The 30 Cleaning Products That Our Editors Loved This Year

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Person washing dishes at a kitchen sink

Credit: Photo: Sidney Bensimon; Prop Styling: Anna Surbatovich

As 2023 approaches its close, editors and writers at The Kitchn and our sister site Apartment Therapy have been looking back at all the tricks and tools that made being at home comfortable and clean. Whether it was trying out a snazzy push mop from an unconventional brand or taking on the challenge of testing the latest viral cleaning hack that popped up on TikTok, the thrilling prospect of finding a new housecleaning staple motivated our team this year.

As great as it is to find a new vacuum to love, you won’t believe the wide variety of cleaners that made their way into staffers’ cabinets from laundry detergent spray to a stainless steel countertop scraper that you didn’t know you needed. Those items and more appear below in a comprehensive list of thoroughly tested products from January to December that made staffers’ homes truly shine throughout the year. No matter what cleaning needs you have at home, there’s sure to be something here that’s worth giving a try in the next year. Best of all, it’s all editor-tried and approved!


The eucalyptus-scented Method Daily Shower Spray is a low maintenance must-have, even for those who hate to clean. Essentially, it does the dirty work so you don’t have to. “If you’re doing a deeper clean of your bath or shower, this plant-based product will work well, but I only use it for basic shower cleaning,” says contributor Laura in her review. “I keep the spray on the windowsill next to my shampoo so I don’t forget to use it. I spray after I shower or after the kids get out of the bath and it keeps everything smelling fresh and mildew/mold-free. There’s no need to rinse, squeegee, or scrub after using; just spray and walk away.”


The popularity of the Best List-winning BLACK+DECKER 20V Max handheld vacuum goes beyond AT staffers. It’s a vacuum you should pick up when you see it because you’ll never know when it’ll sell out. Fortunately, this vacuum actually measures up to its hype. “I was shocked at how powerful the suction on this vacuum is,” says Alicia. “I just hovered it over my dusty floorboard heater and the dust disappeared. I didn’t even need to make direct contact with the surface. It honestly seems more powerful than my stick vacuum.”


A good stain remover is coveted among Apartment Therapy editors, and this year, Grandma’s Secret Spot Laundry Spray came out on top of our Best List. “I first put this spray to the test on the stain of all stains — turmeric,” says commerce SEO editor Sarah, who documented the experience in her review. “I had little faith that I was going to be able to get such a notoriously stubborn stainmaker out of my favorite white blouse, but alas, a couple sprays, some patience, and a wash later, and my shirt was good as new!”


When it came to dish racks that were tested for Apartment Therapy’s Best List franchise this year, Dash’s innovative SmartStore Dish Rack was the top choice. As a larger drying rack, it’s best for those who have a lot of counter space to work with, but it pays off since it’s able to store a lot of dishes, including cutting boards, wine glasses, and bottles. Plus, it looks neat and organized, and who doesn’t want that for their kitchen?


Cleaning brand Tru Earth gives you scent options with their laundry detergent sheets. Choose either Fresh Linen or Lilac Breeze, or opt for fragrance-free sheets that leave your clothes smelling like nothing except clean. I especially appreciated the minimal packaging, as well as how great they work. The detergent itself cleans just as well as liquid detergent without the mess. It’s super convenient and effective, and has been one of my go-to’s as of late!

The Broombi showed us that a broom doesn’t have to be limited to one thing when it can do so much more. “I have been using Broombi’s large broom to clean my floors and rug, and the mini to squeegee my bathroom mirror and sweep crumbs off my kitchen counter,” says executive commerce director Mark’s review. “In every instance, it has blown me away with its simplicity and effectiveness.”


Scotch-Brite’s lint roller has been extremely useful this year in an unexpected way: “When I’m doing my daily reset of the kitchen, instead of collecting the crumbs in a pile with a sponge or a paper towel, transferring them into the palm of my hand, and throwing them in the trash, I simply swipe the lint roller across the counter a few times and let the sticky surface pick up those pesky crumbs,” AT contributor Taylon says in her review. “Not only does it save me time, but it also limits the amount of waste I create with paper towels or the number of germs I spread by using a sponge.”

L’Avant Collective

For luxurious cleaning products that are worth the splurge and surprising giftable, try L’Avant Collective. The brand’s Home Essentials Starter Bundles includes all the basics you need for clean hands, dishes, and surfaces. Plus, they’ll look super stylish on your countertop, too.

At the start of the year, it seemed like everyone had a steam mop. Naturally, we had to find out which one was the best of the best. Turns out, it was the Shark Genius Steam Pocket Mop. “I’ve found this helpful in my kitchen to get up food stains, clear out corners, and even clean my grout,” says AT contributor Erin’s review. “I can honestly say I look forward to cleaning my floors now with how simple this steam mop is to use, from set-up to clean-up.”


TikTok helped us discover some cleaning solutions that were not only effective but stylish, too. Just check out this Washable Gel Lint Roller. “For travel, this little beauty is a game-changer. I’ll never again have to guess how many sheets I’ll need, and it takes up almost no space in my suitcase,” says contributor Meg’s review. For everyday use, it can live in a bag or pocket, and I’ll never find myself out in the bright light of day, helplessly realizing I didn’t entirely remove all signs of my fur baby from my pants.”

West Elm

While the Brabantia Laundry Bin wasn’t the cheapest hamper on Apartment Therapy’s Best List, the price is justified the moment it’s unboxed and the supremely high-quality construction is revealed. Assembly also takes all of two minutes, and the included machine-washable cotton liner actually fits and sticks around the perimeter of the bin, thanks to its non-skid top. The bin’s bottom is also non-skid, adding a safety anchor that is especially necessary if you’ve got little ones at home.


Have you cleaned your coffee maker lately — or ever? If you don’t know where to start, the Affresh Coffee Maker Cleaner has you covered. “I was both shocked and impressed that the coffee pot began to fill with rust-colored water,” says contributor L.Daniela’s step-by-step review. “Once it was clean, I brewed a fresh pot of my favorite medium roast. I noticed a bolder, richer flavor.”

My Kirei

If you remember the viral flower-shaped hand soap, then you’ll be pleased to find out that the same brand also makes a laundry detergent spray that knocks out stains like a beast. “I didn’t pretreat any stains and found the first load came out extremely clean,” says Meg in her review. “Once dry, the sheets felt soft rather than stiff. MyKirei uses plant-based surfactants that don’t contain the types of animal fats or petroleum that can break a washing machine.”


Coway was an incredibly popular pick for the air purifiers in editor’s homes this year. It earned multiple spots on the Best List, but it was the Airmega AP-1512HH that topped the list. “This air purifier is a true powerhouse when it comes to cleaning the air in my apartment,” says AT’s commerce and branded content social media manager, Brian. “It captures and filters out dust, pet dander, city odors, and other airborne particles, leaving the air noticeably cleaner.”


From trash cans to laundry hampers, simplehuman has earned a secure spot among Apartment Therapy favorites. However, if you’ve hesitated at the price tag but haven’t shied away from the thought of adding some simplehuman products to your household, their Odorsorb Pod Starter Kit could be a great place to start. The kit includes a pod holder that sticks to the underside of your trash can lid and two pods that use plant-based ingredients to neutralize odor from the garbage, making sure your home continues to smell fresh even though your trash isn’t.

Yamazaki Home

Yamazaki‘s knack for creating sleek and space-saving home organization products is what keeps editors coming back for more. It also earned the brand a number one spot on our Best List for the Airtight Rolling Trash Can. “This trash can is beyond impressive,” says AT’s executive lifestyle director, Charli, in her review. “It’s super sleek and blends in seamlessly with any decor, and it’s compact and small enough to fit under a kitchen sink but also holds a good amount of trash before you need to change the bag.”


Believe it or not, there’s a new mop slipper to love every year. For 2023, it was a five-pack of them from Tacimy that caught our attention. Contributor Shifrah tried them out with her family to some amazing results: “I actually got some good cleaning done,” says her review. “Having the slippers on encouraged me to dust areas that aren’t the easiest to dust with more typical methods. For instance, I found myself running my feet along the baseboards, and these mop slippers were one of the best baseboard-dusting methods I’ve tried!”


As a huge fan of Shark vacuums, I had the benefit of trying the Best List-winning Shark Cordless Detect Pro in my household. What I really love about this model is that it has a tall dock that takes up less space, so it’s easier to fit in narrow areas of my home. The vacuum is so much quieter than I expected it to be and has done a great job picking up pet hair from my two dogs.


If you’re sensitive to cleaners with strong odors, ECOS Free and Clear Hand Soap isn’t one you’ll have to worry about. “I have a sensory sensitivity to flowery or chemically scented cleaners, so I use Free and Clear hand soap in the kitchen,” contributor Laura wrote. “It has a good texture, not greasy or drying, which I’ve found is a hard balance to strike with hand soaps, and I’ve tried a lot due to my and my family members’ sensory needs. It’s the most neutral soap I’ve ever experienced.”


Put a Scrub Daddy on a power tool and you’ll get the Dremel Versa Power Scrubber. The kit comes with five scrubbers that can be used on multiple surfaces throughout the home from the kitchen to the bathroom. “After adding this device to my deep cleaning routine, I don’t think I’ll need to scrub at my counters and bathroom as frequently as I used to — it cuts through that much grime,” says commerce editorial assistant Morgan’s review. “Now that I’ve seen the light, I’m never going back to cleaning rags again.”


Keeping the air in your home safe and clean is just as important as the floors and counters. To get the job done, AT contributor Laura relies on Lysol’s Air Sanitizer Spray. “A few minutes after spraying, any odors in the area are neutralized,” Laura says in her review. “I dislike bad smells, but I also dislike fake smells, and I don’t find the scents from this line overwhelming. They smell fresh and subtle — like my house might if I’d just finished a load of laundry.”


For an electric scrubber with a bit more reach, the Oraimo Electric Spin Scrubber saved the day (and our backs). “Neither of my mops can thoroughly clean the edges and corners of my cabinets” says contributor Daniela’s review. “With just two passes, this pointed brush head was able to get rid of all the dirt, crumbs, and grime that had been lurking there for a while.”


At Apartment Therapy, surprising cleaning tools never get old. The Norpro Stainless Steel Scraper was certainly one we didn’t know we needed. “When my kids make pancakes, this scraper is there to get under the dried mess,” says contributor Jordan in a review of the scraper. “When the seeds of an everything bagel are strewn all over the kitchen island, the scraper helps corral them into the sink. It’s sturdy, but it doesn’t scratch my countertops.”

Grove Collaborative

Stain removers that are highly-effective white clothing are like gold around here, and Grove Co.’s Stain Remover Spray got it done. “I’ve found it most helpful on my white socks, which always get those stubborn gray stains on the bottom after I spend a couple of days walking around NYC in my sneakers,” wrote shopping writer Nikol. “I just spray this stain remover on each sock, let it sit for about 10 minutes, and throw the socks in the washer. Those pesky gray stains lift every time.”


It’s easy to see why this laundry basket from Home Logic would be a huge hit with just about anyone. It has wheels, a pop-up handle, and lots of space for clothes. “I fill two whole washing machines on one trip, and my old baskets typically only hold about a load and a half,” wrote contributor Taylor in a review. “Despite that very handy vertical space, it’s got a compact-enough footprint to leave out as an extra hamper in your bedroom or bathroom without cluttering the room too much.”

Force of Nature

It’s safe to say that AT’s cleaning and organizing editor, Stephanie, knows a thing or two about trustworthy cleaning products. Force of Nature got her stamp of approval. “It really is tough as bleach but gentle as a natural cleaner,” wrote Stephanie in her review. “Another thing I liked? It has no harsh fragrance. There was a light scent at first, but it disappeared. Some cleaners smell way too overwhelming for me to use, so when I can find one that’s pretty much non-existent in scent, I have to gush about it.”


Small space-friendly cleaning products might sound strange, but how often has a plunger or mop seemed to get in the way. Not only does the Canvint Silicone Toilet Brush not take up a ton of room, it can also be wall-mounted. “I admit I was nervous about whether or not silicone would actually be able to clean the bowl, and I kept my regular brush on standby just in case — but I love the Canvint toilet brush,” wrote contributor Meg. “The flexible head can reach spots my traditional brush never even considered touching, and the Canvint works just as well at removing stains.”


Finding effective laundry detegents was a constant theme of Apartment Therapy staffers this year, and Persil ProClean Plus OXI made an impression on executive lifestyle director Charli. “As soon as I spotted a fresh chocolate stain, I removed the sheets and comforter from the bed and pre-treated by applying some Persil ProClean Plus Oxi directly to each stain and gently rubbing it into the fabric until they were saturated,” says her review. “The stains absolutely vanished in one wash. (It’s like they were never there!)”

Grove Collaborative

Dish soaps that won’t dry out your hands after use seem so hard to find, but senior commerce editor Alicia managed to score one in the form of Grove Co.’s Ultimate Dish Soap. “After so many years of product testing, I am skeptical of everything,” she says. “But after two nights of use, I noticed that I wasn’t slathering on copious amounts of hand lotion to undo the damage done to my hands after dishwashing. In fact, this dish soap has also saved me from going through a bottle of hand lotion every two months.”


If you work out often or lead an active lifestyle, HEX Performance is a brand you should definitely check out, but it’s not at all limited to activewear. While their laundry detergent and wet dryer sheets made waves with AT editors, their Deodorizing Spray has been a shining star in the bunch. “I’d just about given up on fabric deodorizers until I tried the HEX Performance deodorizing spray,” says Nikol’s review. “This fabric freshener actually works, and it has saved me from both urgent laundry days and stinking in the streets.”

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