Back in grade school, the students in my sister’s science class were asked to bring in a sample of something from their homes that could be analyzed for bacteria. One kid had his dog lick the petri dish. My sister lightly dabbed her makeup brush into the dish. Guess what? A dog’s mouth is quite pristine compared to the horrors—mold, slime, worse—lurking in an ordinary makeup brush.
So, let’s get to the chase. The ickiest spot in the house isn’t the toilet seat.
The Item: Your sponge.
The Solution: Microwave it daily to kill germs.
The Item: Your sink.
The Solution: Scrub thoroughly—particularly around the drain—with Clorox twice a week.
The Item: Your toothbrush.
The Solution: Replace every three months—or whenever you’ve been sick. And close the lid when you flush the toilet—it will cut down on airborne germs.
The Item: Your remote control.
The Solution: Clean it regularly with a disinfecting wipe.
The Item: Your bath towel.
The Solution: Make sure you hang it in a way that allows it to dry. Dry on high every three uses.
The Item: Your cutting board.
The Solution: Pop that baby in the dishwasher after every use.
The Item: Your oven knobs.
The Solution: Remove and deep clean once a week.
The Item: Your coffee maker.
The Solution: Brew a batch of straight vinegar, followed by fresh water (until the vinegar smell goes away.)
The Item: Your pet’s bowls.
The Solution: Run their dishes through the dishwasher the same way you do with yours.
The Item: Your purse.
The Solution: Wash and sanitize or use a disinfecting wipe. And for goodness sake, if you’ve ever rested your bag down in a public bathroom, don’t put it on the kitchen counter or your bed. Use a hook instead.