As a former Home editor at Real Simple magazine, I’ve come across my share of domestic products. Cleaning was one of my beats, so I was always testing out the latest mop or updated scrub brush. (What can I say, it was a glamorous job.)
And now that I’m a freelance writer and a mom of two amazing but ridiculously messy children, I’ve really put these cleaning products to use. I definitely have my favorites—the ones I reach for whenever soy sauce finds its way onto the walls or cracker crumbs invade my keyboard crevices (which unfortunately happens more than I care to admit).
So with spring cleaning right around the corner, I’ve decided to share my top 10 products with you. Some are the best of the basics — like these color-coded microfiber cloths. And others are brilliant new inventions, like a mini power tool for grout that looks like an electric toothbrush. To say these are satisfying is an understatement. Put some in your cart, and get to cleaning!
These might be one of my favorite inventions ever. BPA-free silicone gloves with built-in grippy scrubbers for cleaning dishes? Brilliant! They eliminate the need for a scrub brush, keep my manicure intact, and they can be tossed in the dishwasher.
I live in a rental apartment, and when I moved in, the grout around my tub was, shall we say, grout-y. Meaning, stains everywhere. Ew. This tool makes light work of scum. The company says it’s twice as powerful as manual scrubbing, and I have to agree. Use it on everything from faucets and grills to sliding door tracks—you won’t want to put it down.
I can’t count how many times tomato sauce has splattered in my microwave. And even though I know I should clean those splotches right away, I never do. The result? Crud. This gizmo uses steam to loosen all that baked-on grime. Just take off the hair, fill with water and vinegar, and watch Angry Mama get really pissed off as she spews hot steam all over the interior. Then wipe with a damp cloth. She’s incredibly fun to use!
I don’t like how traditional steel wool scrubbers always seem to leave behind steel remnants. (Once I found a little piece wedged in a burner on my stovetop, causing it not to light.) Then I found this medieval-looking cleaner and never looked back. It’s gentle enough for cast iron pans, but won’t scratch. And it happily hangs on a hook.
I can’t get enough of this microfiber blade cleaner. I use it on my blinds and my air conditioner fins—which get particularly nasty because I live in a city. Just spritz with a little water and go nuts.
If I gave my kids only straws in their stockings for Christmas, they’d be thrilled. They ask for straws so often, I should buy stock in them. And now that reusable straws are all the rage (and with good reason), these tools get more use in my house than ever.
The amount of paper towels I use daily is criminal. These microfiber cloths have drastically cut down my usage—so they save money and trees—and I’ve noticed they get surfaces sparkling clean. Designate one color for each surface: glass; stainless steel; wood; countertops. You can use cleaning products with them but you don’t have to, and I don’t—water works just fine. And they’re machine washable!
I eat eggs every morning, and I’m messy. So these two things together means my pan stays in the sink for most of the day and then I’m left with a disaster come evening. Before these brilliant gizmos, I’d grab a paper towel (see, I told you I used a lot of them) to clean off the egg remnants before using a scrub brush. But it’s gross and annoying. These pan scrapers are a breeze and can also be used for getting stickers off new glassware or plates.
Do my kids walk on the baseboards? They get so grimy that sometimes I think they do. And I’m not getting on my hands and knees for anything. The Baseboard Buddy is my friend, for both low baseboards and high moldings. The head swivels to get into angles and can be used dry for dusting or wet for deeper cleaning.
I eat over my keyboard. There, I said it. This retractable cleaning tool makes me feel like a detective working on a top-secret case. I whip it out and brush crumbs from those keys, then use the silicone side to pick off any crud. Great for detailing watches, cameras, and cell phones too.
Read more from Yahoo Lifestyle:
- 100 natural cleaning products that are worth the green this spring
- The cheap cooking tool Taylor Swift calls a ‘game changer’
- Amazon shoppers can’t stop buying this $17 packable backpack — here’s why