Tidying is an inevitability of owning a home. But cleaning doesn’t have to be a hassle. Follow these tips for a home that’s easier to keep spotless.
Neat freaks, I salute you. You wouldn’t be caught dead with a week-old pile of laundry collecting dust on the couch. You might never know the secret shame of a sink full of lasagna-crusted dishes. And there’s a good chance your fridge will never contain questionable plum sauce that expired in 2014.
But what do I know about any of these things? That’s right, nothing. *cough*
Tidy folks possess an impressive ability to keep everything in tiptop shape. But where does that leave the rest of us? Naturally, we’d all love to live in a polished, sparkly home. But life happens. Kids leave out toys. The workday is long. Dishes pile up. And, despite our best intentions, we don’t always tackle messes as quickly as we’d like.
This post was inspired by my endless quest to spend less time cleaning and more time sipping wine, watching Netflix, and relaxing. So whether you’re a neat freak, an aspiring neat freak, or someone who loathes cleaning, these tips will help you design a home that’s easier to keep tidy.
Choose your floors wisely
If you have pets, kids, or a penchant for saucy foods, you’re no stranger to sticky floors. To keep everything looking tidy from the ground up, choose low-maintenance flooring that’s easy to sweep and mop. Because covering your entire home in plastic wrap isn’t exactly practical or fashionable.
Porcelain tile, a great easy-care flooring option, fends off stains and is impervious to moisture. Vinyl and laminate flooring are also good options for the dirt-conscious homeowner.
If you have cats, and they track litter throughout your home, you can’t get around sweeping and mopping more often than your pet-less counterparts. But choosing black floors won’t exactly help your cause since litter particles really stand out against dark colors. If litter tracking is an issue in your home, opt for light-colored floors instead.
It may sound counterintuitive that light colors create the appearance of a tidy floor, but trust me on this one. With that said, you may want to opt for a shade that’s somewhere between the spectrum of black and white, like light gray or taupe.
There are a few reasons why the minimalism movement is so popular: First of all, most of us don’t need nearly half of the stuff we have or aspire to have. Second of all, it’s much easier to keep your home tidy when there isn’t a foothill of clutter in the way.
To keep dust and debris at bay, toss clutter like you’re interning for a job at Mr. Clean. Donate extra clothing to those in need. Add additional storage to house trinkets and items you could stow away. Part with the gadgets and thingamajigs in your kitchen that you don’t need.
In my case, I probably don’t need that pan that cooks pancakes in a snowflake shape. Even though it’s awesome, and I do love my pancakes, it’s a bit gimmicky. Plus, we could use the extra room in our kitchen cupboards.
If you give up your Star Wars popcorn maker, I’ll part with my snowflake pancake pan. Deal?
Go for glass
Glass tiles look lovely on shower and tub surrounds, kitchen backsplashes, and wall tile mosaics. Glass tile surfaces are also easy to care for and clean. For an easy-clean kitchen, opt for a glass tile backsplash in a mid-tone color, like medium brown, gray, or tan. Darker colors like midnight blue can also be quite stunning, and won’t show dirt and splatters as easily as white tiles.
For an even easier clean, opt for glass wall tiles with a smooth surface. If you absolutely must have textured glass tiles, make sure you get into the grooves and crevices. Fill a spray bottle full of warm water and cleaner (or lemon and vinegar if you want to go natural). Now spray down your tiles and wipe everything clean with a sponge.
Tidy it up
What are your favorite design tricks for an easy-to-clean home? Tell us about it in the comments below!