Sitting in a shallow, rapidly cooling bath is the opposite of relaxing. Instead of luxuriating in a neck-deep pool of hot water — God, the dream — you’re forced to choose which parts of your body you want submerged, alternating them strategically to keep the exposed bits from getting too cold.
The only permanent solution to this problem is replacing your small, sad tub with one specifically designed for soaking, but for obvious reasons, this isn’t in the cards for most people. Until you can make all your fancy bathtub dreams come true, you can add a few extra inches of soaking space to the tub you already have with a cheap overflow drain cover — provided that you use it correctly. (If you don’t, it’ll do nothing at all. ) There are two secrets to getting the most out of a drain cover, and thankfully, they’re very simple.
Only use it for baths
Suction cups work best when both they and the surface they’re applied to are clean and dry. To do this, remove the overflow cover after every use so it has time to dry out completely before your next one. Don’t leave it on while you shower or hand-wash your delicates; it’ll just get coated with soap scum and stop working.
On that note, you’ll also want to clean any lingering residue off the bathtub and the cover itself before sticking it on, especially if you love a bubble bath (or a bath bomb). Soap and water will do the trick, but if you’re impatient, just give both surfaces a quick wipe with rubbing alcohol — it dissolves almost everything and evaporates quickly, leaving behind a clean, perfectly dry surface.
Position it correctly
For best results, you should always line up the top of the cover (the part with the big hole) with the top of your overflow drain, not the bottom. This creates a nice air bubble around the business end of the drain, which is key to keeping the rising bathwater out. Press firmly on each little suction cup to make sure it’s secured. For a visual guide, check out this video from the (incredibly-named) bathsofdistinction YouTube channel:
Overflow covers aren’t exactly complicated contraptions, but getting the most out of them does require a little bit of technique. Now that you know how to do just that, you can start taking better, more relaxing baths whenever you want.