A naturally clean home has many health advantages, and when you invest in the essential cleaning tools, you will be able to reap the benefits of good hygiene as well as creating a space that people love to be in.
It is often difficult to focus on life and small tasks when your life is disorganized. You forget where you set your keys when you walk in through the door, with cluttered table tops you lose sight of what you are searching for when in a hurry to get to work, or the thought of having to put things away even before starting the cleaning process, seems like too much of a chore when you are tired after a long day.
If you keep your home organized by utilizing a cleaning routine, know that you are ahead of the game. You have more time to be creative in a tidy space, your mind won’t wander to piles of clutter, and you will ultimately get more done without distraction. If you have children and animals, keep their health in mind and switch to non-toxic cleaners that keep bacteria, mold and mildew at bay.
Cleaning is an act of necessity that we are all capable of, even from the youngest age. And the essential tools needed aren’t many, but they are important, no matter how small. Here is a basic list of tools that every home and apartment should have for a healthy housekeeping.
1 Sponges – Soft and abrasive, sponges are good at picking up all kinds of messes, from wet to dry and everything in between. Make sure to keep bathroom sponges separate from kitchen sponges and give them a good cleaning of their own from time to time as they harbor bacteria that you don’t want to spread around. Depending on the quality, they may be a one-time use, or they may last months; in any case, go for quality and use them minimally.
2 Towels and rags – Reaching for a paper towel is a quick and fairly cheap way to clean up small spills. Ultimately, being able to reuse a material for longer is better, so always have a good set of cleaning towels on hand. Whether made from cotton, bamboo, or microfiber, choose different sizes for distinct jobs to make your job easier. Wash your towels as often as needed to keep them sanitary. Add a cup of vinegar to the hot wash cycle and line dry them in sun for the ultimate clean.
3 Squeegee – In the shower or tub this inexpensive tool is a must. The few seconds spent wiping the walls after each shower, to prevent mold and mineral deposits from accumulating, are well worth it.
4 Broom and dustpan – The iconic cleaner, a broom and dustpan is an essential tool to have in the home. It is great at picking up the bits of broken glass, dog food and spilled cereal, but keep in mind that it is best at doing the preliminary, rough job. For a more detailed clean, follow up with a finer microfiber mop to sweep up dog hair and stray dust.
5 Microfiber mop – Machine washable microfiber mops have multiple advantages over disposables. They are reusable many times over, making their lifespan extremely long compared to their one-time use counterparts. Their sleek, minimalist design allows them to get under furniture and into tight corners, picking up dirt along the way. With long-lasting material and greater cleaning power they will not burden the landfill with single-use waste.
6 Vacuum – Wall to wall carpets take regular vacuuming to stay clean and as allergen free as possible. Remember to keep the filter clean and fresh so that you are not spreading dust back into the air. Again, go for quality. Studies show that better built vacuums not only clean more efficiently, they are also less likely to cause indoor air pollution. If you have carpets in your home, opt for a vacuum with a HEPA filter to help keep dust, pollen and animal dander levels down.
7 Bucket – For storing your essential cleaning supplies as well as acting as a mop bucket for occasional floor and wall cleaning, chances are good that you need one in your home.
8 Set of brushes – From the used toothbrush for getting into tight spaces, to the toilet brush and the scrub brush, if you want to be prepared for a thorough clean, have a small range of items to assist you in cleaning. Make sure that the hardness of bristles is adequate both to the surface material and the task at hand.
9 Spray bottles – Spray bottles are wonderful items for storing your non-toxic cleaners. Have as many as necessary to accommodate a window cleaning solution, an all-purpose cleaner and a floor/tile cleaner. For carpeted areas you may even consider a lidded jar with a mix of baking soda and essential oils for deodorizing.
10 Essential oils – A naturally clean home always benefits from a handful of essential oils. The most common essential oils used in cleaning are lemon, tea tree, orange, lavender, eucalyptus and peppermint. Choose the one that suits your purpose, personality and momentary mood – why not?
Keeping your house clean does take time and energy, yet a calming comfort awaits those with a tidy, uncluttered home.