No one wants to put more time and energy into cleaning than necessary. Even worse: Trying some genius new idea only to still have a a stained toilet bowl or messy pan you still have to clean is no fun. We don’t want to see that happen to you, so we set out to debunk some of the biggest Pinterest myths out there.
THE PROBLEM: If you asked us to test out this genius idea back when hairspray still contained alcohol, we’d say it was brilliant with a capital “B.” But most sprays no longer contain this essential ingredient, so the trick is old (bad) news. Instead, Forte recommends sponging rubbing alcohol onto a ballpoint ink stain or soaking a felt-tip ink mark in water and bleach-free liquid laundry detergent for 30 minutes to an hour.
THE HACK: Soak a Magic Eraser in the toilet bowl to get rid of stains.
THE HACK: Clean a burnt-on mess with a dryer sheet.
THE PROBLEM: Some people swear by filling a crusty pan with water and letting a dryer sheet soak in it for an hour to make scrubbing easier, but Forte says she’s tested this trick, and it just doesn’t work. Not to mention, products meant for clothing care simply aren’t formulated for use in the kitchen, and you might not want to mix fabric softener with items that touch food. Instead, sprinkle your pan with baking soda and water, then use a sponge or cloth to rub crud off.
THE HACK: Add mouthwash to a washing machine to clean it.
THE PROBLEM: While mouthwash kills germs in your mouth, there’s much more water in your machine so it’s not the same ratio of disinfectant. Besides, Forte points out that something that’s safe to use in your mouth won’t clean a machine effectively: “You need bleach for that!” It’s easy: Either run the self-cleaning cycle on your appliance (if it has one) or add liquid chlorine bleach to your dispenser and run a normal cycle with hot water once a month.
THE HACK: Rub your stove top with car wax to make clean-up easier.
THE PROBLEM: While this hack claims rubbing a thin layer of this cleaner onto your range before cooking will prevent grease splatters from sticking, Forte warns against putting such a heavy-duty formula (which could be combustible) near food or a hot range. Stick to your cooktop cleaner post-dinner instead and make your life easier next time by blocking messes before they happen and immediately cleaning up any spills that inevitably happen.
THE HACK: Clean your toilet bowl with soda.
THE PROBLEM: People claim the acidity in this refreshing drink works wonders on toilet bowl stains, but Forte says it’s a waste of soda. Coke or Pepsi is just not formulated to clean a variety of different kinds of stains like toilet bowl cleaners — and it certainly won’t kill germs like the store-bought stuff.
Plus, let’s do the math, people. A value pack of toilet bowl cleaner and 12 cans of soda probably cost around the same price, depending on where you live. You’ll get more than 12 uses out of the cleaner, so the choice is a no-brainer.
THE HACK: Put a lemon wedge in your dishwasher to make dishes cleaner.
We did talk about topic on lemons! But…
THE PROBLEM: Even though Pinterest hackers claims that lemons are nature’s mild disinfectant, don’t believe everything you read. Putting a single wedge (or even a few!) in your dishwasher before running it might give the load a fresh scent, but that tiny piece of fruit won’t make any difference on your dishes, says Forte.
Yes, there’s acid in the lemons, but it’s simply not enough to make a difference in the flood of water that fills your machine. Instead, she says all you need for sparkling china is a detergent and rinse aid.
THE HACK: Remove ironing scorch marks on clothes with corn starch.
THE PROBLEM: Scorch marks are literally burnt fibers on your clothing, and since corn starch isn’t a time machine, Forte says this kitchen ingredient won’t bring your shirt back to life. But all hope is not lost: Try rubbing liquid laundry detergent on your stain and laundering the item immediately after burning. Or, if you need to wear it ASAP, lightly rub white distilled vinegar on the fabric and wipe clean with a cloth.
THE HACK: Place a dryer sheet in your air vent to make your home smell fresh.
THE PROBLEM: While there’s no denying these sheets smell fresh (that’s kind of the point), be careful: They could block the air in your vent — never a good idea when heat is involved. Plus, Exhume points out that there are easier (and, frankly, better) ways to freshen up your home, such as Febreze spray or air fresheners.
News source: (Lauren Smith)