I'm always trying to find ways to use everyday products in new ways when I'm cleaning up the house. Two of my favorite cleaners are rubbing alcohol (it disinfects, polishes, and shines in a snap) and peroxide (test first, but it takes out almost any stain I've tried to get out). They're both great for spot cleaning the carpet when little paws and feet have left behind muddy foot prints.
These tips are not brand-name specific, so please feel free to try homemade versions or organic.
Baby Wipes - Use these to clean carpets (again, test the area first) clean salt off of boots, use as make-up remover, clean off sandy feet (I use baby powder myself), dust houseplants, clean electronics (be careful if the wipe is over saturated), dust the floor (use in place of a Swiffer), and remove white marks left behind by deodorant.
Dryer Sheets - I never toss these... They help capture lint easily from the dryer lint trap, I run them across the floor to pick up pet hair (in place of a Swiffer sheet), degrease the top of the stove, deodorize trash cans (keep one in the bottom of the laundry basket and on the shelves of your linen closet too), removes iron residue, soap scum on tubs, and keeps bugs at bay (rub them across tent or screen netting).
Baking Soda - You already know this one, but use it as a natural odor neutralizer in the refrigerator, cabinets, and on carpets etc. Use 3-1 (baking soda and water) to clean silver and counter surfaces, and scrub walls with a sprinkle of baking soda applied to a damp sponge. You can even get Fido clean if he doesn't like the tub. Sprinkle enough to coat his fur lightly avoiding the face entirely (ears are okay). Gently rub and let the baking soda absorb into the coat for a few minutes. Gently brush away excess.
Bonus: To remove dog hair, and I have a lot, use a squeegee to remove hair from large surfaces. Rubber gloves also work. And I use dampened wash towels to remove the rest.
Photo: Amanda Tipton