15 Popular Cleaning Tools That Really Shined in 2021

published Dec 23, 2021
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
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Credit: Sarah Crowley/Apartment Therapy

This year has had its fair share of ups and downs… for all of us. Through it all, making your home feel like a home became a labor of love for many. Thankfully, the tried-and-true cleaning products that Apartment Therapy editors tested and readers loved in 2021 didn’t feel much like “labor” at all. From tub scrubs that kept bathroom tiles glistening to steam mops that left floors sparkling clean, we were absolutely amazed by these do-it-all household products that made cleaning feel like everything but a chore. Here’s a list of the best cleaning products that stood out this year.

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Bissell’s vacuum can be used on virtually any surface and comes with a crevice tool for furniture and a floor nozzle for stairs, plus it works as well on hard floors as it does on carpets and area rugs. “I definitely recommend this for anyone who does not want to kill their back sweeping or for anyone who wants an easier time keeping up with their hard floors,” says a reviewer. “Total must have!!”

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was $59.99

Extendable, versatile, and rechargeable, this powerful electric scrub brush instantly becomes essential in any cleaning kit. Our writer Sarah enjoys this time-saving shower cleaning tool, which is powered by a rechargeable 3.6-volt battery. It also offers a 90-minute run time, which is more than enough time to get your shower tiles absolutely sparkling.

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Full Circle Home

Senior commerce editor Jasmine called this convenient dishwashing set a perfect buy for your kitchen sink. Made with ceramic and metal materials, the sink caddy and tray are sturdy and can be thrown in the dishwasher for occasional cleaning. Aside from the fact that it’s made with quality, sustainable materials, it’s comes with so many great multipurpose tools for the kitchen.

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was $37.99

Right out of the box, the spin mop takes only a few minutes to put together. Not only did our assistant shopping editor enjoy the convenient and hands-free method of spinning the mop dry, but she also loved how the bucket saturated the mop just enough for an effective swipe across the floor before needing to rinse it again. As a result, her floors tried in no time and were cleaner than ever.

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The Lunaglow Nano is a multi-surface wet-dry vacuum that can be used on rugs, carpet, tile, sealed hard floors, and more. Our shopping editor Britt gave this a whirl in her small bathroom, and it was able to clean in between the tight corners and crevices she never thought it'd reach. With so many options, you can start almost anywhere! The vacuum comes with a roller brush, a HEPA filter for vacuuming, a sponge filter for mopping, a long cleaning brush, a filter cleaning brush, cleaning pods, and a charging dock.

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was $5.97

The Pink Stuff is a U.K.-made cleaning product that became super popular on TikTok, and it now has more than 35,000 five-star reviews on Amazon. In addition to cleaning oven doors and baking sheets, this product can be used to cut through grime and clean kitchen sinks, stovetops, grill grates, and more with ease. It's truly a miracle product!

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was $12.99

Designed to repel pet hair from your clothes before it even sticks, the Bounce pet hair mega dryer sheets are basically a magnet for pet hair. Coming in at double the size of your average dryer sheet, they feature three times the hair and lint-fighting ingredients that regular dryer sheets do, helping to prevent hair from finding a home on your fabric.

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was $30.00

These Newbury Towels are flat-woven and made from 100 percent cotton for max absorbency. They also feature a textured, waffle-like weave which senior Kitchn commerce editor Danielle finds incredibly helpful for really “getting in there” and absorbing everyday kitchen spills and grime.

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was $499.99

Sure, a Dyson is a bit of an investment, but it’s definitely made to last. For a full-size vacuum, the V8 Absolute is surprisingly lightweight and easy to use. The design may be slim and sleek, but the incredibly powerful suction picks up hairballs, extra-large dust bunnies, tiny specks of dirt, crumbs, slimy onion skin, and more. Managing editor Ivy says, "I absolutely can't live without my Dyson V8 Absolute. It's worth every penny, and I love using it every day. It's fun seeing everything it can suck up!"

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was $89.99

The PurSteam ThermaPro 211 10-in-1 Steam Mop is a versatile little wonder that helps you deep clean literally everywhere in your home. It can tackle all types of floors, rugs, blinds, glass, mirrors, grout, and upholstery, and it even converts into a handheld clothing steamer for easily ironing out wrinkles from clothing. That’s a lot of functionality for a lightweight, easy-to-use steam cleaner that’s under $70.

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The Green Laundress

As the name suggests, the Green Laundress Tub Scrub is made to address dirt and grime that lurks within our tubs and showers. But it's also a multipurpose cleaner that can be used on sinks, toilets, showers, faucets, ovens, and even dishes. For our assistant shopping editor Britt, it's made cleaning seriously easy. "It's unlocked the potential of just how spick-and-span my bathroom can be," she wrote.

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was $15.00

The insect-shaped crumb vacuum may not look like much to the naked eye, but it's the real deal. It sits comfortably in the palm of your hand and can even shuffle around on its own as it cleans. This desktop vac is powered by two AA batteries, and its suction is strong enough to pick up crumbs, ashes, and small scraps of paper.

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was $184.85

If you’re not familiar with Cleancult, you'll want to be: It’s a subscription service that delivers eco-friendly cleaning products right to your door. They use natural ingredients and reusable glass bottles, and every bit of packaging can be recycled. The Complete Home Bundle includes all-purpose cleaner, dish soap, hand soap, dishwasher tablets, laundry detergent, wool dryer balls, and bar soap (for your body), plus five refillable containers for storing and dispensing it all.

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Think of it as a Magic Eraser for trapping dust. It’s safe to use on any surface, and you don’t need any other cleaning products — only water and the sponge itself — to see immediate results.

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A scrub brush that's any amount of aesthetically pleasing is a win in our book. With a mock wood handle made out of rubber, natural-looking nylon bristles, and a matte black head that mimics the look of cast iron itself, this brush proudly lives next to my sink. The most important factor of this Lodge Cast Iron Scrub Brush, however, is that it gets the job done.