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Cleaning file: 15 items you probably forget to clean (and should!)

We can attempt to plan our cleaning schedule, but there are things we neglect every time! Take things into your own hands and get to cleaning these fifteen objects that may need a good scrub! How many of them have you cleaned in the last few months? 

In the bathroom

We rarely give it any thought, but the toothbrush container should be cleaned as often as the toilet since it is highly susceptible to mold. According to a study conducted in 2011, it would even be the third dirtiest place in the house! Put it in the dishwasher or soak it in antibacterial mouthwash for a few minutes before scrubbing it with a small brush. 

After each use, remove the clinging hair from your brush, which will reduce the accumulation of dust, sebum and long-term styling product residue. Every month, or even every two weeks, soak it in water and baking soda before rinsing and drying it. Instead of baking soda, you can use vinegar: in this case, pour a few drops of essential oil into the water to avoid spreading the odor to your hair!


If there is one thing that can ruin a bath, it is noticing mildew stains on the shower curtain! Unfortunately, not only are shower curtains prone to mold but they are also prone to bacteria due to their proximity to the toilet and to the dirt that accumulates at the bottom of the bathtub with each use. If your curtain is made of plastic or vinyl, scrub it with vinegar before putting it in the washing machine on the delicate cycle. If your curtain is made of fabric, follow the instructions on the label. There is another habit that can be taken prevent mold: close the curtain after each shower to allow it to air out!

To clean… or to be cleaned?

What if, when you mop the floor, you are helping germs spread instead of eliminating them? After each use, dip the mop head in water mixed with vinegar, bleach or cleaning solution. Dry it out in the sun if possible. If the head is detachable, you can clean it in the washing machine with bleach or in the dishwasher with vinegar. However, regardless of the maintenance you provide, the mop will eventually deteriorate. If it gets ruined or begins to smell bad, it’s time to replace it.

Is washing the washing machine a paradox? Yes, but the washing machine tends to accumulate soap and limestone residue that can ruin it in the long run. Since it retains water (mainly at the level of the seal, i.e. the rubber ring around the door) it creates a bacteria-friendly environment. To clean it, you will need a cup of baking soda and a liter of vinegar. For front-loading washing machines, put the baking soda in the detergent dispenser and vinegar in the drum. For a top-loading machine, pour the vinegar into the detergent dispenser and baking soda into the fabric softener dispenser. Wash in very hot water and scrub as much as possible with a sponge. 

Who would have believed it?

Reusable bags are essential to the responsible citizen, but they are not particularly hygienic. In fact, studies conducted by the Environment and Plastics Industry Council of Canada (EPIC) show that most of these bags contain a significant amount of yeast, mold and, even more disturbingly, coliforms, or potentially dangerous bacteria such as E. coli. To avoid contaminating food, they must be cleaned frequently with soap and hot water. It is also recommended to put meat and fish in plastic bags and to store them apart from fruits and vegetables.

Every day, you touch your keys with unwashed hands: It’s a good thing you can’t see all the bacteria on them! You can simply wash your keys with water and dish soap. If they are rusty, rub them with toothpaste or a mixture of salt and lemon juice. You can also boil them in a pot of vinegar or let them soak in cola. Clean keys will also be less likely to get stuck, especially in winter!

Your debit and credit cards go from hand to hand every day. In addition to being hygienic, washing the cards helps to prolong their life span. A card that is in bad condition will be difficult, if not impossible, to be read by machines. Gently pass an eraser on the magnetic strip and the electronic chip of your card before wiping it with a clean cloth or antibacterial wipe. If you are a shop-owner, you can also buy cleaning cards to preserve your smart card reader.


By using the remote control and the game controllers every day, you leave dead cells, sebum and traces of food on them. To clean them, use cotton swabs and a toothbrush with a mixture of water and rubbing alcohol (50/50). Just don’t forget to remove the batteries first! Take the opportunity to clean the keys on your phone and the computer keyboard in the same way.

In addition to being constantly manipulated by unwashed hands, the steering wheel of your car is damaged by sun rays. In the long run, the leather pales and loses its flexibility, to the point where it may peel and even crack: It is therefore important to maintain it. To do this, first dust it off before cleaning it with leather cleaner, then lubricate it with a suitable conditioner. Allow the product to penetrate for thirty minutes before wiping the excess with a clean towel. If you neglect this step, the steering wheel may be slippery and dangerous!

Watch your ears!

You clean your ears well, so why not also clean your earphones? The accumulation of oil, dirt and wax can not only stifle the sound, but also spread bacteria and cause infection. Soak the silicone pads of your earphones or headphones in soapy water, then brush the mesh with a soft-bristled toothbrush and use a paper clip and sticky tack to remove the dirt left under the grill. Then, clean with cotton swabs soaked in rubbing alcohol and voila!

Even if you regularly wash your pillowcases, the pillows end up yellowing and absorbing body odor. It is therefore advisable to wash them on the delicate cycle in cold water twice a year for feather pillows and every two months for synthetic fibres. Unfortunately, memory-foam pillows cannot be washed, so be sure to clean their protective wrap. Finally, to ventilate and reduce allergens, make it a habit to expose them outdoors in the sun from time to time.

A bad taste?

Does your cocktail have a freezer aftertaste? Try to remember the last time you washed your ice tray. Even if you often fill the tray with fresh water, there is always ice in the bottom, where it picks up the odors. To clean your ice tray, melt the ice under hot water and soak it in water with baking soda. Get into the habit of regularly putting it in the dishwasher.

You’re now ready for a proper cleaning. Feel free to go off the beaten path and examine each object properly so you don’t miss a thing!

Every pictures of this article come from Depositphotos.