You spend a lot of your time in there and, for most of us, the bedroom is a sanctuary, but do you clean your bedroom well enough to make it the best place to be? Possibly not: most of us aren’t doing it right, at all, and we’re not using the right products either. Here are five common cleaning mistakes you’re probably making right now (and how to fix them).
Not dusting under the bed
Even if you vacuum thoroughly every day, dust gathers under the bed (and if you have pets, that is where all that hair ends up, too!).
“That space is not easily accessible, and this is why many people neglect it and then are shocked when they see the amount of dirt that has gathered there,” says Jane Wilson, head of marketing and social for Fantastic Cleaners Melbourne.
And it’s not only dirt and hair, but also dead skin cells, decomposing insects, dust mites and their excrements, and many other nasty things.
“They get attached to the bottom of the mattress too and contaminate it. It’s good to lift the mattress or move the bed at least twice a month, to vacuum the space and keep things under control,” she advises.
Not washing pillows
Ready for this? 16 species of fungi can live in the average pillow and the stuffing attracts dust mites.
“The recommended frequency of cleaning for pillows is three to six months,” says Jane. “You can wash them on the gentle cycle, using hot water and a liquid detergent, because the powder can leave a residue. You can dry them in the dryer, but on the lowest setting for around two hours.” After that, you should check for moisture by pinching them in a few places.
Not cleaning the mattress
Sorry, this isn’t getting any less confronting. The average human produces around 100 litres of sweat each year during their sleep. A big part of that soaks into the mattress along with dead skin cells and many other unpleasant things. Feeling sick yet?
“The recommended frequency for cleaning the mattress is once a month,” says Jane. “You can easily do that using baking soda and a vacuum cleaner. First, remove the sheets and vacuum the mattress thoroughly. Then spread the baking soda all over the mattress and let it sit for at least 30 minutes: the longer, the better. The baking soda will absorb all the oils, odours and moisture. After that, just vacuum again.”
Not changing bedclothes enough
You really need to change the bedclothes once a week. Why? Well, just like the mattress, the bedclothes we use also gather dust and sweat and you’d be surprised how many people fail to change them often enough.
“Studies show this cleaning mistake can cause us asthma, eczema and rhinitis,” says Jane.
Letting the clutter overrun you
In our house, the bedroom can be a dumping ground for a lot of things, in particular, the chair in there - which becomes the third wardrobe - and asking around it seems most of us are guilty. And it’s not just clothes, everyone dumps things in the bedroom that they plan to sort out later.
“Over time these random items turn into a clutter, it’s hard to find anything, and the whole room looks like a wreck,” says Jane. “You can easily avoid that by making it a rule to go through the bedroom twice a week - once a week is proven to be ineffective as clutter gathers fast - and place dirty clothes in a laundry basket. And all the different items can find their right places in drawers or try using decorative containers placed on the desk or table.”