The darker and darker it gets in the evenings, the less I can be bothered to clean when I get home from work. Are you the same?
When it feels like there's never enough hours in the day, cleaning is the last thing I want to waste my weeknights or weekend doing, yet I really want a clean house. I've always believed in the tidy house, tidy mind outlook.
Moving from a small 1 bed flat to a 3 bed semi detached house 2 years ago, I thought I'd never be able to get round it all, even though several times in my life I've been complimented on my ability to speed clean (thanks ma!). So today I thought I'd share a little bit about my routine and a few things I do once a week or so to keep the dust at bay.
If this post helps even one person spend more of their evening sipping G&T's or watching Netflix rather than scrubbing toilets, my work here will be done!
1. Start from the front door and work your way in cleaning room by room
Every time I come to clean I make a conscious effort to do this. Bring all the cleaning gear you need to the front door and start with the hallway. Then work your way in, room by room. Why? If you enjoy working systematically like me, if you love ticking off to do lists and you're a methodical thinker, this approach will keep your inner momentum going cleaning the whole house. As you finish each room, you'll feel relieved you're on to the next, and then the next... It becomes a bit of a challenge rather than a chore.
If you're the type that likes to spread your duties out and clean on different days, for example kitchen and living room one evening, bedrooms and bathroom on another evening, using this approach will helps me keep track of which rooms I have and haven't done so I can pick up where I left off.
2. In every room... Tidy, dust, shine then hoover
I keep it really simple and take a methodical approach to cleaning when I'm in each room. I start by tidying up. In the living room this might mean bringing cups to the dishwasher, rearranging cushions, putting Neil's guitar back in it's place, opening the curtains, tidying magazines/books or re-homing odd and ends.
Then I dust. I get my feather duster and give all the surfaces I can reach a really quick once over with it. This includes skirting boards, mantles, coffee tables, all around the doors and window frames, and occasionally corners of walls if cobwebs are lurking. In some rooms we have column radiators which if you have them too you'll know they are a PAIN to clean. I tackle them by using a lambswool feather duster to slot between each column and it lifts dust out perfectly. It's that bit thinner than a standard yellow duster so slots in to hard to reach areas better.
Next, I shine. By this I mean I use furniture polish and stainless steel cleaner to go over wooden surfaces and brushed silver sockets and handles. If I'm doing a deeper clean than usual I'll also get the glass cleaner out and give mirrors, small windows and glass doors a once over but probably do this monthly, if that.
Finally, I hoover (and mop if it needs doing) but normally do this after the whole house is clean rather than room by room. It’s the last job but the most satisfying I think!
3. Move fast
This sounds all too simplistic but the reality is, the reason I clean fast is because I make a conscious effort to move fast. Well, faster than usual 😂 My builder once told me that the rare occasion he was home to witness the cleaner he hires doing her thing, he couldn't believe what he saw. She literally ran around the house as she cleaned. Obviously I'd probably pull a muscle if I did this, but making a conscious effort to clean faster is a good way to just get it done. And a mighty workout!
4. Keep a waste bin in as many rooms as you can
5. Load up a cleaning caddy and carry it to every room you're cleaning
This is a tip I never practised in our 1 bed flat, but when we moved into this house, I needed something to store cleaning products in under the sink, and found this caddy on Amazon. I’m seriously annoyed I never did this sooner. I clean more thoroughly now that I have all the cloths, products and sponges I need to alternate between for different surfaces right at my disposal, whereas when my cleaning bits were left under the sink I'd have to go back and forth to get things (and not bother on some occasions!)
6. Clean with youtubers (!)
I hope my overshare of cleaning routines and tips helps you spend less time mopping, more time chilling!
I’d love to know what sort of techniques you’ve got? Share in the comments below :)
Thanks for reading,
Collaborative post. All words and opinions my own.