Cleaning is definitely a skill, a skill that is definitely in demand as most of the world’s population is locked inside. And make no mistake, there are quicker and more efficient ways of getting things done, instead of scrubbing everything until your hands are raw.
This is a list of cleaning tips and hacks designed to hasten the process without compromising the quality of the final results.
Here are a few ways in which you can work smarter and not harder:
1. Cleaning wax stains
Here’s a problem that used to be much more common a few hundred years ago: cleaning spilled and hardened wax.
While electricity has eliminated most of the need for candles, halogen and LED lights rarely bring out the romantic streak in people. Try as we might, we still need candles.
Spent candles are a nightmare to change, and most people throw out the pretty glass containers just to avoid having to clean them. Instead of taking a fingernail to the dried wax flakes, simply dunk the glass in some hot water. You can also add a little white vinegar as it will restore some of its shine.
The warm water will melt the excess wax, leaving the candleholder clean and ready to act as a centerpiece for your next romantic candlelit dinner.
2. Unclogging shower heads
Life is suffering.
And one of the main causes of that suffering is the loss of showerhead pressure.
While the previous statement may be a little hyperbolic, low showerhead pressure can indeed be a nuisance. The issue is mainly caused by mineral deposits that clog the tiny holes through which the water springs.
Thankfully, the situation is easily fixed: First, be sure to buy a scrubber sponge, and remove as much of the debris as possible. Of course, this will do a good job of cleaning just the exterior.
For the holes’ interior part, get a leak-free plastic bag, some water, and white vinegar.
Now, mix the water and vinegar inside the bag. Remove the showerhead and place it in the bag to soak for about 30 minutes – 1 hour. This method will remove the deposits, so you will only need to wipe away the loosened debris.
Vinegar is excellent for any situation that involves limescale.
3. Cleaning canvas sneakers
Here’s how you can waste money: take your sneakers and make them unusable by washing them in the washing machine. The result will be a collapsed, wrinkled mess with a sole that is starting to detach. Now that we’re covered what not to do, here’s how you can adequately clean your canvas sneakers:
- Take out the shoelaces.
- Take a soft-bristle brush, wet it, and slightly scrub any excessive dirt. Do this for the entire surface, including the sole, tongue, and edge.
- If the stains are very persistent, dip the brush in hydrogen peroxide first.
- Add a little mild dish soap to some warm water, then wet some cloth inside the mixture.
- Using the cloth, gently clean all of the sneaker’s surfaces.
- Repeat the same process; only this time, use a cloth soaked in just water for rinsing.
- Finally, stuff your shoes with paper towels to get rid of the excess water. As a bonus, this also helps to prevent them from collapsing into a wrinkled mess.
4. Cleaning red wine stains
“There’s no use crying over spilled milk.” Indeed, that popular saying is true. However, the argument can be made that crying over spilled wine is entirely justified. Milk doesn’t stain nearly as bad.
Regardless of the liquid in question, if you’re drinking it often, it’s only a matter of time until an accident happens.
After the spill, most people panic and start hectically rubbing the stain. Rubbing is a mistake, as it only works further to smear the wine into the carpet or clothing item. Your best option is to get a piece of cloth or multiple paper towels and use a dipping motion to absorb the moisture.
Remember: dip, don’t rub.
If the item in question is a shirt or a pair of pants, take it off and leave it to soak in a mixture of cold water and a laundry stain remover solution. About 20 minutes should be enough for the combination to work its magic.
If the discoloration persists, wash the garment in a mixture of bleach and warm water. It is essential to check that the bleach is designed to be used for fabrics and not just general-purpose bleach.
However, if you spilled wine on your upholstery, drenching it in bleach and detergent is out of the question. To remedy the problem, add some liquid dish soap to some lukewarm water, and then soak a sponge in the mixture. Use that sponge to clean the stain as much as possible.
Then, using a blotting motion, get an absorbent cloth to remove the remaining wine from the stain. Finally, rinse using a sponge and plain water. While you can leave it to dry, it is best to blowdry the spot.
5. Toothpaste to remove marker scribbles from wood
Kids sometimes like to color outside the lines, literally. While your little one is coloring, it’s only a matter of time until the table itself starts to look like an abstract painting. To make matters worse, crayons are out of style, and markers are much more popular.
Thankfully, an unlikely item will remove marker scribbles from wood: toothpaste. This advice is pretty straightforward, with no particular method involved. Simply use toothpaste to remove the stain, then rinse.
6. Remove odors from shoes
Thankfully, North America doesn’t foster a shoes-off inside the house culture. Still, many of us get self-conscious about the smell of our feet and shoes. While regular bathing or fungicide solves the former, the latter can be easily fixed with baking soda.
It seems strange, but pouring baking soda inside your shoe will remove the bad smells. Baking soda is famous for its ability to absorb any odor. That’s why it is often used in kitchen cleaning products.
The only mention is to make sure that the shoe is bone-dry; otherwise, the soda will absorb the moisture forming a messy paste.
Leave the filled shoes overnight, and by morning they will be as fresh as when you bought them. To get rid of the powder, shake it loose and tap on the sole while holding each shoe upside-down.