This month we are discussing Spring Cleaning, with tricks and tips to help you make the most of your cleaning and organizing for a fresh start! Our last post, WHY YOU SHOULD SPRING CLEAN, addressed how Spring Cleaning does more than just clean your space, it also can help you clear your mind. This week I will let you know what supplies and tools you may want to have to do a thorough cleaning.
Have you ever thought that your space would be more clean and organized if only you had enough money for that fancy vacuum or those special cleaning cloths? Let me tell you, having used some of those supplies, they are not always all they are cracked up to be. I have used $800 vacuums and $40 vacuums and as long as they are maintained properly, they will both get the job done. So, put aside the thought that you need to spend a lot of money to get your space cleaned, and let’s look at what you truly need to get your cleaning done!
1. Vacuum: A vacuum is pretty necessary if you have carpeting or rugs anywhere in your space. It can also be useful if you use the hose attachments to clean hard floors, stairs, couches, mattresses, and other hard to reach spots. Your vacuum just needs to be able to suction properly to work well. If it does not, you can usually google how to clean out your brand of vacuum and do your own simple maintenance to help it reach it’s maximum potential.
2. Broom and dustpan: I prefer using a broom and dustpan for my hard floors because it allows me to really pick up all of the dirt I can see. Again, there is no reason to spend much money on these items and if your broom collects hair and dirt, just clean it off and it will work just as well as before.
3. Dust mop: There are name brands and generic brands, and if you prefer to use one of these as opposed to a broom and dustpan, go for it! I like using these for dusting, because they really do pick up the dust and dirt. If you don’t want to buy a broom and dustpan, dust mops work very well.
4. Duster: Whether you like to use feather duster, Swiffer dusters, or a cloth, you need to have something that will not only push the dust around, but actually collect the dust and remove it.
5. Bucket: If you don’t have a bucket, you can use a large pot or bowl. Buckets are great ways to transport all of your cleaning supplies from one area to another (or use a caddy) and also to collect old, dirty cloths when you are done with them. If you are using a mop, then you will need the bucket to mix your mopping solution.
6. Mop: If you use a broom, you probably prefer mopping instead of the wet cleaning cloths. Because I don’t have a large surface, I tend to prefer to either mop or hand mop with a towel. Again, this is a preference.
7. Wet cleaning cloths: If you prefer dust mopping, you may prefer to use the wet cleaning cloth system to clean your surfaces.
- Microfiber cloths: Microfiber cloths are really nice to use, especially if you are trying to use less product. These magic cloths can get areas cleaned with just a little bit of water and are also good for drying areas and buffing spots. There are a lot of expensive microfiber cloths that I am sure work wonderfully, but I have never had any complaints with some from the Dollar Tree. Just like with anything else, the secret is proper maintenance. Microfiber cloths should be washed separate from others laundry and without any fabric softener.
- Sponges: For deeper cleaning, sponges are the way to go. I prefer sponges that have a soft side and an abrasive side to help clean areas with more stubborn stains. You should have a designated sponge for each area of the house and not cross contaminate. Keep your bathroom sponge in the bathroom and the kitchen sponge in the kitchen. I like using sponges for the bathtub, shower walls, and sinks. If you prefer, you can find all natural sponges or sponges with no dyes. Again, the Dollar Tree sponges are just as good as the other brands (and sometimes they even have name brands!).
- Toothbrushes: Yes, toothbrushes! But a cheap pack of toothbrushes to help you with dusting and cleaning any small surface. Think about dusting the inside of your window track or cleaning out the gunk between the sink and the counter. You can even use toothbrushes to clean your grout. Toothbrushes are perfect for cleaning and scrubbing. Remember to keep one in each area and not cross contaminate.
- Toilet brush: There are several option to choose from, but no matter your preference I suggest you have some way of scrubbing your toilet. Don’t rely on the toilet bowl cleaners that you leave in for 30 days, those are great for in between cleaning, but nothing beats a good old fashioned scrub.
- Squeegee: This is optional, but it is very good to have around for drying your shower walls and bath tub. You can also use it after every shower to keep soap scum and droplets from staining the walls, making cleaning easier in the long run.
- Old towels: I always use old towels to help dry all the areas I have cleaned. Drying your shower, sink, and floors will eliminate spots and make all the fixtures look shiny and new. I also have a supply of old cloth diapers to use to clean larger windows, to use as dusting cloths, and for buffing shiny areas.
- Rubber gloves: There are some fancy looking rubber gloves out there for cleaning, or there are disposable rubber gloves that work, as well. If you choose to use rubber gloves to protect your hands from cleaning solvents and products or just for hygienic reasons, again make sure not to cross contaminate. Keep a pair for your kitchen and a pair for your bathroom.
Although you can easily clean without spending a lot of money, you do need to have certain cleaning tools and supplies to make your job easier. There are so many options for each type of cleaning you wish to do, but most of them will get the job done as long as you put in the work. Some tools will make cleaning easier, but with proper maintenance of your cleaning tools, you should be able to tackle every job during Spring Cleaning season.
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