A survey released this month by Marigold, the rubber glove brand, revealed that 72 per cent of people feel the pressure to clean prior to having visitors during the Christmas holidays. The survey of 2,000 UK adults also revealed that the average person spends nearly an hour cleaning their home on Christmas Day!
Christmas can be an expensive time of year – so imagine if you could have a fresh, clean home ready for guests without having to spend any money on cleaning products.
We've shared 12 tips from our customers on items you may already have in the home that are great for cleaning.
Lemon is the most popular item of them all, as there’s a number of ways it can be used to clean and freshen your home. You can boil half a lemon in your kettle, or warm it up inside a microwave, to soften up dirt and limescale to make them easier to clean.
It also works well to clean off grease in the oven (perfect after cooking a Christmas dinner!) and you can use it to freshen up your worktops. You can even use lemon essential oil on wood instead of varnish.
2. Olive oil
Another alternative to wood varnish is olive oil. This can also be used on leather chairs to help add luster, restore colour, and even minimise the appearance of scratches.
Another popular item for cleaning is vinegar. Forget buying window spray, use some vinegar with newspaper to clean your windows, mirrors, vases, and any other glass items to keep them streak free.
4. Baking soda
If you love baking Christmas treats, then it’s likely you’ll have some baking soda already lying around. This is a great ingredient to mix with vinegar to tackle a variety of problems around the house.
For example this mixture can help to unblock your plug holes, remove tough pan stains, and clean rust off of radiators. For those with kids, drawings on the walls can be a nightmare, however adding baking soda to a wet cloth before wiping down the wall can help remove these easier.
5. Tomato ketchup
This may not be much use at Christmas dinner, but tomato ketchup can actually be used beforehand to polish up your silver.
6. Tin foil
Another way to bring back the shine on your silver is by rubbing it with tin foil. You can also scrunch up a ball of tin foil and use it as a scrubber on glass casserole dishes or cast-iron skillets.
Believe it or not, pouring coke down the toilet does wonders for it! The acids in the coke can break down stains if you leave it to sit in the pan for a while. Once flushed, you’ll be left with a toilet that’s sparkling clean.
8. 2p piece
When you’ve scrubbed and scrubbed but the limescale on your taps just won’t come off, give a 2p a go. You’ll be amazed at the results as you scratch away the limescale easily without leaving any marks.
Another handy tip is that you can increase the longevity of fresh flowers by adding a couple of 2ps to the bottom of the vase. It helps protect your flowers from bacteria as the copper acts as a fungicide.
9. Long grain rice
Once your flowers are finally ready to dispose of, you may find that your vases are left with green leaf stains. Simply stir some water around in them with a handful of long grain rice to help them come up lovely and clean again.
10. Denture tablets
You may not have denture tablets lying around if you don’t wear dentures or braces, but a tube of 30 can be bought in the supermarket for less than £1. By popping them into your favourite mugs and leaving to dissolve in water, they can help remove stubborn tea and coffee stains.
Toothpaste isn’t just handy for cleaning teeth. It can help to remove soap scum build up on shower doors, and get rid of the gummy coating left from hair products on curling irons or hair straighteners. It has even been said it’s good to use toothpaste to clean off scuffs on piano keys.
12. Tea bags
Got a wood burning stove in your home? An old tea bag is said to help clean the glass on the inside of the stove door. This'll leave it spotless, ready to use for those cosy winter nights.