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The ultimate guide to cleaning your room

Admit it. As we speak, most of your house looks like it could be in a Southern Living magazine. But your room? It’s a mess. A frightening scene of clean and dirty laundry strewn about, wrappers as far as the eye can see, used cups that have yet to be returned to the kitchen and dust, dust galore!

It’s an understandable situation to be in. Your bedroom is your personal space. It gets lived in. It’s hard to keep it clean, and really, why should you? Get that thought out of your head right now. That’s exactly the reason it isn’t clean! It’s time to stop treating your bedroom like a special circumstance. It deserves a good cleaning, just like the rest of the house. Take a deep breath, open that door on up, and take a good look. It’s a scary sight, but not beyond possibility.


Did we say checklist yet? In case we didn’t: make a checklist. It’s hard to stress how important it is to know before you go. Don’t sit on your laurels. After all, that’s how you got into this mess (literally). If you really do intend on cleaning your room fast (since we know that you want to minimize how long this will take you), start by jotting down everything that actually needs attention.

The first thing to write down is anything that doesn’t belong in your room. This could be trash of various sorts, cups, or anything that you wouldn’t normally keep in your bedroom. What do teenagers usually keep in their rooms that don’t belong? You guessed it. Empty potato chip bags, empty soda bottles or cans, dirty plates and cups from those late-night snacks. Somehow, as an adult, you’ve managed to relive your glory days.

The next item on your checklist should be clothes. Chances are, you have both dirty and clean clothes strewn about. Yes, even though you have a hamper for the dirty clothes and a laundry basket for the clean ones, somehow they’ve all been mixed together in a giant heap in the corner or on the bed.

The third item should be your surfaces. Flat, bumpy, you name it. Every surface probably needs a good cleaning. Have bookshelves? They’re most likely dusty. Dressers? They’re likely piled with items or their usual items are almost certainly in disarray. It’s time to bring order to the chaos.

The fourth item is the floor itself. If you have hardwood floors, you’ll want to sweep and mop–yes, even under the bed. If you have carpet, it’s going to be time to get that vacuum out and get ready to rumble.

The last item on your checklist should be your bed. It’s a mess. It’s ok to admit it. It’s definitely a hassle to have to make the bed every day. But hey, every so often, why not clean the sheets, blankets, pillowcases and switch to a new bedspread?

Order is Everything!

And by “order” we don’t just mean “everything’s in order.” Make sure you do each task in the order that makes the most sense. Think of your room as having different layers. You’re peeling away those layers in order to get to the clean room beneath.

Items you will need:

  • Trash bag
  • Laundry basket
  • Cleaning cloth
  • Dusting cloth
  • All-surface cleaner
  • Dust mop (for hardwood floors)
  • Wet mop (for hardwood floors)
  • Vacuum cleaner (for carpets)

Start at one, dedicated spot (perhaps the door). This should give you a spot to return to after every layer has been peeled away.

Go for the clothes and trash first. Carry a small trash bag with you and drag along your laundry bag. Do the smell test. No need to just throw everything in with the dirty laundry. If it’s dirty, put it in the laundry basket. If it’s clean, toss it on the bed (assuming it isn’t already there, of course). Any trash that can or should be thrown away, toss it in the trash bag. If it’s dirty dishes, leave those be for now.

Remove any dirty dishes. If you left dirty dishes after you went through the clothes and trash layer, now’s the time to take them out to the kitchen.

Fold and put away any clean laundry. You’d be surprised how clean the room starts looking when all of the dirty laundry is gone and the clean laundry is neatly folded in drawers.

Attack the surfaces. You’ve already cleaned up the trash and other junk that didn’t belong on them. Now it’s time to put them in order. Straighten up anything that needs it. Now’s the time to use your all-purpose cleaners as well. Spray down flat surfaces that need it and wipe them clean before arranging items on the surface.

Give the floor some love. Your floor is always getting walked on. Give it the loving it deserves. If you have hardwood floors, use a dust mop (or a broom, if you don’t have one) to get anything off the floor that would just get slid around with a regular mop. Of course, the Neato robot vacuum can make this all even easier for you, and if you forget you can even set it to clean from your smart connected device!
Then, methodically mop the floor, starting from the corner furthest from the door until you’ve backed your way out of the room.

If you have carpeted floors, definitely get a Botvac Connected to keep your floors vacuumed on a daily basis. By doing so, it will help you to keep your room tidy so that you don’t use the floor to “store” the clothes you wore yesterday or the bags you brought home today. Keep your floors clear so the Neato robot vacuum can clean every day.

Finishing touch: make your bed! As if you didn’t hear that one enough when you were a kid. Leave bed-making as the last touch. It’s always the most satisfying to leave that part until the end.

Cleaning your room: Tips and tricks

Ok, now you have your checklist. You know how you’re going to clean things. You’re ready to teach your room who’s boss! But wait! No good cleaning happens without inspiration. You can certainly check out a few videos on cleaning your room, but ultimately, those videos aren’t going to clean it for you. You’ve got to do this on your own, and you don’t have all day.

Don’t clean in silence, but don’t get distracted either. There will be no Netflix until you’re actually ready to chill. If you really want to get this cleaning done, you need to focus. Music is a good way to focus while avoiding the whole “I’m so bored I could die right here” feeling. Try starting up a good “cleaning your room playlist” (yes, they’re actually called that). Or, build a great playlist to get you excited! Anything that gets you moving. Take out any distractions—like your cellphone. You can use that as a motivator to finish cleaning.

Think up a few inspirational quotes. You have heard all of the ones your grandmother used to say. “A clean home is a happy home!” Yeah right. That’s only true once the cleaning is done! The cleaning process can be grueling, but it needs to get done. Try this cleaning your room quote on for size: “When cleaning my room: 1% cleaning, 30% complaining, 69% playing with stuff I found.” Don’t let that be you!

Make a game out of it. Room cleaning games can help make the task seem less menial. Give yourself points for cleaning different things. Set a timer and see if you can beat it.

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