Some people love cleaning but for others cleaning is a chore. With our list of ultimate cleaning hacks you can achieve the glistening and sparkling look without needing to splurge on dozens of different cleaning products or spending hours on end scrubbing away.
The Household Goods
Distilled White Vinegar: The versatility of white vinegar knows no bounds. Vinegar can be used to remove stains, eliminate odour, and add sparkle back to metal handles and surfaces. Just make sure you don’t accidentally mix it up with your malt or your balsamic because then you really will be in trouble!
Remove Stains: Particularly effective on wine stains, apply the vinegar to a sponge and dab onto the affected area until the stain disappears. It is important to treat the stain within 24 hours. It is also recommended to wash with detergent afterwards or launder according to the instructions on the care label.
Eliminate Odours: Forgot to take your damp clothes out of the washing machine or gym bag? Either soak the clothes in a bowl of water and vinegar or alternatively add a dash of vinegar to your next wash. If you’ve left it for a very long time, it is even effective at removing mould. White vinegar can also be used to spray on upholstery, mattresses and other large items that are not easy to freshen up.
Revitalise Metals: Vinegar is an effective tool for tackling dull or dirty metal taps, sinks and hobs. Simply mix a spoon of salt, half a cup of white vinegar and enough flour to make a paste and apply to the affected area. After 15 minutes, rinse with clean water and polish with a soft, dry cloth.
Lemon & Lime: Citrus fruits can be used to clean your microwave, rubbish bins and keep your refrigerator smelling fresh. This is the perfect solution for how to use the leftover wedges from your latest sesh of gin & tonics or tequila slammers.
Clean Microwaves: Cut a lemon in half and put it in the microwave for five minutes. The steam produced from the lemon will condense on the sides and ceiling of the microwave and the citric acid will kill the bacteria and remove odours. Afterwards, wipe away any food spillages – which will have softened with the steam – using a clean sponge.
Clean Rubbish Bins: Over time your rubbish bin will get dirty and smelly so keep them looking and smelling fresh with this effortless cleaning solution. Once emptied, place lemon wedges at the bottom of the bin and then rinse out thoroughly with clean, warm water. Simple.
Freshen up your Refrigerator: Put a couple of wedges of lemon or lime in an open container and place on a shelf in the fridge. This will get rid of the smell of any out of date food you may have forgotten to bin as well as any pungent ingredients that are still in date such as salami, mackerel or kimchi.
Ice Scraper & Squeegee Sponge: Most people have one of these tucked away in their car for chilly winter mornings but you will also want to pack one away in your bathroom cupboard. For about £1 you can make cleaning the shower so much quicker and easier for the rest of your life.
Clean the shower: Cleaning limescale and mould off shower tiles is the stuff of nightmares. No matter how many times you scrub and how much industrial strength cleaning products you use it always seems to take forever to clean properly. The ultimate hack here is in prevention. Every time you get out of the shower, use the ice scraper to get any excess water off the tiles. This will help keep it cleaner for longer.
More top tips…
Hanging shirts in the bathroom: This alternative solution to ironing is perfect for those who put more creases in than they take out. Hang your shirt in the bathroom when you take a shower and the heat and humidity will make the wrinkles fall right out. It also helps to hang your clothes up as soon as the washing machine or tumble dryer finishes to prevent wrinkles getting a chance to bed in.
Automation is the future: Most people accept that dish washers can save a lot of time compared with washing up manually but while they are convenient they also take up a lot of space. Robot vacuum cleaners on the other hand tend to be significantly smaller than manual vacuums and the price difference between the two is fairly insignificant, especially when you factor in the amount of time it will save you across a year.
Hire a cleaner/housekeeper: Time is a precious commodity so why waste it cleaning? Hiring a cleaner or housekeeper can free up your time to focus on doing the things that you enjoy. If you have specific tasks you would like the cleaner to complete, be sure to specify this when you make your enquiry. Some cleaners will only do general cleans (such as vacuuming, mopping, polishing and cleaning work surfaces). Other cleaners may be able to assist with tasks such as ironing, washing, oven cleaning, after party help, and external window cleaning and gardening.