Myth #1: "Don't make your bed in the morning—let it air out!"
No-clean activists use this to shame bed-makers into giving up their tidy ways. And they have a point, even if they're not actually right. It certainly doesn't hurt to let your bedding breathe a bit before making it: According to a 2005 Kingston University , bed mites do poorly in drier environments, like unmade beds. But really, it's a matter of a misleading headline and an inaccurate conclusion. The final, expert quote in that very article concludes, "I find it hard to believe that simply not making your bed would have any impact on the overall humidity." Still not convinced? Jezebel's resident Clean Person Jolie Kerr lays out an extremely convincing argument against airing out your bed . In short: Stop making excuses. Make your bed. Myth #2: "Use furniture polish on your wood every single time you clean!" Please don't! Furniture polish is an important part of your cleaning arsenal, but you don't need to pull it out every time. Over time, it can build up to create a gross, sticky film, which is hard to remove. Use it no more than once a week—and ideally less—to keep your wood furniture looking fresh. In between polishing, you need nothing more than a clean microfiber towel. Myth #3: "Newspaper is the best streak-free cleaner for glass!" If you're cleaning your windows, just stick to paper towels. Not only is newspaper lighter, which means it's more likely to tear up if you use too much (or too little!) cleanser, but it's covered in ink. That means not only could it leave streaks—if, say, it tears and you end up rubbing the glass with your skin—but it could stain your windows. Myth #4: "Throw leftover bits of lemon and your coffee grounds down your disposal for a fresh-smelling, clean kitchen!" Don't worry about the lemons—nothing bad will happen to your disposal if you grind up a few lemons, and it certainly will smell fresh. But don't expect them to actually clean the disposal. Coffee grounds are the real offenders here: Despite being popular on the blog rounds for supposedly cleaning your disposal or scenting your kitchen, they'll actually cause havoc. I Dream of Clean one of the seven foods you should never go down the garbage disposal—they can clog the pipes and cause disaster in your septic system. Myth #5: "You can use vinegar for anything!" You can do a lot with vinegar, but it's certainly not the magical home cleaner some people would have you believe. Stephanie at Keeper of the Home wrote a to the vinegar myth, and concluded that it's really not all it's cracked up to be—even combined with its supposed best friend, baking soda! Especially when it comes to cleaning up dirt and grime, you're way better off with any number of alternative, eco-friendly cleaners. Myth #6: "Stain your clothing with ink? Hairspray can help!" This used to work better, but according to , it's no longer a reliable tip. Back in the day, the secret ingredient was alcohol, but current hairsprays either use much less of the ingredient or omit it entirely. You can spray and spray, but all you're going to do is make your clothing sticky. For ink stains, go straight to the source—it's time to bust out the rubbing alcohol. Myth #7: "Professional carpet cleaning? No way! It'll shrink my carpet!"
For some reason, a lot of people are convinced that getting their carpet professionally cleaned will shrink the carpet, pulling it away from the walls and generally making it look yuck. But really, there's no need to worry, especially with newer, modern carpets. About.com's explains that synthetic carpets won't shrink, and even if your carpet is made from natural fibers, professionals will know how to handle it so your carpet comes out pristine—and the same size. The real lesson here? Do your research.
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