I’m confident that I’ve earned the adjective of “seasoned” when it comes to cleaning since I have lost count how many times I’ve cleaned another person’s house. 😉 I mentioned in my post about Dawn and OdoBan that my experience has been humbling and insightful. To add to that post I am sharing what I have found to be all that is needed to clean a house from top to bottom.
Here is a bird’s eye view of my cleaning basket (portable, PINK, and was $3 on clearance). I use this arsenal for my home and for anyone else who asks for my services. Continue reading to see photos and descriptions of what’s inside.
I am starting off the list with a cleaning cloth that has changed the way I clean windows and mirrors. Notice in my pink basket there is nothing that looks like window cleaner solution. That is because the yellow cloth in the pack you see in the photo below is magical! There is a giant bathroom mirror at a client’s home that has been my nemesis for several years. I can not get it clean and streak free without my glass cloth. Before this cloth I would spend time and energy fighting it with different cleaners and methods. Now I’m done and have won in no time.
I found the cloths on clearance at Target several years ago when they were changing packaging, but the cloths can still be found and purchased in store or here for $10. This yellow glass cloth saves from buying window/glass cleaner because all that is needed is a little water to clean. The cloths are reusable, but just like with any towel, do not use fabric softener. To be honest about the whole pack, besides LOVING the yellow cloth, I prefer the blue one to use for dusting or as a wash rag, but am not in love with the pink or green. The green cloth is definitely my least favorite because it feels weird to my hands and doesn’t impress me when cleaning. The pink one repels liquids a bit, but will still get a dusting job done.
I know I talk about being thrifty by reducing waste and rewashing cleaning clothes, but there is just something about Swiffer dusters I can’t seem to shake (there’s a pun in there somewhere). There are places the dusters fit better than my hands do, times the dusting job is a delicate one that needs more care than cleaning power, and sometimes the hair and dirt would quickly kill a dusting cloth alone. Swiffer dusters are also great for dusting ceiling fans and baseboards when you attach them to the extendable handle; which is great for in between deep cleanings. I get the most out of my dusters by using them on the ceiling fans and baseboards last after dusting a room; when it’s too dirty to use for more trinket dusting, but not quite dirty enough to trash. Coupons can be found for Swiffer dusters in newspapers. Click here to see Walmart’s inventory of Swiffer duster starter kits and refills.
I RARELY clean anything that involves using water or a solution without wearing rubber gloves. I hate germs, pruned fingers, and want to take care of my hands. Playtex Living gloves are my favorite. I find the cuff useful for keeping water from dripping down my arm when cleaning showers, and they handle my long fingernails well. I also love the fun colors! Playtex sometimes even includes flower seed packets. 🙂 I buy these gloves at Walmart.
The sponge shown below is what I use to clean bathroom sink bowls, showers, and tubs. The scrubby side is perfect because it doesn’t scratch. I wash these sponges after every bathroom cleaning for the day with my towels and rags in hot water with no fabric softener. This 2 pack of sponges can be found at Walmart for right at $3. I tote the sponge in a plastic cup I use for rinsing when I clean bathrooms.
Not easily visible in the basket pic is a cleaning toothbrush. NEVER underestimate the power of a toothbrush for cleaning! It will get the funk out of around faucets, drains, and around the outside of a kitchen sink. It can also make grout prettier. Always keep an old toothbrush handy because details matter.
For removing the ugly ring in the toilet bowl, I use the Scouring Stick (while wearing rubber gloves!). I keep it in a sealed bag in my cleaning basket. That way I’m ready to make a toilet look new again whenever necessary. Find it at Home Depot.
The next three photos are of products I’ve already blogged about in depth, but I’ll briefly go over them. I use Dawn Platinum (found at most stores; coupons can also be found) to clean kitchens and bathrooms because it cuts through grease, food messes, grime, and soap scum like nothing I have ever used before. OdoBan all purpose concentrated cleaner (found at Home Depot) kills germs and odors while leaving a pleasant scent. It doesn’t mask odors. When a home is truly clean it does not need air fresheners or lit candles. The squirt bottle is from Home Depot. (I have a different top on it in the cleaning basket photo.) It’s what I use to mix my OdoBan and water in for cleaning practically anything anywhere. Please read my post on OdoBan and Dawn: How to get the most Clean for your Buck.
I use store brand paper towels that are comparable to Bounty. I have found these to be the best value.
Finally, there is mopping. I have used several types of mops, but the Libman Freedom spray mop is my favorite. It is inexpensive at $20 and is well-made. I love having the control of mixing my own solution and being able to mist it onto the floor from the mop. Walmart is one store that sells it. I prefer microfiber mop pads because they scrub well, do not leave streaks, and are washable. I usually use one mop pad per room, so it is a good idea to have a few clean ones handy. Libman’s green microfiber mop pads will do the job, but I also love my Bona microfiber mop pad I have had for the past several years…which can be found at Walmart or on Amazon.
I hope this post was helpful!