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    54 Cleaning Basics You Should Probably Know By Now

    Bookmark now; clean later.

    1. To start, clean every area from top to bottom so you don't have to re-clean what you've already done. That means dusting from the ceiling down — no one wants to sweep TWICE after de-fuzzing your fan.

    The duster which is 31.5 inches when collapsed but can reach up to the ceiling to dust

    2. After dusting every surface in your home, ~keep~ your baseboards dust-free by rubbing a dryer sheet along them. It'll repel dust (and even pet hair) for a surprisingly long time!

    The Bounce box with arrows pointing to baseboards

    3. Remove every single pet hair from your couch, carpet, and more by running this pet hair remover over everything you own. It's a rolling brush, with no adhesive paper or tape needed, so you can use it again and again (and again and again).

    4. And knock out pet or kiddo stains (these things happen to the best of us) with a miracle-adjacent carpet stain remover so you can banish wine stains, pet stains, and what-the-heck-even-is-that stains — WITHOUT rinsing or vacuuming. Aka your roommate won't even *know* you spilled in the first place.

    A reviewer's carpet with marker stains before and no stain after

    5. Don't ~just~ wash your pillowcases, but also regularly wash your pillows themselves (at least twice a year!). You do spend hours with your face pressed against it, after all.

    A blogger's before/after of yellowed pillows before, and clean, white pillows after

    6. And wash and dry your pillows, duvet, towels, and clothes *without* ruining their perfect fluffiness by popping a prickly lil' pufferfish in the dryer with them.

    One white and one blue pufferfish nestled in towels

    7. Clean your ~cleaning machines~, too! Just run your washing machine on a hot setting with 1 or 2 cups of vinegar and wipe it out.

    A collage showing the process of running vinegar through the machine (right in the detergent holder)

    8. While you're at the ~machine cleaning~, sanitize your dishwasher by running it with a liquid cleaner and disinfectant designed to remove limescale, ruse, grease, and other nasty buildup so your machine runs more efficiently than ever. It even kills Salmonella and E. coli!

    9. Learn exactly what products and potions remove the worst stains, so when your happy hour turns sad (i.e., when you spill red wine all over your favorite blouse), you know exactly what to do.

    A chart of what removes which stains

    10. And spray the toughest stains (hello food, sweat, and blood stains!) with Puracy's enzyme-based spot remover. It'll erase every trace of stain, without bleaching or fading any colors.

    A BuzzFeed Shopping writer's review photos of a stain on a white shirt, and the same shirt clean after using Puracy

    11. Get pollen, cobwebs, and other detritus off your window screens by passing a lint roller over it quickly.

    A blogger's image of a lint roller removing cobwebs from a screen

    12. Dust your blinds, air-conditioner vent, and more hard-to-reach areas with a three-part microfiber wand that gets 'er done quickly.

    The wand cleaning three surfaces of Venetian blinds at once

    13. But actually, microfiber cloths are your best friends when it comes to *streak-free* cleaning — use them on your car, stainless steel, countertops, wood furniture, floors (reusable Swiffer sweepers, anyone?) and wayyy more.

    A collage showing the cloths being used on a car, fridge, and glass surface

    14. Maintain both wood and leather furniture (and other leather goods) with a cleaning balm made with beeswax, olive and coconut oils, and grapefruit essential oil — it's food safe, so you can even use it to condition your cutting board!

    The tin of wood and leather balm

    15. Conquer the scariest bathroom messes with mold and mildew removing gel, because you don't need to get your whole shower redone when this is in your life. Just squeeze out and let this non-drip gel work its magic overnight — NO s c r u b b i n g.

    A reviewer's shower before and after with lots of black residue and grout staining removed, with five stars and text "magic in a bottle"

    16. For extra scrubbing power, try a toothbrush-like brush duo with an ergonomic grip and stiff bristles that do the heavy lifting for you.

    17. Powerfully clean your toilet — without having to keep a gross toilet brush and all the germs sitting on the brush head — by using a Clorox toilet wand with disposable scrubby heads *preloaded* with cleaner so you can clean the whole bowl with one hand — and *one* product.

    18. And hey, if you're wanting to clean that toilet but are *also* looking to go greener (and not throw something away every time you clean it) I'm here for you. Try these popular toilet cleaning bombs you can drop in, watch the ~fizzing action~ and then scrub away with your usual toilet brush.

    The white bath bomb-like cleaning balls

    19. But if it's already too late for some of those stains (looking at you, hard water!), use a special pumice stick that removes stains without damaging the porcelain.

    A before and after showing the brown stain ring removed from a reviewer's toilet

    20. Get the grossest bathroom scrubbing D O N E in record time with a set of three scrubbing attachments you simply add to any power drill to make cleaning your tub, floor, appliances, or even the wheels of your car ridiculously fast and easy.

    21. Wax off those water spots and fingerprints and wax on a layer of protection by rubbing some ~wax paper~ on your faucets.

    22. Harness your laziness and descale your showerhead while you watch Netflix. Just fill a baggie with vinegar and lemon essential oil and let it sit!

    A scaly shower head inside a baggie filled with the mixture to sit and wait

    23. Keep your shower clean and mildew-free by spraying a 🙌 no-scrub, no-wipe 🙌 Wet & Forget cleaner once a week.

    24. Or hang a dish brush filled with a vinegar-and-dish soap solution in the shower with you for a no-brainer cleaning while the conditioner sits in your hair.

    A dish brush hanging on a shower caddy between cleanings

    25. Unclog your drain by alternating vinegar, baking soda, and boiling water to blast out whatever's blocking up your pipes.

    An infographic with the steps for unclogging: pour in half a cup of vinegar, half a box of baking soda, plug the drain until the fizzing stops, then wait 30 minutes and pour boiling water down

    26. Or if your hair clog is too powerful for that classic science fair combo, try a drain snake with over 4,000 micro hooks and a slim design to shimmy down any drain (you don't even need to remove the cover) and snag all the hairs and goop that's clogging the system — in one quick pull.

    (But really just buy a TubShroom.)

    The Tubshroom in green being removed from a drain

    27. Keep Bar Keepers Friend Soft Cleanser in your house (it's pre-mixed so it makes less of a mess than the original powder). Seriously. It works on SO. MANY. SURFACES — sinks, cookware, stainless steel, faucets, countertops, tubs, toilets, grout, and more — so you can get to work and see results with only one product.

    A review image of a marked-up porcelain sink before cleaning, and the after of the same sink looking spotless after cleaning

    28. AND for any other miscellaneous messes, try The Pink Stuff, a TikTok- (and reviewer-) beloved cleaning product that basically...works miracles! Name your mess, and this mildly abrasive paste will take care of business — including but not limited to bathroom tiles, sinks, stove tops, painted walls, grills, and outdoor furniture.

    A reviewer's oven before/after cleaning, showing baked on brown stains being removed

    29. And for everyday jobs, keep an all-in-one cleaning concentrate you can dilute and use on just about everything — floors, countertops, dishes, windows, laundry, and more — so you don't have to keep swapping out bottles in your linen closet.

    A reviewer's spray bottle and refill

    30. Touch up messes or everyday dust with a super-lightweight vacuum that converts to a hand vac *and* a shorter stair vac.

    31. And if you have pets, opt for a vacuum that was *designed with them in mind*, like Bissel's Cleanview bagless vacuum with a specialized brush roll for picking up embedded pet (and human) hair, powerful suction on carpet and hard floors, and an easy-empty tank so you don't have to (gag) touch all of that icky stuff.

    The vacuum filled with pet hair and dust with five stars and review text "holy forking shirtballs you guys!"

    32. Or if you can't seem to keep up with the dust and messes, let a robotic vacuum do the work *for you* while you just sit back and relax..picking up crumbs, stinky pet hair, dust, and anything else that keeps your house from feeling fresh and clean between deeper cleanings.

    33. Keep your vacuum efficient as heck by cleaning the bristles with a seam ripper.

    A reviewer using the seam ripper to cut through hair wrapped around their vacuum roller with five stars and text "I'm no seamstress, but I do vacuum up a lot of hair"

    34. If you have hardwood floors that have just lost their *sparkle*, reviewers say you can't go wrong with a bottle of almond-scented Method hardwood floor cleaner to make your floors look shiny and smell fantastic (seriously, people looooove the smell) — just squirt and mop, no rinsing needed!

    35. Freshen up and sharpen your garbage disposal by tossing in homemade frozen tablets made with vinegar and sliced lemons and limes.

    The tablets, which are ice cube–size and have chunks of lemon and lime

    36. Or buy Glisten garbage disposal tabs to foam out the built-up gunk and bad odors — no DIY required.

    A reviewer's sink with blue foam bubbling out of the drain

    37. Remove every single crumb lodged in your keyboard by blasting it with canned air designed for electronics.

    The cans of Dust-Off

    38. De-gunk and disinfect your earbuds with a toothbrush and some rubbing alcohol.

    A toothbrush next to earbuds

    39. Or try an AirPod cleaning pen with three tools to keep your favorite headphones and their case cleaner than ever: a flocked sponge to clean dust from deep in the case, a metal pen-style tip for stubborn messes (cough ear wax cough), and a dense brush head for buildup on the speakers themselves. You might be surprised what a difference it makes!

    40. While you're at it, clean your phone. You can make your own disinfecting spray with water and 70% isopropyl alcohol.

    41. Or do as I do and try a Phone Soap UV sanitizer you can just toss your phone in when you get home — it kills 99.9% of germs with a built-in UV-C light (and charges your phone at the same time).

    The PhoneSoap with a phone inside

    42. Remove the product buildup from your curling iron and other hair tools with a combo of baking soda, rubbing alcohol, an old toothbrush, and some sudsy water.

    BuzzFeed's before and after of a stained, residue-covered curling iron pre-cleaning, and the same tool after looking shiny and new

    43. Easily (and kind of fun-ly!) clean your car air conditioner vents, laptop keyboard, cupholders, remote buttons, and any other tricky little areas where dust and crumbs accumulate with a cleaning putty any time you have a few spare moments.

    Model using the putty to clean out an air vent

    44. And knock out lingering car smells with a foaming carpet shampoo (you can use it on your car upholstery too!), whether you're carting around messy kids, keep your gym gear in the back seat, or stop for french fries and don't want your car smelling like McDonald's forever.

    A reviewer's car carpets looking brown and dirty before and brand new back to their original black color after

    45. Refresh your mattress with a combo of baking soda and lavender essential oil; just sprinkle, sit, and then vacuum it up.

    Baking soda, a strainer, and essential oil

    46. Shine up your stainless-steel with a can of Pledge.

    A before and after of a stained dishwasher before, and shiny dishwasher after using the Pledge

    47. Or try a plant-based stainless-steel cleaner to remove streaks, marks, and fingerprints from all of your appliances with one wipe of the included microfiber cloth.

    A review image of a super shiny stainless steel fridge

    48. When your dish sponges get funky, just pop 'em in the microwave for two minutes to disinfect.

    A sponge in a microwave

    49. Wipe away food and grease that's stuck on your microwave with ease — just heat up 1/2 cup of water and some lemon juice for three minutes.

    A graphic of several images showing the dirty microwave, a lemon squeezed in a bowl, and the clean microwave

    50. Scrub your makeup brushes up with a plant-based, paraben-free shampoo so you can feel good about *finally* washing caked-on foundation out of your favorite tools without irritating sensitive skin or leaving behind residue. The formula'll even leave the bristles soft and conditioned.

    51. Deep clean that borderline-foul travel mug you can't bear to look into. Just drop in a Bottle Bright tablets that'll deep clean your thermoses and on-the-go bottles — no scrubbing required. These'll get into all those hard-to-reach spaces and remove *all* the gunk.

    52. Whip up a gentle and nonacidic spray for your granite using just dish soap, water, and alcohol.