Smart Soak from Mandala Tea

Smart Soak

Soak away unsightly stains that tea can leave behind on your teawares. Simple, effective, and without harsh chemicals! It doesn’t get easier than this!

This product was developed exclusively for MandalaTea by one of our longtime tea customers (and friends). One day he visited our shop and found me lamenting about how stained my fine mesh filters were. He formulated Smart Soak and a week later we got to test is on those strainers. It amazed us! All our tea gear was made to look like brand new. It is now used frequently at our shop and home.

A tea lover’s new best friend!

See the photo to the left of a tea thermos strainer that had gotten very tea stained? The second pic is half the strainer submerged in Smart Soak (see the foaming action as the oxygen lifts the tea stains away). Photo three is the “after” photo. The difference is stark!

Recommended for use on: cups, pots, filters, pitchers, and gaiwans made of plastic, glass, porcelain, and ceramic. Avoid contact with adhesive stickers, unglazed paint, or screen printed decorations.

Common Sense Safety Precautions: As with all cleaning agents, keep out of reach of children, avoid contact with eyes and do not eat or drink. This product releases large amounts of oxygen during the cleaning process, never pressurize the solution or mix it in a sealed container.

Instructions: • Mix 2 teaspoons of cleaner per quart (32oz.) of HOT water • Soak tea wares for 10-20 minutes • Rinse tea wares with warm water • Heavily stained items may require more than one application, extended soak time, or more cleaner.

CAUTION: Keep out of reach of children

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15 Reviews View all

  • “Whoa! Get ready to witness some stain miracles! This stuff totally works. If you love tea stained patina on your cups, stay away. If you have items you want clean, especially those with hard to...” Read full review
    Dustin2Dust 619 tasting notes
  • “This is an incredible product. I bought it a while ago but just tried it out today. I heated water to prime the thermos to be cleaned and poured out the water. I then heated water again and poured...” Read full review
    AllanK 589 tasting notes
  • “The amazing Garret at Mandala kindly sent me a small packet of this in place of my free sample with my last tea order!! I had meant to add it to my order and completely forgot to,...” Read full review
    misslena1221 1043 tasting notes
  • “For the past couple of months my stainless steel mesh tea strainer had hardly been letting any tea through (it would take about a minute to let 150ml through, on a good day). I’d tried boiling it...” Read full review
    tperez 121 tasting notes

15 Reviews

619 tasting notes

Whoa! Get ready to witness some stain miracles! This stuff totally works. If you love tea stained patina on your cups, stay away. If you have items you want clean, especially those with hard to scrub areas, this is the soak you want! David’s glass perfect mugs with those lids that have those impossible to clean under lips, Aladin travel mug with that lever basket mechanism, metal steepers, David’s travel mugs, super old Teavana gravity steeper, old steel thermos… all amazingly clean! I was able to get quite a few things cleaned with one quart and reheated it a couple of times to soak more items in it. It finally gave out on the gravity steeper and I had to make a fresh batch of soak. I wish I could post the before and after pictures because it’s such a drastic difference from dirty to clean!

The only thing that disappoints me about this product is that I can’t put it in my mouth and soak the tea stains off my teeth. Work on that, would ya Mandala? ;)

I should add that this came to me as a sample with one of their puerh sample specials. Thanks for that!


My travel mugs really need a good cleaning, as do my infusers. One day I’ll get some of this!


I didn’t realize how dirty my stuff was until I cleaned it! Looks like I can add photos! Just added a before and after.


I’m working on one for the teeth :) Thanks for writing it up and for the photos, too!

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589 tasting notes

This is an incredible product. I bought it a while ago but just tried it out today. I heated water to prime the thermos to be cleaned and poured out the water. I then heated water again and poured it in the 64 oz thermos. I put 4 tsp of smartsoak in initially but some of this bubbled off so I added two more teaspoons. In only seconds I could see my tea stained thermos interior was white colored again. I let it soak for twenty minutes as suggested. I then decided to try the same solution on a glazed teapot and strainer. I let that soak for 30 minutes. It did a pretty good job on this reusing the solution, making it sparkle too. The only thing it did not do was get all the tiny bits of encrusted tea off the strainer. It did make it sparkle though. I am glad I bought the large size of this and will definitely buy more when I run out. This stuff is worth every penny it costs.

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1043 tasting notes

The amazing Garret at Mandala kindly sent me a small packet of this in place of my free sample with my last tea order!! I had meant to add it to my order and completely forgot to, and mentioned it on a thread on this site, and it shows up with my order!!! I am so thankful and CANNOT SPEAK HIGHLY enough of this superb act of customer service! Thank you thank you thank you!!!

Now, this product. WOWZA. I cannot believe what this does to my teaware! It is literally like brand new. Brand. Spanking. New. If you have ever used baking soda or vinegar or other methods of cleaning, STOP. Buy this! I should post before and after pics, seriously. I took them too haha. My old timolino was so horribly stained I actually bought a new one to replace it, it was far too stained it looked black inside. Now I have cleaned them both, and they both look like new!!! The old one actually looks better than the new! OMG. This stuff. My gravity steeper is squeaky clean, was going to replace it as well. THIS STUFF WILL SAVE YOU MONEY. Lol, now, like a madwoman, I am cleaning ALL THE TEAWARES. Haha, unfortunately, I am going through my packet pretty quickly. But you can guarantee I will be reorder this. In a very large quantity. Thank you a million million times Garret for this as my sample!!


Doh. I totally forgot about wanting to try this with my last order. There’s always the next! :)


NEED. My older Timolinos are pretty black inside.


This stuff is the best. I might even order a pound with my next order lol. It is just that good!! @ Nicole, hopefully you remember it, or get a sample of it :)

@ Kittenna – It is like a super cleaner for timolinos! I can never reach the bottom to clean mine ever, but with this no scrubbing, no angry baking soda mess, I even bought those test tube-like scrubbers and it also failed but I should have just bought this lol. It works wonders!


YAHOOOOOOOO!!!!! This review has us grinning from ear to ear here in the tea shop! Clean tea gear is the best!


Happy it made you smile :) thank you for such an amazing product!!

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121 tasting notes
For the past couple of months my stainless steel mesh tea strainer had hardly been letting any tea through (it would take about a minute to let 150ml through, on a good day). I’d tried boiling it in water, boiling it in vinegar, and scrubbing it to death with baking soda and NOTHING would help. I had already given up on it and ordered a new one. After soaking for about 20 minutes in the tea soak and then swishing it around it was like brand new! This stuff really is magical.

“This stuff really is magical.” – Yep – not sure how I lived without it…


is it sold in stores?


I think only from Mandala, but the main active ingredient is sodium percarbonate which can probably be bought elsewhere

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500 tasting notes

Today, I finally got around to using this. It works so well. I got tea stains off of two mugs, and two travel mugs. In fact, the only stains left were those where the smart soak didn’t reach. Very glad this works so well.

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277 tasting notes


I got the water super hot in my kettle, then soaked my white and badly stained teacups for 15-20 min with this awesome powder. Took a sponge, wiped them out, and they look brand new. No lie. Even my boyfriend noticed and he’s not exactly Captain Observant, ifyaknowwhatImean :p

I reused one bowl of solution for all 8 teacups. One cup had to be soaked and wiped twice, but none needed scrubbing. This stuff is amazing. Period.


I’ll have to get some of that on my next order. I use Pollident tablets but they take a few hours to clean.


I got a small bag to try, but when that runs out, I think I’ll be getting a larger size. Be aware that at first it may not LOOK like the stain is gone. Do not be alarmed. Just grab a sponge and wipe. I was a little disappointed at first because I thought it wasn’t working. But oh yeah… it was working. :)


Key for smart soak is HOT water! 160 degrees or above – really gets it fizzing and lifts the stains right out. If I didn’t have the Smart Soak, I’d have quit the tea biz a long time ago :) For our instore samplings and tastings, clean tea gear is a MUST. This makes it super simple. So happy that others are finding it as useful as me. Happy teatime!


This is definitely something I need to pick up. Even the “unflavoured” denture tablets smell minty, and that is not a flavour I like!


I use ordinary baking powder (baking powder, not baking soda) and boiling water. Fizzes like a mad things, so do it in the sink. Leave it a couple of minutes, wipes right off with a sponge. Mind you, I can’t remember the last time it was necessary. The dishwasher rarely fails me.

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195 tasting notes

This stuff is amazing! And it’s simply too much fun to use. At first I was like ’I’m just doing to do one liter on my most tea-stained stuff’, which turned into ‘make 4 liters and clean anything that has the slightest tea or coffee stain on it’. Haha- and I’ve alot of various cups and thermoses and teapots. I even soaked the OUTSIDE of a brushed stainless steel thermos, just to see how it would do (SHINY!) I’m half tempted to make a big bunch of this stuff to see if it’ll get my stainless steel kitchen sink super shiny, but that would be overkill… and a waste of cleaner. Although the tea stains never really bothered me before (except on the inguineTEA), it was just really cool and fun to watch. I think some of this stuff is possibly shinier than when I bought it.

Warning: it does make your hands slippery and slick for awhile after touching, so be careful with handling or you’ll drop it. After the first few I switched to using rubber gloves so I wouldn’t drop anymore things, I didn’t want to risk the ceramic. Also, it does work tons better when HOT.

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537 tasting notes

I recieved a sample of this amazing stuff with my Pu Erh sample order, I was quite giddy because I have wanted to give this a try for a while. See I have a problematic teacup, it is vintage glass and for some reason even a thorough baking soda scrubbing won’t remove the stains. Lots of elbow grease will get it mostly clear, but it has this annoying film that I originally thought was mineral stains…I think it is actually damage from running it through the dishwasher. Good thing it was only 50 cents!

So into the mix my cup (and a spare glass cup that was starting to develop a stain) went! After a nice fizzy soaking all the tea stains were gone, my glass cups are clean! I cannot wait to try this on some of my stained white porcelain.

Sadly the weird white stains are still there, but I think they are there forever since I am pretty sure they are damage and not actual stains.

If you are in need of a cleaner that is not made from harsh chemicals, then I suggest this one. It gets the job done!


I have some glasses that became cloudy because of the dishwasher. Try a Mr. Clean Eraser.


Love those erasers, they’re magic!


I use the magic eraser to get out stains on teaware too!

Amanda 'SoggyEnderman' Wilson

oooooh I will definitively get one! Thank you for the heads up :)


Lol, I use it on ALL my stained teaware…it’s soft enough and works instantly, without having to scrub like crazy. It IS truly magic!

Amanda 'SoggyEnderman' Wilson

I think the whole not having to scrub aspect is probably my favorite!


No kidding, me too! I was shocked the first time I used it on white porcelain, it took everything away, like real bad stains, in a second!


Hi Amanda! yay!!! So happy that people are digging this stuff. We use it EVERY single day in the tea shop!

As far as the white stains, that may be mineral deposits. You can use our “zojirushi water heater cleaner” for that. I use that for my water kettles, too. Works splendidly. Thank you for your review!!! Hi TF, Hi Marzipan, Hi Stephanie, Hi MJ!


Hey garret :-)

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1109 tasting notes

HOLY !#$%^ This stuff works and is AMAZING! DAAANG. I was stubborn and liked my cheapy “baking soda and water scrub” method, but I never got my strainers clean. So I decided to buy the 6oz of the Smart soak to try it out.

Seriously steepster, check out my blog post (Oolong Owl) for the pictures of Smart Soak at work – I test run the smart soak with a gongfu tea strainer and it came out brand new.

I then tried it on my horrific, disgusting, about to trash it gravity steeper from the tea stained bowels of hell and it came out impressively clean! I had scrubbed the blasted thing many times, but after 2 minutes using the smart soak I could see the tea stains peeling off.

I actually noticed my tea tasting better with the sparkling clean tea strainers – like I was using a brand new strainer. Very spiffy!

(on a side note.. rating this 100, with the Steepster green licky happy face is weird. Not drinking this stuff and it is probably a bad idea and smells like stale old tea)


lmao i love this stuff!

Jilly Beane

Huh! Maybe it’s time to beautify my horror of a gravity strainer. I really never liked using it because of how hard it was to clean, so i fully admit to putting minimal effort into its cleanliness.

Now it lurks at the back of my cabinet.


LOL! I was just about to review this myself as I cleaned up all my teaware with it day before yesterday. It’s magic!

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613 tasting notes

Brace yourselves guys, ‘cause I’m about to go full-on housewife. This stuff is as close to a miracle product, actually-like-as-seen-on-TV-demos as I’ve ever tried. I’m lazy and used to a routine with my teaware where I just rinse it out daily, and then perhaps 2 times a week I’ll go at it all with the usual suspects—baking soda, white vinegar or lemon juice, occasionally something a touch more exotic like cream of tartar or citric acid or Bon Ami etc. And it does an ok job—respectable but not squeaky,-just-out-of-the-box immaculate and bright. You know, where there’ll be a couple hard to reach spots or ridges or whatever that have faint tannin discoloration no matter what (in particular, I was convinced the tannin stains on the inner bottom of my For Life basket and the thin glass spouts of my teapots were here to stay). Also, the Breville is nice (though I would say now definitively I prefer the Zoji if you have to choose one), but one thing that’s rough is it’s a little bit of a pain to clean (to do it properly you have to leave it overnight and boil and reboil and all that, which means no insta-morning tea!) and stains very easily, with the section behind the magnetic arm that’s nearly impossible to delicately/safely reach to clean well. But I was thinking, you know…a life of tea means some slight stains on a few hard-to-reach spots you just live with. Not a big deal. But I do sometimes get self-conscious when guests are here, wondering if they think those things are filthy or something.

Well no more. Now I know if/when it really matters, bringing everything back to brand spankin’ new condition is no sweat. Today I took a tablespoon of Smart Soak and 8 cups of boiling water (straight from the Zoji!) and submerged or poured it into or onto everything that had those sorts of pesky stains—lots of pouring back and forth between teapots to reach the spouts, dunking brew baskets in and then once they came out pouring that water into tea cups, what have you. And my gosh. I didn’t even have to wait the 10 minute soak time. Everything dipped in when the water was truly hot came out sparkling, factory-new immaculate immediately (the aforementioned For Life basket is so shiny it’s like a looking glass—ALL of it too, the bottom that no amount of scrubbing or homemade remedy chemical reaction could budge, the rim, everything). !!!! I felt like that Billy whatshisname guy from the informercials. And nothing was damaged, no paint or images or anything. No harsh fumes either; simply some effervescence and watching those yellow-brown tannins instantly bleed from the gear into the water. MAGIC. I was worried I’d have to use a lot for it to be effective, or that it’d smell harsh or potentially harmful, or make a mess, or require long soak times. Nope. No cleaning product has ever delivered on what it promised to this extent. I am so, so grateful Dexter3657, Azzrian, and other Steepsters sang its praises enough to convince me to bother to try it. I don’t ever want to be without this stuff—if Mandala ever announces they’re pulling it (the horrors!), I’ll be first in line to stock up on the remaining tubs. Fantastic product (especially on stainless steel, glass, and tumblers, but really everything).


i need this ! if only something like this could be done for humans…


That’s it, you’re hired for all our infomercials :) I am so happy that you are diggin’ on this product. Your review made me smile and had me nodding my head with understanding and agreement. Thank you for writing this up!


And boychik, if you’re trying to get rid of pesky humans, just serve them really bad tea :)


I promise not to scream like that Billy dude in the infomercial, Garret. Tea is too calming an influence. (: And thank YOU for offering this product!

boychik, I’d be down for sending you a sample to try but I’m not sure how the post office would feel about it…mysterious white powder in a little baggie. Ehrm…


You are so funny lol. Every time I go to PO the same lady keeps asking me what’s inside. I keep saying samples. After several times she asked “samples of what?”
I decided not to mention that its tea. I changed the subject to weather is awful ….


yeah, i remember the first time i sent tea to canadian steepsters and the customs form, the guy’s like “loose tea? is it like, just loose in the box, or in baggies?” and i’m like “uh little baggies” and he asked how many and i was all “6 i think?” and thinking in the back of my mind “he’s probably wondering what the heck my deal is…”


LOL, I was waiting to hear “it cuts, chops, serrates and makes julienne fries!”


Do you think this would be good at getting rid of scent that clings onto things? I’m specifically thinking of cilacone (the inner lid of the timolino has osme on it). This stuff sounds amazing!


Hm, good question! I almost tacked on a disclaimer at the end that the miraculousness referred to tea tannin stains only; my stuff was clean otherwise of other sorts of detritus. I’m not sure…the lemon juice/vinegar trick tends to work for me, so my stuff didn’t have a smell to it. I will try to remember to run a little mini test and find out, keychange!

You made me laugh, Morgana! Thanks. (:

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