No need for a bucket…

Next time you’re washing the kitchen floor, use the rubbish bin in place of a bucket – that way you’ll have cleaned the bin without going to the effort of washing it separately!

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Mildew spots on leather gloves

Gently rub off the surface mould with a soft cloth – do this outside so you don’t inhale spores. If it has penetrated and stained the leather, hold each glove over a boiling kettle (wear oven gloves for protection) and allow the steam to penetrate the leather – the heat will kill the spores and stop them spreading. Then wash the gloves (most are made of washable leather, but check instructions) in a lukewarm solution of soapflakes as described below to try to remove any staining.

Put on your gloves, immerse in the solution and rub your hands gently together to remove dirt, then rinse well. Take off and press between towels to remove excess moisture. Allow to dry naturally at room temperature (not on a radiator). As they are drying, gently stretch them until almost dry, then put on your hands to restore the shape.

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The wonder of soda crystals

Soda crystals are underappreciated and underused. And incredibly cheap. Make up a solution according to the pack instructions and deal with grease-coated surfaces at a stroke.

If you add a scoop of the crystals to your washing machine detergent tray they will soften the water as well as your laundry (and you can get away with using a bit less detergent).

They are also efficient at keeping the water pipes clear of limescale and other gunk. Available for around 99p a pack from most supermarkets.

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Lovely natural air freshener

I’ve never been a fan of chemical spray air fresheners, and for anyone with respiratory problems, they are bad news. Keeping the air indoors fresh can be quite difficult sometimes (particularly if you share a home with teen boys!).

My solution is to put a dab of essential oil such as lavender or tea tree on a cotton wool pad and dispense on certain areas around the place such as bedroom radiators or light bulbs.

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Venetian blinds cleaned in a flash

Venetian blinds are a pain to look after, but if you put on a pair of thin cotton gloves, you can easily clean many slats at a time with one wipe.

They can be used dry to dust or wet to clean (just run under the tap first; there’s no need for detergents).

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Not just for wine stains…

If you’re picking blackberries and get stains on your clothes (hard not to!), the colour behaves like a dye and can be quite difficult to get rid of.

Here’s where stain-remover Wine Away can come in very handy: it works well on food colours (as well as red wine of course!). And as ever, the quicker you deal with the stain, the more chance you have of removing it.

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How should I clean my new white sink? (The instructions say do not use bleach.)

Bleach can sometimes be too harsh on modern sinks. A good alternative is Barkeeper’s Friend (it acts like old-fashioned Ajax but smells far less strong).

Just sprinkle a little over the wet sink, rub with your cloth then rinse well afterwards.

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Want to use less laundry detergent?

If you’re looking for a way of using less laundry detergent without it having an adverse effect on your washing results, try Eco Laundry Balls. You can reduce your detergent load by up to 50 per cent.

The nodules on the eight chemical-free plastic balls knead the clothes and help to remove the dirt effectively.

If you have a household tip that you would like to share with Aggie’s followers – send it to us for publication – go to https://aggiestips.com/do-you-have-a-tip-to-share-with-aggie/ now