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How to Conquer Post-Halloween Cleaning

How to Conquer Post-Halloween Cleaning

Thanksgiving can lead to a bountiful mess. Christmas cleanup is almost as fun as a big lump of coal. But in terms of house cleaning nightmares, there’s no holiday more frightful than dreaded Halloween. Cleaning up all the decorations is scary enough, but the mess left behind by candy, makeup, and pranksters can make Halloween cleaning a truly bone-chilling experience.

To help homeowners conquer their Halloween cleaning fears, we asked our bravest home cleaning experts for their top Halloween cleaning tips.

How to Clean Candy Messes

After a night of trick-or-treating cavities aren’t the only things that parents need to worry about. Candy can be just as bad for clothing, carpeting, and upholstery. If you need to clean up a candy-based mess, use these tricks to clean up treats:

  • Sticky candies — like taffy, tootsie rolls, and lollipops — can get deeper into fibers if you try to clean them immediately. Cover them with an ice pack for an hour, and you’ll be able to scrape away most of the candy with a putty knife.
  • Blot candy stains using a mixture of dish soap and cold water. For sticky candies, you can add vinegar if the stain is being stubborn.
  • Sodium percarbonate (a.k.a. “Oxygen bleach”) can help you get rid of especially tough stains without damaging the color of the fibers.
  • If all else fails, you may need to resort to dry-cleaning clothing or steam cleaning carpets.

How to Clean Makeup Stains

If children aren’t careful, their Halloween makeup can get pretty much everywhere. Most Halloween makeup is grease-based, so dish soap is often enough to lift these stains out of fibers. Wet the stain with cold water, rub dish soap into the stain, liberally rinse/blot the fibres with cold water, and repeat. For tough makeup stains, you can try sodium percarbonate before resorting to dry-cleaning or steam-cleaning.

How to Clean Halloween Pranks

If Halloween pranksters decided to target your home this year, you’ll want to quickly clean the mess they left behind. Here are a few tips for cleaning up your home if it’s been egged, toilet-papered, or covered in shaving cream/soap suds.

  • Eggs: Wet the area underneath each egg stain, then spray water above the egg to create a waterfall that washes the egg off the side of your home. Don’t spray directly at the egg, which will cause it to splatter and spread to other areas.
  • Toilet Paper: You can use a leaf blower, rake, or a telescopic pool brush/skimmer to get toilet paper out of branches and eavestroughs.
  • Shaving Cream/Soap: Shaving cream and soap can be easily washed away with water from your garden hose. Just make sure you rinse off your home thoroughly, so that you’re not leaving a soapy film behind.

In all of these cases, the most important thing you can do is clean up ASAP. Eggs can stain paint and cake onto your home, toilet paper is a mess if it gets wet, and shaving foam/soap suds can leave soap scum on siding.

And, above all else, have a Happy Halloween!