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The Superhero Stain-Fighters You Already Have At Home

Easy solutions for common household stains.

1. Toothpaste to get out stains: Non-gel and non-whitening toothpaste can get stains out of multiple household items. For stains on walls and carpets squeeze on toothpaste and rub with a cloth and rinse with warm water. Be careful with high-shine walls as it could take away the gloss. Marks on leather and rings on wood furniture can be eliminated the same way—spread on a thin coat of toothpaste and wipe clean with a damp cloth.

2. Vinegar for brighter (and cleaner!) laundry: Add 1/4 a cup of white distilled vinegar to your laundry to prevent colors from running (no need to separate whites and darks!) and lint from clinging to clothing.

3. Rubbing alcohol to get paint off of a carpet: Whether the result of an art project, or a renovation, that bright-colored spot in the middle of your cream carpet is unsightly. After picking up the excess, soak a clean cloth in isopropyl rubbing alcohol and gently rub the area back and forth.

4. Rubber gloves to remove pet hair: Attempting to get pet fur off furniture with a vacuum can become a tedious task. Instead, put on a pair of rubber dish washing gloves and run them over the surface— the hair sticks to them and gathers together making it easy to get off.

5. Milk and vinegar to clean linens: A equal part mixture of milk and vinegar can leave dull linens looking new. Soak linens in the mixture overnight to lift stains, then wash.

6. Baking soda and water to clean tile grout: Create a creamy mixture of baking soda and warm water, then place over grout and let sit—once dry rinse with warm water.

7. Get stains off granite with baking soda, hydrogen peroxide, dish soap and plastic wrap: For water-based stains mix 1 cup baking soda, 5 tablespoons dish soap, and enough hydrogen peroxide until the mixture is creamy (for oil-based stains omit the hydrogen peroxide) apply to stain and cover with plastic wrap—let sit overnight then wipe clean.

8. Wax to remove marks on hardwood floors: Rub wax—from a candle or even a crayon— on the mark and use a soft cloth to buff off.

9. Rubbing alcohol instead of vinegar: Out of vinegar or want to make your own all-around gentler cleaning solution? Substitute a ½ cup plain rubbing alcohol for vinegar for a multipurpose household cleaner without the damaging effects of the acid in vinegar.

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“After living in Evansville, Indiana for 65 of my 67 years, it was more than a little stressful to consider moving 300 miles away, when even moving across town can be anxiety-provoking. Diane’s friendly & professional demeanor truly eased my tension as she helped me find and buy the house I did.  She also gave me the names of plumbers, heating & air people etc. to make my adjustment here even easier”.  
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