Tag Archives: cleaning advice

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How to know when to throw it away

We’ve all been in the situation where we know we have to take the plunge and get rid of old items in order to make way for new, but how do we know what still has some life left in it and what we can definitely dispose of without later regret?

Consider the following points, and they will hopefully help make your mind up for you!

When was the last time you used it?

Whether it’s an item in your wardrobe or an item hiding at the back of your kitchen cupboard, we’ve all been in the state of mind that we’ll wear or use it at some point…but when? The next time you have a clear out, we guarantee it’ll still be there, gathering dust and taking up much needed storage space! Get rid!

How much do you like the item?

Do you have a sentimental connection to the item but don’t use it regularly or at all? Some instances are excusable, but if you don’t have that connection to it, ditch it!

Maybe you don’t even like the item in question anymore. That dress you bought in the sale three years ago, but you can’t bear to get rid of it because it was such a good bargain – put the feelings aside and donate it to the charity shop!

How does it function within the household?

The grey rug you bought for your living room a couple of years ago, once served its purpose in your grey colour schemed room… but now your living room is cream and the rug doesn’t match. What is it still doing in your attic, taking up valuable space?

Clean Sweep

Decluttering to de-stress!

The thought of doing a major house clean in this gloomy, cold winter weather is one that fills us all with utter dread and misery. All we want to do in the winter months is get nice and comfy and eat some delicious food – not clean the house from top to bottom! We also mustn’t forget we have the added stress of Christmas a mere six weeks away!

However, you may not realise, but a lot of the stress you’re feeling right now, whether it is to do with Christmas or general winter blues can actually be reduced by giving your home a good clean.

Think about it. You spend a large portion of your day in your home – it’s the place you should be able to relax, but if you haven’t had a good clean up in a while, this could be subconsciously adding to your stress levels.

As well as for keeping your stress levels to a minimum, conducting an overall clean is hugely important for health reasons. We’re not saying you need to do these tasks every single week (except for certain jobs) but ensuring you keep on top of your cleaning will help the process become not so overwhelming.

So when it comes to tasks such as changing your bed sheets, doing the laundry, cleaning your bathroom and dusting, you should make an effort to do these on a minimum of a weekly basis. Areas which are used most often, such as the ones above, are the areas you should prioritise and take care when cleaning.

There are then the more tedious cleaning tasks, but thankfully, these don’t need to be taken care of on too much of a regular basis – we advise every two to three months! These tasks include:

Cleaning the build-up of grease on your oven… It’s pretty much a no brainer but is so often overlooked. Think how often you use the oven and how much grease will form over weeks and months of use. There are lots of great products on the market that will vanish the stubborn grease marks in no time!

While on the topic of kitchen appliances, make sure you give your fridge a good scrub! Here are some tips to help you get started:

Empty your fridge of all its content – this is also a good time to have a clear out!

  • Carefully take out any shelves inserted in the fridge and wash them with hot soapy water. If they are glass shelves, be careful as putting a cold glass shelf into warm water could cause it to crack. An ideal solution would be to either wash with cooler water, or wait until the glass has acclimatised to room temperature.
  • Try not to use scented products when cleaning the inside of the fridge – it’s best to use baking powder with hot water. This will not provide any scent but will still kill all germs and bacteria.
  • Finally, dry all of the inside and shelf compartments and place them back in the fridge. Simple!

Your sofas and carpets should also be cleaned every couple of months to reduce dust particles which can easily become trapped without you realising. Make sure that the products you are using on your sofa is fit for its material – you don’t want to have to fork out money for a new sofa!

When cleaning carpets, yes, a standard vacuum will do the trick, but consider getting your carpets steam cleaned as this will help abolish bacteria as well as stubborn stains!

The one kitchen item you forget to clean

Everybody knows they have to pull apart the oven, pull forward the fridges and delve inside the microwave. These all seem pretty obvious, but everybody avoids doing those mucky, time consuming jobs. We moan and groan about having to clean our household items, especially after a long week. It can be easy to forget the obvious things need some attention, too.

One of the most forgotten things in your kitchen is the one thing you reach for every single day – your kettle. How many times a day do you make yourself a cup of tea? You probably lose count pretty quickly.

A friend of mine came to me recently asking for tips on how to clean her kettle. She felt slightly ashamed that she had never really thought about the inside of her most used kitchen appliance, until she bought a glass kettle which made it impossible to ignore. After neglecting it for a few months, she suddenly noticed the horrible, green limescale that plagues all of our hot beverage nightmares.

Long story short, she couldn’t get it to budge. It was frustrating, but my friend is stubborn and was a woman on a mission. She would not be defeated by an overpriced kettle and a sponge.

It’s actually pretty easy to sort your kettle out, as soon as you know how. It takes longer to boil water if your kettle is battling limescale, so it’s important to keep an eye on it, all that extra time adds to your electricity costs, after all.

You can buy specialist kettle descalers, but I prefer a natural method. Using either vinegar, or a citric acid (lemon juice works perfectly, and smells better than vinegar!), fill the kettle with equal parts water and your chosen solution.

Leave this to soak for about an hour, boil the kettle and discard the cleaning solution. Rinse your kettle thoroughly just to get rid of any loose residue, and you’re done.

Most cleaning problems can be solved with a natural method and some determination, but if you’re struggling on something particular, get in touch with us and we will be more than happy to help you out!

Cleaning your car – inside and out!

When you are busy cleaning your home and keeping your garden neat, it can be easy to forget to wash your car. Follow these simple steps and your pride and joy will be sparkling in no time!

The Interior:

It’s a good idea to start by cleaning the interior of your car! To vacuum the interior, remove the floor mats and vacuum them separately as well as the floor underneath them, along with the seats, back shelf and boot. Also, remember to put the vents on full blast when vacuuming to remove any dust that has built up in them. A good tip to remove dirt and crumbs from the seams of seats is to use a toothbrush before vacuuming!

You can polish the dash and the inside of doors using dash shine and a duster, which you will be able to pick up cheaply in many supermarkets or pound stores.

When cleaning windows, an essential tip is to work from bottom to top with all fluids to avoid streaks.

Ensure you do not polish the steering wheel or pedals, it could be dangerous if those surfaces become slippery.

The Exterior:

There’s no getting away from the fact that the best wash your car can get is a hand wash! It does not take long, and is much more rewarding than driving through the car wash at the petrol station (plus, it will be far cheaper).

Make sure you get rid of all soap suds to prevent dirt marks and finish by polishing the car with a chamois leather to make it gleam.

There is no need to wax your car every time you wash it, but at least once every season is recommended.

What you will need:

- A bucket
- Warm water
- Washing up liquid
- A sponge
- A hose pipe with cold water
- A chamois leather
- Car wax
- Vacuum Cleaner (to pick up all those crumbs!)
- Dash shine
- A duster
- A brand new car air freshener (the perfect finishing touch to all of your hard work)

There you have it! A super clean car inside and out, in no time at all!

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Cleaning your makeup brushes

Cleaning your make-up brushes
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Long gone are the days when we would happily use our fingers to blend our concealer and blot out lipstick. I don’t know about you, but applying make-up with my hands now makes me feel a little bit sick. However, a lot of people don’t realise how important keeping your brushes clean is to your skin (and your health). If you’ve ever seen that infamous video of the girl cutting open her make up sponge, you’ll know what I mean!

A lot of us invest a lot of time in finding the perfect make-up brushes, and spent a small fortune on high quality tools to keep our skin looking flawless throughout the day. We know which fluffy blending brush is the best for our crease, and if we prefer flat or buffing brushes for our foundation. We know what brands make better contour brushes, and which ones are cruelty free. We put a lot of thought into it, and there’s nothing like the feeling of soft bristles on a new brush.

Confession: I know someone who never (and I mean never) washes their foundation brush. Not only do they hold so much dirt, grime, and old make up, but the brushes don’t work as well as they should. It seems obvious, but brushes can only hold so much product before they lose their effectiveness.

Everybody hates washing their brushes, and who can blame them? It’s pretty time consuming, and can take a good few tries to get right- especially with dense foundation bristles. It can also be a little bit nauseating (or satisfying), to see how much stale make-up lives in the middle of the brush.

There are plenty of tools to help you clean your brushes, such as the Real Techniques Cleansing Palette, and the Beauty Blender Beautycleanser. You can find plenty of cost friendly brush cleansers and soaps these days, but if they seem a bit gimmicky to you, you can easily take care of them without breaking the bank.

First of all, don’t use washing up liquid. Think about the effect on your hands when you wash the dishes, and then think about what this could do to your skin if you’re using your brushes every day.

Personally, I advise using high quality shampoos such as Aussie Mega Shampoo, which will not only clean your brushes thoroughly but will also leave them smelling glorious.
• Prepare a bowl or jug of hot soapy water using your preferred shampoo or cleanser, and prepare your brushes by working a small amount of product through the bristles.
• Leave them to soak until you can see the original colour of the bristles.
• Just like with your hair, wash, rinse and repeat.
• Once they’re looking clean, pop them on some kitchen roll and mould the bristles back to their original shape.
• Leave to dry. Refresh brushes every week with a spray cleanser, and repeat cleaning process at least once a month (depending on how much you use your brushes!)