My weekly chores growing up included washing the dinner dishes, vacuuming, and dusting. Same thing every week…there were no rotating chore charts or switching up jobs with my brother, so I got very good at doing all three (comes with lots of practice).
Not that I love doing dishes or vacuuming, but there is a bit of satisfaction to be found in a sparkling clean sink and a loaded dishwasher, not to mention those nice little lines on the carpet that are left after you vacuum. But I hated dusting from day one and, thirty years later, I still hate it. (Seriously…I would rather clean toilets.)
Dusting has to be the most pointless chore that has ever existed. I mean, really…wiping off furniture week in and week out? It just seems so ridiculous!
But you know what is even more ridiculous? How sloppy my house looks when there is a layer of dust all over everything.
So yes, if we want clean houses, we have to dust. But we don’t have to spend a lot of time doing it. My aversion to dusting has helped me develop a few shortcuts to doing my most dreaded chore ever.
Get rid of your clutter
The more stuff you have, the more stuff that gets covered in dust, and the more you need to clean…it’s that simple.
When I first got married, I eagerly decorated our new apartment with cute little knick-knacks that I found at different stores or that had been given to us by family or friends. I thought it all looked so homey and nice until I had to dust all of those knick-knacks every week. It was such a pain!
Related post: Removing and Organizing Clutter
Then my little ones came along and I had to hide all those knick-knacks so that the kids wouldn’t break them or try to put anything dangerous into their mouths. At first, I thought my home looked so sparse, but when dusting day came around, I found out how much faster it was to get it all done.
Now that my kids are much older, I have put a few little things out on my side tables, but it’s much less than before and dusting goes pretty quickly.
Buy Light-Colored Furniture
Obviously, if you already have a house full of furniture, you aren’t going to go out and buy all new things just to avoid having to dust. But if you are in the market for furniture, might I suggest picking something that’s light in color?
There’s a reason for it…the dust doesn’t show (…as much)!
I first noticed this beautiful trick when we replaced our hand-me-down bedroom furniture with brand new furniture that was painted a cream color. I just liked the look of the set; I didn’t buy it thinking that it would save me on cleaning, but it did.
Most of the time, I don’t notice any dust accumulating on my bedroom furniture or the white side tables in my living room…it just doesn’t stand out as much as it does on pieces with a dark stain. So I can go a little longer in between dustings if I just can’t bring myself to get out the dust cloth.
Which brings me to my next hack…
Dust less often
If you really hate dusting like I do, why not dust less often? I grew up having to dust everything once a week, and half the time, the furniture was pretty much dust-free.
In my grown-up home, I only dust every other week, and honestly, I could probably go longer than that between dustings. It all depends on how much seeing dust on the furniture bothers you.
Tools for dusting
The best tip I found for dusting was to use a clean rag, dampened with water to wipe your furniture. Yes, even your wooden furniture.
The reason this works so well is because the dust will stick to a damp cloth; a dry cloth will just push the dust around. The trick is to make sure you wring out the cloth very, very well, as you do not want a lot of water left behind after you wipe the furniture. As the rag gets dirty, simply rinse it in the sink, wring out thoroughly, and continue on.
You do not need to use a spray polish like Pledge each time you dust. The damp rag does just fine, however, you may want to polish your furniture every so often with something like Pledge and a dry cloth.
Sometimes what you are dusting is out of reach…a ceiling fan, for example…so you may need one or two other tools to make your job easier.
This ceiling fan duster (affiliate link) is similar to the one I’ve had for years to clean my ceiling fans. It slips over the entire fan blade, cleaning both sides at one time.
It’s also handy for cleaning the air conditioner’s intake vent, which tends to get dusty over time.
So no matter how much we hate dusting, doing it on a regular basis makes our homes look much cleaner. Using a few of these dusting hacks will save a lot of time and energy and give us clean homes in the long run.