10 Tricks That'll Make You Look Like A Clean Person

Illustrated by Tristan Offit.
Having a clean apartment can feel like a full-time job. And while it can sometimes be rewarding to blast our favorite podcasts and really get our clean on, too often our real full-time job is exhausting enough without adding in sweeping and scrubbing. But, even for the laziest among us, there are ways to keep clean (or at least look like it) in a pinch.

Here are our 10 favorite cleaning hacks to make your place look way cleaner in no time flat.

This month, we're asking you to toss out everything you thought you knew about spring cleaning and give every corner of your life a refresh. The inspiration for a happier, clutter-free you is right this way.
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Illustrated by Tristan Offit.
Only have a few minutes to tidy up the kitchen before your guests arrive? If it's just a few plates and bowls, rinsing and stacking dirty dishes in the sink can make a huge difference. But if you've been cooking all day (or just haven't done dishes in a while), not even a Tetris-worthy stacking can make the kitchen look clean. Instead, stash the dirties (temporarily!) in the oven. Out of sight, out of mind — just remember to remove them as soon as your guests leave (and before preheating your oven).
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Illustrated by Tristan Offit.
If you're like me, you've saved up ever postcard and ticket stub with a sentimental memory attached. And, if you're like me, you have a growing pile of those little bits of memorabilia that one day you'll assemble into a well-curated scrapbook. Fast forward a few years, that pile is still growing, and the scrapbooking aisle in Michael's fills you with anxiety.

Enter: the smash book, a.k.a. scrapbooking for dummies. All you need is a plain, unlined notebook and tape or a glue stick. Half scrapbook, half journal, a smash book is where you can stick your memories with no pressure about layout or design. Once you've started it, get in the habit of adding things directly to the book and make that encroaching pile of keepsakes a thing of the past.
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Illustrated by Tristan Offit.
Declutter closets, clear off coat racks, and get more drawer space instantly — without having to buy more storage. Bulky coats fold up nicely into bigger suitcases, out-of-season shoes can be tucked into your carry-on, and swimsuits can spend the winter in beach totes.
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Illustrated by Tristan Offit.
We all have our version of the quickie clean-up — stashing things in the closet, stacking junk mail neatly, and closing your bedroom door. But what really makes a place look freshly cleaned is sparkling surfaces. And, it only takes 30 seconds and some disinfecting wipes.

Once you're done tidying up, just wipe down your newly cleared surfaces. That freshly cleaned sparkle will make it look you spent way more time on it than you really did.
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Illustrated by Tristan Offit.
Okay, hear me out: the fridge is a fun place to stick up postcards, grocery lists, and save the dates from all your college friends. But all of those nice memories and reminders can quickly become visual background noise — you don’t really see them anymore.

Take them all off. Yes, all of them! You probably don’t need to constantly reference that take-out menu anyway, you always get the Pad Thai. Instead, put the things you love into your aforementioned smash book. Then, recycle the rest. You can slowly rebuild your fridge gallery back up if you want, or maybe you’ll find you like the blank version better.
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Illustrated by Tristan Offit.
A well-lit room looks airier, brighter, and yes, cleaner. But dirty blinds can make the entire room look darker and dingier. Revive a room instantly with a quick blinds cleaning, which is something that only sounds intimidating. All you need is a dryer sheet. Run the sheet between the blinds and all the collected dust and grime will stick to the sheet like a magnet — voila, instant room upgrade.
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Illustrated by Tristan Offit.
Once you walk in the door, just beeline to your bedroom, where you can remove your shoes and proceed to relax. No more discarded shoes — a.k.a. tripping hazards — clogging up your living room or hallways.

This habit also helps with the panic that inevitably sets in when you’re in a rush to get somewhere and can't find your favorite shoes.
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Illustrated by Tristan Offit.
Smashed pillows are a natural side effect of a lived-in couch or bed. But they can also make a room look sloppy, a problem that can be reminded with a quick hiii-yah.

Put your pillows in their place, give 'em a fluff, and then karate chop the top. Quick, easy, and they'll look photo ready instantly.
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Illustrated by Tristan Offit.
Disposable dusters like Swiffer get the job done — but keeping plenty on hand becomes a chore unto itself. For light dusting, you can replace your Swiffer (and save money) by using a sock. Put it on your hand, run it over the surfaces, shelves, and knickknacks that collect dust, then turn it inside out and toss it in the laundry.
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Illustrated by Tristan Offit.
Is this really a lazy girl hack, you may wonder? Well, take it from me, the laziest, most non-morning person in the planet: it can be done. Every damn day. Straighten your top sheet, adjust your pillows, fluff out your comforter, and bam: a room that looks instantly more pulled together.

If your top sheet winds up, more often than not, shoved to the deep recesses of your bed, consider doing away with it entirely and replacing it with a duvet cover that you can wash weekly (a switch that will also speed up the bed making routine).
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