Don’t wait to Start your Spring Cleaning

We recently shared information on Spring cleaning.  Now I know that many of you are in areas where there is still snow on the ground and a chill in the air.  That doesn’t mean that you can’t start your Spring cleaning.  With a little careful planning, you can get a jump on those Spring chores before the tulips are in bloom.start Spring Cleaning Now

First, consult a reliable source for accurate weather in your area.  That could be your local TV station or one of the many weather websites (weatherunderground, accuweather, etc) and find a day that will be sunny and dry.  I did an entire Spring cleaning in a bedroom in our rental cabin yesterday; and the temperatures never climbed out of the 40’s.  However the air was dry and the skies were clear.

Spring Cleaning  The Dust Mite Covers

First, take all the washable bedding off of the bed.  This includes all of your zippered covers for your mattress, box spring, pillows, duvets, and featherbeds.  Get them in the wash with some De-Mite laundry additive and your favorite detergent.

Spring Cleaning with Steam!

For your feather beds, comforters and other items that you cannot wash or do not like to wash you can use a combination of steam and sunlight to get rid of allergens and freshen these items up.  The high temperature of the steam and the power of the ultraviolet light will reduce the allergens that you can’t wash away.  A Vapamore steamer is perfect for this chore.  use steam for spring cleaning

I set up two areas for steaming:  one inside where I could hang the items to easily steam both sides and a second outside where they could hang in the sun to dry.  I used the fabric/upholstery attachment on the steamer to steam both sides of my Downlight comforter and featherbed topper.  The same attachment worked great on pillows and my two comforters that are not washable.  After each item was steamed, it went outside to hang in the sun to dry.  In addition, I gave each a light mist of ADMS antiallergen spray.  I couldn’t hang the pillows, but I able to set them in chairs!

Spring Cleaning the Floors

After everything was steamed and hanging outside, it was time to tackle the contents of the room.  I vacuumed the floor to get up any loose dust then sprinkled down X-Mite Powder to freshen the carpet and neutralize allergens. The contents of the room (furniture, wall hangings, knick knacks, etc) were vacuumed with the round dusting brush attached to my Miele vacuum and then wiped down.  Hard surfaces, such as baseboards, painted walls, and furniture were steamed with the Vapamore before wiping down.

By the time I had this chore complete, the washable bedding was dry as were the steamed items that had been hanging or sitting out in the sunlight. The zippered covers went back on the mattress, comforter, featherbed, and pillows.  Fresh sheets on the bed and then it was time to vacuum up the X-Mite powder and the room was complete.

Spring cleaning on a less than Spring like day.  It can be done!

Till next time
Cheryl

 

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Do You Need a New Mattress if You Have Allergies?

One of the greatest customer service challenges we face regularly is making sure that a new dust mite proof zippered cover arrives on the same day as a customer’s new mattress.  Everyone wants the guys delivering the mattress to put the new dust mite mattress cover on their new mattress.  Great idea and we are always happy to accommodate.  But it did get me thinking, “Why are so many people with dust mite allergies buying a new mattress?”  After doing a little research, it turns out that there is some misunderstanding going around about mattresses, pillows, and dust mites.
 
It is true that a sizable amount of an old mattress’s weight is due to the collection of dead skin particles, dust mites (living and dead), and dust mite feces.  However, if you get a new mattress, within 6 months you will have already started a new collection of these particles.  I am sure that the mattress salesmen of the world would like you to buy a new mattress every 6 months, but that really isn’t practical now is it?
 
The truth is whether you have allergies or not, you should follow the advice of Consumer Reports and only replace a mattress when it no longer provides the comfort or support you need to get a good night’s rest.  If you have dust mite allergies, the most important thing you can do for your mattress is encase it in a zippered mattress dust mite proof encasing.  This is true of a mattress that is 10 years old and it is true of a mattress that is 10 days old.
 
Don’t fall for claims made by manufacturers of latex, foam, and wool mattresses that their products do not need a dust mite mattress cover.  It is true that the lanolin in wool repels dust mites, but it is also true that the very same wool will capture and hold all the allergens to which it is exposed.  Latex and memory foam are dense, but not so dense that they don’t harbor mites and other allergens.
 
Also, every so often you really should clean your mattress (yes, even if you have a cover on it). Your mattress influences your health beyond just comfort and support.
 
If you’re not familiar with the ways on how to clean and maintain your mattress, then you’ll love this infographic from ASleepyWolf.Com.  It is an informative guide on mattress care!
 
Mattress Care 101: The Ultimate Guide For An Ageing Mattress 2019
(Layla Parker, the founder and chief editor of ASleepyWolf. ” I decided to start taking my blog about sleep seriously to help people find what they needed to experience better sleep and maintain their health.” Please check out her website ASleepyWolf.com to learn more about improving your sleep.)
 
I slept on an old soft-sided waterbed for many years. You might think that dust mites can’t live in a waterbed.  Wrong! The padded foam that encapsulates the water cells is a perfect place to capture dust mite allergens.  So even though I could not put a zippered dust mite cover on my bed, I had a fitted style cover.
 
The people that sell pillows would like you to buy new pillows every 2 years.  I sell pillows and I would love to sell you new pillows all the time as well.  However, I will be honest and tell you that you should buy a new pillow when your old one is no longer comfortable.  If you have dust mite allergies, just make sure you have a dust mite proof cover on the pillow.
 

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Breast Cancer and Parabens Could be Connected

A study published in the Journal of Applied Toxicology reports breast cancer and parabens connection in journal of toxicologystrong evidence for the connection between breast cancer and parabens.  You can read more here at  http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/jat.1786/abstract.

In a nutshell, researchers in England studied the tissue removed as part of mastectomies and in 99% of the cases, the tissue contained parabens. The tissues studied came from different parts of the breast and from women of all ages and breastfeeding history.  The one thing they all had in common was the presence of parabens.

Parabens are widely used in the cosmetic and personal care industries as preservatives.  While some folks have long suspected deodorants to be a factor in cancer, it is interesting to note that some of these women didn’t use any form of deodorant (must be an English thing). Parabens also a common irritant to people that are sensitive and can cause dermatitis.

Deodorants can contain parabens, as well as shampoos, conditioners, shaving creams, sunscreens and other substances that people apply directly to their skin and hair.  Kind of scary when you consider that your skin is the largest organ in your body.  You think you are doing something to protect yourself when in fact you could be doing more harm than good.  We don’t recommend that you stop using skin lotions and creams and sunscreens and we aren’t saying to quit washing your hair.  But we are saying to be aware of what you are putting on your body and start reading labels if you don’t do so already!

Dermatologists have been recommending VaniCream and Free & Clear personal care products for years because they are free from dyes, fragrances, masking fragrances, and other irritating substances.  Based on these findings, I  recommend that anyone concerned about breast cancer and parabens should start reading labels.  Look for parabens in any of their skin or hair care products.

Even if you don’t have outward appearances of sensitivity to parabens, bad things can be going on under the surface.  The Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep database of personal care products has always rated the Vanicream and Free & Clear products as safe.  The Vanicream Sunsport sunscreen made the list of preferred sunscreens this year.  If you are already using a paraben free skin cream like Vanicream, be sure to tell your friends and family about this breast cancer link and urge them to start reading labels.

Friends don’t let friends use skin and hair care products with parabens!

Til Next Time

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