Green Clean Makeover: The Living Room

Green Clean Makeover: The Living Room

Sarah Rae Smith
May 19, 2010

We've been talking about giving your spaces a mini green clean makeover and on today's agenda is the living room. It sees a great deal of traffic and use from family, friends and pets alike. If your living room is used as much as ours is, not only could it use a little sprucing up, but a green touch would make us feel more comfortable in the space. Check out our easy tips and tricks after the jump!

If we're not sleeping or working, we can usually be found in our living rooms trying to relax. When you have a space that the whole family shares and spends their time lounging about, things can get a little funky, try these tips to freshen things up a bit.

• Shoes & Windows: Although these two things don't have much in common with each other, they are both the biggest contributors of dust in your space. Although we want to see those windows open for fresh outside air, be conscious of the dirt that comes in and be prepared to be on top of it. Try leaving your shoes at the front door when you enter your home, or even just outside the living room if you're a shoes-on person.

• On Vacuums and Brooms: We've already mentioned that our BFF is a vacuum and we still stand by that. Daily we vacuum our sofas, chairs and well... almost anything that will hold still. We also dust the tops of pictures and accessories with a piece of womens hosiery secured over the end of the extension tool with a rubber band. Sucking up that dust means there's one less rag to clean and it works just as well. If you have hardwoods, sweep daily and don't forget those baseboards, there's a great deal of icky stuff hiding there and sadly, it accumulates every day. The movement of traffic through the space or fans will only blow it around and we like all our dust either outside or in the trash can.

• Upholstery Is Meant To Be Cleaned: Although the thought of cleaning your upholstery sends some minds into a frantic state, we promise it isn't as difficult as it sounds. To start, remove all your cushions and get down in between the crevices with your vacuum. Yes, it's amazing what falls down there, it happens to everyone don't worry. Next, if your cushions have removable covers, go ahead and toss them in the wash if the tag says it's alright. If not and you'd like for all your covers to stay right where they are, try this tip from eHow:

"Mix 1/2 cup of an environmentally safe dish washing liquid (such as Ecover, Method, or Seventh Generation) and 1 cup water in a large bowl, then whip with a hand mixer until the mixture looks like whipped cream. Using a small scrub brush, gently shampoo a small area at a time, using a spatula or rubber scraper to lift away the dirty suds. Wipe with a clean, damp cloth. Rinse the cloth frequently in clean water, wringing it out until it is nearly dry."

• Got Blinds?: If you're comfortable removing them, toss them in the tub with a few cups of white vinegar and baking soda. Allow them to sit for a few minutes and then scrub them with a nail brush to remove all sorts of lurking dirt and dust you didn't want to know existed. If you can't remove them, try closing the blinds and using an eco-friendly cleaner to wipe them down. Reverse blinds and repeat.

• Electronics Care: Most of your electronics are cleaned easiest with a simple microfiber cloth. If you skipped a few days and have a good amount of dust, you can try a light spritz of rubbing alcohol first. It evaporates quick and should be wiped off quick as well!

• Does A Ceiling Fan Keep You Cool?: The dust that accumulates on top of your ceiling fan is just ridiculous. With open windows to keep you cool a fan is a great compliment, but the dust that builds up is simply redistributed around the room if not caught (the same goes for stand fans as well). Dusters can make a bigger mess, so we're big fans if a damp microfiber cloth. That way if anything falls down it's in a clump that's easily swept up — instead of an explosive powder that seems to cover everything!

Do you have a green cleaning tip to add to the list? How do you keep your living room clean while being earth-friendly? Let us know below!

More Green Clean Makeovers:
Green Clean Makeover: The Bedroom
Green Clean Makeover: Under the Kitchen Sink
Green Clean Makeover: The Entryway
Green Clean Makeover: The Garage

(Image: Laura and Andrew's Park-Side Modern)

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