30 Cleaning Products That Made Our Homes Sparkle in 2022

published Dec 21, 2022
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.
Someone cleaning a black glass stovetop with a blue microcloth
Credit: Photo: Sidney Bensimon; Prop Styling: Anna Surbatovich

With only a few days left in the year, editors at Apartment Therapy have been taking a look back at all the fantastic finds from 2022 that made being at home comfortable and clean. Whether it was trying out the most popular steam mop on Amazon or taking on the challenge of testing every viral cleaning product that popped up on TikTok, the thrilling prospect of finding a new housecleaning staple motivated our team this year. As great as it is to find a new vacuum to love, you won’t believe the wide variety of cleaners that made their way into staffers’ cabinets from stain removers for kid messes to washable refrigerator liners that you didn’t know you needed. Those items and more appear below in a comprehensive list of thoroughly-tested products from January to December that made staffers’ homes truly shine throughout the year. No matter what cleaning needs you have at home, there’s sure to be something here that’s worth giving a try in the next year. Best of all, it’s all editor-tried and approved!

1 / 30
Therapy Clean
$69.95
was $79.95

Therapy Clean offers a variety of products that AT editors loved this year, all of which are included in their Home Essentials Bundle that you can score on a discount. "I was shocked by how shiny it made my cabinets with hardly any elbow grease!" said contributor Erin Cavoto of the Wood Cleaner and Polish in her review of another cleaner from the brand. "Encouraged by these results, I tried the Therapy Clean Stainless Steel Cleaner on the years of fingerprints smudged on my fridge. What I wound up with was a gorgeous streak- and smudge-free door that I can’t help but admire." Editors have also reviewed Therapy Clean's Glass Cleaner and Tub & Tile Cleaner, happily expressing their sparkling results. With the Home Essentials Bundle, you can get them all in one go!

2 / 30
Etsy
$19.99

Writer L. Daniela Alvarez loves giving viral cleaning products a run for their money, so there was no question about giving the Everneat Oven Scrub Cleaner a go. "I did a little research to find out what was in the jar as soon as I received it," said this thorough review. "The main ingredients included pumice stone, coconuts, citric acid, and baking soda. It seemed promising, so I rolled up my sleeves and got to work to give it a try. Unlike most cleaners, it truly smelled like an uplifting spa scrub that belonged on my skin instead of my oven. I also loved that it came with a heavy-duty, metallic scrubbing sponge, which definitely aided in getting the job done."

3 / 30
Amazon
$88.66
was $99.99

"Six attachments — a floor mop pad, countertop mop pad, squeegee, grout brush, small detail brush, and metal grate brush — seemed overwhelming at first, but working them is a total breeze," said this AT editor review of BLACK + DECKER's Multipurpose Steam Mop. "So far, I’ve used the steam mop on my rug and hard floors. Even though the rug gave a little more resistance than the floors, both were simple to maneuver. I went over the rug a couple of times — it really needed it — and when my family came to visit later that day, their first comments were all about how bright my rug looked! That’s what really sold me on recommending this BLACK+DECKER wonder."

4 / 30
simplehuman
$20.00

From trash cans to laundry hampers, simplehuman has earned a secure spot among Apartment Therapy favorites. However, if you've hesitated at the price tag but haven't shied away from the thought of adding some simplehuman products to your household, their Odorsorb Pod Starter Kit could be a great place to start. The kit includes a pod holder that sticks to the underside of your trash can lid and two pods that use plant-based ingredients to neutralize odor from the garbage, making sure your home continues to smell fresh even though your trash isn't.

5 / 30
Blueland
$23.00

As someone who doesn't particularly enjoy cleaning the toilet, I swear by Blueland's Toilet Cleaner tablets. The starter set can be ordered for one to three bathrooms with 14 tablets per container. All you have to do is drop one tablet into the basin, brush the toilet bowl, and flush. The tablets are plastic-free and don't contain harsh chemicals. Additionally, the container is reusable when you run out, and ordering refills couldn't be easier.

6 / 30
Nori
$59.00

Already a fan of the super stylish and convenient Nori Press steam iron, SEO Editor Sarah couldn't resist trying out the Nori Trim fabric shaver from one of her new favorite brands. "Now I am no stranger to fabric shavers — using them is one of my favorite past times — so I was a bit skeptical as to how much different this one could be," she said in her review. "My biggest test was when I took the Trim over to my couch. Covered in a white boucle wrap, my sofa was covered in little black pieces of lint from my blankets and leggings that I was itching to get rid of. In a couple of quick passes, my sofa looked brand new and, most importantly, the boucle remained intact. Yup, I was sold."

7 / 30
Amazon
$9.99

"The main problem with my disposal? It’s decades old and doesn’t work quite as well as it once did. After two years with this never-quite-clean, somewhat smelly, secret section of my kitchen tainting my otherwise spotless space, I have finally found a solution that works: Duracare Disposal Tablets," said AT contributor Stella in her review. "After months of semi-regular use, I can confidently say that the odor that used to faintly waft from the sink is finally gone. In fact, I find that my sink smells fresh and clean even weeks after I use the tablets, which leads to one satisfying conclusion: Duracare really works."

8 / 30
Amazon
$21.99

Contributor Nonnahs Driskill prefers to tackle spills, dog hair, and dirt right away versus waiting under the end of the day to clean the entire floor. After picking up a cleaning hack from her mother that required leaving a towel on the floor all day, she found a nicer alternative with patterned floor dust mops. "The overall point of this cleaning hack is to leave something on the kitchen floor to wipe up spills easily with your feet. Any type of cleaning slipper or towel will work," she said in her review. "I find these printed ones more visually pleasing and easy to clean with. Plus, you can throw them into the washing machine after you’re done."

9 / 30
Amazon
$10.99

The Febreze Unstopables Fabric Refresher Spray was such a hit in my home that I even got my family to start using it. The spray eliminates strong odors, including those from pets, and prolongs it with touch-activated technology that sends a burst of fragrance anytime you touch an area where it's been sprayed. I was skeptical about it working at first, but when I could still smell the spray months after applying it on the back end of my couch, that was proof enough for me that it's the real deal. Now I use it on my sofa, chairs, and even the floor ahead of vacuuming. In addition to providing long-lasting scent to furniture and carpet, the spray can also be used to keep bedding and linens fresh, too.

10 / 30
Amazon
$11.95

"Get this: The sponge smells just like peach candy, in the best way possible — it’s subtle enough that it won’t give you a headache, but it’s definitely noticeable (and a lot better than mildew for sure)," said AT contributor Ashley, who was more than thrilled to add the Peachy Clean Kitchen Scrubber to her sink caddy. After testing it for a week alongside Dawn Powerwash, she shared her feedback in this review: "I found myself looking forward to using this salmon-colored sponge because, well, it didn’t stink. Even after seven days of use, the sponge never smelled musty — and at the end, even after scrubbing away all of that grime, the peach smell was still as strong as the very first day I opened the package." Bonus: If peach isn't your thing, the sponge is also available in a fragrance-free version.

11 / 30
Amazon
$21.99

"It took me a couple of weeks to actually start using the Chef’n compost bin because I wasn’t doing much cooking at the time, but once I began whipping up meals every day, it was my trusted companion in the kitchen," said an editor who started composting for the first time this year. "My favorite feature of the EcoCrock Compost Bin is the built-in replaceable natural charcoal filter in the lid. Odors are absorbed with activated charcoal as air is vented through a leaf-shaped grate on the top. It’s a simple and appealing design that’s incredibly useful, too! It takes me days to fill up my compost bin, and while food is breaking down inside of it, I don’t have to deal with any smells wafting outside of it."

12 / 30
Staff
$32.00

"Staff’s toilet brush is a better-looking alternative to the everyday standard. The brush comes fully assembled and docked in its canister, which keeps it looking sleek and tidy when not in use. The Toilet Brush is nice and compact, making it great for small spaces," I wrote in my review of the bathroom tool. "Cleaning-wise, The Toilet Brush does what it’s supposed to do best: It cleans the toilet, and does a great job at it! I had no trouble scrubbing down my toilet with it, and it was great being able to sanitize the brush and put it back into its container rather than leaving it laying around to dry afterwards. The silicone head of the toilet brush is also replaceable, which means you can prolong the lifespan of the tool without having to buy a completely new one to keep the look."

13 / 30
Amazon
$34.95

"The one product we swear by is something we heard about secondhand before we even had children. A friend told us that a friend of theirs said that Folex was a must-have for anyone with kids (or anyone likely to have to deal with spills and stains on upholstery and carpeting). Since then, we’ve always had a spray bottle of it on hand and around our home, along with a big refill bottle," said contributor Shifrah in her review of the cleaner. Best List Editor Kendall has five pets and a white couch, saying in her review, "Knowing that it’s a safe product that works quickly and easily on a multitude of stain types, I personally agree with one Amazon customer’s appropriately short and sweet review: 'How does it work? I don’t care. What are the ingredients? Pixie dust and incantation. Where did all the stains go? Away.'"

14 / 30
J.R. Watkins
$6.49

"First and foremost, I was drawn to its looks," said AT Style Editor Blair in her review of J.R. Watkin's Foaming Dish Soap. "As to be expected from J.R. Watkins, the cleaning staple comes in a well-designed, pretty bottle that’s compact enough to fit on my tiny kitchen counter. Its yellow packaging also nods to another major selling point — its scent. Made from natural ingredients, it gives off a delicious lemony fragrance that makes my entire sink smell like summer personified and blows every other soap smell out of the (dish)water."

15 / 30
Amazon
$11.00

Founded in 1975, cleaning brand Forever New isn't a new focuses on cleaning your clothes and protecting longevity with gentle ingredients, according to AT contributor Ashley Abramson's review of their popular Stain Remedy Gel. "I chose two dish towels to test. One had week-old tomato sauce and curry stains, and the other had set-in brownish discoloration from who-knows-what. I followed the instructions on the back of the label: shaking up the bottle, applying it directly to the stain, and then using the built-in brush to gently scrub," she said, explaining the process of applying the gel ahead of throwing the towels into the wash as instructed. "Would you believe it if I told you the towels were like new once I pulled them out? Not only were the stains invisible (yes, even the old ones), but they also felt so much softer and looked so much brighter than before. And all without too much elbow grease!"

16 / 30
Sharkclean
$329.99

Shark is a favorite for many AT staffers, and managed to score new fans this year with first-time users of the brand. "The Shark Wandvac certainly lives up to the brand’s hype," I wrote in my review. "While vacuuming, I would see dust, dirt, and more being pulled toward the device before I physically reached it. I also couldn’t believe how much dog hair it pulled out of the fibers of my carpet with the help of its PowerFins brushroll, which works on carpet and hard flooring (both of which are in my apartment). I knew my dog shed a lot — it’s why I vacuum so often in the first place — but the Wandvac was able to dig deep and grab dirt that my old vacuum totally missed. My living room floor has honestly never looked better, and I moved in two years ago!"

17 / 30
Amazon
$14.30

According to Zum, this is NOT a laundry detergent: It's soap! The plant-based Zum Laundry Soap cleans with the simple ingredients of glycerin, essential oils, coconut oil, and baking soda, leaving your clothing, bedding, towels, and more smelling pleasantly fresh. A little goes a long way with this product, which is a good thing because you'll want it to last. The Sea Salt scent is a favorite at AT, but there's also Patchouli and Frankincense + Myrrh.

18 / 30
Amazon
$15.99

"According to the description, you can use it on pretty much any kind of stain (including protein stains, like poop and blood) and on all kinds of fabrics (including upholstery). I also love that it’s safe around kids and pets. I got the four-ounce bottle, which seems small, but you don’t need very much of it to see results," said contributor Ashley in her review of Miss Mouth's Messy Eater Stain Treater. After seeing its high rating, she absolutely had to see it in action and successfully tried it on her son's green shirt. "To make double sure it worked, I also sprayed Miss Mouth’s on an old mud stain my dog had tracked in on a pink upholstered chair. I sprayed twice, scratched with my finger, and just like that — the unsightly spot disappeared."

19 / 30
Amazon
$21.99

If you work out often or lead an active lifestyle, HEX Performance is a brand you should definitely check out, but it's not at all limited to activewear. While their laundry detergent and wet dryer sheets made waves with AT editors, their Deodorizing Spray has been a shining star in the bunch. With two dogs running around inside and outside of her home all day, shopping editor Britt keeps the spray within reach to knock the smells out. The spray can also be used on sneakers, workout mats, and more — all without the harsh chemicals.

20 / 30
Amazon
$9.99

Editor Kendall took a tip from her grandmother and started using this retractable gap tool to help keep her apartment clean, and it couldn't have been a better decision. "I grabbed one for my tiny NYC apartment, which is basically a vortex of city grime (oh, and cat hair) and exceptional at hiding it all thanks to a number of tight spaces," she said in her review. "It’s been a life-changer, truly. From tidying my AC unit without having to remove and replace it completely to clearing those grates that cover the exhaust fans in my bathroom and kitchen, there are no less than 472 uses for this gap cleaner in my home. This gap duster has made my home a safer, healthier, and more pleasant place to be."

21 / 30
Staff
$32.00

"It’s such a better alternative for me than a regular old plunger," said this review of The Plunger from editor-favorite brand Staff. "It measures 23.4″ from top to bottom, and the handle is made from a vivid acrylic that comes in four bold colors. You’ll see Staff’s signature bow-tied smiley at the top and a shiny bronze ring at the bottom, adding a touch of flair to a utilitarian item. It actually looks so chic that you won’t want to hide it away when company comes over."

22 / 30
Amazon
$25.00

"While saving my dish towel from the point of no return may have been the first miracle this stain remover worked, it certainly wasn’t the last. Over the past few months, I’ve tested it on everything. Sauce stains on a white t-shirt? No match. Wine stains on my favorite pair of pants? Like it never happened. The real test, however, came when I put it up against one of the worst staining culprits: ink," said SEO editor Sarah's review of the Carbona Pro Care Laundry Stain Scrubber. "After fumbling with an especially inky pen, I left a Jackson Pollock-like mess of marks across one of my favorite tops. After a minor meltdown, I reached for Carbona and thought to myself, 'If this can get ink out, it’s truly a miracle product.' I applied the gel and gently scrubbed it with the attached agitator, let it soak for 10 minutes per the instructions, and threw it in the wash. To my bewilderment, the stain was gone, and in its place was a perfectly clean shirt and a forever ride or die fan."

23 / 30
Wayfair
$140.99
was $164.99

BISSELL's Little Green collection of cleaning machines have been gamechangers for AT editors, and the Little Green Pet Pro is no exception. This pod-like carpet and upholstery cleaner has come to the rescue on more than one occasion, clearing away pet messes and human messes alike. Having to use the Little Green Pet Pro more than once on her living room sofa made me a huge fan, and its multiple attachments helped significantly to clean deep into her couch cushions to make them look like they'd never gotten soiled in the first place.

24 / 30
Amazon
$10.99
was $13.99

"I have long hair and use a lot of different products in the shower, so the drain can get messy pretty quickly. To further complicate things, I have a flat shower drain, so I’ve struggled for a while to find a drain protector that wasn’t specifically meant for a rounded tub," said AT contributor Grace Cooper in her review of the Aire Allure Disposable Shower Drain Stickers. "They’re super easy to apply, and the adhesive stays very secure for the recommended two to three weeks of use. You just put on the sticker when the drain is dry and remove it when it’s wet. And it catches everything."

25 / 30
Etsy
$47.75

If you've never bought cleaning products on Etsy, Humble Suds could be the brand that gets you on board. Their Cleaning Starter Kit is made up of a trio of natural and non-toxic products, including an all-purpose cleaner, cleaning paste, and a laundry soap that one shopping editor relied on throughout hurricane season. Even better, the laundry soap can be ordered fragrance-free for those with sensitive noses. This single kit effectively takes care of laundry, kitchen, bathroom cleaning and makes for a wonderful introduction to the brand.

26 / 30
Amazon
$13.55
was $15.99

Terro is an AT favorite brand for warding off insects, and when contributor Amy Gordon found out they made a fruit fly trap, she added it to her cart right away. "Not only are fruit flies no match for this Terro trap, but it also has tons of additional features that I absolutely adore," said her review of the Terro Fruit Fly Trap. "They’re shaped like little red apples and definitely do not scream 'I have bugs!' The traps are super easy to put together, too: Just empty the included fly-luring liquid into the apple and set it down (yup, that’s all). The substance inside is non-toxic to humans, yet both irresistible and deadly to fruit flies. These pesky bugs make their way into the top of the trap … and never get out. In a matter of days, I not only noticed a severe drop-off in fruit flies flitting around my space, but via a window built into the side of the apple, I could actually see dozens of little dead flies floating around (gross, I know, but oh-so-satisfying)."

27 / 30
Amazon
$112.22
was $133.89

"I’m not a clumsy person by nature, but somehow I’ve surrounded myself with accident-prone people. When I find days-old dried ketchup from my younger cousin’s fries on my living room carpet, I turn to the BISSELL Pet Stain Eraser Powerbrush to get the job done," I wrote in my review of the handheld cleaner. "It’s rechargeable and cordless, so you can take it wherever you need it, from the floor to the couch to the backseat of your car. However, its runtime is only about 20 minutes, so it’s best to use the Pet Stain Eraser for spot cleaning, as a huge mess that would take a while to scrub up would likely not be feasible on a single charge. That being said, this machine is impressively thorough and efficient for stains that fall within its capabilities (high-pile carpets and shag rugs are a no-go altogether)."

28 / 30
Amazon
$9.99

It's easy to rely on tried-and-true favorites for cleaning, but some editors were able to step out of the box and try something new, such as Seventh Generation's Toilet Bowl Cleaner Powder. "It foams well and has little to no smell — it’s fragrance-free — which is ideal for sensitive noses (like mine!). I then proceeded to scrub away — and it does a great job of cleaning. After a flush, I was able to see the results: a clean bowl," said Cleaning & Organizing Editor Stephanie's review. "While the overall clean is very similar to my current go-to liquid cleaner, I really enjoyed the satisfaction of watching this one bubble up and foam. The lack of scent is also a plus — and it didn’t diminish the overall cleanliness of the bowl."

29 / 30
Dyson
$549.99
was $649.99

When AT contributor Stella moved from L.A. to New York, she learned very quickly that she would need some time to adjust to life with white floors, which don't hide dirt, hair, and other messes very well. "Luckily, in my battle against the inevitable crumbs and dirt accrued, I’ve got an ally — and a powerful one at that. I’m talking about my Dyson V12 Detect Slim," she says in her review. "The V12 is far superior to any other Dyson, IMO. Not only is it 24 percent lighter than previous models, it’s also imbued with a special laser technology. The green light shoots out in front of the Laser Slim Fluffy vacuum head, illuminating microscopic dust and other unseen bits (providing a roadmap of where to vacuum next), and demonstrating exactly how clean your home is at any given moment. I like to turn off all the lights so I can max out the laser’s potential and go to town!"

30 / 30
Amazon
$8.99

"Think of these food-grade, BPA-free plastic liners as smartphone screen protectors, but for your fridge. Just place one on top of each shelf for protection against whatever might normally make a mess," said AT contributor Amy Gordon. "Whether you spill a sticky, sugary beverage or knock over the open box of baking soda in the back behind the milk, these mats bring the mess to you rather than the other way around. All you have to do is move the rest of your food to another shelf, remove the liner, rinse and dry it, and put it right back where it was."