Welcome back to my series on deep cleaning! This week: bedrooms!
Bedrooms are likely the most important room on your deep cleaning list. Why? Because a bedroom is the cleanest dirty room in everyone’s house. It’s easy to change the sheets, pick up the floor, run the vacuum around and call it good. But it’s also where you probably spend quite a bit of your day (asleep or awake), so it’s truly worth spending the time to clean deeply every once in awhile.
The biggest issue most people face while cleaning a bedroom is getting sidetracked by decluttering as they clean. Bedrooms hold a lot of personal items, so it’s super easy to focus on sorting clothes in your closet or looking through your jewelry collection. That’s why I suggest setting an objective before you start cleaning a bedroom and giving yourself one day to reach your goal. If you want to spend that full day decluttering your closet or the couple hours you have free one day turning and vacuuming your mattress, go for it. Or if you want more of a full-room effect, focus on an all-surface clean (that means clearing, dusting, and cleaning fans, lights, walls, windows, table tops, etc. and not worrying about the insides of drawers or closets). Taking too much on can get really overwhelming, so make a realistic goal and keep in mind how much time you have and what will have the biggest impact so that you can make solid steps toward improving your living space.
My favorite approach to deep cleaning a bedroom is the bed/surfaces combo, and I think it’s a great place to start deep cleaning a bedroom. Here’s what I do if I have a full day:
- I start by removing my sheets and laundering my synthetic down pillows, the covers of my foam pillows, and my comforter. The goal here is to wash anything detachable from your bed (non-foam mattress toppers go in the machine too!). If there’s anything that can’t go in the washing machine, put it outside to air out. If you don’t have an outdoor space to air things out, fluffing and vacuuming are usually the best alternative.
- Once the washing machine is going, I start from the top down and give the ceiling a once over with a duster (as I said in my post about deep cleaning living rooms, this is always a good approach!). Clean off light fixtures, fans, and get into the corners (where you will be amazed by the cobwebs you didn’t notice!). Cleaning from the top down is super important in bedrooms because they can get very dusty and air quality is important, so you want to eliminate as much dust as possible and get it to move towards the floor.
- Next, dust and vacuum shades (brush attachments work best for me) on floor and table lamps and any picture frames/wall hangings. If you’re feeling very clean-y, hit the glass on those frames with some glass cleaner (use my homemade recipe!). For some reason in my mind there is no more extra cleaning task than cleaning the glass of picture frames that don’t really need it. It’s like washing walls — it makes me so unnecessarily smug.
- Dust and polish (I use Ecos Furniture Polish + Cleaner, which I like because the smell isn’t super overwhelming) nightstands, bureaus, and any other horizontal surfaces. Again, don’t worry about closets and try not to get sidetracked by items in drawers. If you have a lot of clutter on surfaces (like makeup or perfume bottles or jewelry), just move it aside to clean the surface underneath and move on. It’s great to reorganize your jewelry collection or clean out your shoe shelf, but trust me — it will prevent you from finishing the cleaning at hand and ultimately you will get less done.
- If you have a plush headboard, vacuum it and the mattress. The mini carpet heads (which are actually for furniture) are perfect for this. My headboard is a dust magnet, and every time I clean it I’m surprised by how dirty it’s gotten without me noticing (maybe I’m just very unaware of my surroundings since I don’t notice this or the cobwebs on the ceiling?). I don’t particularly like using baking soda to clean the surface of my mattress (I find it messy and honestly pretty ineffective), but I do spray a solution of a few drops of tea tree mixed water or even some white vinegar to disinfect the mattress and headboard material.
- Finally, the floor! If you have carpet, thoroughly vacuum it, but focus on getting under the bed and any other furniture you can move. Actually moving the furniture is almost always better than just using an extension to get under it, but beds and full bureaus can be tough to move without help. Do what you can! If you have hardwood or laminate floors, take the time to vacuum and mop the floors, again focusing on getting under furniture. It’s tough to worry about getting under furniture during a normal day of cleaning, so a deep clean is the time to get into these more involved tasks.
- Last, but certainly not least, put everything back! Set aside time and energy at the end of cleaning to remake the bed, put on fresh sheets, and bring everything in from airing out. I have often gotten so invested in cleaning the bedroom that the comforter was still in the dryer at 8 p.m. It’s awful when you’re exhausted from cleaning all day but can’t get into bed because you stripped all the bedding and got overly ambitious with your cleaning. It’s a good idea to set a timer for the end of the washing machine cycle (so nothing sits in there too long) and a reminder for an hour or so before you need to stop cleaning (if you have to eat dinner at 6, for instance, remind yourself to start putting things back around 5). That way, the room where you relax can become the room where you relax again!
Now all that’s left to do is enjoy your squeaky-clean bedroom! Bedrooms can be tough rooms to tackle, but it’s so worth it. A bedroom really should be a kind of sanctuary, so it feels really good to take time to clean that space and make it nicer for yourself and those you share it with.
Thanks for reading!