I've been using cast iron my whole life, and still cook with my cast iron skillets and dutch ovens daily. If I'm cooking, the first thing I grab is a black iron pot.
At Christmas, my brother-in-law David sent me a little piece of chain-mail and sent the message that I should use it to clean my cast iron. I'm funny about cleaning cast iron, because I take care to manage the seasoning of my collection. Seasoning is important when you're using cast iron and you don't want anything to disturb it. It's a natural, no-stick coating that takes time and effort to obtain.
But, occasionally, something will stick. Milady likes to cook an Alfredo sauce and when we're done, there is always a little scorched Alfredon on the bottom of the pot. Today, I came home to find that very thing. Milady had put the pot in the sink to soak (which will not hurt cast iron), so when I came home I started cleaning then thought about that piece of chain-mail.
Great Googly-Moogly. That little piece of chain-mail cleaned that pot slick as a whistle with very little effort. This is the best thing for cleaning cast iron I've seen in several years.
I found it on Amazon, and the link is here. This is a great little labor-saver, and it has the PawPaw seal of approval.
Thanks, David. That little piece of mail is a godsend.