Practical Sailor tests 22 hull cleaners on scummy, brown waterline stains to find the best remedy to the ‘ICW mustache.’
From gels to liquids to sprays and powders, waterline stain removers all get the job done, but which one does it fast, does it the best, and does it with fewer harmful chemicals?
We tested 22 products from 15 companies, dividing the playing field into four categories based on the type of stain remover: gel, liquid, spray, and powder. Those tested included products from Boatlife, Davis FSR, Interlux, Marykate, Spray Nine, West Marine, Y-10, Aurora, Nautical Ease, Star brite, Poli-Ox, Boat Brite, MDR Amazon, Sudbury, and Toon Brite. Picking the top products was a tough job considering the minor differences in performance. We found that the thicker gels worked best and were the safest to use. They are easier to apply thanks to their easy-to-see color and their consistency. In the end, all of the “Excellent” rated products are effective, but to avoid the cleaners with sinus-scorching vapors, go by the individual product descriptions in the review.