Let’s finish off your spring cleaning with some bonus tasks!
Beds and Mattresses.
We spend about a third of our lives in our beds where we shed skin and release body oils. Even with weekly sheet washing, mattresses will still absorb oils from our skin overtime, and this can create discoloration and/or odour.
Mattress protectors are a great everyday preventative step for mattress hygiene. Depending on your usual routines it might time to wash your mattress protector – they need to be washed at minimum a few times a year to prevent oils building up; follow your protectors instructions for this as they can made of different fabrics. But in essence, the basics to remember are that body oils and respiratory irritants are best washed away in long, hot soapy washes, so if your protector is compatible with this, then this is the way to go.
With your bed stripped, give your mattress and behind your bed a thorough vacuum – dust bunnies always multiply back there! Mattresses and flooring can be home to many allergens incl. dust mites, pollen, animal hair, mould & leeching chemicals (e.g., flame retardants and formaldehyde). All these things can contribute to some serious health consequences from irritated lungs and skin like shortness of breath, wheeze, continuous coughing, and rashes. For those without Asthma and Eczema you might notice waking with a stuffy nose, morning cough or itchy eyes.
While your mattress is uncovered inspect it for any marks or stains. Figgy soaps are excellent for safe, non-irritating cleaning. Figgy coconut bar soap is a great product for spot cleaning upholstery including your mattress, simply wet the stain and rub directly with the soap. If you have access to a wet and vac spot cleaner (i.e., Bissell or similar) a cleaning solution can be made with Figgy Home Cleaning Castile soap – use 1-2 tsp per litre of warm water. Remember do not over wet your mattress, ensure you rinse the soap residue thoroughly, blot up water with a clean towel and allow to air dry (you’ll need it completely dry before making the bed). Tip: use a light coloured towel and your body weight to blot up water. This way you will see if you are lifting the stain, and your body weight (e.g. sitting on the blotting towel) will help soak up the water.
Lastly, before you put your room and bed back together rotate or flip your mattress! This will help with longevity of your mattress.
Let’s clean the grease trap that are your rangehood filters. Fabulous at extracting all of your steam and cooking odours, it will need some Spring Cleaning attention. By their very nature they will collect grease and grime, and to keep them functioning optimally they need to be clean. Here’s our easy how to, without the heavy-handed chemicals:
First up, remove your filters. Run them quickly under a very hot tap. This removes the surface build-up of loose fat and oils. Next, give the filters a direct rub over with our Coconut Bar Soap, or, add some Home Cleaning Castile Soap directly onto the filters and clean this way. This step will remove the bulk of the easy-to-shift grease and save the water in the following step being full on grime! If your filters were not to dirty you may even be able to atop at this point.
Rinse well, air dry and pop those sparkling clean filters back into your rangehood.
Note: do not use oxygen bleach either on it’s own, or as part of our dishwasher powder to clean aluminium filters – this kind of metal is reactive to the oxidisation process.
Walls and Scuff Marks
Super satisfying and super quick! Not only are cleaning your walls and marks easy tasks, blasting those marks is fun and gets a little bit addictive! Most walls can be easily wiped down with a bucket of soapy water to get rid of cobwebs, dust and general grimy build up. To do this take warm water and a couple of tablespoons of the Figgy Home Cleaning Castile Soap in a bucket and a sturdy cloth, work in one direction i.e. from left to right and from top to bottom. If your house had lots of little hands, concentrate on door frames at about hand height, where lots of little fingers have flown through!
Clean off fly poop by making up some Figgy S.O.S spray (see recipe book for how to) or Everyday Spray. Spray the affected area, wait 30 seconds and wipe away. Make sure you rinse your cloth regularly. You will be amazed at how quickly those tiny brown turds disappear.
Lastly, let’s hit those scuff marks! Look around the walls and see where shoes have been kicked off, where chairs have been pushed against a wall – there may even be some wall art from a beloved child! Take a damp cloth and use a small amount of Cleaning Paste, working in circles to clean off the marks. If the wall is gouged there is no magic trick, but if it’s a mark, the cleaning paste will make easy work of it.
Spring Clean your reusables!
Reusables are the lucky last bonus tasks for Spring Cleaning with Figgy & Co this year! Reusing anything will come with maintenance. Remember, when it comes to food items, the last thing you want to do is cut corners and end up with more visits to the loo than you’d ever want! Let’s go!
Reusable coffee cup. Give it a good looking over. Is it in a state of good repair? Could it break under the strain of piping hot liquids, does it have tanins staining the inside or perhaps a sneaky silicone liner that liquids can get into and not easily wash out of? Take your cup apart as best you can and wash each part with soapy water (fill sink with warm water and use either of the Figgy Soaps) and a small brush getting into the nooks and crannies. Use Cleaning Paste on any tannin marks – it works amazingly! If you have any broken parts, check with the manufacturer if they accept returns for recycling or whether they sell spare parts. (Ideal Cup New Zealand and Keepcup sell spare parts.) Now is the time to consider the best place to store your clean keep cup ready for its next outing (the car maybe?).
Drink bottle. Now for the often overlooked drink bottle – first up this will need a hot soapy scrub and soak (as you have done with your coffee cup). Does it have a pong of dank water? Take the time to give it a sanitizing freshen up – choose from soaking in hot water and either oxygen bleach or strong white vinegar overnight, before giving it a rinse and air drying.
Straws. Next grab your straws and give them a scrub on the inside using Cleaning Paste and a small diameter brush – again think about the best place to keep them, e.g., in your purse in a wee bag. Do the same with your reusable cutlery and lunch box. If your lunch box comes with insert containers, get them back together in one spot in your kitchen.
Reusable shopping bags. Bags are a shopper’s best friend – big grocery bags, flimsy produce bags, foldable-just-in-case bags! Whatever the bag it’ll need a wash and dry. These need to be kept hygienic and to find all the details of washing different kinds of bags check out our blog post all about this! A word from the wise – when you are shopping for meat or fish, have a dedicated bag – a heavier cotton bag is perfect as cotton washes up well in sanitizing hot water.
Mops, cloths & buckets. Wow! After an entire month of Spring Cleaning our tools are going to need a spruce up.
- This is the time to organise your sponges, buckets, mops, brooms, cloths and brushes thinking how you have used them in the last month. Do you have the cloths and cleaners at hand in the right place to make ongoing cleaning easier? Think about what will work well for you (e.g., if you have little ones, you may want to keep a disinfectant spray and clean cloth in the bathroom all the time – then it’s super easy to clean up little spills hygienically there and then). The cloth goes into the wash and you can replace it with a fresh cleaning cloth.
- Does your mop head need replacing or freshening? Keep it looking fresh by soaking the sponge head in a bucket of hot water and ½ cup oxygen bleach periodically. This reliable bucket of warm water and oxygen bleach can also bring back to life your cleaning clothes and brushes too. Everyone is getting a bath!
- Lastly have a look at your buckets- the unspoken heroes of all this cleaning. Specifically, how are they looking on the inside? We recommend giving the inside of your buckets a once over scrub with Cleaning Paste. This will mean the next time you clean you’ll be starting with a fresh set of cleaning tools, and won’t introduce any grease/grime/germs from the last clean.