‘The Other Press’ guide to life: cleanliness (part two)

Image by Jude Hussain.
Image by Jude Hussain.

Cheap ways to clean your man cave

By Keating Smith, Staff Writer

Purchasing household cleaning products doesn’t need to cost you an arm and a leg, especially if you’re working with a student budget. However, if you hold off on a brew night with the boys and use the money to buy a few essential cleaning products for your residence, they can last you quite some time and make those unwanted science experiments you have growing in your pad disappear effectively.

Where to buy from: Avoid purchasing cleaning products from stores such as Safeway, Thrifty’s, Superstore, London Drugs, Save-On-Foods, or any convenience store. Unless they have a sale on or you partake in clipping coupons like an old lady, you will pay a significant amount more for these products at those stores. Instead, buy them from places such as the dollar store or Army & Navy. These places will generally have the same types of product, but with significantly lower prices. Another place to consider is a bulk store such as Costco; if you do not have a membership, find a friend or family member who does. You will acquire more than what you need but that’s fine as it means they will last longer. Finally, one of the best-kept secrets for purchasing cleaning products here in Vancouver is from the Vancouver Flea Market on Terminal Avenue.

What to buy:  In no particular order you should have the minimum: Windex, toilet bowl cleaner, Pine-Sol, LYSOL spray, vinegar, bleach, dish soap, a mop, a bucket, a broom, and any type of abrasive cleaning pads (some brands include Scotch-Brite or 3M). The cheapest way to acquire rags for cleaning is by cutting up old cotton T-shirts you no longer use or going to the Salvation Army and buying some.

Do not buy: Swiffer dusters, Bee Mops (complete garbage), and specialty cleaning rags. Avoid paper towels if you can. Newspaper works just as well as paper towel does and you have my permission to use this page to clean whatever it may be when you are done reading this.

If you are still feeling like these purchases may all be a little too much for your budget, then hot water with a touch of vinegar or bleach and a rag will suffice when cleaning any surface in your home. Before I forget to mention this, do not mix bleach with ammonia or make a concoction with multiple cleaning mixtures unless you want to inhale some deadly gases and take a trip to the ER. If you think I’m joking, you should know that this kind of mistake is common. Finally, if your microwave resembles the set of a bad horror movie, you can place a bowl containing lemon juice and water inside it, let it nuke for two minutes, and wipe all that splatter off using little to no elbow grease.

So there you have it, fellow Douglas students. I sincerely hope that this has helped you a little, especially if you are living on your own for the first time and no longer have your parents around to look after such household tasks. Good luck, and don’t be afraid to take a little time out of your busy student life to make sure everything in your house looks legit. Maybe, just maybe, you will find the chaos of school a little less intimidating if you have a clean and organized place to call home.