Old wives tales: A look into the cleaning tricks that DO work

January 3, 2018

Article originally sourced from Express

"LEAVING vinegar in a smoky room with the door shut overnight does in fact get rid of the smell of stale cigarettes.


But old teabags do not freshen up smelly shoes.


These are among the findings of an analysis of “old wives’ tales” carried out by the Good Housekeeping Institute.


Gems of wisdom that do work include spraying shaving foam on a bathroom mirror then wiping it with a clean cloth until streak free to stop it steaming up.


Hairspray can remove ink and permanent marker stains on hard surfaces.


It also works well at removing biro and red wine stains from cotton fabric, which need to be washed afterwards with a biological detergent.


Lemonade in water prolongs the life of cut flowers better than bleach, aspirin, sugar, flower food or plain water.


And rubbing soap on a zip will help it glide, but you will have to repeat the application as the soap wears off.


Candle wax drips on fabric can be ironed away but do not let the iron touch the wax. Scrape off what you can with a blunt knife and cover the area with kitchen roll or brown paper on both sides of the fabric, if possible.


Then with a warm iron, melt the wax on to the paper.


Launder using the hottest wash the fabric’s care label allows. Rubbing fabric conditioner on tights does stop static.

However, cleaning shoes with banana skins does not work. They are very messy and leave greasy marks.


And do not try removing beetroot stains with salt – it will only set the stain and make it impossible to remove. Instead, tackle the stain as quickly as possible before it dries.


Blot up excess juice and flush with cool water. Treat carpets with branded stain remover and launder washable fabrics at 40 degrees with a biological detergent.


Meanwhile, putting vinegar on chopping boards does not stop you crying when you cut onions


The report said: “At the Good Housekeeping Institute, we’ve been writing about how best to get the cleaning done for more than 90 years.


“So there really isn’t much we haven’t tried out. Our cleaning experts have debunked the most common myths and have sorted the fact from the fiction.”


The growth of advice on the internet means there is no shortage of tips to keep the house and its contents clean.


These often involve everyday ingredients that could save many families a small fortune in branded and expensive specialist cleaning products.


But while some are modern variations on age-old advice and clearly do work, others seem to be speculative at best and dangerous at worst.


The GHI guide added: “The internet is full of cleaning tips – from the sublime to the ridiculous.


"The good news is that we test everything before we write about it, so you really know what works and what doesn’t.”


Old wives tales that work:

1. Lemonade in the water prolongs the life of cut flowers.

2. Candle wax drips on fabric can be removed by covering with brown paper and then ironing with a warm iron.

3. Wipe shaving foam on a mirror stop it from steaming up when you take a bath or shower.

4. Remove the smell of cigarettes in a room by putting two tablespoons of malt vinegar in a dish and leaving overnight with the door shut.

5. Hairspray removes ink and permanent marker from hard surfaces.

6. Rubbing soap on a zip will help it glide.

7. Rubbing fabric conditioner on tights to stop static.


Old wives tales that don't work:

1. The inside of a banana skin does not shine leather, it just leaves greasy marks.

2. Do not try to remove beetroot stains with salt as the salt will just set the stain.

3. Dry tea bags do not deodorise smelly shoes.

4. Do not bother putting vinegar on a chopping board when cutting onions to stop crying, it does not work


Source: https://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/896941/Old-wives-tales-cleaning-tips-vinegar-teabags-zips-smell-cigarettes


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