Cleaning & Tidying Tips for Holiday Guests

It’s that time of year again…yep, the family’s visiting! Getting your home ready for a family gathering or a visit from a big group of old friends can be quite a daunting task. Just thinking about all the prep you have to do before your guests arrive for the holidays can be quite overwhelming when you want to make such a good impression. Below you’ll find a few quick clean-up ideas you’ll be sure to have time for in between all the gift shopping and holiday decorating!

Clean-Guest-Room

1) The guest room
Chances are this room is rarely used, but that doesn’t mean you should skip it in your guest prep. Although you may not need Naked Clean to clean this room on every one of your scheduled cleanings, it’s important to make sure it’s ready for your guests. A quick pass through is enough to make a good impression. One helpful tip is to start with the dusting so make sure to get to all surfaces like dressers, nightstands, and even in the drawers, which your guests are sure to use. If you have a ceiling fan, don’t forget to wipe what’s settled up there too. Next, move on to the bed—check that the sheets and comforter are clean and the bed is made. If you really want to impress your guests and make it seem like their walking into a five-star hotel without putting in that much effort, simply place a holiday-themed chocolate on top of their pillows…because who doesn’t love chocolate? After that’s all done, finish up by vacuuming. I always like to leave this task for last to be sure to collect all the dust that’s fallen from the initial wipe through and bed-making.

Cleaning-To-Do-List

2) Make a list for a quick cleaning
So you don’t get too overwhelmed, make a list categorized by room. Then list 4 or 5 tasks you want to complete in each room. For example, you may want list “do dishes, take out trash, wipe stove, wipe counters” for the kitchen so you don’t forget to wash and put away the dishes, take out the trash, clear the caked on gunk on top of the stove, and give a quick wipe to all the counters. You may list “dust side tables, fluff pillows, tidy coffee table, vacuum” for the living room if you want to remember to wipe the lamps and side tables, fluff the sofa, de-clutter the main table your guests will be using, and want to finish it up with a quick vacuum. This type of list will help you stay organized and focused, while prioritizing what’s most important to you.

3) Tidy up with the “Clockwise Method”
If lists aren’t your thing and you really just want more of a “tidying” rather than a “cleaning”, pick a couple rooms you know your guests will be using (e.g. the family room and dining room) and try the clockwise method. Pick a starting point in each room and move from left to right around the area. Everything that you leave behind should be clean and de-cluttered, leaving you to focus on what’s to the right of you. This helps you measure what you have done and what you have left to do. Be sure to bring a basket, a trash bag, and a dusting cloth with you during this quick pass through. Use the basket to pick up items that belong in other rooms of the house, the trash bag to collect items that go into the trash or need to be recycled, and use the dust cloth to quickly wipe surfaces and fingerprints. Bringing these three things with you as you go through the main rooms will help you save time because you won’t be going back and forth. Make sure to focus only on the room you’re in so that you don’t get distracted. If you do this, you’ll be able to tidy up each room in only 5 minutes!

Cleaning-Clockwise-Living-Room

Just try out these tips and you’ll be able to tidy up in no time for your guests during the holidays. If you need a deeper cleaning and a little extra help, don’t hesitate to call us over here at Naked Clean and the maids will be sure to get your San Diego home sparkling and ready for your holiday guests! Don’t forget to share and let us know about any other tips you use to prepare for house guests. We’d love to hear about them in the comments!

3 Quick Tips on Prepping for the Holidays

No matter what holiday you celebrate, you’ve probably been getting ready and started bringing out the old displays and wrapping a present or two…or twenty for family and friends. With all the decorating you’ve got to do and all the gifts you just bought at the Carlsbad Premium Outlets that you now have to wrap, your head is probably spinning. Check out these 3 quick tips to help you prep for the holidays!

Christmas-Decorations1) Clean up your decorations
Some people really get into decorating, leaving no inch of the house uncovered. But if you’re not a Griswold and haven’t quite gotten around to it yet, here’s a tip that will help your decorations really shine this year. Since we don’t regularly use our holiday decorations, they tend to get dusty and dirty throughout the year. For small décor or items that may be a bit more delicate, use a clean small paintbrush as a duster. Use a bigger paintbrush for larger items. You can even lightly dampen the brushes with water to help the process a bit. Just make sure to start at the top and work down so the dust doesn’t fall over any areas you’ve already cleaned.

2) Avoid sticky messes laterMenorah
Candles are a big part of the décor around the holidays. One of the pesky problems I often encounter is the wax that falls from the candles I have throughout the house. Letting it fall and settle is a real annoyance for the after-holiday clean-up. One helpful tip is to put a little bit of olive oil at the bottom of candles. This will keep the wax from sticking, which will make clean up easier later on. If you’re using a menorah, you can also place foil under it to catch any wax drippings that may fall. For a little extra style, try cutting wax paper into a decorative shape and place under the menorah to give it some flair.

3) Keep tidy while wrapping presents
Wrapping presents can get a little frustrating and messy, especially when snipping away at the paper to get it wrapped around that oddly-shaped gift just right. Your table ends up covered in a collage of tiny torn shreds and bits of ribbon that didn’t get used. The solution for this one is actually quite simple and you’ll wonder why you didn’t think of it before! Simply cut open a large garbage bag and lay it over the surface you’ll be using. When you’re done, all you have to do is grab and toss! And if there are any small pieces that got away, use a lint roller to pick them up. This clean-up strategy is a real time-saver.

Christmas-WrappingHopefully, these easy-to-do tips will help your holiday displays glow and your gift-wrapping go a little more smoothly. Do you have any favorite tips that help your home stay tidy and clean during the Holiday prep? Let us know in the comments and be sure to share!

Naked Clean: TV Commercial 2014

We’re live with Naked Clean’s new TV commercial! After a long and exciting process of filming and editing, it’s out for you to watch. It features our very own office pup, Snoopy, as the new face of our company so check it out:

As a local San Diego house cleaning company, we not only believe in making your home shine, but are strongly founded on the promise to be non-toxic. We believe in the health and happiness of our city’s residents and their pets so, on top of getting the word out about us, we wanted to showcase our commitment to being “People, Pet and Planet Friendly”. What better way to do this than with a fun and upbeat commercial seen through a dog’s eyes?

We’ve uploaded it to our YouTube channel and it’s running on local TV screens across San Diego County so we hope you enjoy! Make sure to share it and let us know what you think in the comments.

Food for Thought: 10 Ways to Clean with Food

Along with that crazy and wonderful family you’re excited to see for Thanksgiving tomorrow, I’m willing to bet that the only other thing on your mind is food! But food isn’t just good for stuffing your family—it’s also a great tool for cleaning once they leave. That’s right, you can actually use food to help you clean up after all those guests put your pots, pans, dishes, and kitchen through the ringer. Not only will using food to clean be fun, but it’s also a great natural alternative to scrubbing and scouring with those toxic products you shouldn’t be using in the first place! So check out these 10 foods that you can use for house cleaning:

1) Club Soda
This one is somewhat common so I thought I’d list it first. With all the food and drink spills that are probably going to happen tomorrow, club soda is a great way to remove stains from many fabrics and even carpeting. You can even use it to clean your cast iron pots and pans by simply pouring club soda into a hot skillet and lightly scrub using a scouring pad. Just make sure to use a non-metal brush!

Clean-With-Lemon
2) Lemon
Lemon is another of the most well-known natural alternatives used to clean. A fairly common use that’s really going to be helpful after Thanksgiving is placing a lemon in your garbage disposal to reduce or eliminate odors. It’s easy and will leave your kitchen smelling a little fresher! Lemons are also a great way to remove lime scale, that hard and chalky deposit you can find on your faucets, kettles, or hot-water boilers. Use it to clean before the big day to impress your guests with how shiny and fresh your kitchen is!

3) Onion
This tip will leave you smiling instead of tearing up! Onion is a great way to clean your grill if you end up using it for dinner tomorrow. Once your grill is hot, stick half of an onion onto a long barbeque fork or use long tongs and scrape the grill clean. It will remove all the grime without all that elbow grease you usually have to put into the grit that’s left over.

Clean-With-Cucumber

4) Cucumber
A lot of people in the house can mean you end up with a lot of accidental marks on the walls from all the hustle and bustle of the day. A cucumber will do just the trick of removing them. Simply cut a piece of cucumber that’s one inch or thicker to remove many types of marks from your walls. It’s even useful for polishing your stainless steel.

5) Coffee Grinds
Did you know coffee isn’t just a great pick-me-up, but it’s also useful for picking up after a messy dinner? Coffee grinds can be great to scrub down greasy surfaces and can even be used as a hand scrub. Coffee grinds can also be placed in your refrigerator to absorb all those odors of the leftovers that will surely be piled up.

Clean-With-Tea-Bags
6) Tea Bags
Not a coffee drinker? Well, you can use tea to help you clean too! Your furniture is likely to take a bit of a beating this holiday so an interesting trick is to take your “used” cooled tea bags to clean and polish wood surfaces, such as your cabinets and even your floors (although cleaning an entire floor using tea bags might be a little difficult and tiring). The reason this works is because tea contains tannins, which are excellent wood cleaners.

7) Salt
Speaking of wood cleaners—coarse salt is a good natural scouring agent so it is great for scrubbing wood cutting boards to really get off all that food that tends to stick on after a day of cooking. Just combine half a lemon with some salt and scrub away using a non-metal brush or sponge scrubber.

Clean-With-Olive-Oil

8) Olive Oil
Salt can even combine perfectly with olive oil for even more cleaning uses. This combination will allow you to clean you cast iron skillets well, while also seasoning them at the same time! Leaving a little bit of the oil on the pan will even help prevent rust too. You can also use olive oil and a non-metal brush to clean your stainless steel pots and pans, although it won’t work if what you’re trying to polish is coated with a plastic film.

9) Ketchup
With all the cooking you’re going to do, ketchup can be quite useful. And I don’t mean just as a condiment. Usually best on hot dogs and french fries, ketchup is also great for polishing your copper pots and pans (not recommended for those that are only copper-coated). Tomatoes are actually acidic and the chemical reaction causes the copper to really shine, serving as the perfect solution to the dingy and dirty pots you are left with after cooking the big dinner.

10) Rice
And for the rest of the weekend, when you need to wake up your overnight guests or want to relax with a fresh pot of coffee—use rice to clean up your coffee grinder. Simply put a small amount of white rice into the grinder and turn it for a short while. This will help you remove any stuck coffee grinds from the inside surface of your grinder and it’s a real time saver!

Now try out these fun DIY ways to clean and let me know what you found to be the most useful in the comments! And if you ever need some extra help, don’t hesitate to call your local San Diego non-toxic house cleaning service, Naked Clean. We’ll be sure to have your home sparkling after that big Thanksgiving weekend!

5 DIY Ways to Make Your Home Feel Like Fall

Getting ready for the holidays doesn’t just mean it’s time to get your home cleaned by Naked Clean, your local green house cleaning service. It’s also important to make your home feel like fall for you and your guests now that Thanksgiving is just around the corner. Although I’m so thankful to have near perfect weather year-round here in San Diego, I find myself craving the feel, the look, the sounds, the smells, and the tastes of fall. Below are some easy and fun DIY ways to satisfy all your senses and make your home into a fall fantasy!

1) The Feel of Fall
Fall-BlanketsMy favorite part of fall is being able to get comfy by the fire. A quick and easy tip to make your home feel warm and cozy is to add blankets to your living room. Find the softest blankets you can (in your favorite fall colors, of course) and simply drape them on your couch or place them in a basket nearby for everyone to enjoy. You’ll find that more and more time will be spent cuddling up and enjoying the company of your family.

2) The Look of Fall
Fall-DecorationsDecorating your home can also help it feel like fall. Although I probably won’t get a chance to try all of them out this year, I found so many great DIY decorating ideas here. When it comes to fall décor, it’s all about adding touches of browns and oranges, finding ways to incorporate those beautiful fall leaves and pumpkins in every room, and getting a little crafty and creative with the more rustic elements.

3) The Sounds of Fall
Fall-FireplaceA crackling fire, rustling leaves, and drizzling rain—all sounds that remind me of fall. Although it may be 73 and sunny here in San Diego, it’s starting to get a bit cold. After dinner is the best time to start the fire and get the wood burning and crackling, find some tracks that sounds like rain on your favorite music streaming site, and grab a book (and blanket!) to curl up with.

4) The Smell of Fall
Fall-Smells-PotpourriNow this one is important—make your home smell like fall to truly make it feel like fall. I found some amazing tricks to do just that here. From simmering pot recipes to candles and potpourri, you’ll find ways to fill your home with the smells of fall spices, herbs, and cinnamon (my favorite). It’s time to really enjoy all those scents of nature!

5) The Taste of Fall
Fall-Caramel-Apple-SnackFood! So much delicious food! This is probably one of the first thoughts you have when you realize that fall is here…but it’s not always all about the turkey. One fall favorite is the pumpkin spice latte, which you can find out how to make at home here. It may even turn out better than the Starbucks seasonal classic! I also found a mouth-watering list of apple and caramel snacks here. Choosing an image to show was so difficult because each one looked just as scrumptious as the last. Now, I’m not one for cooking, but these recipes look absolutely delicious and well worth the little bit of extra work!

So just follow some of these DIY tips and tricks and your home will be fall-tastic! It’s a short list, but the possibilities are endless. Do you have any other fall favorites for your home that I didn’t mention? Comment to let me know and I’ll be sure to try them out!

A Press Release for the Community

I’m Dave, Marketing Director for Naked Clean. It’s not only my job to advertise and help people find our services, but it’s also my job to learn about the science behind Probiotics and the other non-toxic products we use to clean homes across San Diego County. What I love most about my job is discovering and absorbing all the material I can and then relaying the information to our community.

Toxic Cleaning ProductsMost people don’t give a second thought to what they’re using to clean their homes, as long as it’s “sanitizing” and killing “99.9% of the germs” on surfaces. But this is where most people go wrong. What they think is making their homes a healthy environment for their kids and pets, can actually be quite dangerous and harmful. I am happy to be able to teach people why the products they use are so toxic and open their eyes to better, natural alternatives.

One of the ways we decided to do this was through a press release. However, rather than focus on our company and trying to sell our services, I wanted our press release to be an educational article highlighting how Probiotics actually work. Good GermsI felt this press release was so necessary because I find that people are often surprised, and sometimes a bit concerned, when I tell them we are using germs to clean their homes. I wanted the press release to be completely transparent, explain that Probiotics are actually good germs we use to fight the bad germs in your homes, and discuss our reasoning behind using Probiotics. It was important to me that people discover how they could take steps towards going a little greener, whether they chose to hire Naked Clean for their cleaning service or not.

And that’s what I find to be the most important part of my job—not selling Naked Clean to you, but rather teaching you about the natural choices that could improve house cleaning and provide a safer alternative for your family, your pets, and our environment.

So find our press release here and give it a quick read!

Naked Clean: A Non-Toxic Maid Service Introduction

Hello! Allow us introduce ourselves—we’re Naked Clean, a family-owned San Diego maid service providing affordable, green house cleaning that is “People, Pet and Planet Friendly®”. We believe in keeping you, your family, and the environment safe. That means no toxic chemicals! You can also trust us and the maids we refer to you. Not only are they self-insured and self-bonded for your protection, but, with many years of experience, they really know how to clean! All you have to do is choose the service and choose the rooms you’d like cleaned—we do the rest!