Housekeeping & Cleaning Tools

If You Love Marie Kondo, Swedish Death Cleaning May Be for You — Cleaning Tips from Kitchn

My husband and I are avid antique shoppers and like to joke that when we die (hopefully many, many decades from now!), we're setting our neighbors up for one of the best estate sales of all time. Who wouldn't want a primitive jelly cabinet with a slightly busted corner? Or a six-pack of canned, expired emergency water?

Of course, we say that in the same breath we take to complain about eventually having to clean our parents' houses when they pass. It's a little morbid, we know, but we're not so much focused on their deaths as we are talking about just how much stuff they have managed to stuff into their suburban New Jersey homes.

Why am I telling you this? Because I just stumbled upon an upcoming book that gave me pause: The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning: How to Free Yourself and Your Family from a Lifetime of Clutter.

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The Most Basic Kitchen Cleaning Tool Just Got Reinvented — Shopping

Can you guess what we're talking about here? It's something you'd use while standing at one of the stations in this photo — specifically, the sink. Okay, we'll just tell you: sponges! Exciting, right? It is when you think about it!

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Conquer Caked-on Messes with These Awesome Sponges — Amazon Deal of the Day

Even the best cooks in the world occasionally find themselves with a pan that has a caked-on mess to deal with. If you're an avoider, you may decide to let it soak. "What's the deal with the pan in the sink?" your partner will ask. "It's soaking," you'll say. "For five days?" Busted.

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Microwaving Your Sponge Causes Fires, but This Won’t — Shopping

If you've heard it once this year, you've heard it a million times: Sponges are disgusting, bacteria-ridden pieces of cellulose. (By some estimates, they are dirtier than toilet seats!) And while you used to zap them in the microwave to kill said bacteria, we all learned this summer that doing so is actually pretty ineffective. While the microwave can nuke weaker bacteria, it has no effect on stronger species. Even more, it's pretty easy to start a fire in there if your sponge isn't wet enough.

Cool. Even cooler? The fact there's basically no good alternative. Microfiber cloths actually suck up more bacteria because they're so porous. Bristled brushes tend to harbor less bacteria, but they're not as effective at getting food off of dishes.

So we've just been sticking with our sponges. We try to swap them out every week or so, but they still end up feeling a little gross after a few uses. Which is why we are so excited to learn about this new product.

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3 Restaurant Supplies That Will Make Your Kitchen Safer and Healthier — Shopping

In a world that offers seemingly infinite choices in kitchen gear, the streamlined aisles of restaurant supply stores are a haven. I love walking my restaurant supply outlet, with its rows of plain and functional sheet pans, carbon steel skillets, and ladles. This unadorned equipment is designed to be long-lasting and hard-working — and often very cheap!

But a restaurant supply store can also provide another benefit to your kitchen: increased health and safety. Here are three restaurant staples that make my kitchen a safer, healthier place to cook.

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Probiotic Cleaners Are a Thing — Here’s What They Are and How They Work — Cleaning Tips from Kitchn

I recently heard about probiotic cleaners and thought, "Come again?" I was obviously familiar with probiotics when it comes to gut health (cue that "activi-ahhhhh" song!) but never in terms of cleaning. Upon further investigation, I learned that these products are marketed as being allergy-free, non-toxic, eco-friendly, and non-GMO — basically all the things you'd want in a cleaner you're using around kids, pets, or yourself.

Naturally, I was curious. So I got on the phone with Robert Meirovich, the CEO of Airbiotics, a company that makes probiotic all-purpose cleaners, to learn more.

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