12 Cleaning Staples

not pictured: Vinegar
My apartment is so clean right now, you could eat off the floor. (Well, as long as you didn't mind ingesting insecticide. . .But that's another story.)

I've been on a cleaning binge and it's just now beginning to abate. That is why I am blogging right now instead of scrubbing something. So what all do I use?

With just a dozen (mostly cheap or natural!) items, you can be well on your way to a thorough home cleaning kit.

Here are what I use and recommend: 

  1. An old toothbrush -- great for window tracks, grout, and those tight edges around the sink and faucet.
  2. Microfiber cloths for windows and dusting; dish rags for other projects like scrubbing counters, carpet stains or upholstery.
  3. A mid-sized stiff-bristled scrub brush . This mainly hangs out near my bathtub, though I use it for tough stains on the kitchen floor, too.
  4. Borax -- As we know, it's the best way to clean your bathtub. Also great for other scrubbing projects, laundry, and insect control!
  5. Vinegar -- for the coffee pot, and a mild disinfectant for counters and handles. With baking soda, it unclogs drains! More about these two pals here.
  6. Baking soda -- for stained tea cups, mainly, and cleaning the oven. Anywhere some abrasion is needed where borax might seem too toxic.
  7. Bar Keepers Friend -- When you need to haul out the big guns. Use for drip pans, stainless steel sinks, and the brown scummy stains that start on the bottom of your pots and pans. But make sure to wear gloves!
  8. Dishsoap -- Great for grease and grime in general, and an unexpected miracle worker on some upholstery stains.
  9. Rubbing Alcohol -- for removing adhesive. Caution: it's particularly flammable. (I suppose plenty of things on this list are, but I wanted to mention it because I just saw an article in the paper where a lady actually caught on fire during a c-section because of rubbing alcohol. [They put her out and she survived.] Strange but true.)
  10. Sprayway . Okay, you know I choose natural products when possible, but here's an exception. This stuff cleans glass better than . . .


    Wow, I just sat for five minutes trying to think of an adequate analogy. Seriously, this stuff is awesome. It defies description. I've never met anything that cleans glass better.
  11. Murphy's Oil Soap -- did your mom use this on wood? Mine did.
  12. A bleach pen for touching up grout stains. Not generally a fan of bleach, but when it's really needed, I find the pen more controlled and less fume-y than spraying it all over.

What are your cleaning staples?

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Catherine said…
I really like this scrub, it's great for my stainless steel sink. Especially for rust stops. :)
Marissa Deen said…
I'll pop over and take a look! :) Thanks for the comment...
Anonymous said…
I just started reading your blog, and I really like it a lot! Right now, my cleaning products are baking soda, water, castile soap, and vinegar.
Marissa Deen said…
Thanks and welcome! :) I have castile soap, too, but I use it mainly just for cleaning me.
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Layla said…
Yikes! And I thought my c-section getting infected was horrible, but catching on fire is horrible and frightening!