Look, guys. Cleaning is boring. And sometimes gross. And anyone who says otherwise is… perfectly valid in their opinion but probably not like the majority of us. So if the thought of cleaning makes you cold with dread, then get out of that foetal position and put these simple tricks to good use. Even the laziest of Lazy Girls can make these work.
The dreaded decluttering
This is the one big task here, but it’s going to make everything a lot easier. We recommend using Marie Kondo’s method from The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: only keep things that bring you joy. For personal items, that is. Don’t go throwing out your bills because they don’t bring you joy.
As for clothes, shoes and random household items, sell them if you can. If it’s still in good condition but you don’t think it’ll draw a buyer, then donate it and feel good about giving to those in need. Once you only own things that bring you joy, you’ll take pride in what you own and you’ll probably be more willing to clean in general.
Make sure everything has its place
It’s pretty obvious where a couch goes. Or a fridge. But what about the smaller items? Where are you going to keep your shoes and your handbag? What about your laptop charger or your phone?
It may not seem like it, but deciding where you’re going to put these things is going to save you a whole heap of cleaning time; eventually it’ll become a habit and you won’t even have to think about keeping things in order. And it’ll also stop that last-minute rummage for your keys when you’re already late for work.
Remember to use this method for your cleaning products as well. If you have to spend more than 10 seconds looking for the Windex or Spray n’ Wipe, you’re way less likely to actually clean the surface that was irritating you so much. If this means keeping a bottle of cleaning products in each applicable room then do it; life will be so much easier in the long run.
Only ever handle your paperwork once. Pay those bills as soon as you can, then file what’s necessary and toss the rest. Thinking you’ve forgotten to pay a bill is the worst thing ever, so make sure you don’t leave that paperwork lying around for Future You to find and freak out over.
Suck it up
Get yourself a dustbuster or handheld vacuum for quick clean-ups. Once a month (or however frequently you need), bust out the big corded vacuum for a good all-over clean. If you don’t want to fork out for a second vacuum then grab a good ol’ dustpan and brush. Or just slide around the house in fluffy socks to pick up all the excess dust and dirt.
NO ONE likes to clean the bathroom. It’s gross and the cleaning fumes can leave you with a blinding headache. The best product that we’ve ever used is Orange Power. It smells better, it’s better for the environment and it just makes cleaning up SO much easier.
Avoid nasty soap scum in the shower by switching to a liquid body wash instead of soap bars. We also recommend leaving your shower until the end of the cleaning cycle so you can scrub down and then lather up, washing away the dirt and grime of the rest of your cleaning duties.
Go old school
You thought the days of using erasers were long gone. NOT SO, FRIEND. Not so. Get your hands on a magic eraser (it’s a cleaning product, not an actual eraser) to help remove marks from walls, kitchen cupboards and even bathtubs! A little goes a long way and you’ll soon be swearing by this thing instead of at your gross-looking surfaces.
Here’s the dish
There are two ways you can go about this. If you have a dishwasher, just stack that thing throughout the day and turn it on at night. In the morning, you will magically have clean dishes to use again. Unstack it while you’re waiting for your toaster or kettle to do its thing and repeat the process.
If you are stuck in the land of no dishwashers, you can either hand-wash as soon as you finish with an item, or you can go into full Lazy Girl mode and just use paper plates and plastic cutlery. You’ll still have to wash pots and pans but you won’t have the everyday dishes to sort through.
Keep a set of actual dishes on hand so that you can break out the big guns when you have company; it shows them you know how to adult a little bit.
The effing laundry. It’s so easy to just strip off your work clothes and fling them at the hamper or leave them in a pile on your floor until it gets to be an actual hazard. Consider this: you could do a teeny load of washing every night or every second night.
Pop that baby on while you’re watching TV or cooking dinner. It should be done in less than an hour (unless you have a front-loader, in which case godspeed). Then just hang out the few things that you’ve washed in the next ad break. For bonus lazy points, get yourself an indoor clothes rack and just whack the fan on to help it dry faster and keep you cool.
It might sound like extra work to do a load more often but TRUST US, it’s so much easier to deal with a few items every night rather than tackling that mountain of laundry at the end of the week. And it frees up your weekend to do fun things rather than opt out because you’re about to run out of clean underwear.
No, we’re not being facetious. Cleaning is NOT fun, so you need to make it fun for yourself. Or interesting. Or challenging. Set a timer for 10 or 15 minutes, put on some motivating music and try to get through as much as possible.
If you’re anything like us, once a challenge has been set then you’ll want to beat your personal best again and again. The house will probably be clean in under an hour rather than an entire day and you’ll feel like an actual god.
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