Better Homes and Gardens Online caught up with interior designer and Electrolux ambassador Anna-Carin McNamara to discuss how we can design our home to reduce clutter and the proliferation of allergens.
Here are Anna-Carin’s top tips:
1. Floorboards vs carpet
I am a fan of selecting floorboards and rugs in the home, floorboards are easy to keep clean and they don't lie, you can see if the floor is dusty. Carpets are a bit more deceiveable they can build up a lot of dust invisible to the eye. Rugs can be sent off to be cleaned regularly but avoid anything too fluffy. When it comes to cleaning your floors, look for a vacuum that is powerful enough to collect small dust particles that you might not be able to see and can get right into the cracks.
The Electrolux Pure Q9 handstick vacuum (PQ92-3PGF) is a lightweight and powerful 2 in 1 vacuum that is perfect for hard floors, as the PowerPro fluffy nozzle picks up fine dust through crevices, as well as larger particles. With the plush edges, it is gentle on the floors, whilst the combination of materials can have a lovely polishing effect on floors too.
2. Furniture upholstery
Pet hair, dust and other allergens can stick to fabric sofas. Tightly woven fabrics are best, the less fluff the better so avoid fabric like velvets and opt for linen or cotton. Also look at fabrics that can be easily cleaned, and coverings that can be removed and washed.
3. Reduce clutter
A surface that is clutter free is easy to keep dust free, and most surfaces can be wiped down if there aren’t too many items stored on them. Keep your spaces organised and buy less, so any clutter doesn’t collect dust.
4. In the bedroom
The best way to avoid allergens in the bedroom is to have rituals in place to keep the bedroom fresh. Wash the sheets at least once a week, vacuum daily, open the windows and air the room. Also make sure bedding is tightly woven in a natural fibre and that the mattress is not too old. Pillows can also collect dust and grime, so check the cleaning instructions from the manufacturer. At least once a year pillows should be washed or dry cleaned, and wash pillow cases once a week.
5. House layout
Try to avoid pushing furniture up against the wall, or storing things in the corners of the rooms. When your furniture has space around it and is placed away from the walls there's less chance of build up of dust and dirt and the room feels and looks better. You are honouring each piece by giving it space.
Decorations are lovely to make a space feel like your own, but if you have allergies it’s best to use them sparingly, and be prepared to also use the duster and the cloth to keep them clean as they do attract dust.
7. Bed selection
I prefer beds with legs so nothing can hide under there and the temptation to store things that give off bad energy while sleeping is minimised. Legs also makes it easier to vacuum under the bed.
8. Curtains or blinds
Opt for light sheers and roller blinds, heavy drapes collect a lot of dust.
9. Bathroom and kitchen
Live simply, buy less and only what you will use up so there's no build up of old unused stuff, which can create mould and unwanted food smells or pests.
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