Mrs Hinch’s top 10 home cleaning tips for lockdown

Rounding up some of the best pointers for keeping a clean and happy home during tense times.

Mrs Hinch
Mrs Hinch’s top 10 home cleaning tips for lockdown
Bill Waters / Penguin

Hi guys! Everything is a bit mad in the world right now; I really hope you’re all keeping safe and well in your homes. I’m so lucky to be at home with my boys, and I’m thinking of everyone out there right now who is scared and worried. These can be really stressful times.

Guys, when I’m stressed or anxious I’ve always got my Hinching, so I’d really like to try and help out with some tips and tricks for you and your home during this lockdown. Here are ten big ones.

1. Get your rugs spotless

Being at home more, your rugs will be suffering more than ever, so here’s a little tip to sort them out. Pour a capful of your favourite fabric softener and Ariel Excel Washing Gel into a bowl. Add some warm water and give it a good stir. Use a white cloth (rugs seem to transfer colour especially easily) and soak the whole cloth in the mixture. Rub the cloth over your rug or carpet, working in sections, rinsing your cloth out regularly. Then use a hand-held all-purpose scrub brush to revive the surface pile by brushing the rug/carpet back to life. Allow it to air-dry, and ta-da! Done!

2. Freshen your mattress

You need to turn and refresh your mattress once a month, guys! Here’s how I do it: completely strip your bed down to its naked self! Hoover your mattress to within an inch of its life; you’ll get rid of all the dead skin cells and dust. Using a flour sieve, shake bicarbonate of soda evenly all over the mattress – remember this amazing stuff is an odour eater. Leave for a few hours at least and then hoover it off – it will lift out any nasty whiffs. Especially if you have kids that have had an accident in the bed! Urine smell… see ya later, mate!

Breathe slowly, and deeply. You can do this!

3. De-wrinkle your clothes

Sick and tired of ironing? Small loads on short and sweet cycles are key when it comes to tumble drying! This is because there’s less in there so the clothes don’t crease as much. If you have the option on your machine, a cooler setting is also better for preventing the creases from setting. It works for me, Hinchers! Before ironing, lightly spritz your clothes with diluted fabric softener. This not only smells amazing but it helps the creases drop out and makes the boring task of ironing more bearable.

4. Clear your plugholes

Those plugholes need Hinching too! I suggest you boil your kettle and pour three-quarters of a cupful of soda crystals down the plughole and leave for two to three minutes. Fill a cup of white vinegar and pour it down too. It’ll fizz up like a mini potion, but that’s the best part! Leave it for ten minutes. Then pour down a neat capful of Zoflora and leave for one minute. Last but not least, pour the whole kettle’s worth of boiling water down the plughole to wash it all away! Your plugholes will never smell dodge again!

5. Scrub your bin

Nobody’s fave task but an important one – Hinch your bin! Start off by spraying the whole bin down inside and outside with a disinfectant. I am in love with the Astonish Germ Clear Disinfectant with pine oil! Don’t forget to do the lid and the foot pedal too, if you have one, because they are often the grubbiest bits. I then use an old Dishmatic to give it a good scrub – because it’s small you can get right into the corners, and the handle makes reaching the inside of the bin so much easier! You can never have a bin too clean, now can you? Grab your garden hose and use this to shower down any suds. I won’t lie, I quite enjoy this part. Keep the lid open and let it air-dry outside. Once dry, bring her inside and place kitchen roll at the bottom of the bin before you add a bin liner.

6. Shine your shine-ables

Bicarbonate of soda is my magic product and so cheap to buy, it’s got so many useful properties! Try it as a mild abrasive or scouring agent on shiny materials, as it can clean without scratching. It is suitable for use on aluminium, chrome, jewellery, plastic, porcelain, silver, stainless steel and tin.

7. Declutter, with a plan

Now is a great time to get round to that decluttering you’ve been meaning to do! Examples for me would include: my Tupperware cupboard in the kitchen and my ottoman in the lounge. Once you have all of your lists written up, work out a plan of action for when you’re going to tackle each area. Try and have a go at slowly making your way through your plan as and when you’ve got some spare time, ticking each item off as you go, and you’ll be amazed at the progress you’re making! Tidy house, tidy mind!

8. Change things up

Make little changes: You’ll be amazed at what a difference something as small as changing your kitchen-cabinet door handles can make. Trust me, and try it!

9. Make a ta-da list

Ta-da lists are for those days when a to-do list just seems a bit too much. A ta-da list is basically like a backwards Hinch list – write down things you have already achieved so far!

10. Don’t forget to breathe!

This one is just as important as the rest. As I’m still learning, it’s important to stop and breathe once in a while. Nothing else – just breathe and be mindful of the moment you’re in. I know breathing sounds easy, but when things get on top of us it’s hard not to stress and panic. Breathe slowly, and deeply. You can do this!

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