More Cleaning Tricks Your Grandma Used That Still Work Today

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Grandma probably had a few cleaning tricks up her sleeve that didn’t require fancy or expensive products. And remember how spotless her house always looked? Channel your inner domestic goddess, and make your own cleaners at home the same way they did it 50 years ago with these retro cleaning tricks that still work today.

1. Use vinegar to clean windows

Women hand holding spray bottle
Skip store-bought window cleaners. | iStock.com/ solar22

Why waste money on stinky blue window cleaner when you can make your own using items you have lying around the house? For a streak-free, chemical-free, and naturally antibacterial shine combine equal parts hot water with distilled white vinegar in a spray bottle and get going on those windows and mirrors. For a lovely scent, you can even add a few drops of your favorite essential oil (lemon smells like clean, as Grandma would say).

And skip the paper towels, too. A streak-free shine can be achieved by drying your windows with newspaper or a reusable cloth.

2. Combat clothing stains naturally

lemon, baking soda, and toothbrush with stain
Use natural remedies to combat stains. | iStock.com

Stains happen, but you don’t need expensive stain removers to fix the problem. In fact, savvy grandmas know most stains can be removed with some common household products you probably have lying around.

Here are some stain-specific natural remedies:

  • Blood, chocolate, or coffee stains: Soak overnight in ¼ cup borax and 2 cups cold water. Wash as usual the next day.
  • Grease: Apply a paste made of cornstarch and water, and allow to dry before brushing away the powder and grease.
  • Red wine: Sprinkle the stain with salt, and let it sit for several hours. When it’s dry, brush away the salt and wash, or dab immediately with soda water.
  • Grass: Soak the stained garment in a 3% solution of hydrogen peroxide, then wash.
  • Ink on a white shirt: Wet fabric with cold water, and apply a paste of cream of tartar and lemon juice for one hour before washing.
  • Scorch marks: Rub the area with a cut raw onion. After the onion juice has been absorbed, soak the stain in water for a few hours.

3. Restore pots and pans with bread crust

Pan before and after cleaning
Don’t be so quick to discard those bread crusts. | iStock.com/ themanwhophoto

It might sound like magic — and it kind of is. If Grandma’s pan became crusted up with burnt-on bits, she simply added baking soda and warm water and then used the crusts of her bread as a scrubber. This works on all kinds of pots and pans and on utensils, too. For stubborn spots, try soaking pots and pans in baking soda and water overnight to loosen up the stubborn debris.

 

 

What fruit is great to use when cleaning counters? Click “Next” to find out.

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