by the wayside -- and sometimes with unexpected consequences.

Forgetting to put the garbage out, totally understandable and no biggie -- right? After all, they come around every week.

And who hasn't lost their car keys because they're what's making all that racket in the dryer...

So you'll understand when recently I put my seat back and exhaled in exasperation while looking at the long line of blue ink trailing across the grey, suede headliner of this week's expensive german press car. Yeah, nice to know that missing pen was tucked behind my ear, right where I left it.

Fortunately, this wasn't the catastrophe that it could have been. Thanks to one of the staples in my detailing kit, even that horribly indelible-looking ink stain was easily dealt with.

Mr. Clean's Magic Eraser lives up to its name by being one of the absolute must-haves in my arsenal against stains and spills.

Mr. Clean Magic Eraser

A small, white, sponge-like rectangle, the Magic Eraser can be used either wet or dry, depending on the surface and type of stain.

A couple of gentle swipes with a dry corner of the sponge against the delicate suede fabric and the offending stain was miraculously gone.

My new blue jeans made a lasting impression on a recently driven sedan -- and not in a good way. Exiting the vehicle at the end of the day, I noticed in horror that most of the creamy leather seat bottom had become a dull grey from the indigo dye.

I wasn't sure if my old stand-by would be able to tackle a disaster of this proportion, but using the slightly damp sponge, I gently began to rub at the stain.

I say gently (and this is important), because the Magic Eraser is completely different from other sponges on a molecular level. It's made of melamine foam- which, unlike other foams whose structure is very similar to enclosed bubbles, is composed of very rigid open cells.

This not only results in very fine, very hard filaments that effectively sand the stains away, but all those open cavities are just great for trapping dirt. Together, they form an extremely effective stain-removal tool. But care must be taken on soft or delicate fabrics so as not to damage the surface.

I'm happy to say it removed my blue-jean disaster without a trace, restoring the lovely leather seats to their pristine former glory.

The Magic Eraser works great on hard surfaces too, removing boot heel scuffs from light plastic door sills, finger prints from steering wheels, and assorted stains from consoles and cupholders.

And that spilled fruit juice on the grey carpet? Gone -- just like magic.