Cleaning Tips, Guides & Resources
Maidforyou’s 30 Day Cleaning Challenge
An entire month may seem like a long time, but when it comes to a realistic 30 day cleaning challenge, you’ll find that a little goes a long, long way over a period of time! Perhaps, that’s the best part about cleaning your home over a course of 30 days; you get everything done without the stress and tiredness of overworking yourself for long hours each day.
While the amount of time spent on tackling daily cleaning tasks will differ from person to person, on average, Maidforyou’s 30-day cleaning challenge will require between 30 - 60 minutes a day for a thorough, top to bottom home cleaning by the end of it! There are ways to speed up the cleaning process but the key is to work at your own space and in accordance with your personal schedule to ensure that you aren’t stressing yourself out. Of course, a little help from family members or close friends is always welcomed!
So, if you’re up for the challenge, let’s begin!
Empty your closet(s) one section/shelf at a time and sort through the contents. More often than not, you will find various clothing items and other personal belongings that you no longer use but still take up space in your closet. As you pull out clothes, set aside items that you can donate to charity by placing them in a box or bag to give away later. Depending on how many clothes you have, you can clean out more than one closet a day or simply move on to the next task (to stay on top of the challenge).
Clean out your dresser and other storage units in your bedroom such as drawers, bedside tables, cabinets, etc. Just like your closet, you will find a lot of things you don’t really need or use anymore, as well as items that are broken or really worn out and need to be discarded. Use this opportunity to get rid of things and free up more storage space for those belongings you tend to leave lying around! Typically, this should take you less than an hour to complete.
Remove cobwebs from ceiling corners and clean high-mounted fixtures such as fans, lights picture frames, etc. While you’re at it, use this opportunity to clean on top of cabinets and cupboards. During this entire process, a lot of dust and dirt will find its way to lower surfaces including your bed; therefore, we choose to replace the sheets and pillowcases with fresh ones on day 3. This is a good time to change curtains as well since they will also collect dust from all the bedroom cleaning tasks you’ve just completed. Before you call it a day, roughly clean up dust and debris from your furniture and floor so that you don’t have to sleep in a dusty room.
Clean under the bed and other furniture in your bedroom. These dust bunny hot spots are often overlooked when doing a routine clean up and hence, shouldn’t be missed during your 30-day cleaning challenge! Use a broom or vacuum cleaner to remove dust and debris hiding in these spaces before dusting the furniture in your bedroom. This includes desks, dressers, tables, bookshelves and other bedroom furniture.
Start the day off by cleaning the bedroom windows. Next, clean the floors by sweeping or vacuuming thoroughly, followed by mopping. In the case of carpeting, spot clean stains using a suitable carpet cleanser, followed by a do-it-yourself deep cleaning with mild detergent and a carpet brush. Carpet cleaning may require a little more than an hour to complete so be sure to keep that in mind before you begin. For tiled or other types of flooring that can be mopped, day 5 should take you no more than 45 minutes.
Dampen a clean cloth with a disinfectant and wipe down switchboards, knobs and other handheld areas that are crawling with bacteria. Finish up your bedroom cleaning by organising desks, tables, shelves, etc. Make sure that everything is in place and put away neatly before stepping back and admiring your incredibly clean and organised bedroom!
Clean the tops of cabinets and the refrigerator; wipe shelves, wall-mounted hooks and other elevated components in your kitchen. The key here is to make sure that you’ve cleaned all the higher surfaces in the room before you get to the lower ones. Be sure to clean up cobwebs and ceiling corners too. If you have a ceiling fan, let that be the first thing you clean in your kitchen. Overall, this should take 30 - 40 minutes. For hygienic reasons, be sure to clean up dust and dirt from your counters and tables before you call it a day.
Dedicate this day to cleaning the stovetop and oven interiors. If they haven’t been cleaned in a while, you may need about an hour to finish both tasks. To help make cleaning easier and quicker, soak some rags in a solution of all-purpose cleaner and hot water to be placed over hardened gunk. While the heat from the rags loosens up the dirt and stains, begin cleaning the sides and roof of your oven. Finish off by cleaning the base and the rest of your stovetop.
Clean your refrigerator by planning ahead of time as it will need to be turned off a few hours prior to cleaning it. Make sure that it is unplugged and that you do not use hot water when cleaning. To speed things up, keep the racks/trays soaking in warm water while you clean the interiors of the fridge. While the inside airs out and dries, scrub the racks/trays before wiping and replacing them. Be sure to rinse the interiors properly so that there is no trace of the odour of the cleaner left.
Before you get to the basics of kitchen cleaning, clean your microwave, dishwasher or dirty dishes first. For the latter, clean up any food bits using an old toothbrush and give it a rinse using white vinegar and warm water. To deep clean your microwave, cut a lemon into slices and put them in a microwavable bowl filled up halfway with water; place it inside and heat for 5 minutes or until the glass door starts to fog up. Remove the bowl and use the water to clean the interiors using a sponge or soft cloth. Allow the insides of the microwave and the water to cool down before you begin cleaning (lukewarm water is effective for this).
Organise your pantry and clear your counters. Check for any products that are past their expiration date and/or empty bottles that should be disposed of. If you don’t have storage racks and trays, consider purchasing a few to help keep your pantry organised. For your kitchen counters, clear as many items as you can and find suitable storage spaces for them to keep your countertops clutter-free.
Clean and organise kitchen cabinets. More often than not, things are pulled out and pushed back in a haphazard manner, leaving you with lesser storage space and more of a mess! To get this task done in a quick and systematic way, clear out one cabinet at a time and wipe down the interiors thoroughly before neatly replacing the contents. Again, look out for expired products or empty bottles/cans and use storage trays or racks to keep things organized.
Clean and disinfect your kitchen sink with warm water and an anti-bacterial cleaner. Use a non-abrasive scrubber to clean the sink and surrounding area thoroughly, as well as the faucet and other fittings. For added sheen, dampen a clean cloth with vinegar and wipe over the stainless steel after it has dried completely. This should not take more than 20 minutes to complete. Wipe down the exteriors of all appliances (oven, microwave, fridge, etc) after you’ve finished cleaning the kitchen sink.
Clean the kitchen window (interior and exterior). Give it a good wipe down to remove dust and dirt before cleaning the window panes with glass cleaner and a cleaning tool of your choice. You can use crushed sheets of newspaper for this as it does a fine job at removing hardened dirt and grime. Finish off by cleaning the window sill using an all-purpose cleaner and some old rags.
Halfway there! Today, you’ll need at least 30 minutes to finish off with your kitchen by cleaning the counters and floor. Clear the counters and wipe up any debris and spills. Next, spritz the surface with an all-purpose cleaner and give it a good scrubbing to remove any stubborn stains. Rinse off the cleaner with a clean, damp cloth by wiping over the counters repeatedly. If you feel like your kitchen counters aren’t shining as much as they should, sprinkle some lemon oil over the surface and buff it using crushed newspaper balls. For the floor, vacuum thoroughly and mop it thereafter. If needed, spot clean any hardened stains.
Remove cobwebs from the ceiling and wall corners; clean the ceiling fans; descending lights and wall-mounted fixtures. Dust the tops of tall cabinets, large furniture pieces and higher shelves. Once you’ve cleaned the areas in your living room that are taller than you, day 16 will be complete! Of course, if needed, you will have to clean up any dust and dirt fallen on surfaces that you use on a daily basis; eg, coffee table, sofas, chairs, etc.
Takedown your living room curtains and begin cleaning behind furniture pushed against the wall. A lot of dust and dirt collects in these spaces which are rarely cleaned. Use a suitable vacuum attachment for a quick and efficient clean of these tricky spots. You can also use a broom or dust cloth for this, however, a vacuum cleaner is preferred to avoid unsettling dust.
Finish off dusting other furniture pieces and items in your living room. This includes lamps, tables, the television, remotes, switches, baseboards and knickknacks. Use a microfibre cloth to dust for more efficiency. You can also dampen the cloth if needed, just be sure to rinse it out as and when it gets dirty.
Pull out the vacuum cleaner again along with an upholstery attachment to clean your couch and sofas. If you have removable cushion covers, take them off and throw them in the wash along with the curtains you took down the day before. Vacuum your sofa cushions, couch and other upholstery to remove dust and debris. If needed, spot clean stains using mild detergent and water. Allow the material to dry completely before you slip on fresh covers and put up clean curtains to end the day.
Clean the windows in your living room by dusting all the window panes first, followed by a thorough wash. Clear the space around the windows and put down some drop cloths to avoid making a mess or dirtying places that have already been cleaned. Be sure to clean the exterior windows as well; if you live on the ground floor, step outside and wash the exteriors before you clean the interiors. Depending on how many windows you have in your living room, this should take you about 40 - 50 minutes to complete.
It has now been three weeks since you began Maidforyou’s 30-day cleaning challenge! This is the perfect day to finish off cleaning your living room by vacuuming and mopping. There is likely to be more dirt and debris accumulated on the floor than usual; therefore, you will need to spare a little more time and effort in cleaning up (than usual). Be sure to vacuum/sweep underneath furniture and narrow spaces that are generally overlooked when cleaning. Floor cleaning should also involve vacuuming of area rugs or other floor runners.
Assuming that your dining area is smaller than your living room, you should be able to get a good amount of cleaning done within an hour. Start by cleaning from top to bottom; remove cobwebs, clean the ceiling fan, light fixtures and wall hangings. Follow this up with wiping the rest of the furniture in your dining room using a damp, microfibre cloth to ensure that dust and dirt is picked up and not just moved around. Be sure to clean behind furniture pieces during the dusting process.
Wipe down switchboards and baseboards with a clean cloth. Wash the windows (if any). Since this should only take about 20 minutes to complete, spare another 15 - 20 minutes to clean your dining table thoroughly. Clear the contents placed on the table and wipe it down using an appropriate surface cleanser. Wipe down the chairs using an all-purpose cleaner and clean cloth. Place your fruit basket and/or other contents back on the dining table once it is cleaned.
Clear out storage drawers and showcase cabinets to clean the interiors and exteriors of the unit thoroughly. Organise these spaces to accommodate contents in a neat and visually-pleasing manner. If the items have collected dust within the storage space, wipe them with a clean dust cloth before you put them back in. This should take you about 40 minutes to complete.
Remove cobwebs and dust from the ceiling and around wall corners. Follow this up with a deep clean of your bathroom wall tiles. You will need a tile brush and tile cleaner for this. Simply wet the wall tiles, spray on the cleaner and scrub them in circular motions. Rinse off the cleaner with mugs of water to reveal clean, grime-free bathroom walls! Overall, this should take less than an hour to complete.
Clean and organise the medicine cabinet. Look out for expired products and medicines to ensure that you aren’t holding on to anything that shouldn’t be used. Clean the interiors of your medicine cabinet and mirror using glass cleaner and a soft, clean cloth. Clear and clean any racks or holders where you place shampoos, shower gels and other items. Check for empty bottles that need to be thrown away and wipe down the unit with an all-purpose cleaner and a clean scrubber.
Clean the bathroom window and window sill. Move on to the sink before you wipe down bathroom fittings using a scrubber and all-purpose cleaner. Take a separate scrubber to clean the flush tank and toilet bowl exteriors. You can also use a brush for this as it is more effective in removing dirt and stains. Don’t leave out plumbing fixtures such as pipes underneath the sink and those connecting to the toilet. These areas are often overlooked when cleaning and, therefore, may require more product and elbow grease. Before you call it a day, pour your chosen cleaner around the toilet bowl interiors and leave it overnight (to be scrubbed the next day).
Start the day off by finishing the toilet bowl cleaning. By this time, all you need to do is scrub the interiors with a toilet brush using minimal effort and pull the flush to rinse it clean! Move on to the bathtub/shower area next. If you have a glass door to separate your shower from the rest of your bathroom, use glass cleaner and a clean cloth to remove soap scum and watermarks. In case of a shower curtain, take it down and scrub it using vinegar and water (equal parts), and just enough baking soda to make the solution a runny paste. Scrub thoroughly with a handheld brush before rinsing the curtain.
Today, all that’s left to clean in the bathroom is the floor. A long-handled tile brush is useful for this, particularly when cleaning grout lines as it eliminates the need to get down on your hands and knees! Simply wet the floor, sprinkle a decent amount of powdered tile cleaner on the surface and brush away dirt and stains! Finish off by rinsing the tiles thoroughly to remove any soapiness. Once you’re done, push the water into the drain using a squeegee to allow the floor to dry up faster.
You thought this day would never come but here it is! Best of all, the last day of your 30-day cleaning challenge is the easiest of the lot! It is dedicated to putting the final touches on your freshly, deep cleaned home! Some tasks involve straightening out the sofa cushions, putting things back into place and, perhaps, a quick vacuum of the hallway. It’s just a matter of perfecting the work you’ve done in the last 29 days before successfully completing the challenge!
There you have it! A realistic 30-day cleaning challenge by Maidforyou! So, take your time, do a little each day and watch your house transform into an immaculate, well-organised home!
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