Every week (or every couple weeks, I get it, things happen), we clean our bathrooms to keep them as fresh and hygienic as possible for ourselves and our families. You may have noticed an unsightly red or pink hue coming from your tile/grout or inside your shower curtain.
This “pink mold” or “pink mildew” is not actually mold: it’s bacteria! The most common bacteria causing it are Serratia marcescens and Aureobasidium pullulans. They produce prodigiosin, a bacteria pigment that ranges in hues of orange, pink and red.
Although this bacteria does not pose dangerous health risks of black mold, that doesn’t mean it should grow in your bathroom. This bacteria wouldn’t necessarily harm you unless it got in a wound or your eyes, but immunocompromised individuals could suffer from infections.
This bacteria is caused by dampness, mineral deposits and residue from your personal hygiene products like soap. When there is more moisture in the arena, the bacteria can become airborne and spread throughout the shower area and bathroom.
The good news is, “pink mold” is easy to eliminate yourself, with the right protective gear always recommended when working with chemicals: rubber gloves, protective glasses and face masks. Turn on your fan for ventilation and use any powerful household cleaners designed to kill mold, like baking soda, bleach, white vinegar or dish soap. With a bathroom scrubber or brush, scrub the affected areas until the stains are removed. Rinse the area until it washes away completely.
In some cases, if it is not removable, a mold remediation company or professional cleaning may need to be done to the area. If the pink mold remains, it could be a water contamination issue.