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These Are The 20 Dirtiest Things In Your House (& What To Replace Them With That Will Get Way Less Gross)

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It's kind of scary to think about, but your home can become super dirty, super fast. You're constantly tracking germs and filth in from all of the places you go. And don't even get me started about the objects in your house. Have you ever thought about the dirtiest things in your house and the things that you can replace them with that will get way less gross? I have. And now I'm one step closer to having a cleaner home.

Think about it: You use your toothbrush at least twice a day, it's going in and out of your mouth, and then you leave it sitting out in your dirty bathroom. There's probably a toilet brush in there that you haven't replaced in a very long time. And all those germs are floating around in the air.

If you venture over to the kitchen, you've got a dirty sink, a dirty drain, and a gross sponge (that you're cleaning your dishes with). Oh, and have I mentioned your cell phone that you've now carried with you all day, placed it on your bathroom counter, and then on your kitchen table? Yuck. Luckily there are a lot of items out there these days that you can either replace your disgusting household objects with, or can help prevent them from getting dingy and germy.

1. Clean Doorknobs With A ShamWOW!

Shamwow 8 Piece Set, $18, Amazon

Okay hear me out: Shamwows are so amazing. My stepmom swears by them. She and my dad use them to clean up everything because they're super absorbent (just one can hold up to 21 times its weight in liquid), and they're even machine-washable. That means you can wash them after you use them, and they'll stay clean and fresh. I'd use them to clean your doorknobs (because just think about how dirty those are) with some bleach or some sort of disinfecting solution.

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2. Don't Let Your Toilet Brush Become The Germiest Thing In Your House

Clorox ToiletWand Disposable Cleaning Kit, $21, Amazon

Your toilet brush is nasty. It usually lives next to your toilet, and you usually use it to clean the bowl a few times a week (or maybe a month). Think about how after you've scrubbed your bowl, you place the wet brush in a container (and maybe you've dripped on the floor). That is so much bacteria right there. Instead use a toilet brush system that is disposable. You can buy refills, clean, and pop off the scrubber into the trash, where it belongs.

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3. Automatically Have A Clean Toilet

NeverScrub Automatic Toilet Cleaning System by NeverScrub, $10, Amazon

If cleaning your toilet seems like a chore you'd prefer to avoid, look for a cleaner that you only install once every four to six months. It cleans the whole bowl (even under the rim). You can say goodbye to stains, scum, rust, and hard water marks. One user said, "As long as I use this product I will never have to scrub a toilet again...Not only do they keep the toilets clean, they removed the existing stains."

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4. Get Rid Of Dust On Baseboards Without Having To Bend Down

Baseboard Buddy Extendable Microfiber Duster, $25, Amazon

I recently saw a commercial for the Baseboard Buddy, and I had never thought about how much dust must end up on your baseboards. I'm a person who cleans, but I rarely ever completely scrub anything down. The Baseboard Buddy is a great cleaning tool because you can use it wet or dry to remove dirt, grime, and dust that has collected in your baseboards overtime. It has got an extendable handle and 360 degree swivel action, so you can clean without bending down. It's also made to fit around crown moldings so you can get all the dust.

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5. A Toothbrush That You Can Use For A Year Without Replacing

ISSA Electronic Sonic Toothbrush, $199, Amazon

This toothbrush is incredibly hygienic (you don't have to replace it for a year). It's made of silicone that actually resists the buildup of bacteria. Because the silicone dries quickly and doesn't absorb water, there's actually 10,000 times less bacteria than a regular one with bristles. Aside from being a healthier option, it also uses 11,000 pulses per minute to gently clean your teeth and gums without any irritation.

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6. Don't Cross-Contaminate Food With A Dirty Wood Cutting Board

Large Cutting Board Four Piece Set With Food Icons, $23, Amazon

Wood cutting boards are actually really hard to properly clean because they are porous and absorb whatever's been placed on them. So if you like to cook a lot, and you're worried about cross-contamination of foods, find a set of plastic, eco-friendly boards that are clearly labeled for what they should be used for. These ones are great because they have a micro ban protection that basically means that stains, bacteria, mold, and mildew won't be able to grow on them.

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7. Make Sure You're Washing Your Washing Machine

Affresh Washer Machine Cleaner, $11, Amazon

I never realized that you should actually be washing your washing machine. Washers (especially front loaders) can end up growing bacteria because they don't dry completely in between uses. You're really supposed to be leaving your washer door open after use, so the inside can dry out. Either way, about once a month, you should wash the machine. You can use a tablet that will actually end up cleaning it better than bleach can. They remove dirt and residue from inside the machine, ensuring that your next loads of laundry are super clean and fresh.

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8. Keep Your Phone And Tablet Sanitized While It Charges

PhoneSoap XL UV Sanitizer And Charger For Phone And Tablets, $120, Amazon

How many places do you put your phone down throughout the day? So far this morning, I've put my phone down on the bathroom counter, my bed, a table at a restaurant, and on a chair in a common area in a hostel. This charging device would come in handy, as it actually uses UV rays to safely kill 99.9 percent of germs. You can also fit most tablets inside. You put your phone up to your face, and it's constantly in your hands, so it's worth it to consider being a little more mindful about cleaning it.

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9. Toss Your Regular Loofah For An All-Natural Sponge

Konjac Body Sponge, $10, Amazon

Unfortunately I'm totally guilty of keeping my loofah way too long. It seems like it should be sanitary because of the material it's made out of, but you probably shouldn't be using the same one over and over again for a long amount of time. Instead pick up a konjac body sponge. It's a natural sponge made from the konjac plant root and this one is infused with bamboo to make sure you get extra clean. The great thing about using a konjac sponge is that it dries fully before your next use, ensuring that bacteria isn't growing on it.

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10. Clean Both Sides Of Your Windows With Ease

Zuwit Telescopic Window Cleaner Double Faced Kit, $30, Amazon

I think a lot of people forget to clean their windows unless they're super dirty and you can't see out of them. But, if you started to clean them regularly, you'd actually notice a huge difference. This cleaning tool is great because it allows you to clean both the inside and outside of your sliding windows with ease. It comes with a sponge, as well as a squeegee, so you can get those hard-to-reach spots and be left with streak-free windows.

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11. Protect Your Sink From Getting Too Dirty

Rubbermaid Antimicrobial Sink Protector Mat, $17, Amazon

Aside from worrying about scratching your stainless steel sink, you should also be concerned about how many germs are growing there. Unless you're super diligent about either washing your dishes or putting them in the dishwasher right away, there's probably some food being left behind. This sink protector mat is made with microban antimicrobial properties which help fight off both odor-causing bacteria and stains. So your sink will stay clean(er). And when you want to clean the mat, just pop it in the dishwasher.

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12. How Much Dust Are You Breathing In Because Of Your Ceiling Fan?

Unger Pro Microfiber Ceiling Fan Duster, $14, Amazon

I cleaned my ceiling fan before I left for my trip, and I ended up having to clean my duvet cover, too, because of all of the dust. I've been getting terrible sore throats over the past few months, and I chalked it up to allergies, but really it was from the layers of dust that I had building on top of the ceiling fan that I use every single night when I'm at home. It's so easy to dust your ceiling fan. All you need is a microfiber duster that goes around the blades and a connecter, so you don't have to reach or climb on a ladder or your furniture.

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13. Bacteria Grows In Your Cat's Litter Box and Around It

ScoopFree Self Cleaning Litter Box, $130, Amazon

If you often find yourself forgetting to regularly clean out your cat's litter box, you should absolutely invest in a self cleaning one. Of course bacteria is going to grow where your cat is going to the bathroom. That's just a given. But, if you don't clean the litter box regularly, it will get worse. A self-cleaning one is also great because it has a covered trap where waste is kept that blocks out odor and the leak-proof tray is totally disposable, so you don't have to worry about picking up and dropping waste while cleaning.

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14. Make Sure Your Dog's Food Stays Fresh And Their Bowl Stays Clean

PetSafe Healthy Pet Simply Feed Automatic Feeder, $130, Amazon

Have you ever seen a puppy run for its bowl of food? They go so quickly and end up knocking it down. Or they chase after you waiting for you to scoop them out their meal. It can be a big mess. That's why using an automatic feeder is great. It's pet-proof, so they can't knock it down (which means no spilled food all over the kitchen), and the bowl is stainless, which is more sanitary and hygienic than a plastic one. The whole thing comes apart very easily, so you can clean it whenever you want to.

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15. Say Goodbye To Dirty, Smelly Sponges

Kuhn Rikon Stay Clean Scrubber Sponge (Set of Five), $40, Amazon

I think one of my biggest pet peeves in life is a smelly sponge. I was always told to ring out the sponge and leave it out of water, so it can dry and not grow bacteria. But I've definitely had roommates who just liked to leave our sponge in the bottom of the sink, soaking in dirty water. If only we had had these silicone sponges! They don't absorb liquid, so they won't grow bacteria. They actually last longer than a regular sponge and are safe to use on all kitchen surfaces (including non-stick pans).

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16. Keep Food Out Of Your Drain

Joie Ribbit Kitchen Sink Strainer, $6, Amazon

If you don't have a garbage disposal in your sink, then you really need to make sure you aren't having food get stuck in your drain. That can lead to a stinky sink, clogged pipes, and a bad scent that just won't go away. Use a sink strainer to keep debris and food out of your pipes. This one is fun because you can get it in all different colors and animals like a whale, ducky, rooster, fish, piggy, and frog.

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17. Keep Your Carpet Clean Without Having To Hire Someone To Do It

Bissell 3624 SpotClean Professional Portable Carpet Cleaner, $130, Amazon

I think a lot of people don't clean their rugs properly because they don't have the correct equipment. Sure, you could hire someone to come in and deep clean your carpet once a year, but that can be very expensive. I think that investing in a spot cleaner is a great idea because you can get rid of stubborn stains, spills, and accidents yourself. You can also use it on stairs and upholstery. It's a great thing to have around, if you have a pet or like to entertain a lot.

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18. Keep Your Bags Off The Filthy Floor

Cosmos Foldable Glossy Handbag Purse Hook, $10, Amazon

It's so gross to think about how dirty the bottom of your bag probably is. You put it on the ground, your chair, the table — all places with plenty of germs, which your bag is transferring to other surfaces. Get one of these hooks that you literally just attach to the table to keep your bag off the ground. It's so small and will easily fit inside your purse. It's an easy fix to avoiding spreading germs around.

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19. Buy Enough Dish Towels, So You Always Have A Clean One On Hand

Utopia Kitchen Towels (12 Pack), $21, Amazon

When I cook, I wipe my hands several times on our dish towels. We then lay our dishes on there if they haven't dried completely in the dishwasher. It is just gross to think about how many things are growing on them. To avoid that, buy a large pack of dish towels, and change them out every few days. That way it doesn't matter if you don't have enough time to get laundry done, you'll always have a clean one on hand.

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20. Replace Your Sheets Every Few Years And Change Them In Between

Zen Bamboo Hypoallergenic Sheets, $30, Amazon

Realistically you should be changing out your sheets every one-two weeks. That means taking them off, washing them, and putting them back on or changing them to another set (I recommend the latter) and washing them when you have time. But, you should also be getting new sheets every few years depending on the material and quality that you have. The next time you go shopping for sheets, pick up bamboo ones, which are high quality, hypoallergenic, and stain-resistant.

Bustle may receive a portion of sales from products purchased from this article, which was created independently from Bustle's editorial and sales departments.

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