Someone in our household absentmindedly used a green ScotchBrite pad to clean a couple of the stainless steel appliances in our kitchen. In some cases, they went across/against the grain.

The appliances (Kitchenaid and Frigidaire) have the rough fingerprint resistant, brushed-looking finish and the scratched up areas are finer, smoother looking with "grain" going in all directions.

I'd like to "re-finish" the surfaces but I don't seem to be able to find any "solid" advice. I found a couple of videos on YouTube that were selling "restoration kits" and they made it sound pretty dramatic. I don't think I can handle all that drama. And I found this, which talks about what I generally want to do, but it doesn't give me a good sense that the results won't be disappointing. I did find this, which deals with resurfacing brass, but it doesn't look quite right for stainless.

From what I gather there are a handful of popular finishes in use across manufacturers. Does anyone have experience matching the prevailing finishes or know what abrasives to use to match which finishes?

  • 1
    Wait for it.... a ScotchBrite pad! But this time go the right direction. You have to 'sand' their scuffs out and make new ones. Might have to do the whole thing, and if it used to shine, it won't anymore. Don't use a new one; take the one from the sink.
    – Mazura
    Feb 19, 2022 at 4:24
  • @Mazura - D'oh!
    – gnicko
    Feb 19, 2022 at 5:43
  • 2
    @Mazura Surely you can get it to shine again. Different scotchbrite pads (green, red, blue) have a rough equivalent sandpaper grit. It’s all about getting progressively finer until you can’t see the scratches anymore. Whether it is practical and what the best technique would be to accomplish this on a large surface area appliance though... Most I’ve ever done is on a stainless steel pan where you can just attach a pad to a circular buffer since the pan is round anyway. Feb 19, 2022 at 13:45
  • @Mazura Make it an answer!
    – FreeMan
    Feb 19, 2022 at 20:17

1 Answer 1


Not much to add to what the first link says, which "doesn't give me a good sense that the results won't be disappointing"

You do it to SS sinks every time you clean them, w/o noticing... unless you're like me and you notice everything, so every time you do it you forget, make scratches the wrong way, and then fix it by going the right direction(s).

You'll be surprised how well it works and how soft steel is, and how easy it is to mess it up several times trying to fix it, but it'll get there, and that will be better than gouges.

I've always been satisfied eventually and have never tried a polishing solution.

You mention "against the grain" so that's a scratch finish (parallel lines) and that's relatively easy. If you want a brush finish, you need a 'grit', like @stat mentions above, that's small enough not to make lines and do swirls in every direction.

  • For scratch finish, use the one that's been currently employed by your sink for at least a week or two. For brush, use the one you threw under the sink and are keeping for jobs just like this because it doesn't really work anymore.
    – Mazura
    Feb 20, 2022 at 4:04

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