How to Clean Old Marble With Cornstarch

Nick Davis

You love antiques and vintage furniture. You have an eye for spotting antique lamps, china cabinets and even old marble accent tables. Your only dilemma is when it comes to cleaning the old marble tables you recently found. Old marble furnishings may contain stains, caked-on dirt and even heavy layers of grime.

Cornstarch is one substance that will cut through the layers of dirt and grime buildup without damaging the marble surface underneath.

  1. Use a funnel to fill a spray bottle with distilled water.

  2. Spray the old marble surface lightly with the distilled water.

  3. Sprinkle a thick layer of cornstarch on to the old marble surface.

  4. Let the cornstarch sit for 24 hours.

  5. Wipe off the cornstarch with a clean soft cloth into a trash bag.

  6. Repeat steps 2 through 5 if stains remain on the old marble surface.

  7. Mix in a small bowl 1 tsp. of mild dishwashing soap and lukewarm water.

  8. Dip a clean soft cloth in the soap mixture. Wring out excess water.

  9. Wipe the old marble surface with a damp cloth to remove any cornstarch and grease residue.

  10. Dry the old marble surface with a dry soft cloth.

Sealing the Old Marble Surface

  1. Pour 1 tbsp. of a marble pH sealer in a plastic container or small bowl.

  2. Dip a clean cloth in the container of sealer.

  3. Wipe the old marble surface with the sealer-soaked cloth. Apply the sealer evenly over the marble surface.

  4. Let the marble pH sealer sit for 10 minutes.

  5. Wipe the old marble surface with a dry cloth to remove excess sealer. The sealer will protect the old marble surface from spills and stains.

  6. Reapply the marble pH sealer once a year for marble tables and non-flooring surfaces. For marble floors, apply the sealer every six months.

  7. Tip

    After sealing your old marble surface or marble floor, clean the marble surface weekly with the soap mixture to keep dust and dirt from building up on the sealed surface. If you spill a drink or other liquid on your old marble table or other old marble surface, blot up the spill immediately with a soft cloth. If the spill is dry, use the above method of cleaning the old marble with cornstarch.


    If the old marble surface has deep cuts/scratches (etching) visible or the marble is extremely dull after you have cleaned the surface with cornstarch, call a professional marble restoration company to buff and restore the finish.