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Our 21 MOST LOVED Cleaning And Organization Products Because That Spring Cleaning Itch Is Already Here

When it gets down to brass tacks, I’ve always been a “company is coming” cleaner. If you’re like me, maybe you’ve struggled with finding some deep intrinsic motivation to really spend some time deep cleaning since the pandemic started – if I’m the only person staring at my baseboards, does it really matter if they look a little worse for the wear? If I haven’t turned on my fan in months, do I really need to break out a ladder to dust the blades in the wintertime? Basically, my spring cleaning dilemma is this: Will I get it done? Yes! In a timely manner? That’s questionable!

Enter the Astrological New Year, AKA the kick in the butt I need. This Sunday, March 20th, marks the spring equinox – the first day of spring! – and I’m really excited about it for two reasons:

  1. The EHD team can testify that I looooove a good New Year’s resolution, and the Astrological New Year gives you a chance to check in on your progress. I like to think of the first two months of the year as a trial period – what works? What doesn’t? – so I can reframe some of my goals accordingly. (Like, in my case, I’m reducing my water intake aspirations. Maybe one day I’ll get to 8 glasses a day. For the rest of 2022, we’re shooting for and celebrating 3 glasses of water per day, THANK YOU.) It’s nice to knock out spring cleaning this weekend because it’ll start your “new year” on the right foot, you know?
  2. I want to clarify that I’m not an astrology expert – I know my birth time (11:58 PM on 10/14/91 in Newark, DE, baby!!!) and have a general idea of how my chart works, but I’m totally lost when it comes to day-to-day interpretations. (People who understand planet positions and new moons and and transits are way smarter than me. Knowledge-wise, I’m like an astrological sixth grader.) That said, experts suggest that there’s value in preparing your home for a fresh start before Sunday will set the stage for the year ahead. And, well, I don’t know – there’s just something kind of nice about tying tedious chores to the possibility of something nice happening over the next 12 months, you know? It makes scrubbing my (wholly unused and yet still somehow grimy) oven feel less annoying. I’m into it.
photos by sara ligorria-tramp | from: a bedroom & closet reveal with target’s made by design line

SO. Here we are. In the spirit of helping others conquer their most annoying spring cleaning and organizing tasks, I’ve pulled a few products that I own, love, and actually enjoy using. They’ll help you tackle those forgotten-about nooks, neglected crannies, and maybe you’ll even be able to set up some organizational systems that you keep your home running smoothly year-round. (Look at that! You really WILL set the stage for the year ahead! Literally!) LET’S BEGIN?

1. Electronics Cleaning Brush: A microfiber cloth cannot hold a candle to this double-ended tool. The rubber side can still get gunk out of the cleanest keyboards.

2. Electronic Telescopic Waterproof Scrubber and Polisher: STOP SCRUBBING WITH SPONGES. This is my 2022 discovery – it’s an electric scrubber with a telescoping rod. You’ll never have to squat next to the toilet and scrub those little crevices again (and there are 5 different heads, so you can clean all kinds of surfaces). If you have any mobility issues, this thing is AWESOME.

3. Pumice Stone Toilet Bowl Cleaner with Extra Long Handle: Because sometimes a brush and your cleaning agent of choice can’t cut it. (Especially handy if you live in a city that’s notorious for its hard water. #LA)

4. Broom and Dustpan Set: I will never stop singing the praises of the Disney broom/lobby broom/movie broom. It makes sweeping fun. (I hate that I said that, but I mean it. Wrangling in that last strip of dirt/dust/debris is SO much quicker with a standing broom.)

5. Fresh Wave Odor Removing Gel: I don’t know what’s in this, but it’s miraculous. They last for ~60 days and I cry when my Target doesn’t have them in stock – I keep one in my kitchen (read: the litter box room) and it makes a huge difference.

6. Power Scrubber: It’s like an electric toothbrush for your grout. I’ve had mine for a year and it cuts cleaning time in half.

7. Deep Clean Brush Set: For all other nooks and crannies in your house, these are a life-saver. I use the smaller one to get gunk out of the strip where my linoleum meets my cabinets in the kitchen. Great for polishing up drains, too.

8. 32pk Felt Pads: While you’re doing all this cleaning, you might as well take 20 minutes to protect your floors. (This is an open letter to myself, from myself.)

9. Pot & Pan Brush: I don’t have a dishwasher, so I take my scrubbing tools VERY SERIOUSLY. While I am loyal to Scrub Daddy for washing my utensils, cups, bowls, and plates…nothing tops scrubbing burnt stuff out of a pan with this brush, guys. (Maybe you don’t need this if you’re better at cooking than I am.)

photos by sara ligorria-tramp | from: sara’s kitchen – an updated sneak peek (it’s functional, but still not “finished”…)

1. Ribbed Shelf Liner: If you’re going through your drawers, give them a quick clean after everything’s been removed. Then, take a second to line each drawer before filling it back up. (If your drawers are already lined, you’ve already got it all together. Go you!!!)

2. White Cabinet-Sized Pull-Out Drawer Solutions: Before you demo your kitchen cabinets, consider grabbing a few of these – they’ll make all of your shelves function like drawers. No more crouching and hunting for the one pot at the back of the cabinet – just pull out the drawer and grab it! GAME-CHANGING.

3. Weathertight Portable File Box With Handle: Everyone should have a dumping ground for their important documents. It doesn’t have to be organized, but it’s nice to know where you can find a medical record or your birth certificate, or your car’s title.

4. 4-Sort Wire Dividers: I don’t know if anything makes me as irrationally angry as the sound of a baking sheet being pulled out from the middle of a stack of baking sheets. (So cacophonous! So unnecessary! Harsh and metallic! BLEH!) If you have space in your cabinet, these are great for organizing sheets, small pans, and lids.

5. Corner Double Tool Rack: So many configurations, so little time. I think this is the best and most utilitarian space-saving garage storage item on the market. Rakes, shovels, brooms – they all fit. Keep it in a demilune shape or separate into two pieces to make use of some corner space.

6. Hangmate Belt & Tie Rack: As someone who’s always been like, “um, excuse me? Do I…roll these? Put them in a box? Hang them over a hanger?”, this is the best solution for keeping them all visible in one place. Big fan.

7. Large Expand-A-Shelf: If you cook a lot, you owe it to yourself to create a multi-tiered cabinet where all of your contents are readily visible. I love this shelf because it expands to fit larger cabinets, but you can always DIY a solution that fits for your space.

8. Polytherm Undershelf Baskets: Adding a few of these will double your shelving capacity. They’re AWESOME. If you don’t have a ton of cabinet space, these can open up some breathing room so you’re not just balancing all your plates and bowls and cups on top of each other.

9. White Mesh 2-Drawer Unit: If I had participated in our closet organization challenge, I would have hyped these up SO HARD. I love their construction – a little more elevated and sturdy than their plastic drawer cousins – and they come in a ton of different configurations, so you can find a piece that fits your spatial needs.

1. Large Pet Hair Roller: INCREDIBLE. I’m not sure how many times I’ve linked this up over the past 2.5 years, but I can’t recommend it highly enough. Great for lint rolling upholstery. Even better for lint rolling yourself when you’re running late and don’t have time to lint roll your sweater in seemingly-minuscule increments.

2. Pet Food Containers: Especially handy if you buy pet food in bulk. I also love these because they keep food fresh when my cat comes back to the East Coast with me – it’s nice to not worry about her food going stale while we’re gone.

3. Wiper Blade Squeegee: Squeegees are the best, second-most underrated pet removal hair tool – especially on velvets and microsuedes. (The most underrated tool is a latex glove.) Run it along the surface and hair will start to clump together. DREAMY.

If you, too, have been fully motivated to knock out your spring cleaning ASAP, all of these products shoooould also be available in-store at a retailer near you. Here’s to all of us powering through our annoying tasks (fan blades, I’m coming for you) so we can settle into our comfy, freshly-laundered beds on Sunday night. WE GOT THIS, RIGHT? (Anything else I forgot?) xx

Opening Image Credits: Art Direction by Emily Henderson | Photo by Sara Ligorria-Tramp | Styled by Emily Bowser

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Jessvii
8 months ago

For cleaning my home, I love using The Clean Team products. The guy wrote a book and I cannot recommend the “red juice” and “scum bum” cleaners enough. Their cleaning tools are great too – their cleaning “professional toothbrushes” and “tile brushes” work so much better than others I’ve tried. Given how well their products work, I’m surprised they aren’t more popular. I am not affiliated with them in any way. Just writing because I have come to depend on them. https://www.thecleanteam.com/

RuthAnn
8 months ago
Reply to  Jessvii

I agree, wholeheartedly!

DeannaM
8 months ago
Reply to  Jessvii

Just say NO to palm oils in your cleaning products or elsewhere! I won’t touch The Clean Team products! https://www.realhomes.com/us/news/is-palm-oil-lurking-in-your-favourite-cleaning-products

Suzanne Baumann
8 months ago

I want to hear what owners of beautiful houses do with their plungers. The ick factor is off the charts and I don’t want to see it, so it’s stashed under our sink but also that grosses me out!

Kimberly
8 months ago

Sincerely, this is the question. What are the best solutions for this?

Selena
8 months ago

Love this question!! I recently discovered the Simple Human plunger that is self-contained. It is the best one I’ve found so far. It still sits by the toilet though.

StephanieZ
8 months ago
Reply to  Selena

I have the simple human plunger and it looks pretty good. I have nowhere to hide one away in my bathroom and feel that one should always be in the bathroom so a guest doesn’t need one and feel all embarrassed asking me where the plunger is. I’ve been that guest (more than once) and it makes me so annoyed when there isn’t one around.

Kj
8 months ago

Yes! We have a Korky Beehive Max Hideaway Plunger in the cabinet under every sink. The handle folds down so it will fit “standing up” in it’s little container, but is there something better? Definitely a necessary evil. https://www.target.com/p/korky-beehive-max-hideaway-toilet-plunger/-/A-53429704#lnk=sametab

🥰 Rusty
8 months ago

I keep mine outside in the shed. I never thought about where apartment dwellers keep these things!
Good point.

Julie T
8 months ago

100% agree. I have a dual plunger and toilet cleaner brush and it is HIDEOUS but needs to be RIGHT THERE so anyone has quick access if needed and doesn’t drip everywhere. Anything I found that was more attractive was like $80 per bathroom. I keep thinking of how I can DIY a little box or cover of some kind but leave one-handed access when needed.

Sasha
8 months ago

Oxo made great plungers (like the one Lisa linked) with container that self open and close. It is sold as a twin pack at Costco.

Sasha
8 months ago
Reply to  Sasha

My bad, the Oxo one sold at Costco is scrubbers, not plunger.

Sheila
8 months ago
Reply to  Sasha

Oxo does indeed make a plugger in a container: https://amazon.com/OXO-Grips-Toilet-Plunger-White/dp/B07GTHXKF3/

BeckyB
8 months ago

Hey Caitlin, the first day of spring is the true New Year for Persians. We celebrate Norooz, the first day of spring, as the beginning of the traditional new year. It has nothin to do with western concepts of astrology, except that I suppose we both acknowledge the symbolism and new life energy engendered in the beginning of spring. And I know other cultures celebrate the equinox, too. There’s even a count down to the exact minute it changes. That obviously changes every year, but I grew up celebrating those countdowns with my family, whether it was 4am or 11pm. It’s a big deal holiday for us. Just wanted to share so you knew there was a global and deep rooted cultural basis for celebrating the beginning of spring that extends beyond star charts and western woo-woo (which I admit I sometimes love, too).

🥰 Rusty
8 months ago

LOL 🤣🤣🤣 I’m into deep cleaning too…very satisfying. In fact, I’m roughly half-way through orange oiling all my wooden furniture. Half way coz it takes some serious elbow grease! This is, after I cleaned all the dark tudor-ish stained wooden plate rails, doors, door frames, skirting boards and fancy fretwork! I’m taking a sabbatical from polishing for a week or so.

I’m concerned that the pumice stone toilet cleaner is going to scratch the porcelain glaze! It effectively etches into the smooth surface, which will enable bacteria and stains to get into the now porous surface more easily and make discoloration worse! 🥴 (I studied ceramics in uni ). Like if you used a nail file on your polished nails.
(BTW: If you use bleach to get your grout white, it actually eats your grout away, it bad for the environment and is a bad source of chemical estrogen.)

Thanks for the scruffy-dawg n kitty fix! 🤗🐾

In Australia, we’re into Autumn. I actually prefer deep cleaning in Autumn, because it’s ahead of being tucked up and mostly inside for the cooler months. Clean n cozy! 🥰

🥰 Rusty
8 months ago
Reply to  🥰 Rusty

Oh, and it’d be outrageously interesting for you to do a post on home-made, environmentally friendly clesning products, tips n tricks! Kinda like “tried n tested by Caitlin”.
💡

DeniseGK
8 months ago
Reply to  🥰 Rusty

I recently learned the best way to clean grout by accident. My house has unsealed grout, and we bought it from flippers who bought it from a very elderly lady who was a hoarder due to not bring physically able to take care of herself & her home. The grout stains are truly horrible and go deep. BUT I recently needed to spot clean some bedding that my youngest got sick on. I was going to do it in the bathtub so i brought the enzyme detergent into the bathroom. Enzyme detergent is a special kind of detergent that works extra good on gross substances that come from living beings. I have Persil bc that’s available to me, but I dislike the strong fake fragrance. There are other brands, but not available to me. Of course, I was silly and opened the detergent while walking, so of course I tripped on the bathroom mat and spilled detergent all over the tiled floor. I was so mad at myself I walked out of the bathroom and had a pout for a good 20 minutes. When I came back, I started cleaning up with a damp hand towel. I mention this because… Read more »

🥰 Rusty
8 months ago
Reply to  DeniseGK

Now THAT is a happy accident, indeed!!!😊xx

Char
8 months ago
Reply to  🥰 Rusty

Rusty, you are right about the pumice scratching the porcelain glaze. When I was lucky enough to have a once-a-month housekeeper, she used pumice on our toilets to combat the dreadful well water stains. I now have scratched toilet basins and they are even harder to keep clean without that smooth porcelain finish. Going to replace all three. I can afford it only because my housekeeper retired. sigh

Kate
8 months ago

FYI – Don’t put your date of birth and the city in an article – it makes it that much easier for someone to break your passwords or spoof your identity.

Amy
8 months ago
Reply to  Kate

I hope that she changed it for the article. I cringed when I saw that too.

Deb
8 months ago
Reply to  Kate

In today’s world unfortunately if you know a person’s name and know how to use the Internet you can find anyone’s date of birth and where they were born.
I am basing this on the fact that I spent hours doing research to find people when I worked for a police department. Sometimes all I had was a nickname but eventually I found their birth name and date of birth,etc.

Andrea
8 months ago

Hmmmm, wondering if y’all have inferior ( I was going to say ‘shitty’) toilets. Our plunger comes out maybe once a year, from the laundry room, that is accessed through the bathroom

Jeffrey C
8 months ago

Using an electric toothbrush head you’re ready to retire works just about as well as the Power Scrubber. And I’m sorry but Container Store is overpriced on way too many things. Better deals can be found for comparable items.

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