Taryn Williford, cleaning editor at Apartment Therapy, simplifies everyone's least favorite pastime into easy tips and tricks to make deep cleaning more enjoyable.
Publish Date: Mar 19, 2021
it's pets. Spouse, um things get complicated and cleaning is no different, laying out expectations for who cleans what on what schedule can really help. People have very different standards for cleaning. So I think just laying out those expectations at the beginning and, yeah, when you're talking about kids, I think kids love to be useful, and the parents I speak to kind of tell me that it's good to provide structure and goals. So, like checklist chore charts, that's all great. Another thing when we talk about mindset, some people like really enjoy cleaning and organizing, and some people he did. Can you talk about how you can kind of make it more fun? Sure, I am one of those cleaning haters. I think this might be why I became a cleaning editor. I realized I hate cleaning. I hate spending time cleaning, so I really want to know the most efficient ways to do things and how to make sure it doesn't take a second longer than it has to. If you don't enjoy cleaning, it's really hard to start. Setting a timer can really help you get the motivation to clean, so if you have a big tasks that you want to de clutter your closet or something like that. You can just say I'm going to set a timer for 10 minutes, and when the timer goes off, I'm going to stop. But more often than not, that time is going to go off. And you're just gonna keep cleaning because starting is the hardest part. Giving yourself a bite sized task. Um, whenever we do big cleaning assignments at apartment therapy, I will make sure we always start with something small. So we might kick off an entire whole home decluttering project by just cleaning out one drawer. Because sometimes that's all you need to just get yourself in the mindset to clean in terms of just making sure once you're cleaning that, it's more enjoyable. Um, playing music is great. Playing Podcasts are great audio books. Um, sometimes I'll put up a stand up comedy special on the television. I think that's great, but you can also just call a friend, call your parents, call your grandparents that cleaning is gonna fly by. I think once you have your tools and a target, um, most cleaning doesn't require a lot of focus. It's very meditative, so you can definitely multitask. Um, okay. Supplies. There are so many cool gadgets. There are so many awesome smelling sprees. What is like a list of must haves. So in terms of solutions, you can really get away with an all purpose surface cleaner, a disinfectant and a window cleaner. That all purpose cleaner is going to work for most of the surfaces on your home in your kitchen and your bathroom. Um, sometimes on the floors. Um, but also, you shouldn't use all purpose cleaner on natural stone surfaces, So just kind of be careful, do a little bit of research about what all purpose cleaner. Can I clean this with all purpose cleaner Disinfectant is what you need to attack. Germs, kitchens and bathrooms are hotspots for those inside of the toilet on the kitchen counter. If you're preparing food, you need a disinfectant to tackle that, um, and then window cleaner. The reason why you can't use an all purpose cleaner on a window is that all purpose cleaners might leave streaks. Window cleaners are formulated to make sure that they dry off quickly and don't leave streaks and don't leave deposits. Do you need specialty cleaners, or can you use natural cleaners? You can get a lot of mileage out of vinegar, baking soda and dish soap. If there was a trifecta of cleaners to have at home, I think those three vinegar is going to be great at cutting through mineral deposits. Vinegar is great in the bathroom, and baking soda is great at kind of dissolving fats. Grease oils. So if you're cleaning an oven that's grimy and based on a baking soda paste, which is just baking soda mix with water is going to get that done. And then dish soap is such a versatile cleaner. If you never pick your dish soap up away from your sink, I think you're really under using it. Dish soap is great at cleaning bathroom surfaces. The shower tile tubs that are always grimy and always stained Dish soap is a great cleaner for those. What about cleaning tools? Yeah, so I think cleaning tools the must haves are you need some kind of cloth. Micro fiber cloths are a great go to cotton cloths are great, but they're not going to be as absorbent. Um, a scrub brush is great, and then you need, like a vacuum or a broom. I'd say if you're only gonna buy three things, make sure it's those three things. But then you start getting into, maybe you need a duster. Maybe you need dusting cloths or gloves. Maybe you need a mop. Um, I always make sure I have a razor blade scraper around. Any time there's stuff stuck to my kitchen counter or stuff stuck to my bathroom, I will take a razor blade and just scrape it right off. Um, cocktail picks are great for cleaning. If there's like a little ridge around your bathroom faucet, for example, sometimes I'll just take a cocktail pick and scrape at that thing and get the grime out of there. Um, and then squeegee can be really helpful if you have glass shower doors. Um, squeezing them often is great. And squeegees just make windows spotless. Okay, so we've got our supplies. We've got a plan. Which room would you suggest we stopped with? Yeah, I think whenever you're cleaning a house, you just can't ignore the kitchen and the bathroom. These are just rooms that so many people go in and out of and do all kinds of things. It's the most important rooms to clean and to clean properly. I feel like we could talk about cleaning the kitchen all day because there's so many ways to go about it and so many approaches. If you had 10 minutes, I would say Clean the surfaces, clean the top of the oven, clean the sink, clean the floors. If you're doing a really, really deep clean up the kitchen, start at the top, which means maybe the tops of cabinets, the top of the fridge, Um, then moved down the front of the cabinets, the front of the fridge, Then start on your counters. Then you might want to hit the top of the oven and then the lower cabinet fronts and then the floors. I mean, really, cleaning a room starts with just