April 12th 2016
How to spring clean your home, diet and makeup bag like a pro
February 19th 2016
Clean house, clear mind: we've teamed up with natural cleaning brand method to create our essential spring clean checklist for giving you the most hygienic of new season headstarts
Spring is in the air and with it, comes the perfect opportunity to de-clutter, re-invigorate and refresh your home, health and beauty regime.
From what we fill our fridges with to what we put on our skin to what we clean our homes with – all are connected when it comes to creating the best of environments to rest, work and thrive in. So where do we start in giving ourselves a healthy living overhaul? We asked the pros for their top tips for cleaning and eating cleaner to ensure both body and mind are in perfect synergy as we prepare to step into spring.
How to spring clean your home…
We’re in the midst of a wellness boom at the moment, with the population more mindful of what they eat and put on their skin than ever before. It therefore makes perfect sense that this pattern extends to what people choose to clean their homes with; and to meet the demand, there’s now an array of beautifully scented and designed (as well as affordable) environmentally conscious cleaning products out there ready to give our beauty products a run for their money in the style stakes.
No more is this better illustrated than natural cleaning brand method's new limited edition pomegranate collection, which boasts the type of superfood ingredients list to rival that of your fridge. “When we explore potential new fragrances we’re always taking inspiration from nature, and with its vibrant colour and delicious taste, pomegranate got us excited,” says method’s Fragrance Expert Cassie Browning. “The fragrance we’ve created for the limited edition range is a delicious combination of juicy pomegranate, orange, fresh berries and grapefruit zest which mingle harmoniously with red currant, cranberry and sparkling citron. Finally, white woods and sheer musk add a richness to the base.”
If you thought industrial style cleaners were the best way to take your spring clean to the next level, think again. “Despite what many people think, cleaning products don’t have to be industrial strength and clinical smelling to be effective - who wants a home that smells of a laboratory?” says Clare Burke, UK Country Marketing Manager at method. “At method, we believe you can have it all. We’re proud to offer products that keep your home sparkling while treating it to a natural, sweet-smelling fragrance. What’s more, the natural ingredients mean the product is kind to your skin, the planet and animals too. And to top it off, the range is super stylish so looks great on display in your home.”
This modern perspective towards cleaning products makes for a marked shift in mindset when it comes to an all-encompassing approach towards healthy living. “We believe we should take as much care to make our home happy and healthy as we do ourselves,” says Clare. “We’re careful about what we eat and put on our skin, so it makes sense to think about what we use to clean our dishes or surfaces with too. Any nasty chemicals could easily be transferred from the dishes into our bodies and we think there is an alternative to this by using more non-toxic products, meaning we can all clean happy.”
Feeling inspired? Here are Clare’s handy spring clean tips for your home:
1. “Hands up - ever looked at your sponge, shuddered, then put it back by the sink? Pop it in the dishwasher or for a few seconds in the microwave. Ta da, good as new.”
2. “We recently commissioned some research into the nation’s ‘dirty little secrets’, which revealed that one in six (15%) Brits are happy to eat food off the floor and admit to using the five second rule. To get your floor sparkly clean without the hassle, trade in your bucket of water and mop with method’s non-toxic floor cleaner instead. Squirt the cleaner straight on to the floor, wipe away and enjoy our almond or lemon ginger fragrances. Your floor will smell so good, you’ll practically want to eat off the floor… although that is not recommended.”
3. “If you’re looking to give your bathroom a spruce for spring, simply hang a sprig of dried eucalyptus from your showerhead. When the steamy water fills the shower, the natural essential oils in the eucalyptus will activate and permeate the air. It smells delicious and will do wonders if you’re feeling a bit congested.”
How to spring clean your diet…
3 easy but effective spring clean superfoods
Delicious, colourful and widely available, pomegranates make for one of the most versatile superfoods to have in your kitchen. “Pomegranates are quite possibly one of my favourite superfoods to add to any type of salad – both a fruit salad or sprinkled over a vegetable based salad,” says nutritional therapist Zoe Stirling. “Pomegranates are perfect for any spring clean-up as they’re full of antioxidants and fibre to support detoxification and the digestive system respectively. In addition, pomegranate has been traditionally used to boost fertility - perfect for making those spring chickens!”
Move over Rooibos, matcha is hot on your heels to become the nation’s favourite health-boosting brew. “Boasting a whole host of benefits, matcha is a must in everyone’s kitchen cupboard these days. It is a form of green tea, which is thought to be much more potent in terms of nutritional properties, i.e. antioxidants and the amino acid l-theanine, which promotes a sense of calm,” says Zoe. “It comes in powdered form, which makes it versatile in the kitchen, but you’ll most commonly find it on the high street served as a tea or mixed with milk (or nut milk) to make a latte. However, matcha can also be used in smoothies, porridge and in yoghurt - I even love adding it into homemade protein balls. It’s quite possibly the best spring clean swap you can make; out with the coffee, in with the matcha!”
Gold is fast-becoming the new green with this superfood spice making an impressive name for itself thanks to its multitude of uses and wealth of wellness enhancing benefits. “Turmeric is another must-have in everyone’s kitchen cupboard; I’m not sure I could love this kitchen spice anymore. Either taken fresh in its root form or as a ground spice, it should be a staple in everyone’s diet,” says Zoe. “Boasting potent nutritional properties including anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and detoxification supportive effects, fresh turmeric is a lovely addition to juices (I particularly love it in a carrot, ginger and orange juice). Dried turmeric is great for adding to smoothies or on roasted squash and sweet potato, but of course, it’s probably best used in the traditional way - within curries.”
How to spring clean your makeup...
If cleaning your makeup brushes is one of those cumbersome house admin tasks that usually falls to the bottom of the to-do list, you’re not alone. However, forgetting to do so could be turning them into a breeding ground for bacteria.
“We take great strides to keep our faces clean and yet our makeup and brushes are in contact with our faces daily, so it only makes sense to also keep them clean as regular practice,” says makeup artist Jenna Treat. “Cleaning brushes between each use is a must for me professionally but not always practical for most busy bees out there. Washing brushes once a week to every two weeks is a bit more achievable.”
Keeping your makeup brushes clean needn’t also mean using products that smell like they were made in a brewery. “I like to keep as clean and non-toxic an atmosphere in my makeup bag as possible. I'm not preachy, but do use eco-friendly lines all over the house and have tried everything from natural washing up liquid (great for cutting though oil based makeup), to shampoo and homemade brush cleaner (when I'm in super Eco nerd mode),” says Jenna. “For a homemade brush cleaner I use coconut oil. It's amazing, has antibacterial properties and softens bristles beautifully.”
Regarding technique Jenna says: “Treat brushes like hair and without mangling the brush shape, give them a good wash and thoroughly rinse until the water runs clear. It is imperative that brushes are re-shaped while wet, laid flat on a towel and left to air dry. This ensures they keep their shape and minimises bristle fray.
“I also recommend having a regular makeup cull,” she adds. “What works to extend a perfectly good product that may be just past its sell-by date, is to simply CLEAN it. Sterilise shadows, powders, blush, kohl pencils (sharpening alone doesn't rid them of bacteria) and keep them going until they run out. White vinegar, witch hazel, and rubbing alcohol are all great products to spritz onto your products daily to mitigate bad bacteria. MUJI has a container for everything. I use their tiny spray bottles for such jobs.”
Want to give your spring clean a superboost? The new pomegranate collection from method is available exclusively in Tesco, priced at £3 for the multi-surface cleaner + washing-up liquid and £2.49 for the hand wash. method offers a wide range of planet-friendly and design-driven home cleaning, hand wash, laundry, washing up and air care products. method is available at stores including Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Waitrose, B&Q, Homebase, Ocado.com, Robert Dyas, small independents and online via www.methodproducts.co.uk.
Written in partnership with method.