25 Things You Need If You've Never Cleaned Your Home Correctly

So you can cover the basics, and then a little more.

If you find yourself in a constant cycle of cleaning your whole home and then just having to do it all over again because you didn’t use the correct products, don’t worry, we have you covered.

From dishwasher-cleaning tablets that’ll ensure your dirty dishes actually come out clean to a wine-stain remover that’ll allow you to enjoy your next glass of red with some peace of mind, here are cleaning products that’ll help you get the job done the right way.

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A broom and dustpan set
You have to use something to pick up the bits of pasta, strands of hair and dust bunnies that afflict your kitchen floors — and some would argue that a broom and dustpan like this is your best bet. The dustpan features a row of useful teeth to help extract any debris that the broom won't let go of, so you don't have to bend down and mess with the broom when it stubbornly grabs a clump of hair.

Promising review: "The best broom and dustpan set I have ever purchased. After researching numerous possibilities, this is the broom that won. I have a shop with old wooden floors with lots of space between the old wood planks. The bristles pick up everything between the planks. The rubber lip of the pan is flush with the floor and the teeth clean out the bristles perfectly. I was so happy that I bought another for my home and a third for the shop. This set costs a bit more, but in my opinion was well worth the price." — Carol

Get it from Amazon for $34.99.
And a handheld broom and dustpan
Sometimes you just spill a little bit and don't feel like pulling out the big set. The brush easily snaps into the handle for simple storage, too!

Promising review: "My dustpan brush broke and in the search for a new one, I found this one. I didn't think I'd be saying this about an ordinary dustpan but this one is the real deal. Its material is well made, the brush handle is comfortable and there are even the spikes on the pan to separate the hair from the brush. It also gets into the hard corners. The best dust pan and brush out there!" — QueenB

Get it from Amazon for $7.99.
A telescoping microfiber flip mop
Perfect if you have wood, tile, laminate or linoleum floors. The blue side picks up some dirt, dust and hair (completely dry), then the white side uses water to wipe up even more stubborn gunk.

Promising reviews: "Awesome, easy way to clean hard floors. A dry mop that removes dust, dirt, and hair more efficiently than sweeping. Hair sticks to this and unlike sweeping, it doesn't just move the dirt/dust around. Once I was done cleaning my large kitchen and tiny bathroom, I just shook out the debris over the outdoor trash can. Works great and definitely more cost-effective than a Swiffer and more maneuverable than my Dyson vacuum cleaner." — K Lawson

Get it from Amazon for $19.79.
A powerful but inexpensive vacuum cleaner
Is there a perfect vacuum? Probably not, but this one has lots of great reviews, passes ReviewMeta, and is under $100! Plus it'll do a better job on wood, tile and other hard floors than a broom or dust mop would — and with less effort.

Promising review: "Have long hair? Have you killed other vacuums with your (slightly worrying amount) of shedding? Then look no further. We bought a canister vacuum a year ago, and it didn't take long for my long hair to just kill the little vacuum. Now, we have this vacuum and our apartment is actually clean because my hair is not too much for it. The bristles have grooves that prevent hair from caking on it, and it's very easy to clean. The brushes are also adjustable, so you can really get into the carpet if you want. It's also pretty light for something so heavy duty. I also love that all of the attachments stay on the vacuum, and I don't want to look for that hand attachment. For the price, it's a great vacuum and would really work if your place isn't very big, as the cord isn't super long." — J. Haller

Get it from Amazon for $99.99.
And a carpet-freshening powder
It'll deodorize the rug in your open-to-the-kitchen living room that has absorbed several years worth of cooking smells. Pardo Naturals is a Black-owned, woman-owned business specializing in products for people with issues related to sensitive skin.

Get it from Pardo Naturals for $9 (available in four scents).
A pack of reusable microfiber cloths
You could use an old cotton T-shirt — cut out rectangular rags if you feel inspired — or a simple cotton washcloth to clean surfaces in your home. But microfiber cloths will hold up wash after wash, won't leave lint or streaks behind, and will help remove dirt and grime with less elbow grease on your part.

Promising review for the microfiber cloths: "These cloths are truly lint- and streak-free. I’ve already used these cloths to clean my stove, dust my entertainment center, and wipe my bathroom fixtures and mirrors. All sparkling clean without any streaks or lint. So glad I found these. I’ll be putting one in every room for quick access." — FairGamer

Get them from Amazon: the pack of eight cloths for $15.99, and a pack of three of Mrs. Meyer's multisurface everyday cleaners for $11.49+ (available in five scents).
A glass cooktop cleaning kit
It's packed with everything you need to shine up even the messiest burner so it gleams like it did the day you moved in.

Promising review: "I hadn't thoroughly scrubbed my glass cooktop in years, only wiped down with random multipurpose cleaners which never seemed to do much. Then a friend recommended this product... AMAZING! The included scrubbers and scrapers really make the difference. As others have said it will leave your cooktop shiny and new... Even marks that had been on there for years came almost completely off... 98% better. The key is to use very little product. Let it dry to a haze and buff with a clean dry cotton towel, just like waxing a car." — B. Swartwood

Get it from Amazon for $9.69.
A bottle of Bar Keeper's Friend
It can make so many things in your kitchen look like new again: stained pots and pans, dull and scratched ceramic sinks, tarnished metal, rusty-looking stainless steel and more.

Promising review: "I was so bummed when I scratched up my pretty white sink with pots and pans. I thought I'd need to have it replaced but I bought this stuff as a last ditch effort to fix it. It takes some elbow grease, the scratches don't just wipe off, but if you scrub them for a few minutes they melt away pretty quickly. After two rounds my sink looks nearly brand new again. It also worked on a few mineral stains in my bathtub that I thought were permanent. Again, a little of this stuff, the scrubby side of a blue sponge, a little bit of effort and they were gone!" — Dan Borden

Get it from Amazon for $17.62.
A bottle of no-odor gel mold and mildew cleaner
It sticks to your tile grout and caulking, giving it the time it needs to do its job: banishing the grossness like it was never there.

Get it from Amazon for $12.99.
A pack of three disposable drain snakes
They reach deep into your pipes and pull up that slimy hair monster that has been blocking your tub and sink from draining freely.

Promising review: "I saw these featured on BuzzFeed and have been unsuccessfully through so many rounds of chemicals in my sink drain that I figured I might as well try it. IT COMPLETELY FIXED MY DRAIN IN LESS THAN A MINUTE. I was about to call my landlord. I wish I had known this sooner. Why we have all been pouring terrible chemicals into our drains and environment is beyond me. Bonus... I rinsed the first one off and am pretty sure I can use it again, so I consider these reusable." — Geneveive

Get them from Amazon for $9.99.
A high-quality toilet brush
It's the easiest way to keep your commode from getting gross. The canister this comes with opens automatically when you lift up the brush, then closes when you set the brush back down. Use it with a toilet cleaner ($11.99 for two), and after you're done scrubbing, trap the brush under the seat so it can drip-dry into the toilet before you put it back in the canister.

Promising review: "Big fan of these toilet brushes. I bought two (one for each bathroom) and I love the clean and simplistic look. My housekeeper works in an upscale resort and said she likes mine way better than the ones they use in the hotel. They are easy to take out, and easy to put back in — it's a very well designed product. I also love that the brush and the handle are one piece. I've had brushes before where the head kept falling off. This brush is very sturdy and you can use a good amount of force to scrub (if needed)." — Patrick Reiner

Get it from Amazon for $15.99.
And a stamp-in gel
After your toilet's clean, this will KEEP it clean — no need to scrub on a regular basis. Just press it beneath the rim and let it do all the work. You'll have to re-stamp every 12 days or so, depending on how often that toilet gets flushed. (Pro tip: Make sure to stamp it somewhere in the bowl it won't, erm, become a "target" and get sprayed off before its time.)

Promising review: "These are amazing and I'm bummed I haven't tried them until now! Warning: possible TMI ahead! We're big fans of the 'if it's yellow, let it mellow' potty practice in our home as it conserves a serious amount of water if you flush every 3-4 tinkles vs every time....anyways! We used to use the Clorox pucks in the toilet tank, however a recent move to a home with very hard water has rendered our beloved Clorox tabs useless and I found myself scrubbing our toilets every few days. These little gems are easy to use and with our limited flushing, one application tends to last around two weeks before it starts to lose its smell and effectiveness. But it kept our bowls clean and the bathroom smelling fresh." — Stephanie

Get a pack of two from Amazon for $8.34.
Oh, and a pumice stone scrubber
So you can tackle built-up hard water stains no toilet brush could stand a chance against. You just wet the stone a little, then scrub away to watch it work its magic!

Promising review: "I have a 19-year-old master bathroom toilet that had accumulated some nasty stains over time which regular toilet brushes and cleaning products just would not remove. Pumice stone worked like a charm! Given the nature and severity of the stains, it required some elbow grease, but 10 minutes later I have a new-looking bowl, and I see no signs of scratching. Am very happy with this purchase...well worth the very low price!" — Happy Retiree

Get it from Amazon for $8.99.
A pack of five hydrogen peroxide-infused toilet bombs
With regular use, these completely eliminate the need to scrape with a pumice stone at all. All you have to do is drop one in the bowl, swish once or twice, let it fizz for about five minutes, then scrub for a minute or so with a toilet brush. Juniperseed Mercantile is a Littleton, Colorado-based small business with a passion for great skin care, simple living and the earth.

Promising review: "This is my second purchase of theses so you can tell I totally love them. They work great and I just store them in a jar on the back of the toilet. Definitely can't say I’ve ever stored any other toilet cleaner out in the open." — Laura Wick

Get them from Juniperseed Mercantile on Etsy for $10.
A telescoping tile brush
The handle extends from 26 inches to 42 inches, meaning you can reach all the corners of your bathroom without teetering on the edge of your tub.

Promising review: "Makes cleaning so much easier! We have a small walk in shower and it is difficult to get in the corners to clean without getting on your knees. With this I can remain standing and reach everywhere in the shower. I've recommended this brush to friends and neighbors (we are getting to a certain age) and it's been very helpful. Being a OXO product it's very good quality." — Linda L

Get it from Amazon for $15.99.
A carpet and upholstery stain remover
So you can extract all kinds of dirt, rust, grease, food and other stains that you haven't been able to get out with literally anything else.

Promising reviews: "Fantastic product and does what it promises. I had purchased several cleaning products to remove a stain from my mattress from my dog vomiting. This is the only one that got it out. I now keep this in my cupboard at all times." — Book Bandit

Get it from Amazon for $11.97.
A soft cleanser
With very little elbow grease, this will eliminate years of built-up hard water stains on tile or glass, truly transforming your shower right before your eyes.

Promising review: "Like a hot knife through butter for built up hard water stains on my glass shower doors. I've tried everything and this stuff worked in two minutes. Made me a little embarrassed it took so long to find something so effective. I haven't tried it on anything else yet but I guarantee I'll be reordering just to have extra. Just can't have enough of a good thing." — Ron

Get it from Amazon for $13.99.
A pack of Magic Eraser bath scrubbers
Scrub out every last bit of grime and soap scum from your tub and still have energy left to keep cleaning — or just enjoy life! — when you're done. These bath scrubbers are like an ~upgraded~ version of the classic Magic Erasers: They're infused with a water-activated foaming cleanser that makes the job of scrubbing soap scum even easier.

Promising review: "We have a rental property and the tenants trashed the house. I went to clean up and brought these along. The bathroom was in really bad shape, and I gagged for a portion of my scrubbing. But these worked wonders. I'd say that they probably cut my cleaning time in half. Water stains, grime, whatever it was that those tenants left on the floor near the toilet...it left everything looking as brand new as it could. Saved me a lot of time and headache. Highly recommend these little guys.... They pack a punch!" — Crista Nalezny

Get a pack of 12 from Amazon for $16.61.
A jetted tub cleaner
Scientifically engineered to eradicate the years of grimy buildup you didn't even realize was lurking in the pipes.

Promising review: "It's disgusting to see what comes out of your jets when you use this product. I can't believe we bathed in this! I've run bleach and dish detergent through my jets before, and that combination never cleaned with this efficiency. I highly recommended this product." — Amazon Customer

Get it from Amazon for $16.99.
A pack of six dishwasher tablets
Running even just one cycle with a tablet will eliminate any buildup in your dishwasher *and* those stains it keeps leaving on your clean dishes.

Promising review: "Started getting white streaks all over my dishes. That never happened before. Thought it was my detergent and changed it, but no difference. Clean dishes with this weird white film on them. Wash them by hand, then put them back in the dishwasher, and white film again! Then I did an internet search to figure out what was going on (a dishwasher is an incredibly simple piece of machinery.) Found this! Bought it. Used it. Dishes are clean again!" — Carey Holzman

Get them from Amazon for $5.99.
A daily granite cleaner
So you can shine up any stone countertops you happen to have around your home, because some all-purpose cleaners (and anything with vinegar in it) can etch and damage the finish.

Promising review: "I use it daily since I have a black counter top that always looks dirty. This stuff is good — the best I have found — but it does require applying it correctly. I use a paper towel to spread on when wet and immediately wipe with a microfiber towel to dry. When I don’t do that it leaves streaks which are easy to see on my black countertop. Sometimes I keep the damp paper towel in case the streaks stay, to just 'rewet' an area before drying with a microfiber. Overall when done my countertop looks great!" — Mrbadass

Get a pack of two from Amazon for $16.98.
An extendable microfiber duster
It will help you reach your highest ceiling fans and the tops of cabinets without lugging out the ladder or pushing chairs around. Its three expanding sections reach up to 64 inches — that's 5 feet! — so basically nothing will be out of your reach. You simply rinse the microfiber head clean when you're done using it (one reviewer suggests spinning it between your hands after it's dry, to fluff everything back out), plus the entire thing folds in half for easy storage. And its fluffy dusting head collapses easily to reach into small nooks and crannies.

Promising review: "I'm not a neat freak so I never thought I'd be saying I love a duster, but when I use this I feel like it's one of the best things I've ever bought. I'm only 5'2" tall so I need the extra length even though I don't have high ceilings. It's nice to be able to use it at different angles as well as bend the duster part itself. Plus it's really easy to adjust.

I think the people that say the head spins as they use it haven't tightened the silver piece that prevents that from happening. Yes, some dust goes into the air, but hardly any and you can see you're picking up a lot by how dirty it gets. I don't it wash it every time, usually just take it outside and shake it out and clean it off with my hands." — cologirl

Get it from Amazon for $16.99.
A bottle of Goo Gone
It's essential if you have to tackle sticky substances like tape residue, old stickers (including bumper stickers), glue stains and dried bits of that slime kids love so much.

Promising reviews: "This stuff is amazing. So far, I have used it to remove heavy adhesive from a tile floor where we had previously had an adhesive cover for a wire running across the area. I applied Goo Gone, scraped the majority of the adhesive and fibers off, then wiped off the remaining residue with a paper towel.Additionally, I used it to clean grease off of wood veneer cabinets using a paper towel, and it was so effortless! We have a microwave above the stove, and I also used Goo Gone to clean grease from the exhaust vents, which was so much easier than ever before." — Cass

Get it from Amazon for $7.20.
A finish restorer
Designed to eliminate heat rings, water marks, scratches, color fade, oxidation and more from your favorite wood furniture — or even your wood kitchen cabinets. For minor stains and discoloration, it's a simple wipe-on, wipe-off process you can do in just a couple of minutes. You may have to put more time and effort into the worst cases (like the one pictured here), but reviewers swear it's worth the work.

Promising review: "It's not magic or a miracle cure all, but it really worked well removing some BAD heat circles on a used coffee table a friend game me. This product requires work. I found I got the best results using 0000 steel wool and getting a fresh piece rather often. It takes some scrubbing but it's so much less work than stripping, sanding, pre-treating, staining, and lacquering. Vigorous scrubbing (WITH the grain) will also remove some shallow scratches and swirls. I have included some pictures of my results, before and after. It took me about 90 minutes to scrub and wipe down my coffee table with more than adequate results." — Raymond J. Rathburn

Get it from Amazon for $14.65+ (available in nine colors, and two sizes). For a finishing step, you can also add on the same brand's polish and conditioner, $8.48 on Amazon.
A wine-stain remover
Emily Shwake / BuzzFeed
It'll make even dried, set-in spills vanish completely after just a spritz or two.

Promising review: "I fell in love with this product some 15 years ago, and I am so very happy that it's still available in the same wonderful formula as ever. I have seriously poured red wine over a white comforter to demonstrate how great this is to a friend once. It is a miracle in a bottle! We use it for all sorts of cleaning on materials around the house, and one bottle has last us years! This is definitely a product every home should have." — Melanie Nolen

Get it from Amazon for $12.50.

Before You Go

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