Posts Tagged: cleaning
81

The Bathroom Whisperer: How to Really Clean a Toilet

Whenever I clean, whenever I am sweating on my hands and knees wiping strands of hair out of a corner or picking them off of freshly Ajaxed porcelain, I try to interrupt my feelings of victimized indignation to dreamily recall how I grew up with a maid.

Now, we weren’t particularly rich. My father was a school superintendent (this is back when school superintendents made one and a half times or twice what teachers made as opposed to 600 times) and my mother was a teacher. The deal was that my mother was such a housecleaning perfectionist that if she had even one iota of responsibility for cleaning the house, she [...]

51

"The January Cure"

Who here likes starting projects a week late? Apartment Therapy has a thing going on called "The January Cure" which sounded too James Bond-y before it started: "Sign up below and we'll send you emails from January 2 through February 1, giving you all the info you need to know to follow along, stay motivated and complete your assignments. By the end of January, you'll be sitting pretty in a clean, fresh, organized home." But how? Well, now that they're five assignments in ("make a list," "select one project from your list"), it looks pretty endorsable/like less of a drag. I'm still probably not going to do it, but I'll [...]

178

Ask a Clean Person: Autumnal Cleaning Conundrums

It's that time of year, brrr, and I'm cleaning all our fall coats. I notice that both my boyfriend’s raincoat and mine have big DRY CLEAN ONLY labels, but are both made of polyester/nylon, so the ‘dry clean only’ seems a crock (I always prefer to hand or machine wash when possible, because we have a washing machine at home, and I am both lazy and cheap, and dislike extra chemicals). Given the material, it seems like I should be able to do this at home EXCEPT!: Does the raincoat have some sort of coating which boosts its magical raincoat waterproofness, such that machine washing would ruin it? I am [...]

66

Ask a Clean Person: Dusty Air-Conditioners and Dirty Fans

What is the proper way to clean an air conditioning screen? I kind of just pull it out and rub it lightly so some of the dust pills off, but then now I ran it under some water? It didn't work all that great, either, but it was mostly clean, and I patted it dry with a paper towel and then put it back in, dampish. Was that horrible?

This is a great question and oh so very timely for those of us sweating and cursing our way through yet another summer of heatwaves.

Okay so! You're not that far off … the way to clean an AC screen [...]

94

Ask the Non-Squalid

If you've been missing the lovely Jolie Kerr's "Ask a Clean Person" un-filthying column on this site, it's now running on Jezebel and Deadspin, on alternating weeks, as "Squalor."

Sadly we couldn't keep her here forever, much as it would have been nice to (in an immaculate steel cage for all eternity), but the first installment deals with problematic outerwear, among other things, and everyone remains reassuringly disgusting.

#bikeshorts

Jolie Kerr is also on Tumblr and Twitter.

Wait, Jolie, how do you get [chickadees?] out of an air-conditioner?

346

Shared Spaces, Lie-Measurement, and the Manageable Hassle

1. I've been with my husband for four years, although we have just been married a few months. We have a really great relationship, with just a few issues, and the biggest one for me is housework. He does NOTHING. And it drives me insane. I think it's a combination of a lot of things — his parents are hoarders so he grew up in a very messy house, and he has adult ADD which can make it impossible for him to focus on things, especially things he doesn't want to do. He feels bad about not helping, he apologizes, and he laments over the difficulty of changing. But after [...]

274

Ask a Clean Person: 'Pits, Revisited

It's almost August, which means I've been sweating like my Slavic farmer forebears for months now. All the t-shirts (cotton!) that I bought at the beginning of the summer have gross pit stains! And not just a little discoloration on the lighter ones, but whitish, hardened patches as if the deodorant isn't washing out all the way! I've always used Tide detergent, and usually wash my shirts on cool with jeans and stuff. I've tried some Arm & Hammer "wash boost" and washing them on hot, but that didn't work. Can the damage be undone? If not, what can I do with my next round of shirts so they don't [...]

95

Sex vs. Happiness

"Men who do more household chores typically viewed as feminine — like cleaning, cooking and washing — have less sex than men who don't, according to a new study."

Oh, New Study. How are things with Mrs. New Study?

125

Ask a Clean Person: Holiday Disasters 2012

Happy just-about-holidays, everyone! Here we are, facing another holiday season full of potential cleaning disasters. But this year we're getting a jump on things so you can be PREPARED. In the spirit of preparation, a festive reminder for you that topics covered last year included Menorah wax, massive butter spills in the kitchen, frosting on fabric, pine sap on everything, stains on ties, and barf on green corduroy party shorts.

Here's to hoping your green party shorts remain barf-free this holiday season!

1. This is a sort of MacGyver question. The holidays are loaded with unexpected visitors — here’s a scenario: You’re at home. Someone calls and says, “I [...]

97

Ask a Clean Person: There's No Laundry Care Tag. EVERYBODY PANIC.

My dear boyfriend just got back from Afghanistan (hooray!) and brought with him many fun presents. Among which was a burqa for me. It's half-ly a keepsake gift, but is also very beautifully embroidered and I think it is wonderful and would like to keep it nearer to me than in the back of a drawer. However, it smells very strongly of sandalwood maybe? I really have no idea. Being that it was made for domestic consumption, it also lacks a laundering tag, and I have no idea what material it's made out of. Definitely not cotton or silk. Maybe polyester? Again, no idea.

So, short question after a long [...]