Microfiber cleaning cloths. Ugh.
These things have been driving me crazy for the last couple of years with their promises of perfectly clean glass and better-than-anything-else performance. It seems that no matter how many times I decide to pull them out of the drawer and give them a try again, or what type of microfiber cloth I use, they never even come close to working the way they’re supposed to! But I want them to! I have glass-cleaning needs!
So, what’s the deal with these things? Are they actually as good as they’re marketed to be or are you better off just using paper towels or newspaper?
On one recent cleaning adventure, the stars aligned and everything fell into place and the secret was revealed to me!
So, I remembered that you’re supposed to wash your cloths before you use them, which I had done before. I washed them again though, just for the heck of it, and suddenly they worked like a charm!
So what was different? Well this time I was out of dryer sheets, so I’ve been been using tinfoil in my dryer instead! You can read more about the whole tinfoil dryer sheet process in this post here. The dryer sheets must have been leaving a residue on the cloths that kept them from working! My glass just kept getting smeary and smudgy before and I was just not a happy camper, but now I finally get to see what all the fuss is about with these darn cloths!
So after you’ve got your cloths nice and clean and residue-free, you’ll want to wet just a corner of your cloth with plain water and use it to wipe whatever glass you’re cleaning. After that, go back over the wet glass with the dry part of the cloth. These cloths work by picking up all the dust and specks and oils and gunk that cause smears and unshinyness, so once you’ve used a section of cloth, don’t reuse it or you’ll just be re-depositing the stuff you just lifted off the glass. You’ll notice the smears if you start using an already-used part of the cloth, so just move on to a clean section. It’s a good idea to pick up a few of these cloths once you find a brand that you like so you can keep re-washing them as necessary to keep them, you know, actually working for you.
Things working they way they’re supposed to: It’s pretty exciting stuff!
From what I can tell, this method seems to work for all different types of microfiber cloths, the shinier ones and the fluffier ones.
So do you use microfiber cloths to clean your glass? Do you have a favorite brand? Mine were gifts so I’m on the lookout for more now that I know they can actually be of use to me!
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Courtenay Hartford is the author of creeklinehouse.com, a blog based on her adventures renovating a 120-year-old farmhouse in rural Ontario, Canada. On her blog, Courtenay shares interior design tips based on her own farmhouse and her work as founder and stylist of the interior photography firm Art & Spaces. She also writes about her farmhouse garden, plant-based recipes, family travel, and homekeeping best practices. Courtenay is the author of the book The Cleaning Ninja and has been featured in numerous magazines including Country Sampler Farmhouse Style, Better Homes and Gardens, Parents Magazine, Real Simple, and Our Homes.