8 Ways To Make Spring Cleaning Easier — And Also Way More Satisfying
Spring brings us many things — the ability to walk outside without a heavy jacket, the start of sandal season, and of course, spring cleaning. Decluttering your space doesn't have to be a major drag. In fact, with a few easy spring cleaning tips on your side, it might just help you clear your mind.
How did the concept of spring cleaning get started? Researchers have looked into the concept of spring cleaning, and believe it started way back in the day, when Jewish families tried their hardest to have a thoroughly cleansed home in time for Passover. Also, before vacuums became widespread, many believed March to be the perfect month to clean their homes due to the fact that they could open up their doors and windows to let some fresh air in, but wouldn't be faced with any kind of insect infestation, since it's still cold enough to keep them away.
Bugs or no bugs, it's still important to have a season where a deep clean is scheduled. Popular housecleaning product company SC Johnson actually ran a survey that polled 1,200 American adults back in 2013, and found out that 39 percent of people would consider it a deal breaker if their partner was a slob, and 34 percent of people fessed up to cleaning before a professional housekeeper arrived (since, I mean, you don't want them to judge you). Messes happen, and we often feel like keeping our space tidy is a necessary evil, especially if we want to have company over.
If you're starting to fret over the idea of getting your place in order, here are a few tips to make the process a little easier.
1. Don't look at the big picture
Instead, look at each room as a different task. If your house is a big, huge mess, it's bound to get overwhelming. Take a breather, and try to focus on one task at once. Doing something is better than doing nothing, and spring cleaning is a big project to take on as is.
2. Rent a carpet shampooer, and go crazy
Why a carpet shampooer? Because they're weirdly fun. It's a similar sensation to a Biore strip — watching the results is oddly satisfying. Lowe's offers 24-hour rentals for about $25, so it won't break the bank, and your carpets will thank you. Plus, just the act of renting the shampooer will make you feel productive, and ready to start cleaning.
If you rent your space, it'll probably also help you get more of your deposit back when you move out (since, clean carpets will be visible, and prove that you took care of your apartment). Also, if you have cats, trust me. There's stuff lingering on your carpet that you might not even know about.
3. Use fresh sponges
Sponges make a world of difference, and having fresh sponges laying around will help make sure you're getting the best clean possible. If you're not keen on replacing the ones you already have, just put your current sponges in a gallon of water, and add in three-quarters cup of bleach, letting them soak for about five minutes. Another method is to zap them in the microwave, if they don't contain any steel. Just soak them in some water with a little bit of lemon juice, which will help deodorize them. Just a minute in should kill a lot of bacteria.
4. Focus on your closet
It's amazing how messy a closet can get, especially if you're one of those people who needs to try on a bunch of outfits before settling on the perfect ensemble for a night out. While we know we should iron, fold, and hang up clothes after being washed, let's face it — most of us are content with leafing through big piles and unorganized stacks of clothing.
Here's a golden rule — if you haven't worn it in over a year, just toss it. The clothes that are still in good condition can make someone's day if you donate.
5. Play some inspirational music
Know why Zumba is such a fun exercise? It's because you kind of forget that you're exercising, you're just letting loose and having a grand old time. A lot of that can be credited to the fun music. Cleaning is very similar — if you create a playlist that'll get you moving, you'll have something else to focus on, and it'll make the time go by much quicker. If you've never cleaned out your dishwasher before, you should probably get started with the help of some Katy Perry.
6. Focus on the windows when it's cloudy outside
It sounds weird, but it makes a huge difference. But if the sun is shining down on your windows, the cleaner will dry a lot quicker, and lead to streaks. Nobody likes a streaky window.
7. Make your own cleaners to save some cash
Speaking of cleaners, you can make some of your own at home to save cash, and make you feel more "involved" with the project. You can make a heavy duty scrub with just half a lemon and about half a cup of borax, or an all-purpose cleaner with some baking soda and warm water. Did you know that using some powdered lemon drink isn't just for making an amazing lemonade? About a quarter of a cup can remove dishwasher stains, as well.
8. Open those (streak-free) windows up
Fresh air is seriously important, and if your house has some dust, it'll be good for your lungs to get some outside air circulating inside. Plus, it's the best way to enjoy the amazing weather while also being super productive indoors.
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