If you could bottle common sense and put elbow grease in a jar, you’d get a clean house just like Grandma used to do it. Here are five “home remedies” that will take your home back to a simpler, cleaner time.

Do it on the daily.

Grandma believed in leaving the house better than she found it, which is why she made her bed as soon as she woke up, finished the washing the dishes after every meal, and swept the floor at the end of the day. When things don’t have a chance to stack up, the process of cleaning isn’t so overwhelming.

She threw in the towel.

Flour-sack towels, the large lightweight white towels often sold in bundles of 12, were Grandma’s go-to cleaning tool. Naturally lint-free, absorbent, and thin, flour-sack towels dry, polish, scrub, and wipe better than most paper towels. Added bonus: they launder well and dry quickly.

Cleaning for a season.

Not to be confused with Cleaning for a Reason (which is another idea grandma would have loved), seasonal cleaning was the way Grandma made sure certain household tasks were done on a regular basis throughout the year. Windows were scrubbed, closets were purged, and carpets were steam-cleaned like clockwork, ensuring the house had a strong clean baseline for the rest of the year.

Get some fresh air.

Grandma believed in fresh air, and you should, too. If the outside air is more potent than what you have inside, dab cotton balls in pure vanilla extract and tuck them throughout your living spaces. For an added scent boost, rub a little vanilla on a cold lamp light so that the scent diffuses as the light bulb warms up.

Simplify your cleaning products.

We know that everyone has their favorite brands of cleaning products, and Grandma was no different. What makes her experience different was that she chose cleaning products that did more than one thing, which helped keep her cabinets clutter-free and gleaming at the same time. Look for products that can do double and triple duty, and make Grandma proud.

Is there anything your mom or grandmother used to do in her cleaning routine that you now do?

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