By Michaela Kajiwara –
Spring Cleaning is a home’s rite of passage and transformation from what was starting to feel like a dingy, winter hovel into a fresh and open space veritably bursting with order and cleanliness.
The work of spring cleaning historically focused on clearing away the soot, grime, and ash from cooking, heating, and lighting a home with gas, oil, wood, kerosene, and the like over the course of a shut-in winter. Today’s efforts are focused on making sure your home and all that’s in it is ready for the bustling activity of warm weather, guests, and open windows.
It can be wise to take the time to also notice what parts of your home might need to be replaced or upgraded. From rugs that no longer pass muster to the dried herbs in your kitchen cabinet, here are seven items to look more closely at during this season’s big clean, in case it’s time to show them to the curb.
As you’re spending time deep cleaning all the carpets and area rugs in the house, be sure to pay close attention to those rugs or carpets that show the kind of wear that can’t be lessened with elbow grease. Over time, rug and carpet pile gets so worn down that even before it’s threadbare, a deep cleaning is unlikely to return it to its former glory.
Don’t waste time trying to remove dirt, grime, and dust. Find bold, colorful area rugs to cover up worn carpet and replace area rugs that no longer meet your standards.
Spring Cleaning is a great time to air out mattresses and covers and see to it that your home’s mattresses all get a flip. While you’re at it, take note of any covers with unseemly stains or with elastic corners that no longer hold a shape, as well as any mattresses with a permanently flabby center.
Replace them right away, or, if you aren’t in a rush, keep an eye out for sales and specials going on in your town, and pick up new ones at a discounted price.
While it doesn’t get much attention or credit, the toilet brush you use week in and week out to keep your toilet bowls clean and bright has to withstand some hearty chemicals and brusque use, which means — even if you bought a high-quality brush — its days are inevitably numbered. The next time you clean your toilets, notice the bristles on your toilet brush: Are they bent? Flattened? Discolored? If so, it’s probably time to get a new one.
Toiletries, makeup, and lotions all come with an expiration date stamped on them, and many of us hold onto these bottles and tins long past both those dates or long after the last time we actually used the products themselves.
De-clutter your drawers and medicine cabinets by tossing out anything that no longer gets used or has a date stamped on it that has already passed.
The dried herbs in your spice rack don’t last indefinitely. In fact, they lose their strength and aroma two to three years after they’ve been opened. As you’re wiping out your kitchen cabinets and wiping down spice containers, pay attention to which ones seem the dustiest.
Unscrew their lids and give the contents a sniff. If you can’t identify it by smell, it won’t have any taste left to it, either. Throw it out, and consider whether or not it even needs to be replaced since you clearly didn’t use it much over the last few years.
What is the mat that greets your guests like? Is it worn? Stained? Discolored? Make sure that the first thing that greets your guests as they approach your front door is in tip-top shape. If it can’t be made to look new again with laundering or spot cleaning, get a new one. It’s just the icing on the cake that your Spring Cleaning efforts need to feel complete.
Pets, children, and haste can all be blamed for broken mini blinds, but regardless of the cause, when they’re off-track or spot cracked and missing blinds, Spring Cleaning is the perfect time to see to it that they’re replaced.
Inside and out, Spring Cleaning is a great time to make your home feel fresh and clean again, and by ridding yourself of these seven items once they’re past their prime, you’ll also help make your space feel as good as it did when it was brand-new.