12 Essential Cleaning Supplies You Need at All Times for a Clean Home

published Jan 14, 2024
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A cleaning caddy filled with spray bottles, sponges, and other cleaning supplies is pictured in front of two white vases
Credit: Andrea Monzo for Apartment Therapy

Keeping a clean and hygienic home is all about maintenance. Sure, the deep-cleaning chores you do now and again are important. But the more you stay on top of your everyday cleaning routines, the cleaner your space will be regularly (and the less work you’ll have to put into bigger jobs). 

Maintaining a cleaning routine doesn’t have to be complicated, but you will need a few key tools to get the job done. If you’re hoping to upgrade your cleaning cabinet or you’re building a collection of cleaning products for the first time, here are some supplies every home needs. 

1. All-Purpose Cleaner

From wiping off sticky counters to de-griming the kitchen table after dinner, there’s nothing all-purpose spray can’t do when it comes to cleaning — which is why it’s always a good idea to keep one on hand (ideally, in your favorite scent, as you’ll probably be using it a lot). 

2. Disinfectant

Cleaning wipes away dirt, but it’s disinfecting that actually staves off germs in your home. A disinfectant spray is a key part of any cleaning collection. Just be sure to read the instructions thoroughly before using it to ensure the product works (and to protect yourself from potentially harsh chemicals). 

3. Glass Cleaner

Everybody has windows and glass in their home, and a good glass cleaner can tackle streaks and dirt on both. Be sure to use a microfiber cloth or paper towel when cleaning glass, as cloths with larger fibers often leave behind annoying fuzz.

4. A Couple of Key Pantry Items

It’s not all about fancy store-bought cleaning products. Common pantry staples can be effective cleaners throughout your home. Baking soda, for example, is mildly abrasive so that you can make a cleaning paste with a bit of water. Distilled white vinegar is great at cutting through grime, and hydrogen peroxide is known as a great stain remover. As always, do your research before using any of these easy but effective methods! 

5. A Few Specialty Cleaners

Depending on your specific home, you may need a couple of specialty cleaners in addition to the staples. Natural stone countertops, glass cooktops, and stainless steel appliances often benefit from dedicated products that’ll leave them clean and shiny (without risking harm to their surfaces). 

6. Microfiber Cloths

No need to waste paper towels when you’ve got microfiber cloths on hand. The tiny fibers can easily pick up and hold on to dirt, so you can be sure you’re not just spreading it around the surface you’re cleaning. Plus, they won’t leave any fuzz behind!

7. Sponges

Whether you’re washing a load of dishes or cleaning a spill, an absorbent sponge is an important tool to have on hand. A typical sponge is all you need, but if you wash a lot of pots and pans with stuck-on gunk, a more abrasive one could come in handy. 

8. Dish Soap 

A standard dish soap is obvious when it comes to your dishes, but it can also come in handy when you’re out of all-purpose cleaner or you’re trying to remove an oily stain from your clothes. 

9. Cleaning Brushes

A set of cleaning brushes in various sizes is a great idea for cleaning crevices a sponge or cloth can’t reach. Consider adding a dish brush to your collection, too — the long-handled ones are great at cleaning inside tall glasses and bottles. 

10. Toilet Brush

On the topic of brushes, every home needs a toilet brush (and, while you’re at it, a reliable toilet bowl cleaner) for routine maintenance and deep cleaning. You’ll need to replace yours every few months, given the nature of the job!

11. Vacuum

Dust, dirt, and other debris are no match for a good vacuum. If your home is mostly carpeted or you have a lot of rugs, a standard upright is a good pick. But if you like to clean on-the-go, a stick vac is a solid choice. Either way, a vacuum with a couple of attachment options ensures versatility wherever you’re cleaning. 

12. Duster

Windowsills, baseboards, and furniture all collect dust, which means you definitely need a duster. Microfiber dusting tools are conveniently designed with long handles, and they’re great at attracting the tiniest dust particles.