Lampshades eventually become stale and dingy, even in the event that you wipe or vacuum them down regularly. The accumulated dust dims the light from the bulb and also ruins the expression of the shade. Periodic washing, one or two times a year, rejuvenates the lampshade and prevents permanent staining from accumulated dust or fingerprints. Wash shades gently, whether they are made from plastic, fabric or fiberglass, to prevent damage and to ensure they keep their shape.
Remove the lampshade from the lamp base. Removal varies depending on lamp layout, but typically the shade lifts off following the light bulb is removed.
Vacuum the inside and the outside of fabric colors with an upholstery brush attachment to a typical vacuum cleaner. Remove all dust and loose debris to prevent stains from forming the shade when you wash it.
Fill a bathtub or sink with warm water to depth enough to fully submerge a fabric lampshade. Stir up to 1/2 cup of mild detergent to the water until it is sudsy.
Dip the shade to the soapy water until the water gets dirty. Scrub any stains gently, using a soft brush. Replace the water with clean, clear water, and dip it again. Change the water when it becomes cluttered. Continue to alter the water and dip the colour until the water stays clear.
Combine 1/4 cup light detergent with enough water to dissolve it in a bowl for cleaning a vinyl or fiberglass shade. Whip the detergent and water with a handmixer until it forms deep suds.
Wash the inside and out the plastic shade, using a sponge dipped in the suds. Avoid wetting the binding if it is pasted onto the shade. Wash the suds from the shade with a clean cloth and clear water.
Air-dry fabric sunglasses before replacing them around the lamp. Alternatively, wipe vinyl colors dry, using a textile cloth.