The 14 Best Car Cleaning Products to Make Your Ride Shine Inside and Out

Shop the best car cleaning products, according to both experts and product reviewers.

Every editorial product is independently selected, though we may be compensated or receive an affiliate commission if you buy something through our links. Ratings and prices are accurate and items are in stock as of time of publication.

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Disinfectant sprays, steam cleaners, stain removers and car wipes are some of the best car cleaning products to help you get that new car smell on the inside of your vehicle. On the outside, the best car waxes, polishes and buffers can bring a professional sparkle to the body of your car. No matter what needs attention, these are the essential car cleaning supplies to make your car shine from top to bottom, inside and out.

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Car Shampoo and Conditioner

One of the best car cleaning products out there, Meguiar’s Gold Class Car Wash cleans and conditions at the same time. Rich suds get rid of a winter’s worth of dirt, chemicals and all the other grime that accumulates on your ride. The conditioner leaves a slick, shiny surface, and it won’t strip the wax or risk damaging the finish like a commercial car wash can. A gallon of the concentrate should last a year; all you need is a capful in a bucket of water to clean the car from top to bottom.

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Wash Mitt

Here’s a cleaning secret from car detailers: You can use old rags to wash your car, but it’ll take longer and won’t do as good of a job. The Chemical Guys wash mitt is extra absorbent, so it holds plenty of soap to get every square inch of your vehicle lathered up. Plus, the microfiber material doesn’t hold grit like a towel does, so it won’t scratch the paint. And when you’re done, just toss it in the washing machine

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Liquid Car Wax

Meguiar’s liquid wax is easy to use and super effective. With one easy step, it gives your car a long-lasting protective barrier along with a brilliant shine. It’s also safe for all paints and clear coats. One application is all you need to properly wax a car, and it’ll leave your vehicle looking better than it did the day you bought it.

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Car Glass Cleaner

Invisible Glass is an Amazon top-seller and one of the best car window cleaners for a reason: it works! The foam cleanser removes bugs, grease, road salt and anything else that makes it hard to see out of your windshield. It goes on without streaks or drips and doesn’t leave behind any residue. It’s also safe for tinted windows, and it effectively cleans inside car windows, too.

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Car-Drying Towels

Half the battle when washing your car can be drying it fast enough to avoid water spots. With a name like The Absorber, this towel does the trick, and quick. It’s chamois, which absorbs water faster than a terry cloth or microfiber towel. Speaking of water, here’s what to do if you leave your car window down in the rain.

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Trim Cleaner

Armor All Trim and Plastic Restorer fights wear and tear on exterior plastic, vinyl and rubber trims, which are prone to sun discoloration and wax stains. Armor All is easy to use: simply apply, let the cleaner sit, then wipe it off. This car detailing tool protects finishes through 100+ car washes.

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Car Cleaning Wipes

Meguiar’s Quik Detailer Wipes are safe to use on all interior surfaces—leather, fabric, carpet, plastic, vinyl and rubber. The wipes are thicker than average and dry quickly to a matte finish.

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Interior Car Cleaner

With more than 15,000 five-star reviews on Amazon, you can trust that Car Guys Super Cleaner works on all interior surfaces—plastic, rubber, vinyl, leather and fabric. Reviewers love its stain-busting power that restores interiors to their original color and leaves a matte finish.

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Tire Cleaner

Armor All Wheel and Tire Cleaner is one of the best car cleaning products that does double duty: It also helps your wheels and tires last longer. The foaming spray dissolves brake dust as well as dirt and makes tires glossy black. Just be sure to protect yourself from brake dust and wear rubber gloves while cleaning.

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Buffing Attachment Tool

This buffing tool is designed for use in your cordless drill. Safely remove scratches and water spots, then apply polish and wax in half the time it takes by hand. When it’s time to buff excess wax from your car, make a quick conversion by wrapping a microfiber cloth around the foam applicator and buff away.

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Leather Cleaner

Lexol Leather Conditioner is “the best, period,” according to Lauren Fix of The Car Coach. “It’s made of natural products and truly does the job. It absorbs well and doesn’t leave a film behind,” she says. This two-step leather car cleaner and conditioner combo can also be used to clean furniture, shoes, sporting equipment, clothes, accessories and saddles.

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Car Cleaning Kit

This best-selling kit brings together all the best car cleaning products in one convenient package. The car wash kit includes a wet wax, wheel gel, glass cleaner, microfiber wash mitt and more. The set has everything you need to keep the exterior of your car looking new, and it also has the tools to make cleaning your car fast and easy. The foam cannon even hooks up to your pressure washer to produce foamy, professional-grade cleaning fun.

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Auto Carpet Protector

The Chemical Guys HydroThread is a ceramic coating and stain repellent for car fabrics that causes liquids to bead up and hover on the surface. It works on seats, convertible tops, carpet and more. Car carpet has different materials underneath than the carpet in your house, which is why you should avoid using home carpet cleaners in your vehicle.

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Mccullock Mc1375 Canister Steam Cleaner Ecomm Via Amazon.comvia merchant

Car-Cleaning Steamer

Steam cleaners use distilled water instead of soap or harsh chemicals, which is particularly helpful if you have allergies or skin sensitivities. The McCulloch Steam Cleaner comes with 20 accessories and an extra-long power cord. It heats up in less than 12 minutes to 200 degrees to kill bacteria and eliminate grease, grime and stains. It’s a splurge, but you can also use it in your home to remove wallpaper and clean tile, grout, wood floors and even appliances.

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Veronica Graham
Veronica Graham is a freelance writer in Arlington, Mass. Her work has appeared in The Washington Post and SheKnows. She's covered health, politics, high school football and everything in between. Graham enjoys learning about the world through a variety of lenses as a reporter.
Mary Henn


As Associate Shopping Editor, Mary helps Family Handyman readers find products to elevate their time spent at home. Her expertise lies in style, trend and design. When she’s not working on the latest home and DIY content, you can find her reading a poem or novel—her creative writing has been awarded national recognition.