I used the popular TubShroom for a year—and now I'll never shower without it
There's a reason this plastic mushroom has 30,000 reviews on Amazon.
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Most people unfortunately know the feeling of hopping into the shower, and then five minutes later feeling dirty water backing up to their ankles. The culprit? A clogged up shower drain. Who’s to blame? Literally everyone you live with (even though you will automatically assume it's those of us with lengthier locks).
The average person loses 50 to 100 hairs a day, but if you have shorter and thinner hair, you probably won’t notice it as much when it comes to your drain. Unfortunately for us Rapunzel-esque beauties, when people wash long and thick hair in the shower, it can mean losing between 150 and 200 hairs! Talk about a hairy situation.
And if you only wash your locks once or twice a week, then those washes may cause even more hair loss because of the buildup from the previous unwashed days. So with people averaging between 100,000 to 150,000 hairs on their head, and (hopefully) everyone showering frequently, that’s a lot of hair to be washed down the drain.
How should you fix a drain clogged with hair?
Or you could stop this problem before it even starts. That’s where the TubShroom comes in.
This strange plastic mushroom caught my attention a little over a year ago. I thought that it was just a novelty to put in your shower, but people seemed obsessed with it so I moseyed on over to Amazon.com and found it actually had over 30,000 4.5-star reviews! What could make this weird shower drain protector have such incredible user reviews?
What is the TubShroom?
Winner of the the 2018 KBB Product Innovator Award in the home and bath category, the TubShroom is a mushroom-shaped silicone device that fits inside of most shower drains. It's designed to collect hair around its midsection instead of allowing it to make its way down the pipes. When you notice the water starts backing up—or after you wash your hair—simply wipe the hair off of the TubShroom and stick it back in.
Users love it because it’s so simple. There are no harsh chemicals, no weaseling snakes, and no replacements needed. TubShroom inventor Serge Karnegie claims the silicone "should last as long as your bathroom does."
What it's like to use a TubShroom
With my roommates constantly yelling at me for my curly hair clogging up the shower drain, I thought this would be a great product to test out (and stop their nagging). I’ve been using my TubShroom for a year now and I don't plan on stopping anytime soon.
After initially de-clogging my tub, I faced the issue of how to insert the TubShroom. I already had a drain cover and was nervous to remove it out of fear I’d break the bathtub. But as its website says, TubShroom fits any standard 1.5-inch to 1.75-inch drain. It also advises that if your shower already has a drain, it can probably be easily unscrewed with your fingers or a screwdriver in seconds. Thankfully, mine only needed a few twists with my fingers and was off.
Unlike regular plugs that go over the drain, TubShroom fits right inside—surprisingly so. It almost felt like it formed to the inside walls, although I know that wasn’t the case. It felt very snug so that no hair would get through but also very lightweight and flexible so that the water would have no problem draining. It stays there politely out of the way while you shower and catches all of the hair that you lose.
I tend to lose a lot of hair after I condition my curls, so I pulled the ‘shroom out of the drain after a few uses and noticed a gag-worthy amount of hair and gunk in there. Thankfully, all I had to do was take a paper towel or piece of toilet paper, wipe the gross stuff off, and throw it in the trash. I've found that hair and leftover debris come off the little mushroom with ease, whether wet or dry.
Then you just pop the TubShroom back in the drain. If you're using the TubShroom and still find the tub backing up with water, it may be because it's not being cleaned often enough. I like to clean it out every time I wash my hair, or at least once a week.
What I liked most about using the TubShroom
It's safe for pets
I originally got the TubShroom because I hated the idea of keeping harmful chemicals in the house, as I live with cats who get into everything. This option is safer, preventing clogs in the tub rather than needing chemicals to clean them out every so often.
It can save money in the long run
Fewer clogs also means fewer calls to the plumber, which means saving money. Plus, we no longer have to consider buying fixes like chemicals or snakes.
It's super easy to clean
Everyone is showering daily and therefore losing hair down the drain at the same rate. After using the TubShroom, the thought of having to go back to using a snake to pull clumps of hair out of the drain every month or so is exhausting. With this solution, it's extremely simple to get rid of hair and debris and takes maybe 10 seconds. Anyone can do it without any complaint, so there's no excuse for your tub to clog up anymore.
You can still take a bath with it
So I'm sure you were probably thinking, "But what about my weekly relaxation beer-and-bath-bomb soak?" You have a few options. What I've done is just slip out the TubShroom—since it's really easy to pull in and out—and twist my original, boring drain cover back into place, so that I can stop the water from going down the drain.
The only problem with that is that once you open the flood gates at the end of your bath and the water goes down the drain, so does all the hair and debris that might have come off of you during your soak.
But the makers of TubShroom thought about that and came up with a solution. The StopShroom Drain Cover works alongside the other ‘shrooms, for when you want to take a bath or stop water from going down, but still protect your drain from hair and debris. Genius, right? Granted, we haven't tested the StopShroom yet, so we can only hope that it works as good as the original TubShroom does.
What I don't love about the TubShroom
It can get gross
Obviously, not everything is perfect. While this bendy mushroom is still holding up just fine a year later, it does get pretty gnarly. We clean it out when the water starts to back up, although we’ve been trying to make it a habit of that you clean it out after every shower to prevent the back up in the first place. But the hair on the ‘shroom gets kind of funky—especially when wet—with some white gunk and mysterious sticky stuff scattered amongst the hair. I’ve found some weird stuff around it—even the remnants of a bandage once. It’s pretty gross, but one or two wipes with a paper towel and you’re good to go.
It needs a more thorough cleaning every so often
You do need to wash the actual TubShroom every so often, even though they say you shouldn’t have to. The little holes on the top and around the sides get filled up with goo of unspeakable descent and won’t easily go away with a normal paper towel wipe. But if you find that you can’t stand actually seeing the gross clumps of hair that you produce, the makers of TubShroom have a 60-day return policy.
How to clean your TubShroom
Step 1: Take it out of your drain and, using a paper towel, remove any hair and debris around it.
Step 2: Rinse the TubShroom under some cold water in your sink, making sure to unclog any holes that have gunk in them.
Step 3: With a damp and anti-bacterial soap-covered paper towel, scrub down your TubShroom. Do the top, the sides, the inner lining, the bottom—all of it.
Step 4: Run it through some cold water again, making sure all the soap has washed off.
Step 5: Dry it off with a paper towel and stick it back in your shower drain. Repeat every month or so, whenever you see it looking especially gross.
Should you get the TubShroom?
The TubShroom was the best investment I've made as an adult. That's an exaggeration but still, I feel very strongly that the TubShroom is super-helpful in my day-to-day life. For such a low price to fix a common problem, it was kind of a no-brainer. So, yes, if you or anyone you live with has hair longer than a buzzcut (on any part of your body), own pets with hair, or just want a cute little functional mushroom for your bath, the TubShroom is for you.
Other products in the TubShroom family
While we have only tested the original TubShroom, there are other similar products if you like it enough to want to incorporate it into other areas of your home.
Now you can also get the Kitchen SinkShroom Strainer with a stainless steel construction and an ergonomic design that will catch all your leftover food.
The SinkShroom 1.25" Strainer is great for protecting your bathroom sink, while the StopShroom Drain Cover works alongside the other ‘shrooms, for when you want to take a bath or fill up your sink but still protect your drain from hair and debris.
The brand has even gone so far as to create the ToiletShroom Toilet Plunger, which claims to be “the most effective way to clear your clogged toilet drains by pushing out the clog in one simple step.”
We'll report back if we try any of these products, but in the meantime, we stand by the original TubShroom.
Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.