This year, as opposed to last, 35% of people in Manchester have said that they clean more often. with 33% cleaning 'more thoroughly' now. People from Manchester were found to spend on average £12.74 a month on cleaning products.
Key findings of the study suggest that:
Keeping your home hygienic is something we all have to contend with, but a clean home doesn’t come for free. Currys PC World conducted a survey to investigate the cost of cleaning in all senses, including the money people spend and the time they dedicate to their cleaning routine, as well as the emotional and environmental impact of cleaning. We spoke to cleaning expert, Lynsey Crombie aka the ‘Queen of Clean’ and Health Psychologist Benjamin Ainsworth to gain additional insight on the topic.
What’s the price tag on a clean home? In a pre-COVID-19 world, the average Brit would spend £12.61 a month on cleaning products. But, with a pandemic added to the mix, this figure is even higher, with nearly 1 in 5 confessing to spending more on hygiene and cleanliness.
Homecare expert, Lynsey Crombie aka the ‘Queen of Clean’ is all for using more affordable products, however, saying “I actually find some of the more expensive ones to be awful. A basic disinfectant and washing up liquid will always work well and not cost you much at all.”
Looking at different demographics, 16-24-year olds spend the most on their cleaning routines compared with other age-groups, averaging £14.73 a month. People in London (£14.54) and Northern Ireland (£14.02) are also the most likely to fork out more cash for a clean home, whereas those in the South West spend the least (£11.71).
· Brits spend more time cleaning the kitchen than any other room, adding up to an average of 2 hours a week
· 2 in 5 men wear a pair of underwear more than once before washing them, with 1 in 10 wearing them three times
· Over 1 in 10 Brits would rather throw away a dirty towel than clean it
· Brits are cleaning their fridges almost four times more often this year, and mopping the floor twice as often
Our cleaning habits and routines cost us time – whether you believe this is time well spent or not. For the average Brit, 6.5 hours a week are dedicated to keeping the home tidy - a figure which has risen by an additional 23 minutes since the dawn of COVID-19. Out of all of the age groups, 45-54- year olds are the most likely to have upped the time they spend cleaning this year.
This said, with the lockdown resulting in us spending more time at home, people have confessed to wearing things such as gym wear, socks and underwear more times before washing them now than pre-COVID. Men are most guilty of this, with 1 in 10 wearing their underwear three times before washing.
Lynsey Crombie aka the ‘Queen of Clean’ says that generally speaking “If you have been out for dinner for just a few hours, you probably do not need to come home and put that outfit in the wash. But, in the current climate I would advise you wash your clothes after every wear, if worn outside of your home.”
Quirky cleaning hacks also commonly feature in our hygiene routines. In fact, almost a quarter of Brits have tried to remove a red wine stain with white wine, with men most likely to have tried the hack.
Lynsey Crombie does not recommend this trick, however, saying “it simply does not work, it just makes it worse. To remove red wine, you need some warm soapy water (not hot) with a splash of white vinegar to scrub onto the stain and leave for 15 mins, before blotting dry.”
Some cleaning hacks that she does endorse are:
Apply shaving foam to carpet for effective stain removal, especially make up!
Cleaning expert, Lynsey Crombie says “steam cleaning is a great eco-friendly method for cleaning floors, whilst also being safe for pets and young children.”
Due to the chemicals found in commonly used cleaning products and energy used by home appliances, cleaning can have a negative impact on the environment. And while many Brits are making a conscious effort to be more eco-friendly, 2 in 5 claim the environment does not affect their cleaning habits at all.
Of all age-groups, the younger generations are more likely to proactively consider the environment when cleaning. 25-34-year olds are the most likely to buy eco-friendly cleaning products and 16-24- year olds are the most likely to make their own eco-friendly cleaning products. This said, youngsters are also the most likely to throw an old, dirty appliance away to avoid cleaning it, contributing to harmful landfills.
Does a tidy home make for a tidy mind? Yes and no. For some, cleaning can have therapeutic benefits and result in a more serene environment that promotes feelings of calm and motivation. For others, it may simply pose as a distraction from their troubles.
Health psychologist, Benjamin Ainsworth says that “While some people really benefit from and enjoy a ‘spring clean’, others might use cleaning as a ‘coping mechanism’ that can actually lead to increased anxiety and stress.”
And while the COVID-19 pandemic has had an understandable impact on people’s attitudes towards hygiene, Ainsworth advises to “Try to avoid ‘excessive cleaning’, which can be psychologically unhealthy. While an extra wipe with some soap and water usually does no harm, it’s important to make sure that cleaning habits are in line with your own personal level of risk.”
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