5 tips to keep your summer essentials squeaky clean

Summer is a truly magical time - you can practically smell the beach, sunscreen is the perfume of choice and the parks are filled with folk barbecuing and chilling out.

But without sounding like total killjoys, there are a few summer essentials that can induce a serious cleaning related headache if you don’t know how to handle them. We talk to Helpling cleaning expert, Roxanna Pelka, and find out how to keep your summer essentials in tip top shape with ease.

1. Sunglasses

Most of us wear them year-round, but summer does present a bigger cleaning challenge – sunscreen, sand and fingerprints can combine to make a streakier than average mess. Roxanna cautions over-cleaning can lead to scratched lenses, and warns it’s super important to not wipe them clean on your shirt unless there’s no other option. The better move? Moisten them, then gently rub the lenses with dish soap using your thumb and forefinger, finishing with a rinse under lukewarm water and patting dry with a lint-free cloth.

2. Swimwear

While tempting, leaving your cossie to dry without a wash, or throwing them in the washing machine after every wear isn’t the best way to keep them in good nick. Instead, hand wash in cold tap water with some detergent for a few minutes, then rinse off. This will remove salt, sand and chlorine, the common causes of fading and discolouration. Once you’re done washing them, leave them in a shaded spot dry - leaving your suit in full sun, putting them in the dryer or wringing them out also contributes to discolouration. Away from home? Hand wash using gentle shampoo and cold water.

3. Thongs

Thongs are exposed to lots of bacteria from the ground, and in summer, the hot sun acts as an incubator. While we certainly don’t discourage you wearing them, we do recommend they are washed often. Don’t worry, it’s a five-minute job max, and you can easily dry them off with a towel to wear instantly. Use soap, warm water and a brush to wipe away the dirt. Simple! Be warned, using chemical products or baking soda may cause discolouration or even erode the rubber. 

4. Beach bag

We’re sure you know how to clean your bag, BUT, what happens if your sunscreen springs a leak? Fear not, this simple trick will help you get rid of the stains easily. Take a wet cloth and dab some detergent on it (a few drops are enough). Now wipe the stain away with the cloth. Got grease issues? Dishwashing detergent is a miracle weapon against grease and can also dissolve sunscreen magically.

5. Beach towels

Much like bathroom towels, beach towels bring the bacteria and mildew odour to the yard (ok, your cupboard/car/bedroom floor) if not cleaned properly. Depending on the fabric, coloured ones should be cleaned in 60 degree Celsius while whites can tolerate 90 degree Celsius. Avoid using fabric softener as it decreases absorbency.

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