Black slate tiles always look dusty

I have black natural slate tiles in my bathroom and they constantly look dusty. The only time they look good is when they are still wet just after I have cleaned them. As soon as they are dry they back to a grey dusty looking tile.

When they were originally laid the tiler did put a sealant on them and they were ok for a while but not long.

Please can anyone recommend any products or anything I can do.

I have tried star drops, washing up liquid, flash, down on my hands and knees etc to no avail.


  • I would think the sealant put a coating on them which has now worn off. I had a fireplace which had a green slate facing to it - they too looked a bit dusty, but, we accepted that as part of the charm of a natural product. if you prefer the 'wetter' look then we were told that they could be 'laquered'. I would look for varnishes etc from companies like ronseal as I am fairly sure they do sealants for stonework?
  • Go to somewhere like wilkinsons and find a product called CLEAR that will do the trick, it gives it a permanent "wet look". Not too expensive, but needs to be done about every three months.
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  • LacemakerLacemaker Forumite
    47 Posts
    Ninth Anniversary 10 Posts Combo Breaker
    I have them in all the bathrooms in my house, I find the very best thing is "Worktop Wonder" from Lakeyland.It's pricey but it lasts for ages, especially if you spray onto a cloth and rub over.It has a lovely coconut smell too x
  • tpttpt Forumite
    312 Posts
    using cleaning products like some that have been suggested actually strips off the sealer.

    not sure how long they have been down, but if they are new then it could be a bad grout job, washing would just then spread the grout film around which shows again when dry. You need to clean this off before sealing again, you usually need a mildly acidic cleaner such as lithofin cement residue remover

    2-3 coats of Lithofin slate seal applied when the floor is clean and dry will leave a slight wet look, everyday cleaning use lithofin easycare (this looks expensive but lasts ages!).
  • For my slate hearth (perhaps not for floors....) I rub a little olive oil over it every so often, it brings the slate up really lovely (and smells a bit like Greek salad at the same time :rotfl: )

    But I have been wondering about slate floors, as I have the same problem for something more long term. I'll be watching this with interest.

  • lushplus4lushplus4 Forumite
    288 Posts
    Part of the Furniture 100 Posts Combo Breaker
    Thanks for all your replies, I am going to try the worktop wonder first as I have a lakeland near me and I will report back.

    Incidentley I did spill a little baby oil, wiped it up and that tile looks great, but worried that it may all become a bit slipperey if spread all over the floor.

    I will report back:)
  • I use WD40 on my black slate hearth, brings it up lovely, but might be slippery in a bathroom? Are they smooth or riven tiles?
  • tpttpt Forumite
    312 Posts
    the problem with oils and other suggestions is that they will sit on the surface and stay oily - so will attract fluff, dirt etc. plus you'll then walk it all over the house.

    there are specialist products that will achieve what you are aiming for on a long lasting basis
  • pinkmamipinkmami Forumite
    1.1K Posts
    For my slate hearth & windowsills I use Slatesheen. Brilliant stuff.

    But not sure if its OK for floors to walk on as it can be a bit oily.
  • On my tiles in the bathroom I had the same problem. I used a product that is called magic eraser, or something like that- can't remember the name exactly but I got it from Lakeland. It is a solid white sponge, you rub it on- time consuming!- but it really worked.
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