13 Pinterest Cleaning Tips That Don’t Actually Work (And How To Make Them Better)

The internet never lies, right? posted on

1. “Baking soda, vinegar, and a few drops of dish soap”

That oven glass looks so clean, right? Truth: The dish soap was doing most of the work here. When you mix baking soda and vinegar, you end up with a little bit of sodium bicarbonate and a lot of water (it’s science: They neutralize each other).

Make It Better
Use a soapy sponge and some dish soap to suds up the glass. Then, add a few drops of water to a couple tablespoons of baking soda in a bowl (enough to get a thick paste). Use this to scrub away at the soapy glass. Then clean off the soap and scrub with some hot water, until you get all of the cleaning product off.

2. “Soak your knives in vinegar to remove rust spots”

Variation 2: Soak in lemon juice. I tried both, plus some of my favorite baking soda/water scrub. Neither worked.

Make It Better
Forget the vinegar or lemon juice: Use a potato. Slice it in half, dip the sliced side in baking soda, and scrub your knife with the potato. Wash, and rub with a little bit of vegetable oil to help prevent more rust.

Not working? Stick your knife in the potato and let it sit for about 20 minutes. Then wash and apply oil.

Pro tip:
Love your knife? DON’T PUT IT IN THE DISHWASHER.

3. “Keep one in the shower filled with a mixture of half vinegar, half dish soap. Use it to wipe down the shower while you are in there and your shower will always be clean”

If you turn off your shower, then wipe it down with this, you’re basically asking for soapscum.

Make It Better
If you insist on the vinegar/dish soap wand, use it while your shower’s still running so you can rinse it off your walls after you’ve soaped them. Honestly, though, the best thing to do is squeegee at the end of every shower, and wipe your faucets with a towel to help prevent mineral buildup.

4. “Great idea! Those things are so wasteful and expensive”

Not arguing with the “wasteful” and “expensive” part, but terrycloth just won’t pick up the same amount of dirt that a disposable duster cover and pad will.

Make It Better
You can try chenille socks, although they still won’t pick up quite as much dirt as the disposable options.

Try mopping — or using your DIY terrycloth covers — with half a cup of vinegar diluted in about 1 gallon of water, plus some essential oil. The vinegar smell will go away, and you’ll be left with a clean floor.

5. “ONLY use this and it leaves floor spotless. (Heavy duty floor cleaner recipe: ¼ cup white vinegar, 1 tablespoon liquid dish soap, ¼ cup baking soda, 2 gallons tap water, very warm.) It leaves everything smelling amazing.”

This is the same issue as pin No. 1: The dish soap is doing most of the work here.

Make It Better
Just skip the baking soda. Srsly. Maybe add a couple drops of essential oil if you want it to smell nice.

6. “Place pillows in the dryer with a couple of tennis balls to help get them back to their ‘fluff stage’ and kill germs with the high heat. This is sooo important… I actually learned about all the molds that can grow in pillows if you don’t do this”

Oh, did you ACTUALLY LEARN? This will help fluff your pillows and maybe kill a little bit of bacteria.

Make It Better
ACTUALLY wash your pillows. Then dry them with tennis balls (yes, the tennis ball part is legit).

7. “Give up toxic dryer sheets and make your own dryer balls — two socks and your favorite essential oil”

If you want soft clothes sans dryer sheets, you’re going to need something with a bit more thunk than two balled-up socks. Like, yum, essential oil. But who cares if it smells good if it doesn’t work?

Make It Better
My grandmother used foil balls (although then you don’t get the oil — so if you want both, make an oil sock ball and add a couple good-sized foil balls). You can also use tennis balls, or make your own felted dryer balls.

8. “Make your own carpet cleaner! Small spray bottle, 1 teaspoon dish washing liquid, 1 tablespoon white vinegar, 1 cup warm water, 1 teaspoon baking soda”

So you know what I’m going to say, right?

Make It Better
Mix 4 parts of the king of all stain removers — hydrogen peroxide — with one part ammonia and use within two hours of mixing.

9. “How to make a homemade fruit fly trap — this really works.”

So, this recipe, which uses apple cider vinegar and dish soap, sort of works. It will trap fruit flies, but it certainly didn’t trap all of the ones in my kitchen. Like, maybe 20% of them. (Trust me, it was in the right place and everything).

Make It Better
Mostly, you have to take out your garbage, do your dishes, rinse out your sink and drain, and toss fruit and veggies that are in your fridge as soon as they start to go bad.

10. “Wash sponges in the dishwasher”

This might help get rid of those food particles, but it doesn’t take care of all of the E. coli and other bacteria that likes to party on your sponge.

Make It Better
Microwaving your sponge for two minutes kills just about all of the bacteria. Make sure it’s damp, first. If you want it to smell extra fresh, dampen it with some lemon water before microwaving.

11. “Easy and efficient way to clean toys, hairbrushes, toothbrushes, and whatever else fits in a dishwasher…”

The instructions behind this pin say to use just a little bit of soap. And with all that plastic, you can’t use the heat dry…or even hot water. Congratulations: You rinsed off the toys.

Make It Better
For the toys: If you don’t want to use dish soap on your toys, at least add a couple cups of white vinegar to the bottom of your dishwasher before running your rinse cycle, to help disinfect everything.

For the toothbrush: If you don’t want to just toss it out and get a new one (seriously, you’re supposed to replace it every two to three months), soak it separately in white vinegar. Same thing for the hairbrush: Just soak it.

12. “Ground coffee grounds will take away the smell and dehydrate vomit.”

OK, it may help cover the smell.

Make It Better
Here’s a thorough step-by-step guide. But for that “dehydrates” part, you’ll probs want some baking soda. And you’ll want to pick up the, uh, bigger chunks first.

13. “How to get your stoneware to a ‘like new’ finish. Perfect for the person who struggles with the ‘unclean’ factor.”

Nope nope nope.

Make It Better
The WHOLE POINT of stoneware is to season it. You don’t want it to look “like new.” Scrape off excess food, run it under hot water, and scrape more with a nylon scraper.

Check out more articles on BuzzFeed.com!

Facebook Conversations
          
    Now Buzzing