Clever tricks to make your home clean and fresh….

• Freshen your mattress. Mix three to five drops of an essential oil (such as lavender, peppermint, citrus or eucalyptus) with one cup of baking soda. Sprinkle it on your mattress, and work it in with a stiff brush. Leave for one hour so that the baking soda can absorb odors and the oils can infuse the mattress. Vacuum, using an upholstery attachment for best results.

• Remove toilet rings with cola. Pour a can of cola into the bowl, and let it sit overnight to get rid of rings and rust. Or use a wet, used dryer sheet.

• Keep air vents debris-free with car wax. If you can, remove the vent grilles for a more thorough cleaning. (If not, take the hose of your vacuum and set it on the grille to remove as much dust and other debris as possible.) If the grilles are very dirty, wash them with ­dishwashing soap and water. Then vacuum inside the vent as far as you can reach, and wash with soap and water as you did the grilles. Wipe away any remaining dirt with a damp cloth. Before replacing the grilles, coat them with a thin layer of car wax and buff to prevent dust from building up and to maintain better air flow.

• Use your hair dryer to clean radiators. Place damp newspapers or cloths between the rungs and behind the radiator. Blow with your hair dryer to dislodge debris and dust. The papers or cloths will catch the dirt.

• Put glass light fixtures in the dishwasher on the top rack. Make sure to leave enough space to avoid potential breakage. Run on the gentle cycle.

• Remove dust on cloth lamp shades with a lint roller. Roll on the inside and outside of the shade until the dust is gone.

• Prevent mold on houseplant soil with cinnamon. Remove any visible mold growth on the surface of the soil, and discard it in a sealed plastic bag. Replace with a layer of fresh potting soil. Sprinkle on cinnamon or an essential oil such as tea tree oil or lavender to repel future mold growth.

• Use a ‘‘Post-it’’ to clean your laptop keyboard. Slide the sticky side of a Post-it note between the keys to remove dirt, dust and crumbs.

• Wash makeup brushes in shampoo. Most makeup brushes are made of hair, so clean them with a little shampoo and warm water. Use baby shampoo or another gentle shampoo that does not have conditioner in it. Rinse with cool water. Then reshape and lay the tips over the edge of the sink to dry.

• Revive potpourri with vodka. Revitalize your potpourri by spraying it lightly with vodka.

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