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The Ultimate Upholstery Cleaning Guide

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Whether you’re looking to extend the life of an investment piece or give Grandma’s hand-me-down a loving boost, regular cleaning (ideally once per season) can grab dirt before it truly becomes part of the furniture. Here’s our quick and easy plan for keeping upholstery fabric fresh and stain-free.

What You’ll Need


A vacuum
A few clean white cloths
A can of compressed air
Nellie’s WOW Stick Stain Remover and/or the Oxygen Brightener
A small bucket
Carbonated water (optional)

The How-To


Using the upholstery attachment, vacuum left to right in short, overlapping strokes, starting at the top of the piece of furniture and working towards the bottom. This left-to-right method is especially important for materials that hold onto dirt, like suede, velvet, and corduroy. Switch to the crevice nozzle (if you’re worried about sucking up coins, cover it with a piece of old nylon pantyhose secured with a rubber band); vacuum under cushions and around seams. Then grab the can of compressed air to blast dirt from tufting and buttons.
Attack stains on linen, cotton and polyester-acrylic blends with the WOW Stick Remover or the Oxygen Brightener.
For the Oxygen Brightener, create a solution using 1tbsp per 16oz (500ml) of water for upholstery (also works for counters, trash cans, and all over water-washable surfaces). Apply solution to stain with a cloth, wait 1 to 5 minutes, and scrub with sponge or blot with a towel. Rinse thoroughly and allow to dry. Do not use on leather, silk, or wool.
Alternatively, use the WOW Stick Stain Remover on any stubborn stains. Simply wet the stained area (you can use carbonated water here to help lift old stains), rub the WOW Stick onto the stained area, and agitate the stain underwater. Repeat until the stain is removed, and let air dry. The WOW Stick is ideal for removing grass, makeup, wine, and blood stains.
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How to Remove Laundry Stains from Fabrics

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Like most things in life, laundry can come with a learning curve! If you’ve ever shrunk a shirt in the dryer or discovered detergent residue on your favourite jeans, you know what we’re talking about. What’s the deal with laundry detergent stains? Keep reading to find out!

Can Detergent Stain?


Technically speaking, no. Laundry detergents are formulated to leave clothes clean (some with more chemicals than we think necessary, you can read about that here). However, some detergents can leave spots or residue on clothes, especially with improper use. The good news is you can get those spots out relatively easily if you wash the garment immediately!

How to Remove Detergent Residue from Clothes


If you have a detergent mishap and the spot doesn’t come out after re-washing the item, you’re not hooped just yet. Try this six-step routine:

  1. Rise the spot under hot water to remove as much residue as possible.
  2. Gently wring out the excess water from the item and lay it flat.
  3. Apply household rubbing alcohol to the spot, being sure to cover the entire affected area. We recommend spot-testing on an inconspicuous spot of the fabric first though!
  4. Let the spot soak for at least 10 minutes. The longer the better!
  5. With warm or hot water, rinse the fabric. This should remove the spot. If not, repeat the above steps!

How to Prevent Laundry Detergent Stains


The short answer – switch to Nellie’s Laundry Soda! Thanks to our highly-concentrated and quick-dissolving formula, you're not likely to run into this kind of issue. If you're still using a conventional detergent, here's the long answer: while laundry detergent doesn’t technically ‘stain’ clothes, the spotting that comes with overuse or washing issues is totally preventable. Using your detergent, whatever brand, as intended is the best route. For complete instructions on how to best use the Nellie’s Laundry Soda, click here.
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Cleaning with Ease – A Weekly Cleaning Schedule

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By spending just 15 minutes a day, you can have a presentable house pretty much all the time! It’s almost like your home will clean itself. We’ve created a weekly cleaning schedule that will help you out majorly, but first we’ve got a few rules to make it work…

Good Enough is Great


Don’t be too thorough. Aim to keep each task to just 15 minutes. Do what you can in that amount of time. It doesn’t have to be perfect; you’ll get to it again next week! Just get it done.

Keep Supplies Nearby


We’ve talked about this on our blog before. The trick to a quick clean is having things nearby and in-reach. If it takes you 5 minutes to gather up all your cleaning supplies, you’re wasting time you could be using to actually clean! Keep rags and cleaning products in each bathroom so you can easily grab and clean, and house kitchen cleaning supplies under the sink. Use an inexpensive caddy to keep it all neat and tidy.

Plan Strategically


In addition to smartly storing products where you use them, save time by thinking about how you use them. For example, if you whip out the WOW Mop to clean the floors in the bathroom, make that the day you mop all the bathroom floors.

Keep Yourself Accountable


Make a lamenated list and cross of items, use a tracking app, or simply create a list on your phone. However you do it, just make sure you know exactly what you need to do every day, and you’ll feel accomplished crossing items off.
Now, here’s our cleaning schedule! Use it as a starting point, and within a week or two you’ll have a good sense of where you’ll need to make tweaks and adjustments.

Schedule


Monday

Vacuum bedroom carpets
Wash bathroom towels
Clean common area floors
Tuesday

Master bathroom
Dust surfaces and clean glass doors
Wednesday

Clean common area floors
Outside pruning, sweeping, etc.
Wipe kitchen chairs
Thursday

Guest and kids’ bathrooms
Deep clean fridge, sort through fridge
Friday

Clean common are floors
Pick up desk, laundry room, mudroom
WOW Mop the kitchen
Saturday

Strip beds and wash linens
Pick up closets
Sunday

Rotate toys and books
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5 Clutter Mistakes We All Make and How to Fix Them

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We all make mistakes – it’s just human nature! However, a mistake isn’t valuable unless you learn from it, and we’re here to help you learn from your cluttering habits! Minor gaffes like forgetting to change your car’s oil or common laundry mistakes can add up to a major problem. The same goes for clutter! Some organizing mistakes can be unavoidable in the moment, but acknowledging that these lapses are creating a bigger mess is the first step to finding a simple solution.
Watch for these little clutter mistakes in your life and prepare to be wowed by what a few shifts can do to stop clutter build-up!

Not Folding Clothes


The accumulation of clothes – clean or dirty (or in between – hello bedroom chair!) – outside closets and dressers is a leading cause of bedroom clutter. Sometimes, putting clothes in their correct place or washing them immediately isn’t always possible, but not folding these in-the-open clothes makes the problem look much worse than it is. A pile of clothes on the floor sends a chaotic message, whereas a neatly folded stack in a corner or on a chair says you’re a tidy person… even if you’re actually not. The next step, of course, is to put clothes where they belong right away.

Letting Clean Dishes Sit in the Drying Rack


Anyone without a dishwasher or with a large assortment of hand-wash only dinnerware knows that drying dishes is a pain. Enter the drying mat or rack: a clean place for dishes to air dry, no dishcloths required! Of course, if those clean dishes don’t get put away once they’re dry, there will soon be a clutter problem. Drying every dish may be a tall order, but putting away dry dishes the next morning or before your next meal is an easy, quick fix. Tidy up the rest of your kitchen by keeping your sponge squeezed out of excess water on the side of the sink, and tuck away your favourite Nellie’s One Soap to an easy-reach spot.

Buying Extra Supplies


Planning ahead is usually a clutter-buster, but when it comes to surplus toiletries, cleaning supplies, and more, planning to far ahead can encourage clutter! Having an extra roll of paper towels on hand in case of a big-time spill is smart… having 18 extra rolls is a little excessive and can strain storage space!
Avoid buying more toothpaste, toilet paper, and other household essentials until just a few days before they’re actually needed. If buying in bulk is a necessity, set aside a specified storage spot for overflow.

Allowing Mail to Pile Up


This one goes for magazines, newspapers, and other recyclable paper-based reading materials. Setting aside bills, greeting cards, and other important mail items for the weekend or a slow night is to be expected. However, letting these to-be-dealt-with items pile up for weeks or even months at a time with the promise to read them eventually encourages a mess. Set aside time each week to flip through the mail and cut down on subscriptions that aren’t being read.

Leaving the Shoes Out


Taking off shoes at the door is smart. Leaving a pair at the door for quick trips to the corner store or walk the pup is even smarter. But letting the entirety of your shoe collection pile up in the entryway, garage, mudroom, or kitchen is a habit to kick! Make a household rule that only one or two pairs per person is allowed in the space, and encourage everyone (including yourself!) to take extra pairs to their permanent spaces, even if that’s at the bottom of the closet, at the end of every day.
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5 Things to Clean After the Holidays

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After the craziness of the holidays, it’s nice to spend some time puttering around the house and getting things back in order. Although the two biggest holidays of the year are still just around the corner, we’ve written up this list of the 7 things to clean after the holidays so you can get a head start!

Fridge & Freezer


It’s amazing how much food we can actually pack into the fridge over the holidays! It’s important to try to keep your fridge fairly organized, but over the holidays sometimes you just need to shove something in wherever it’ll fit. Now, you can take the time to go through everything and make sure that nothing is tucked away in the back that you’re missing. While you’re at it, take everything out and give the fridge a good clean. The One Soap is perfect for soaking and scrubbing drawers and storage containers, while the All Purpose Cleaner is ideal for spraying and wiping down with a cloth or paper towel. Toss out any old or expired food and draw up a meal plan to use up any leftover food.

Carpets


There are always at least a handful of carpet stains that magically appear after the holidays! You obviously want to treat any stains as soon as possible, but sometimes you simply don’t notice them or don’t have time. You can create a strong, toxin-free carpet cleaner using the Oxygen Brightener! Here's how:
Create solution using 1 tablespoon per 16 oz (500 ml) of water. Soak up excess liquid before applying solution to stain. Use only enough to cover stain area, wait 1-5 minutes, soak up with white towel. Repeat if necessary. Ringer thoroughly with water and blot dry. Vacuum once dry.
Have a stubborn stain? Take the WOW Mop to it. The oscillating pads lift up stains with ease.

Upholstery


Like the carpets, upholstery can take a beating during the holidays from all the use and abuse. The earlier you treat the stains the better – don’t leave these ones too long! Depending on the material, you can use the WOW Stick, the Oxygen Brightener, or – if nothing will work – take them to your local dry-cleaners.

Vacuum & Mop


The vacuum is one of those hard-working appliances that we often forget to clean. Especially after sucking up all those pine needles! Be sure to give your vacuum some TLC before taking it for a spin around the house. When it comes to hardwood, laminate, or tile, use the WOW Mop for a sparkling clean! Lightweight and easy to use, it’s perfect for a quick deep clean of your floors – plus it can be fun for your little ones to use if you want to get them in on the cleaning action!

Bathrooms


With all the friends and family coming and going, the bathrooms are in desperate need of some love. Use our handy bathroom cleaning guide to get the job done – bonus marks if you give the toilet a deep clean too!
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