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I've tested just about every weird cleaning product — these 9 are life-changing, from $7

Person hiding face behind a mop.
These are some of my tried-and-true faves. (Photo: Amazon)

As a former Home editor at Real Simple magazine, I’ve come across my share of domestic products. Cleaning was one of my beats, so I was always testing out the latest mop or updated scrub brush. (What can I say, it was a glamorous job.) And now that I’m a mom of two amazing but ridiculously messy children, I’ve really put these cleaning products to use. I definitely have my favorites — the ones I reach for whenever soy sauce finds its way onto the walls or cracker crumbs invade my keyboard crevices (which unfortunately happens more than I care to admit). So as someone well versed in tidying up, I’ve decided to share my top nine products with you. Some are the best of the basics — like this microwave cleaner — while others are brilliant new inventions, like a mini power tool for grout that looks like an electric toothbrush. To say these are satisfying is an understatement. Put some in your cart and get cleaning!

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These might be one of my favorite inventions ever: BPA-free silicone gloves you can use to move hot pots and pans, as well as maneuver around the grill. Here's the genius part: They're entirely waterproof, so if you accidentally dip your paws into some hot soup, the gloves won't soak it up.
$14 at Amazon
When I moved into my rental apartment, the grout around my tub was, shall we say, grout-y. This tool makes light work of scum. Use it on everything from faucets and grills to sliding-door tracks — you won’t want to put it down.
$22 at Amazon
This gizmo uses steam to loosen all that baked-on grime. Just take off the hair, fill with water and vinegar, and watch Angry Mama get really pissed off as she spews hot steam all over the interior. Then wipe with a damp cloth. She’s incredibly fun to use!
$7 at Amazon
I can’t get enough of this microfiber blade cleaner. I use it on my blinds and my air conditioner fins— which get particularly nasty because I live in a city. Just spritz with a little water and go nuts.
$8 at Amazon
Flathead Products
If I gave my kids only straws in their stockings for Christmas, they’d be thrilled. And now that reusable straws are a must in every home, these silicone wonders (and the cleaning tool they come with) are sure to get plenty of use.
$11 at Amazon
I don’t like how traditional steel wool scrubbers always seem to leave behind steel remnants. Then I found this medieval-looking cleaner and never looked back. It’s gentle enough for cast iron pans, but won’t scratch. And it happily hangs on a hook.
$9 at Amazon
I eat eggs every morning, and I’m messy. Before these brilliant gizmos, I’d grab a paper towel to clean off the egg remnants before using a scrub brush. These pan scrapers are a breeze and can also be used for getting stickers off new glassware and plates.
$8 at Amazon
I eat over my keyboard. This retractable cleaning tool makes me feel like a detective working on a top-secret case. I whip it out and brush crumbs from between those keys, then use the silicone side to pick off any crud. Great for detailing watches, cameras and cell phones too.
$9 at Amazon
Do my kids walk on the baseboards? They get so grimy that sometimes I think they do. That's why the Baseboard Buddy is my friend — it takes on both low baseboards and high moldings. The head swivels to get into angles and can be used dry for dusting or wet for deeper cleaning.
$25 at Amazon

Did you hear that Prime Day is happening again? Amazon’s Prime Early Access Sale is on October 11 and 12, but you need to be an Amazon Prime member to take advantage of the deals. Here's how you can sign up for a free trial, which also gives you complimentary shipping. See all of our Prime Early Access Sale coverage here and shop the early Prime Day deals here.

Looking for more great Amazon home deals? Check these out:



  • Hoover Windtunnel Air Bagless Upright Vacuum

    $136 $200
    Save $64
  • eufy by Anker RoboVac G30 Robot Vacuum

    $280 $319
    Save $39
  • Eureka PowerSpeed Bagless Upright Vacuum Cleaner



  • Mr. Coffee Espresso and Cappuccino Machine

    $200 $250
    Save $50
  • All-in-One Stackable Bento Lunch Box Container

    $17 $30
    Save $13

Bedding and home

  • Eddie Bauer Cotton Flannel Queen Sheet Bedding Set

    $46 $80
    Save $34
  • Ultra Cooling Gel Memory Foam Mattress, full size

  • TubShroom Tub Hair Catcher Drain Protector

    $13 $20
    Save $7

Lawn and garden

  • Black+Decker 3-in-1 Electric Leaf Blower

    $88 $109
    Save $21
  • Sun Joe 14.5-Amp Electric High Pressure Washer

    $153 $169
    Save $16

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Originally published