Living & Coach How to fake-clean a house. Plus, “My partner’s gaining weight. How should I encourage him to get healthy without upsetting him?”
A cheat sheet for when you need to spruce up – fast!
We’ve all left cleaning up before a party ’til the last minute. But as long as your house isn’t a total disaster, it only takes a few minutes to make it look pulled together. Cleaning pro Leslie Reichert shares her speed-cleaning checklist.
Put your post, papers, shoes, pet toys – anything on the floor, a counter or a table – in a basket and remove it from the room. That will immediately make any space look cleaner. And designate a ‘no admittance’ zone where you can store everything out of sight and shut the door. Mine’s the upstairs bedroom.
Focus your efforts
Figure out the messiest part of a room and clean that first. For many people, it’s the kitchen counters. I have a 16-year-old son and dogs, so for me, it’s the floors – I hit them with the vacuum cleaner for a few minutes.
zero in on sinks
A clean sink makes the rest of the kitchen or bathroom look tidy. Put dirty dishes in the dishwasher, wipe the sink (including the tap) with a damp cloth, and then dry it with a paper towel or microfibre cloth. It creates the same spotless look as a four-step powder-and-scrub process. In the bathroom, fold the towels nicely and stash anything personal out of sight, like your toothbrush or creams.
be a closer
Shut cupboard and bathroom doors, shower curtains, toilet seats, drawers and cabinets. Finish by straightening picture frames and pillows. That instantly makes your home look well organised and under control.
set the Mood
Dim the lights and light a scented candle. If you can’t see the mess, it’s not going to bother you as much.