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We asked our cleaning expert how to restart, refresh in the new year

Expertly reviewed by Ketia Daniel

As the holidays near an end, the post-holiday cleaning will begin. From the fridge to the fireplace and everything in between, holiday celebrations result in needed tidying throughout the house. Additionally, it’s crucial to properly store decorations like Christmas ornaments to protect them and keep them ready to go when the holidays roll around again.

After the holidays, decluttering and deep cleaning can be overwhelming, but professional assistance can help. We consulted with our cleaning expert, Ketia Daniel, the founder of BHM Cleaning Co in Birmingham, Alabama, for tips to simplify your cleaning up and organizing efforts for a fresh start to the new year. 

Tips for efficient post-holiday cleaning

When it’s time to clean up your home after the holidays, Daniel stresses that time organization is a must. “Use the time wisely, when it's time to clean up your Christmas tree and your Christmas decorations. That’s the best time, in my opinion, to give your house a deep clean,” she said. 

Having the items you need before you begin the cleaning process is the first step in maximizing your time, Daniel continued. “I would say to go ahead now, while the Christmas things are out, and buy your supplies. If you need containers to put your ornaments in [and] organize them. I would go ahead and label them and everything.” 

Focus on storage

Refreshing your home after the Christmas season begins with a plan to store decorations and keep them protected while in storage. Daniel recommends purchasing boxes that are “designed especially for ornaments.” Boxes with this design typically have protective dividers. 

Holiday inflatables are more popular than ever but require careful care once when it’s time to take them down and store them. “I think it’s very important for people to gather their inflatables and other things they have outside and clean them off before they put them in storage. You can just water them down after you deflate them and then let them dry and then pack them up in a plastic container. Don’t use soap because that may discolor the inflatable,” Daniel said. 

Prepare to clean

When embarking on your post-Christmas cleaning chores, the most important consideration is to do a thorough job. A quality vacuum cleaner is a must for cleaning pine needles and debris off carpets, hard floors and around cracks and crevices, but Daniel also emphasizes the importance of cleaning vents.

“For air vents, I would use my vacuum along with a Swiffer Duster. I will go in with the Swiffer Duster as far as I can go then use the stick handle part to make sure there are no cobwebs.” She continued, “If the vent has black or brown discoloration from dust and dirt, I use Dawn dish soap and scrub it off in the kitchen sink. For this, you can use a microfiber cloth or an SOS non-scratch soap scrubber.”

A thorough cleaning should also include fireplaces, windows and baseboards. Daniel advises that vacuum attachments and a Swiffer come in handy for removing dust and debris in tight spaces. And because most people stock the refrigerator with Christmas goodies, it also needs a complete cleaning. “It’s a great time to clean out your fridge. Making sure that all the food from the holidays is gone completely,” Daniel said. 

In addition to a vacuum and Swiffer, you can use the Clorox in a spray bottle, Dawn dish soap, scrubbers and microfiber cloths to accomplish many of the cleaning tasks Daniel recommends for the New Year and beyond. 

Products our cleaning expert recommends

Dawn Ultra Dishwashing Liquid Dish Soap

Dawn Ultra is a top-selling dish liquid for its ability to cut grease and clean gently yet effectively. Its reliable performance has made it a popular choice for numerous cleaning applications. 

Sold by Amazon 

Clorox Clean-Up All-Purpose Cleaner Spray with Bleach

In addition to the germ-fighting power of bleach, this versatile cleaner comes in a spray bottle that’s convenient to use for a wide range of cleaning tasks. It’s made by Clorox, one of the most trusted names in household cleaning products. 

Sold by Amazon and Home Depot

Mr. SIGA Microfiber Cleaning Cloths, Pack of 12

The soft, absorbent material that’s used to make microfiber cloths makes them useful for many cleaning purposes. What’s more, they won’t scratch delicate surfaces. This budget-friendly pack includes 12 cloths. 

Sold by Amazon

Zober Large Christmas Ornament Storage Box

This spacious ornament storage box will protect your treasured ornaments while in storage thanks to the dividers that prevent them from rubbing together. It holds as many as 128 ornaments. 

Sold by Amazon

SOS Non-Scratch Soap Scrubbers

While these soap-infused scrubbers are powerful enough to whisk away tough grime, they are designed to clean without scratching surfaces. 

Sold by Amazon and Home Depot

Swiffer Duster

Once you own a Swiffer, tidying up dusty surfaces will be a snap. That’s because the soft fibers do a great job locking in dust particles, thus removing potential allergens from any indoor environment. 

Sold by Amazon and Home Depot

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Jennifer Manfrin writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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