A major problem in tubs and showers is mildew, and the best way to handle it is to prevent it from ever forming. To do this, clean the area with a disinfectant cleaner or special mildew product once a week. Start at the top and work your way down. Keep the air in the bathroom as dry as possible, using an exhaust fan or bathroom heater to evaporate excess moisture after showering. If you have a shower curtain, stretch it out on the rod. Mildew can form in the creases. Pull it back open after it's dry. Most fabric shower curtains can be machine washed on the gentle cycle. Use a water softener to remove film. Mildew can be removed with a chlorine bleach solution. When cleaning the tub, choose one of the mild abrasive cleaners to prevent scratching. A bathtub ring can be removed by soaking a sponge in undiluted vinegar and rubbing. To remove appliques (* app-lick-KAYS) from the bottom of the tub, use a plastic putty knife to scrape off as much as you can. Soak the remaining adhesive with mineral oil or nail polish remover to soften it before rubbing it away.