The Maids of Portland, Maine

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

5 Cleaning Myths Debunked

We trust the things that have been handed down by the generations. After all wasn't our grandmother a fabulous cleaner? Didn't our mom always seem to have everything in order? Is it really possible that some of the old tricks are myths?

1. Is Bleach the Ultimate Cleaner?

I remember growing up thinking that bleach was the ultimate cleaner. After all, anything that can take the color out of any surface has got to be a great cleaner. It took me awhile to realize that the real power of bleach isn't actually in its ability to clean. Actually bleach doesn't clean much. Find out what it's really for and what it's not so great at.

2. Does Professional Carpet Cleaning Shrink Carpet?

Carpet is a huge investment. We want it to last. But no matter how careful we are, carpets get stained and dirty. And when they do, we often call in professional help. But what if the carpet cleaning could actually damage your carpet. It's a scary thought. You hire someone to clean your carpet, and as it dries, it shrinks. Is it really possible? If did this idea get started?

3. Does Vinegar Clean Everything?

I love vinegar. It can clean nearly everything. In fact, it is such a versatile cleaner and so green friendly that it has earned a reputation it may not always deserve. There are some surfaces that shouldn't come into contact with vinegar. Contrary to popular belief, using vinegar on these surface only leads to a lot of damage and very little clean.

4. Does More Soap or Detergent Equal More Cleaning Power?

It's a common misconception that the more dirty something is, the more soap it needs. It seems to make sense, more dirt needs more soap. In reality, while soaps and detergents are great and necessary for cleaning too much of a good thing can create its own problems. So if more soap doesn't equal more cleaning power, what does it equal?

5. How Can Dye-Free and Preservative-Free Cleaners Serve Any Purpose?

It's all the rage to be dye free and preservative free. And while that may make a lot of sense for the things we put into our body, there may actually be a reason for some cleaners to have dyes or preservatives. It's easy to label dye-free and preservative-free cleaners as better than their counterparts. Is it really possible that cleaners with dyes and preservatives might serve some purpose?

                                                                                Courtesy of: Sarah Aguirre

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Five Unexpected Natural Cleaners

Around-the-house staples that moonlight as dirt-busting superstars...


White Bread and Ketchup

Use white bread to: Dust an oil painting. Gently dab a slice of white bread over the surface to pick up dirt and grime.

Use ketchup to: Remove tarnish from copper and brass cookware. Squeeze ketchup onto a cloth and rub it on pots and pans. They should go back to their coppery color in minutes. Rinse with warm water and dry with a towel.



Use it to: Scrub very dirty hands. Make a thick paste of oatmeal and water; rinse well.



Use it to: Clean the inside of a vase or a thin-necked bottle. Fill three quarters of the vessel with warm water and add a tablespoon of uncooked rice. Cup your hand over the opening, shake vigor-ously, and rinse.



Use it to: Scour rusty garden tools. Brew a few pots of strong black tea. When cool, pour into a bucket. Soak the tools for a few hours. Wipe each one with a cloth. (Wear rubber gloves or your hands will be stained.)



Use it to: Remove dried wax drippings from candlesticks. Peel off as much wax as possible, then moisten a cotton ball with glycerin and rub until clean.

Courtesy of: Real Simple