How to Avoid the Deep Clean
Hands up who spends some of their precious time off work cleaning the house? Maybe you spend an hour or two at the weekend, or go all out spending 4 hours gutting the place every few weeks. Or maybe your house is pretty big, or you have kids, and you have to spend hours on it every week.
Either way, how annoying is it when you want to spend your spare time doing something for yourself, or your family, and you have to clean up the house instead.
It's hard to resist though; when the crumbs, soap scum, dog hair and dust are left, they build up and build up, until you get so distracted and annoyed by it, suddenly you go from popping into the kitchen at 9pm to 'get a brew', and the next thing, you're transported upstairs, wandering around with a fluffy duster, emptying bins and cleaning the bathroom. Or is that just me?!
Unless you have a cleaner in every day, it's pretty hard to avoid cleaning at some point in the week. However, there are ways in which it can be done without it taking a huge chunk of your spare time, to keep on top of things so you can sit and watch your TV shows without turning into that crazy late night cleaning person.
Doing little and often is the key. Spending one or two minutes here and there is how to keep things clean so they never reach the 'I need to do a spring clean' stage, to lower your stress levels, and free up more time on the weekend to do the things you love. *Disclaimer: this post assumes you don't love to clean on your time off. If you do, we encourage you to clean to your heart's content if it brings you joy!
In my experience, keeping on top of the cleaning every day, for just a few minutes, can help to avoid having to do a deep clean. 5 minutes per day = 35 per week VS a thorough clean every week or fortnight of 1-3 hours.
That's not to say I don't do a thorough clean every now and again, but it means that by the weekend, the house isn't so dirty I feel stressed about it, and driven to spend my entire Saturday morning cleaning.
This type of cleaning can be done while you're waiting for the microwave to ping, when you'd usually be browsing on social media, waiting for your bath to fill up, or any time when taking 2-5 minutes would not infringe on your daily schedule.
Here are our top tips for 'short-burst cleaning' of just a few minutes at a time, to keep on top of things in the muckiest of rooms: the kitchen and bathroom.
Wipe your counters/worktops, sink area and hob every day, after washing up from your evening meal. This prevents grease and food buildup on the hob, prevents bacteria from forming on work surfaces, and lets you start the following day with a clean area in which to prep food. It literally takes 2 minutes to do this.
Empty the toaster crumb tray every couple of weeks. An overflowing tray is often overlooked but can leave crumbs all around the toaster, and questions of "where has that come from - I just wiped it up?!"
For your chrome, glass and stainless steel appliances and surfaces, keep a glass polishing cloth nearby (we like the E-Cloth lint free glass cloths) and spend 2 minutes every other day buffing up these surfaces. This may include any glass counter tops, kettle and toaster, and the front of ovens and microwaves. This prevents tarnishing and build up of smear and finger marks. You can use the cloth on its own, or with a suitable glass cleaner product, such as our fave spray from Bio-D.
Each time you use the microwave, give it a quick wipe out with a damp cloth, as soon as it's pinged. The residual steam inside will help to work away at any dried on food (and kill any bacteria), and this is so much easier than having to scrub it clean if it's regularly left.
Cupboard and fridge doors, and shelving, can be a magnet for bacteria, and easily build up a nice patina of dried-on food over time. It can be really hard work cleaning all the doors in your kitchen at the same time. Why not spend just 1 minute each day wiping one or two of the doors, after you've washed the dishes. Again, this prevents build up and means all the doors are done at least once a week.
Lift up the toilet seat and use 2-3 pieces of loo roll to wipe around the underside of the seat and the porcelain bowl, every day. This is very often overlooked and can be a hive of bacteria due to residue from pee and poop!
Wipe over the sink, taps, cistern and bath rim every day, after you've brushed your teeth in the evening. A micro fibre cloth with warm water is usually enough to remove any 'food' that bacteria need to survive on surfaces.
Follow this with a glass polishing cloth, to shine up any glass, chrome, porcelain and mirrored surfaces. This stops fixtures from tarnishing, removes toothpaste and soap before it has time to build up, and leaves your bathroom looking and feeling clean every day.
Keep a separate cloth for the toilet. Wipe over once per day and follow with a squirt of biodegradable sanitiser or toilet rim cleaner last thing at night (to allow it time to work away at any limescale and stains).
After showering, wipe over the bath rim and/or shower screen, shower riser and head, and shower tray (if you have one). You could use a combination of cloth and squeegee, and the main purpose is to remove water residue, which is what leads to build up of the red 'scum' and black mould spores we sometimes find in bathrooms. This may sound like a big job but it takes just 2 minutes, and saves on lots of elbow grease in future.
In addition to these smaller jobs, we recommend cleaning inside the bathtub, window sills, vanity units and floors once a week or fortnight, depending on how much footfall you have in the bathroom. It's also worthwhile doing a good clean of the toilet (including the outside) once per week. In total these tasks should take no more than 15 minutes if you've kept on top of the regular maintenance cleaning.
As always, we recommend the use of vegan, natural, non-toxic cleaning products. At Pristine Eco Cleaning Services, we use a combination of Bio-D products along with good old bicarbonate of soda and white vinegar.
Do you have any time-saving, graft reducing cleaning tips that you rely on in your home? We'd love to hear from you; please get in touch via our blog or social media accounts.