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Looking to combine the super-effectiveness of Swiffer Sweeper cloths with the reusability of microfiber cloths? Our domestic DIYer shares her easy recipe for homemade, pre-treated, washable cloths that trap dust like a magnet.

Swiffer, dust clothsHomemade dust cloths are a budget-friendly answer to disposable Swiffer Sweepers. Photo: Francesca Clarke

My quest for a dust-free home is neverending. Even if I'm simply managing the weekly buildup on the piano, bookshelves and photo ledge, I'm detesting it every step of the way.

Ever since I abandoned store-bought, pretreated dust cloths -- read: Swiffer Sweepers -- my dusters of choice have been microfiber cloths. They're a satisfactory alternative, but to be honest, I don't find them nearly as effective as Swiffers. Then I thought, if only I could combine the effectiveness of Swiffer Sweepers with the reusable appeal of microfiber cloths.

That's when I came up with this homemade version of Swiffer cloths. No worries: the recipe totally natural. (Though it should be noted that, according the Procter & Gamble, the ingredients in Swiffer Sweepers aren't too bad either; the company lists wax and various fragrances as the pre-treating ingredients).

homemade dust clothsNo, we're not making salad dressing. This DIY pre-treated dust cloth recipe calls for items you can find right in your kitchen. Photo: Francesca Clarke

What You'll Need
-- 1/2 cup hot water
-- Juice from 3 lemons
-- 2 Tbs olive oil
-- An old cotton t-shirt
-- Glass container with lid

How to Make Your Own Pre-Treated Dust Cloths

dust clothsFrancesca Clarke

1. Cut rags out of an old cotton t-shirt. If you don't have one, there's no need to destroy a good shirt. Any cotton cloth will do.

pouring hot waterFrancesca Clarke

2. Pour 1/2 cup of water into a glass container. Then mix in the juice from 3 lemons

homemade dust clothsFrancesca Clarke

4. Add 2 Tbs olive oil. Mix well.

homemade dust clothsFrancesca Clarke

5. Immerse the cotton cloths in the solution.

let the cloths sit in an air tight containerFrancesca Clarke

6. Put a lid on the container and let it sit for two hours. I put mine by the windowsill.

air dry the clothsFrancesca Clarke

5. Wring out each cloth and set it to dry. Wait till they're completely dry, then dust away!

homemade dust clothsFrancesca Clarke

Tip: I recommend hand-washing the cloths after each use. Tossing them in the laundry with other items could result in oil stains on your other laundry.

Washing by hand also stretches out the number of times you can use the cloths before you need to re-treat them. You should get about three uses out of each treatment.

I used these pre-treated cloths on my piano, and am thrilled to report that it's dust-free and polished too!

Got any homemade cleaning recipes? Share them in the comments!


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