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How has having children impacted on the cleanliness in your home? Share your stories with Cif to win a £250 Love2Shop voucher NOW CLOSED

(171 Posts)
MichelleMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 02-Oct-13 11:40:24

Cif have asked us to find out whether having children has had an impact on your family's cleaning habits.

Here's what Cif have to say: "We all know that children see the home as a playground, and playgrounds get dirty. But we also understand how difficult it can be to clean up after your child, so we want to help make that process as easy as possible."

Do you and your DP/DH (if applicable) find yourselves doing more cleaning since you've had children? Or less? How have things changed post children in this regard? Do you find yourself looking for the anti-bac cleaning products now or were you always partial to this type of product? If your home gets cleaned more now, is it more likely to be a quick clean here and there to tidy up after teatime etc? Or is it do regular deep cleans as well/instead? Are you now more likely to look for quick convenience products like wipes? Or – has nothing changed?!

We'd love to hear your views. Everyone who adds their comments to this thread will be entered into a prize draw to win a £250 Love2Shop voucher.

Please note your comments may be used by CIF on their pages on MN and possibly elsewhere (anon of course) please only add your comment if you’re happy with this.

Thanks and good luck,

MNHQ

malachite Mon 14-Oct-13 19:10:58

Our house is much cleaner since having children, because we gave up and got a cleaner! We also do have much more routine to keep the kitchen clean and stay on top of laundry and vacuuming through the week too. Since I have a toddler in the eat things they find on the floor stage I've been much more careful about cleaning up!

kilcrea Mon 14-Oct-13 16:25:14

I clean the house a lot more frequently now as the kids seem to spill something almost every day so the hoover is always out. It's probably more a question of frequent quick cleans rather than weekly intensive cleans now though, so products like bathroom wipes come in really handy.

clubnail Sun 13-Oct-13 12:50:05

Probably less clean at times, more clean at other times. Depends how busy we are and what's been happening. Also it has varied according to the child's age. When crawling, the floor was spotless. Now, not always. We aren't uptight about a few germs, we think it's ok to build up their immune system a little. There is worse outside. Kitchen is always clean though.

aaaaagh Fri 11-Oct-13 21:15:19

My house is as dirty as it ever was - but now there is more mess and stuff so you can't see the dirt. wink

sallyc06 Fri 11-Oct-13 12:45:37

I think having children forced me to be much more aware of germs and cleanliness, but nothing like a bit of CIF or old fashioned Vim on a dishcloth to wipe around everything and get those little sticky finger marks off. You feel like you are always cleaning but it's worth it to have peace of mind and see everything sparkling.

CheekyChimpsMummy Fri 11-Oct-13 09:36:40

From o.c.d to NO.c.d !!!

I'd love a clean tidy immaculate house, I really would. I remember those days so well

Since having ds I have learnt to do my cleaning little and often. Dh helps too... but between him & the furry dirty dog he bought (not my first choice in pets!!!!) They create the majority of the mess anyway!

My view point now is to clean as I go but not to the point where I'm missing out on precious time with my baby, I won't get that time back - there will always be dirt to clean, no matter how many hours I spend scrubbing.

Gerty1002 Fri 11-Oct-13 08:22:37

My first child, DS, is four weeks old and it is driving me mad how messy the house is... antibacterial wipes have been a godsend for keeping kitchen and bathrooms hygienic. I'm usually very house proud but at the moment any free time I get is spent sorting out DS' bottles and clothes, or sleeping if I'm lucky smile.

BruthasTortoise Fri 11-Oct-13 08:18:48

My house is cleaner but much more cluttered. I think the children make more obvious mess that adults so it takes more frequent but much quicker cleaning.

Bubbles85 Fri 11-Oct-13 07:53:59

More cleaning, definitely! I like to wipe down the surfaces more regularly too.

threefeethighandrising Thu 10-Oct-13 23:11:36

So children are a great leveller where cleaning is concerned then grin

The clean freaks just don't have the time to do it any more, whereas us messy ones finally have a reason which motivates us enough to keep it tidy.

Are we meeting in the middle somewhere?

NicNak71 Thu 10-Oct-13 22:21:59

Cleaning my house now I’ve children
Has become an incessant chore
From dawn until dusk I am scrubbing
And tomorrow I’ll do it some more

Sticky hands, crumbs and spilled juice
Are all part of the daily grime battle
I’m going around here in circles; my nerves are beginning to rattle

My gleaming shiny surfaces are now just a little bit dull
When I step inside of the playroom, I’m thinking we need a toy cull.
My house is no longer spotless; some cupboards hide all the sins
But my anguish at mess is soon put to rest by my daughter’s mischievous grins.

madamweasel Thu 10-Oct-13 17:17:17

I have to clean up every day now! I get through so many cleaning wipes on the hard floors under the highchair. I also have to regularly sweep and mop areas such as hallways and the kitchen floor because I'm conscious that my son crawls and sits on those floors and then puts his hands in his mouth - it's a whole new level of cleanliness compared to when you don't have kids. Essentially your floors have to be clean enough for little people to lick!!! I look for products that clean well and are antibacterial but try to avoid them if they're very strong chemicals, like neat bleach as I wouldn't want DS to come into contact with anything dangerous.

OanaChi Thu 10-Oct-13 07:39:11

I clean less as I have less time to do it! I used to be a cleanliness freak, cleaned my house top to bottom at least twice a week. Now I'm much more relaxed and clean every other week or if we have visitors :-)

SpecialJK Wed 09-Oct-13 15:53:16

Wow. I used to be the most house-proud person before children, and now I'm usually pretty despondent at trying to keep on top of it all. There just never seem to be enough hours in the day, and working FT, the last thing I want to do, but seem to end up doing, is cleaning all weekend. I definitely clean less, but when I do, I focus more on specific areas since I've had children, so less dusting, and more kitchen worktop and table wiping!

I have to say I loved the new product from Mr Muscle, the click top thing where you could use your own kitchen roll/cloths to spray the cleaner into. I usually use wipes for convenience, but felt that using a cloth with the anti-bac spray is more eco friendly

beeelaine Wed 09-Oct-13 11:08:22

well no surprise its a lot cleaner before you have children!!! anything that saves time and makes cleaning easier gets tried out!!!! the most recent product was a spray foam from a well advertised brand which cost me £3.50 and did the shower cubical twice - yep twice so i wont be buying that anymore! (and neither will my friends). I think the reason mums dont have enough time is that once kids can walk and pick things up the place turns into a mess if you dont constantly keep on top of it! We have antibacterial soap in a dispenser but i dont tend to use much antibacterial sprays as i feel if you use very hot water and cloth with your cleaner it should clean away the dirt which is where the bacteria multiplies so as long as you keep on top of the cleaning it will be ok - i think sometimes we can be a bit over the top on the antibacterial stuff - no point if you then leave your house and mingle with everyone else and go in shops etc cos they are not 99.9% germ free! I dont tend to like wipes as they end up in landfill (or even worse blocking the drains). can cif please invent a special jet sprayer that i can use in my overflows? im using an old hair dye bottle to squirt cleaner down them now to clean them!

janajos Wed 09-Oct-13 10:18:48

I do clean more but try to use products with few harmful chemicals in them. Kitchen is cleaned daily and loos are checked (all three!) for unsightly stains. We do a deep clean once a week with a cleaner and then the floors are washed, hoovering is done and all window sills etc are wiped and furniture dusted.

I do not like antibacterial products as I feel they disturb our natural ability to build up immunity.

missorinoco Wed 09-Oct-13 10:02:53

Children 1- house 0.

My house is cleaned far more often than pre children, but as said, it is far messier. We do a weekly clean, and extras as needed. So the kitchen table is wiped and floor swept after every meal, and often the surfaces are wiped. It depends on the age of the children though. When I was weaning we had to mop after every meal.

I also do more deep cleans now, probably once a month.

I bulk buy cleaning products, and opt for disposable products like wipes more than previous. They are very handy for quick spillages throughout the house.

lews Wed 09-Oct-13 09:57:31

It's probably cleaner - but definitely messier!

Doubtfuldaphne Tue 08-Oct-13 22:30:16

Having kids means being organised and clean and tidy
When the children were born I stocked up on cleaning products and got in to the habit of cleaning everything much more thoroughly.
I do wonder if I clean a little too much now but I love the satisfaction of a nice orderly home!

spicers1976 Tue 08-Oct-13 21:57:47

The house is a lot more cluttered than it was pre children. It is a lot cleaner than it was before, mainly because my daughter likes to investigate everything around and she collects bugs from the garden, so I'm always on top of cleaning for her.

Hopezibah Tue 08-Oct-13 20:24:04

we do SO much more laundry (used to do one whites and one darks wash a week - now we do two washes a day!). Some things take less priority these days like dusting and vacuuming, whilst other things are higher priority like keeping toilets, sinks, kitchen, highchairs etc really clean and germ free!

I worry less about how messy the house looks as long as the key areas are hygienically clean.

SaltySeaBird Tue 08-Oct-13 20:07:36

I've become more immune to mess.

Actually, the house is messier, but cleaner. When DD started to crawl we invested in a fancy mop. Now we have sticky fingers exploring we tend to wipe down all surfaces including cupboard doors with anti-bacterial. The bathroom is a lot cleaner as we are more thorough with deep cleaning.

Yet there is more clutter and stuff everywhere!

Since having children, our house is now alot cleaner as I am more organised and have a good routine, although it is untidier than it was before as it is now a family home smile smile

I care much more about the state of my house since becoming a step-mother. It's partly a hygiene thing - it's easier for me to feel assured that I can get rid of D&V bugs if I can sterlize the house quickly. It's also easier for me to say I did everything I could to prevent asthma/hayfever in children if the house is relatively dust- and damp-free. DH and I are a lot more relaxed about day-to-day tidying during the weeks DSD is away with her own mom. Our tidiness has been picking up again the closer I get to my due date.

I am always looking for cleaning shortcuts and have a bunch of tips saved to a Pinterest page. My latest experiment is using a Dishmatic sponge in the shower with a mixture of washing up liquid and white vinegar. I buy vinegar by the jarful to use for cleaning - I'm under the impression that it's much safer to use in pregnancy than a lot of chemicals and bleach. I also buy a lot of "plant-based" cleaners, like Method, which probably have just as many chemicals as the standard stuff, tbh, but they smell nice and the Squirt and Mop floor cleaner is really easy to use.

We use stuff like Cif cream for really heavy-duty jobs - the last one was sterilizing the kitchen sink - but we try not to use stuff like that on a regular basis. I've had asthma since childhood, so minimizing asthmagens in the air is always on my mind a bit. There is a bit of a balancing act between combating germs/damp/mildew and keeping the air relatively free of harsh chemicals.

Cambam2010 Tue 08-Oct-13 15:24:27

When my son was a baby I was very much into all the antibac products that you can buy but as he has got older and more disgusting with his habits (3.5yo) I have become a bit more relaxed! I still clean as well as I ever did but I am not so over the top about germs.

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