Is Fabuloso a Disinfectant?

Updated: Dec. 22, 2023

Fabuloso has been a beloved multipurpose cleaner for decades. Now everyone wants to know, is Fabuloso a disinfectant? Let's find out!

If you regularly shop for cleaning products, it’s hard to miss the Fabuloso display. Bright, vibrant colors stand out amid more medicinal greens and yellows. And the fragrance names — Ocean Paradise, Tropical Spring and Floral Burst — would be equally at home on a tropical drink menu as they are on this popular cleaning product’s label.

It turns out those fragrances have a story to tell.

When Fabuloso was created more than 40 years ago, household cleaners weren’t exactly known for smelling great, according to Fabuloso’s origin story. Fabuloso captured the attention of women (remember, this was 1980) who wanted their hard work at home to be accompanied by a lingering, fresh scent at the end of a long day.

The more things change, the more they stay the same. Every single person I informally talked to as I researched Fabuloso mentioned this product’s distinctive fragrances. And I live in Texas, where Fabuloso is wildly popular, so that’s a lot of people. Here’s what you need to know about Fabuloso.

What Is Fabuloso?

Fabuloso is a popular all-purpose cleaner for floors, walls, counters, toilets, cabinets and nearly any other hard surface in your home. Created in Venezuela in 1980, it’s now sold around the world, with a particular devotion in Latin American communities.

In 1983, Fabuloso expanded from Venezuela and Central America into Mexico, and from there into the United States in 1996. By 2019, Fabuloso was the most popular all-purpose cleaner in the U.S., beating even Pine-Sol.

Is Fabuloso a Disinfectant?

Does Fabuloso kill germs? It depends. Fabuloso is available in several formulations.

Regular Fabuloso is an all-purpose cleaner and degreaser, not a disinfectant. To be classified as a disinfectant, a chemical must kill viruses and bacteria on surfaces, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). As a cleaner, Fabuloso removes dirt and grime, and with it microorganisms. But it doesn’t kill germs.

Fabuloso’s antibacterial formulation kills 99.99% of Staphylococcus aureus and Klebsiella pneumoniae bacteria, according to the product label. Fabuloso also makes disinfecting wipes that kill bacteria and viruses, including cold, flu and coronaviruses. Learn how to make disinfectant wipes.

Does Fabuloso Kill Mold?

No. Fabuloso cleans hard, non-porous surfaces. If mold spores have settled on your countertop or bathtub, wiping the surfaces with Fabuloso will physically remove mold and other contaminants. But Fabuloso isn’t a mold killer.

Molds are ubiquitous in the environment, which means they’re everywhere inside your home (and out). As long as mold spores can’t find a suitable place to live, they’ll stay dormant. Fix all leaks and sources of moisture, and keep surfaces clean to prevent mold colonies from establishing. Here’s how to remediate a mold problem yourself.

Can You Mix Fabuloso With Bleach?

No. Fabuloso should not be mixed with bleach, according to Fabuloso’s website.

Bleach and other chemicals, particularly acids, combine to create toxic substances like chlorine gas. Fabuloso is a neutral-pH cleaner, but it’s important to follow manufacturer instructions with any chemicals. Always read the label.

If bleach appeals to you because of its disinfecting properties, use it separately after rinsing the surface well of other cleaners. Fabuloso makes an antibacterial formulation and disinfectant wipes, too, and choosing these products means you can skip the bleach altogether.

Can You Use Fabuloso on Wood Floors?

It depends. Fabuloso is safe for sealed wood floors. Sealants like polyurethane protect the wood from liquid intrusion, which can warp the wood and introduce mold. If your hardwood floor is sealed, you can safely use Fabuloso to disinfect it.