Welcome to Spring Cleaning Bootcamp, our step-by-step guide to everything you need to clean once a year, and how to do it right.
We asked Rebecca Gill, our resident clean-house guru, to share all of her secrets for getting a tidy, gorgeous home in as little time as possible—so you can get things clean, then get on with your life.
These guides are thorough. But with our step-by-step instructions, you can get them done! Turn on some music, put on some comfy kicks, and get ready to get your house cleaner than it’s ever been before.
We’ll be posting a floor-to-ceiling guide to deep-cleaning one room in your home every week.
This week’s bootcamp: Your bedroom. Happy cleaning!
Step 1: Floors and Baseboards
- Remove rugs and drag them outside for an airing. Shake out as much dust as you can, then hang them up in the sun until you’re done cleaning the room.
- If you have carpeted floors, sprinkle them with baking soda, then vacuum them thoroughly.
- If you have wood or tile floors, sweep the floors with a broom or sweeper. If you really want to get all the dust and dirt, do it twice: once with a broom or sweeper on its own, and once with a dryer sheet wrapped around it so it brushes the floor. Make sure to swipe cobwebs and dust bunnies off of the baseboards and out of the corners.
- Go over wood or tile floors with a damp mop (make sure not to mop yourself into a corner–we know it seems like a no-brainer, but we’ve all done it before).
- Give yourself a high five over all the dirt, dust, and allergens you just rid your sleeping space of. Woo-hoo! This is what spring cleaning’s all about!
Step 2: Bed and Linens
- Remove any drapes from the windows and strip the bed of sheets, blankets, comforters, duvets, duvet covers, mattress covers, pillow covers, and pillows.
- Throw machine washables in the laundry, and place drapes in the car so you can take them in for professional cleaning later.
- If you have feather duvets and pillows, you can wash them yourself, but you might prefer to press the easy button and get them professionally cleaned along with the drapes. Launder your pillows on the gentle cycle of your washing machine with a mild detergent, and dry in the dryer on the air dry setting. Throw in a few tennis balls so your pillow filling fluffs up like new.
- Use the vacuum with the upholstery attachment to clean dirt from the surface, seams, and sides of the mattress. With a dry rag, wipe the headboard, sides, foot, and legs of your bed.
- Move the bed enough so that you can reach behind it with your vacuum’s crevices attachment. Use the tube and brush attachments to vacuum the underside of the bedframe as well. Goodbye dust!
Step 3: Closet and Dressers
- Empty out your closets and dressers onto your newly clean bed (that’s right: Empty them. We promise you won’t regret it!).
- Sweep closet floors, then vacuum crevices, corners, shelves and ceilings with your tube attachments.
- Vacuum the insides of drawers with your vacuum’s tube attachments, then wipe both the insides and surfaces of dressers with a damp rag and some non-toxic all purpose cleaner. If you want to be extra-fancy, place a scented sachet or drawer sheet into each drawer so your clothes will always smell fresh and clean.
- Sort your clothing and accessories into four piles: keep, store, bring to the dry cleaners, and donate.
- If you haven’t worn it in a year, donate it!
- If you love the item but it’s been sitting in your closet waiting for a new button or hem, take this opportunity to bring it to the tailor, and give it a new life.
- Wash, fold, and neatly hang everything in the keep pile.
- Fold sweaters, coats, and woolens in boxes or zip-up bins with a block of cedar to keep the moths away (don’t hang them—months on a hanger will stretch your sweaters and give your coats permanent creases).
Step 4: Walls, Trim and Ceilings
- You’re almost done! With an extendable duster or simply a broom with a t-shirt draped over it, knock cobwebs and dust down from corners, light fixtures, and ceiling fans.
- Dust artwork and wall decorations with a microfiber dusting mitt.
- Spray walls with non-toxic all purpose cleaner, and immediately dry with a terry-cloth rag (do the wall in sections, so that the wet cleaner doesn’t sit on the porous paint for too long). Do the same to door handles, drawer pulls, and lamp bases.
- Fire up the vacuum again, and go over ceilings fans and light fixtures one more time. On your way down, vacuum the insides and outsides of any fabric lampshades.
Step 5: Everything Back In Its Place
- Retrieve rugs from outside, and place them back on the floor. Before you put away the vacuum, give all rugs a good once-over.
- Grab your fresh, toasty bed linens from the dryer, and make the bed.
- Put all of your cleaning supplies back where they belong.
- Take a deep whiff of fresh, delicious spring-cleaned air, and enjoy your new bedroom!
Top Image Credit: Neil Kelly
Conquered your bedroom? Great job! Keep giving your space its yearly TLC at Spring Cleaning Bootcamp: Living Room Edition.
Don’t miss the rest of our Spring Cleaning Bootcamp series!