Hi Reddit! We're the Marketing team at Bar Keepers Friend. Since 1882, we’ve made multiple cleaning products, like our iconic Powder Cleanser. We've introduced over 10 products that specialize in all the many tasks you may have around the house.

A quick intro: Megan- Hi y’all! I’m the Communications Specialist with BKF and began working with the company in September. I run the BKF Subreddit & Facebook Community Page. I also reply to users on social media, so if you’ve posted a sweet before & after and received a comment from us, that was me!

Alex- Hi peeps! My name is Alex, and I’m the Digital Marketing Specialist, the “brains” behind the witty captions and posts you see on our social media pages. I joined Bar Keepers Friend in September of 2021.

Felicia- Hey, everyone! I'm Felicia, the Marketing Manager at Bar Keepers Friend. I’m tasked with developing strategies to help the brand grow and run the department's day-to- day operations. I've been with BKF for three years.

Chrissy- Hi everyone! I'm Chrissy. I’ve worked for Bar Keepers Friend for nearly 25 years and am the Controller and Digital Marketing Director.

Thanks for taking the time to join our AMA! :D

Proof: Here's my proof!

EDIT: Thank you SO MUCH, everyone! Our team is over the moon with how much we were able to talk with the Reddit community. We are now closing this thread. Thanks again!

Comments: 948 • Responses: 39  • Date: 

Snicklefitz651972 karma

Bar keepers friend has a marketing team? I thought it was just the same billion canisters that were produced in the 1940s.

I joke, but bar keepers friend is an absolute miracle product.

barkeeperfriend664 karma

Ha! That legit made us laugh. 😄

Well... for what it's worth, you aren't necessarily wrong. For years, folks learned about Bar Keepers Friend primarily through word-of-mouth. If we're being honest, that's often still the case. It wasn't until 2010, when Chrissy (BKF's Director of Marketing) started a Twitter account after Paul SerVaas (BKF's President & CEO) asked if SHE had a Twitter account. "Yeah, I've got a Twitter account. I use it to follow Chris Daughtry" (I think she's still a huge fan. LOL) is what she told Paul. It was there that BKF's social media presence was born. Soon came a BKF Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest.

For the longest time, Chrissy would personally monitor our social media pages and answer everyone's questions. Of course, with her being the Controller, she needed some help with managing that content and evolving those marketing efforts. Around 2017, BKF brought in an outside marketing firm to manage our website, create content calendars, run digital ads, and so on. At the very end of 2019, BKF determined it would be best to take full ownership of the brand and move its marketing efforts in-house. It was at that time that *I* was hired on to develop strategies and build out a marketing team.

We don't really do any print or billboard advertising (never say never), as we recognize digital is one of the primary ways to reach younger audiences. And by younger audiences, I really mean people my age - within the 35-45 age bracket. Before launching our marketing efforts in-house, most of our audience was comprised of folks 65 years of age and older. Now it's around the 30-45 years - and we've got younger folks learning about us too!

Anyway, that's a little history for ya. I go on and on all day about our department's history. 🤣 Thanks so much for writing! -Felicia

MrVilliam271 karma

My wife has been a huge fan of the product ever since taking a chance on it to work on heavily used sheet pans and pots a couple of years ago. We thought they were just permanently blackened, but nope! My wife is in her mid 20's and helps spread the word about the miracle product that is BKF. Occasionally she thinks something is too far gone and tries BKF just to do her due diligence and it just keeps surprising us! Please don't change the formula to cut costs and make it shitty like every other product seems to wind up doing!

barkeeperfriend163 karma

Don't you worry. Our formula will always remain the same! :)

ScoutLynch796 karma

My grandpa has used the Barkeepers Friend powder cleanser for his janitorial company for years and he loves it. He wanted me to ask, “Why don't they make a close-able container so that it doesn't clump when it gets humid?”

barkeeperfriend922 karma

We want to offer our customers the best bang for their buck, so we chose not to add a lid since it does not affect the cleaning quality of the product. Including a lid adds quite an increase to the overall cost of our powder cleansers. Storing your BKF powder products in dry, non-humid areas can help decrease the chance of humidity collecting in the can.

We've seen users use wet cat food lids, silicon lids, pringles can lids, and sandwich bags with a rubber band... we have a very creative fanbase! (:

Also, let your grandpa know we say hello and thank you for the support over the years!


jawanda1258 karma

You guys should sell a branded reusable lid . Let the customers choose whether to pay for the convenience and maybe make a little extra on the upsell.

barkeeperfriend1015 karma

That's a great idea. We'll share it with our team! It's definitely something we can keep in mind if our customers would be interested.


findar45 karma

Have them use a protein shaker

barkeeperfriend83 karma

You know what, I don't think we've ever seen someone share that they've used BKF on a shaker bottle, but I don't see why you couldn't! Especially the metal shaker part of a protein shaker! Many users have cleaned their coffee thermos cans with BKF too, so it's safe to use on something you'd drink from, obviously! Just make sure you rinse well. Great idea, honestly! :)


findar117 karma

No no, not use it on. Use the shaker bottle to dispense. The shaker part allows it to break up any clumps, and the lid allows application. Just have to cut the can of BKF open and pour to fill.

I've done similar with other products which had a tendency to clump(BBQ seasoning)

barkeeperfriend109 karma

OH Wow, love this idea!! That is BIG BRAINS right there. Genius move there!


butterfly13131318 karma

Alex and I are secretly blonde, right? Because it took me a minute to grasp that too. I'll just grab my trusty BKF and see myself out. Thanks for the ama!

barkeeperfriend22 karma

...... how did you KNOW???? LOL

- Alex

spankmyballs69675 karma

Who is Barkeeper’s Enemy?

barkeeperfriend487 karma

Dirty sinks and stoves. And Dry January (jokes, of course LOL)


NeoMoose261 karma

Homebrewer here. We love you. I'd always been aware of your product, but it wasn't until I got into the hobby that I learned how hard a truly burnt-on mess could be to clean. Every time you get online to ask about cleaning tough messes on stainless the universal answer is Bar Keeper's Friend.

A lot of us in our brew club use the soft cleanser on our stainless steel, and of course, the original on extremely tough messes.

Are you aware of your popularity among brewers?

barkeeperfriend153 karma

We weren't aware, but thanks for bringing it to our attention! We love hearing cleaning stories, so feel free to share your home brewing stories with us any time! We're always happy to hear from our fans about their cleaning experiences! :)


motociclista163 karma

Not a question really, but it works really good for taking stains off boat hulls. I guess it has oxalic acid in it? A lot of boaters know about it. You should come up with a product designed especially for boats. You know what you can do to the price of a product when it’s for boats? $$$ You’re welcome. I await my royalty checks.

barkeeperfriend121 karma

Hahaha! We don't have the authority to cut any royalty checks, sadly. Sorry about that. :P

However, I'm happy to report that we are well aware of the love boaters have for BKF. We actually had someone clean their boat with our MORE Spray + Foam cleaner and send us a video. We uploaded their video to our YouTube channel. :D

Thanks for commenting! -Felicia

RedPon3159 karma

Are any of these questions being asked by actual redditors, or are they all from your team’s alternate accounts?

barkeeperfriend154 karma

We're a team of four... ain't nobody got time for that LOL


Jets237147 karma

As a fellow CPG marketer - is a sponsored AMA worth it? What are your KPIs to understand the success of this?

barkeeperfriend353 karma

That's a fantastic question!

Despite being a globally recognized brand (with our fans, of course), we're STILL a small, family-owned business with a small, and relatively new marketing team. While we're provided with a solid marketing budget (in my humble opinion), we're also not a major conglomerate that can drop several thousand dollars on a whim. That being said, it's important for us to carefully allocate where our dollars go. A question I often ask myself is "Is the juice going to be worth the squeeze?" If I'm able to say "yes," then we can often times move forward.

In regards to this AMA, this was a no-brainer. While this is a "scheduled AMA," it cost us a whopping $10 to get us on the schedule. If there was a low to zero engagement, then heck, we're only out $10 - and we're not out too much time because we don't have to answer that many questions. LOL.

Thankfully, it looks like our AMA was a pretty darn big success. We didn't have any specific metrics we were looking out for, as much as we wanted to engage with existing fans (Reddit has a HUGE cleaning community!) and hopefully capture the attention of newbies. Our brand is VERY new to Reddit - and truthfully, it was a matter of experimentation. I guess that's the cool thing about being a small (and new) marketing team. You're encouraged to experiment and see what works and what doesn't.

If this Reddit AMA reengaged people somehow, got folks to look at our other products or inspired them to tell their friends, it's 100% worth the time. Thanks for asking, u/Jets237! -Felicia

qazplme113 karma

Is the liquid any different than the powder with some water mixed in it?

I use the liquid bkf on my ceramic nonstick, works great at making the inside super slick again when food starts to stick.

barkeeperfriend196 karma

Our soft cleanser liquid is a pre-mixed version of our powder cleanser! You can use it the same way you would our powder cleanser. It's mostly for convenience. For example, you can use it more easily on verticle surfaces, like a shower door! If you have a tougher spot to tackle, you may find the powder cleanser made into a thick paste does the job better than the soft cleanser. It's a matter of preference! Both do the same great job! :)


BonePGH111 karma

How safe is it if inhaled? Not like put your nose in it, but when using it I do notice that some of it gets airborne.

Awesome product btw

barkeeperfriend188 karma

In regular daily use, there should be no problem. Keeping windows open or using it in a well-ventilated area is always a great option!

If you feel irritation after using one of the powder cleansers, make sure to move to fresh air, drink water, and blow your nose. If the irritation continues, then we recommend getting medical attention.

For full safety information, our Powder Cleanser's Safety Data Sheet (SDS) can be found on our website.


Prestigious-Joke-574103 karma

Can you tell me why the blue lid always breaks off my BKF cream cleanser? I have two bottle right now and both are broken.

barkeeperfriend85 karma

Hi there, we're sorry to hear that! Unfortunately, plastic is, just that. Plastic. And unfortunately, it's not indestructible. We're always looking to improve our packaging and we will take this feedback into consideration! :)


-null101 karma

I've never seen any marketing for your stuff and I'd never heard of it before. I ran into a situation where I was trying to clean a stainless steel bbq that had been left outside in the elements for over a year and asked the internet how to make it look nice. The consensus was Bar Keepers Friend and it worked great. I looked up the same question to get soap scum build up off my shower doors and same thing; internet says Bar Keepers Friend. I'm assuming it'll work great, but is there a specific kind I should be using?

barkeeperfriend67 karma

Our powder cleanser may be the best choice for the two tasks you want to accomplish. With the powder cleanser, you can choose the water-to-powder ratio. More powder will give you a stronger paste for cleaning!


EstablishmentUpper6386 karma

Could BKF work for the outside of Le Creuset pans?

barkeeperfriend205 karma

Definitely! Le Creuset actually recommends us on their blog as a tool for cleaning their Dutch Ovens.


merelyadoptedthedark62 karma

I just discovered this product a few weeks ago, and started scrubbing everything I could. The directions didn't say anything about needing gloves when working with the product so I didn't use any...and then my skin was peeling for like three days after. Shouldn't there be some kind of warning for stupid people like me?

barkeeperfriend87 karma

Under the warning section of our bottles, we recommend avoiding using the product for a long period of time. To help mitigate that, we definitely recommend wearing gloves when using BKF products, especially if you have sensitive skin.

Thank you for letting us know; We'll definitely keep this in mind as something to better clarify in our packaging!


WhitePopcornCeiling56 karma

What can you NOT use BKF on? It’s done wonders for pretty much every surface around my house and I’ll probably go too far eventually using it.

barkeeperfriend95 karma

Cast iron, wood, fabric, leather, or painted surfaces. Although many of our fans have used BKF on mirrors, gold, and silver (sterling silver is OK), we advise against it. If you’re tempted to try our products on these non-recommended surfaces, we suggest you test a small spot first.


barkeeperfriend23 karma

Hello! That's a bit of a shorter list to say the least LOL! You should not use BKF on gold or silver (sterling silver is ok, just test it out first), painted/lacquered surfaces, cast iron, non-stick, wood, porous surfaces such as concrete, and reflective surfaces like mirrors. These are what we advise against using BKF on! If you’re tempted to try our products on these non-recommended surfaces, we suggest you test an inconspicuous spot! Hope that helps :)


lightscameracrafty39 karma

Can you walk us through the product’s safety specs?

Especially interested to know whether one should wear mask and gloves and/or whether it’s necessary to open a window when using.

barkeeperfriend44 karma

Hello, great questions! You do not need to wear a mask as there aren't harmful fumes, but if you are sensitive to smells, feel free to wear a mask. Bar Keepers Friend does not have bleach, so you wouldn't have fumes like you would from a bleach product. We always recommend using gloves to protect your hands! Opening windows would be a matter of preference!

If you'd like to know more, each product's SDS sheet can be found on our website! Located near the bottom of the product's page, it can be viewed in English, Spanish, and French. (:


Kraagenskul37 karma

Is it septic safe?

barkeeperfriend30 karma

Yes! (:


workinghardforthe27 karma

How happy are you that GoCleanCo loves your product?

barkeeperfriend25 karma

Incredibly happy!! We love their content :)


PoopsieDoodles24 karma

From a marketing perspective, what efforts do you prioritize for a product that does so well by word-of-mouth?

I literally heard of BKF from a barkeeper cleaning a very dirty bar. :)

barkeeperfriend40 karma

That's a really interesting question. While Bar Keepers Friend is a popular cleanser among people who have tried it, there are still a TON of people who don't know we exist. From my own personal experience, I'd say about half the people I talk to KNOW precisely what BKF is and half of them look at me like I've got two heads. The folks who know BKF were generally recommended the product by an older relative (mother, father, grandmother, grandfather, etc.).

While we certainly cater our content to ALL BKF fans (we love our fans), we do prioritize increasing brand visibility in our marketing strategies. We genuinely don't spend a ton on digital advertising (most of our efforts are organic), but much of that spend is dedicated to reaching consumers who have never interacted with our brand before. Prior to bringing marketing in-house, most of our fans were 65 years of age and older. According to our latest website demographic information, we're looking at folks aged 25 to 45. The more we focus our efforts on gaining new fans, the younger (-ish) the demographic. Essentially, we're gaining more Millennial fans. Thanks for the great question! -Felicia

MrSquamous21 karma

How do you clean it off the pans?

We used it to clean some cookie sheets a while ago and it's still on them. Comes off to the touch; on hands and, presumably, food. So we've been lining the sheets with foil or parchment ever since.

Bar Keepers Friend did make the sheets look cleaner but are they safe? Can we be sure we're not ingesting it?

barkeeperfriend30 karma

Hello! We're sorry to hear that you've had some residue troubles! Typically this happens when too much product for the surface space was used, and it wasn't rinsed off enough. It happens to the best of us, so don't fret! We recommend a second application with a little bit of our powder or soft cleanser, scrub with something like a Scrub Mommy or a non-scratch sponge, and rinse well with warm water after. A microfiber towel is also great for making sure any excess comes off. The phrase "less is more" applies here! Your cooking sheets are safe to eat off, and the foil was a good and secure move to use in the meantime! Give that a try and see how it does! :)

u/ExceptoPetroleum this can apply to your questions as well! The hard water may not be the issue, but if you don't have the best water pressure, that COULD contribute to how well it rinses off. Personal experience: I tend to use my glove as a way to wipe with the water (if you will) as I rinse it. Just to be safe. Hope this helps! :)


pogonator211 karma

Do you sell in europe?

barkeeperfriend20 karma

Hi there! We're working hard to expand our reach in Europe! Currently, our list is small, just the U.K., but we're working on it!


RogerRabbit12349 karma

What works better? The paste or the powder? We have an ongoing debate in my house. My wife likes the powder better, I feel like the paste just saves you a step, of getting the powder wet.

barkeeperfriend14 karma

Let me just add to this debate here LOL! It's honestly a matter of preference. If you have something that may be a simple clean up, like everyday cleaning of your stove or sink, the paste or liquid is fine! If it's something a little more stubborn, the powder may be your best friend. You both are ~technically~ right in a sense. :D


NicNoletree8 karma

(Love your projects) What are some of the most unexpected things that people have used your products to clean?

barkeeperfriend25 karma

We have SEEN some cool stuff over the years! Arguably some of the most unexpected cleans have been a pair of crocs, a vintage My Little Pony doll, roller skates, boats (both speed boats and kayaks), and so on! It's easier to list what you CAN'T use BKF on!


Neee-wom13 karma

What can’t we use it on? (Just so I don’t mess anything up). I normally use it to clean my sinks and bathtub!

barkeeperfriend15 karma

Gold, Silver (Sterling Silver is OK, definitely test a small spot first!), lacquered or polished surfaces, and painted surfaces are generally places we do not recommend using BKF on. Your sinks and bathtubs should be perfectly fine, though. (:


betterl8thannvr3 karma

What about nonstick pans that occasionally get stuff stuck on the coating?

barkeeperfriend9 karma

Non-sticks are tricky, as BKF can scratch the non-stick coating. We typically say to steer clear of using BKF on those types of pans, but we have fans who have found success with it. The general verdict, though is to avoid using on non-stick to preserve that coating on the pan!


_Demo_8 karma

How does Bar Keepers Friend compare to some of the other cleansers on the market? What makes it better?

barkeeperfriend27 karma

Hi!!! BKF is an acidic cleaner, compared to most other powdered cleansers being alkaline (bleach-based). We use Oxalic acid, which can be found naturally in many vegetables, such as rhubarb, chives, and parsley.

Acidic cleansers like BKF are more effective against mineral deposits and rust stains. Plus, since our products don't contain bleach, it's a great alternative to products that do!


CornCheeseMafia5 karma

So if I drink BKF will it give me kidney stones?

barkeeperfriend31 karma

Please do not drink BKF ):


PennyKermit8 karma

I've seen recommendations for using it on glass shower doors. Is it safe? Is there a particular method to use? Thanks!

barkeeperfriend23 karma

Hi there! Many fans have used BKF, specifically our liquid cleanser and our spray on their glass shower doors to help tackle hard water and limescale. It's absolutely safe to use on glass shower doors, especially our MORE! Spray. It has zero abrasives and can be useful for those vertical surfaces. I'd recommend wetting the door, and spraying our MORE! spray and scrubbing. Make sure you rinse well, and you're golden! Hope this helps! :)

- Alex

hi_jake6 karma

I always use the liquid BKF to clean my sink, however, the scent lingers on my hands. Is there a faster way to get rid of the BKF scent from my hands?

barkeeperfriend6 karma

Wearing gloves can help!


Cassscade6 karma

How was BKF invented?

barkeeperfriend19 karma

Love this question, it's such a fun bit of info to share! (:

In 1882, a chemist named George William Hoffman was cooking up rhubarb to eat in a pan! Once the pan was ready to clean, he noticed that the once tarnished pan had a new sparkle to it. Being a chemist, he looked into the science behind this and found Oxalic acid (naturally found in rhubarb) was the answer!

To this day, Oxalic acid is the main power ingredient for BKF products. Thank you for this question!


Gnefitisis5 karma


barkeeperfriend22 karma

I think we are the KEEPER of the Bar, and the bar is pretty high ;)


Hooman_Paraquat4 karma

The powder cleanser is an amazing product! Which of the 10 new products do you suggest to try? Anything "better" to use than the the powder cleanser?

barkeeperfriend5 karma

Depends on what you're aiming to clean! Here's a brief breakdown:

  • Powder: Versatile, can be used for a loooot of cleaning projects
  • Soft Cleanser: Great for vertical surfaces & more everyday cleaning
  • Cookware Powder: Great for cleaning cookware & buildup made from constant heat
  • Cooktop Cleanser: Perfect on glass & ceramic cooktops
  • Coffee Cleaner: Can be used to clean your coffee machine or your coffee thermos/mug
  • Coffee Descaler: Gets rid of buildup in your coffee maker so your coffee tastes fresher!
  • Toilet Bowl Cleaner: For the toilets
  • Granite & Stone Cleanser & Polish: Formulated specifically for granite and stone surfaces
  • Stainless Steel Cleanser & Polish: Makes your stainless steel surfaces really sparkle!
  • MORE Spray + Foam: Doesn't have any abrasives, so it's really awesome for general/everyday cleaning


acethree3 karma

"If nothing else will clean it off, Bar Keepers Friend will". Seriously, your stuff is amazing! For whatever reason it doesn't seem to be my first choice to clean something caked/baked/dried on, but when my first choice doesn't work (which is often), then I remember to use BKF.

I've always bought the powder, but lately I've seen a liquid - is there a difference in cleaning power?

barkeeperfriend4 karma

The only difference is water! :) We created it mostly for convenience. It makes it easier to use on all types of surfaces, and it's pre-mixed, so there's no need to add more water before you scrub. u/qazplme asked a pretty similar question above if you'd like more information!

We're always happy to hear we're a first choice! Thanks for being an amazing BKF fan!


bludstone2 karma

Bkf on nonstick surfaces?

barkeeperfriend2 karma

Hello there! Non-sticks are tricky, as BKF can scratch the non-stick coating. We typically say to steer clear of using BKF on those types of pans, but some fans have had success. The general verdict, though, is to avoid using on non-stick to preserve the coating on the pan!