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7 Carpet Cleaning Hacks You Need for Spring Cleaning

7 Carpet Cleaning Hacks You Need for Spring Cleaning

Spring is the quintessential time to spruce up your house. This means you’ll probably be knee-deep in scrubbers, scouring pads, brooms and sponges soon. While you’re making your home feel more like a glistening castle, don’t forget that your carpets took a beating this winter along with the rest of the house. Most carpet cleaning issues – stains, shagginess, padded-down spots – can be DIY projects using these clever and non-toxic carpet cleaning hacks.

how to remove carpet stains

    #1: Removing Stains with an Iron

    Don’t put that iron away after you starch the collars on the laundered button-down shirts that will go in your newly-organized closet. It can actually be carefully used to remove some stains.

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    First, vacuum the carpets so there aren’t any particles left on it. Then, dampen any spots or stains with a towel concentrated with a solution made of one part vinegar and three parts water (tap water is fine.)

    Put the moist towel over the stain and use the iron to heat the towel. As you move the iron over the towel, the stain should start to lift into the towel. Stop ironing when the stain is all – or as much as possible – removed.

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    carpet cleaning hacks

      #2: Baking Soda and Essential Oil Carpet Freshener

      Want your carpets to smell so fresh that you’ll feel like you’re walking in a field of daisies every time you step foot in your living room or bedroom? Make your own deodorizer by adding about 10-20 drops of any essential oil (I prefer lavender or wild orange) with about a 16-ounce box of baking soda. Mix it up well so the oils are completely absorbed and store in a glass container. When you want to use it, simply shake some of the perfumed baking soda on your carpet, wait 5 minutes and then vacuum it.

      #3: Homemade Deep Clean Carpet Cleaner

      Deep cleaning your carpets will help get rid of allergens and dust mites. Most people think you have to use the liquid chemical cleaner with your carpet-cleaning extractor, but you can actually make your own deep green cleaner. Mix the following ingredients together to make a non-toxic deep cleaner for your machine: ¾ cup of Hydrogen Peroxide, ¼ cup white vinegar, 2 tablespoons dish soap, 5 drops of essential oils, 2 tablespoons of fabric softener and one gallon of hot (not boiling) water. Use this in your rug cleaning machine instead of expensive, chemical-filled store brand options.

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      homemade green carpet cleaner

        #4: Properly Cleaning a Shag Carpet

        Shag carpeting has come back into style with a vengeance, so if you have a shag carpet in your home, you’ll need to know how to clean it. Most vacuums have too much suction and can cause the shag to go frizzy or get caught in the machinery. If you notice that your carpet is “shedding” regularly, de-shag it by using the hose attachment of your vacuum. Yes, this will take longer, but will allow you to get deep into the fibers of the rug without hurting the strength or look of the shag.

        #5: Carpet Fluffing Technique I

        Does your carpet look like it’s been walked on my an army? Fluff it up by spraying any hardened, stained areas with a carpet stain remover of equal parts vinegar and water. Allow the agent to work, and then blot up the stain. At this point, run a spoon along the carpeting (hold the spoon on its side) to “fluff up” the fibers and encourage them to stand straight again.

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        how to fluff a carpet

          #6: Carpet Fluffing Technique II

          Tired of dented-in spots where your furniture put pressure on the carpet? Allow an ice cube to melt into the dents. After the water has completely dissolved, take a soft towel and blot up the excess moisture. Do not press hard; this will dent the carpet again. Lay the moist towel on top of the dented area and run an iron (on cotton setting) back and forth across the towel. When the fibers feel almost dry, stop ironing the spot. Allow the carpet to air dry, then use your hands to fluff up the spot.

          #7: Cleaning Different Types of Carpet

          Carpets differ in a number of ways. There are low loop carpets (think Berber) and more plush/shaggy carpets. These can come with or without stain protection, and may be made of anything from 100 percent wool to synthetic fibers.

          Let’s start with low-pile, looped carpets. While they are great for high-traffic areas, they may not be as apt to give up stains as plush carpets. You have to have patience when cleaning low-pile/looped carpeting; use a lot of elbow grease.

          With a little bit of patience, you can have the carpet you love back looking and smelling wonderful again. Plus, if you are saving money for new carpeting, this helps you extend the life of your current flooring a little longer. That means more dollars in your purse AND a beautiful, spring-clean home.

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          Science Says Screaming Is Good For You

          Science Says Screaming Is Good For You

          There are many reasons why people might scream – they’re angry, scared, or in pain (or maybe they’re in a metal band!). Some might say that screaming is bad, but here’s why science says it’s good for you.

          “For the first time in the history of psychology there is a way to access feelings, hidden away, in a safe way and thus to reduce human suffering. It is, in essence, the first science of psychotherapy.” — Dr. Arthur Janov

          Primal Therapy

          Dr. Arthur Janov invented Primal Therapy in the late 1960’s. It is a practice that allows the patient to face their repressed emotions from past trauma head on and let those emotions go. This treatment is intended to cure any mental illness the patient may have that surfaced from this past trauma. In most cases, Primal Therapy has lead Dr. Janov’s patients to scream towards the end of their session, though it was not part of the original procedure. During a group therapy session that was at a standstill, Dr. Janov says that one of his patients, a student he called Danny, told a story that inspired him to implement a technique that he never would have thought of on his own.

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          How it Started

          “During a lull in our group therapy session, he told us a story about a man named Ortiz who was currently doing an act on the London stage in which he paraded around in diapers drinking bottles of milk. Throughout his number, Ortiz is shouting, ‘Mommy! Daddy! Mommy! Daddy!’ at the top of his lungs. At the end of his act he vomits. Plastic bags are passed out, and the audience is requested to follow suit.”

          It doesn’t end there, though. Dr. Janov said that his patient was quite fascinated with that story, and that alone moved him to suggest something even he believed to be a little elementary.

          “I asked him to call out, ‘Mommy! Daddy!’ Danny refused, saying that he couldn’t see the sense in such a childish act, and frankly, neither could I. But I persisted, and finally, he gave in. As he began, he became noticeably upset. Suddenly he was writhing on the floor in agony. His breathing was rapid, spasmodic. ‘Mommy! Daddy!’ came out of his mouth almost involuntarily in loud screeches. He appeared to be in a coma or hypnotic state. The writhing gave way to small convulsions, and finally, he released a piercing, deathlike scream that rattled the walls of my office. The entire episode lasted only a few minutes, and neither Danny nor I had any idea what had happened. All he could say afterward was: ‘I made it! I don’t know what, but I can feel.’”

          Delving deeper

          Dr. Janov says he was baffled for months, but then he decided to experiment with another patient with the same method, which lead to a similar result as before. The patient started out calling “Mommy! Daddy!” then experienced convulsions, heavy breathing, and then eventually screamed. After the session, Dr. Janov says his patient was transformed and became “virtually another human being. He became alert… he seemed to understand himself.”

          Although the initial intention of this particular practice wasn’t to get the patient to scream, more than once did his Primal Therapy sessions end with the patient screaming and feeling lighter, revived, and relieved of stresses that were holding them down in life.

          Some Methods To Practice Screaming

          If you want to try it out for yourself, keep reading!

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          • Step 1: Be Alone — Be alone. If you live in a place that you can’t be alone, it might be a good idea to talk to your family or roommates and explain to them what you’re about to do and make sure they’re okay with it. If you’re good to go, move on to step 2.
          • Step 2: Lie Down — Lie down on a yoga mat on your back and place a pillow underneath your head. If you don’t own a yoga mat, you can use a rug or even a soft blanket.
          • Step 3: Think — Think of things that have hurt you or made you angry. It can be anything from your childhood or even something that happened recently to make yourself cry, if you’re not already crying or upset. You could even scream “Mommy! Daddy!” just like Dr. Janov’s patients did to get yourself started.
          • Step 4: Scream — Don’t hold anything back; cry and scream as loud as you can. You can also pound your fists on the ground, or just lie there and scream at the top of your lungs.

          After this, you should return your breathing to a normal and steady pace. You should feel lighter, like a weight has been lifted off of you. If not, you can also try these other methods.

          Scream Sing

          Scream singing” is referring to what a lot of lead singers in metal or screamo bands will do. I’ve tried it and although I wasn’t very good at it, it was fun and definitely relieved me of any stress I was feeling from before. It usually ends up sounding like a really loud grunt, but nonetheless, it’s considered screaming.

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          • Step 1 — Bear down and make a grunting sound.
          • Step 2 — Hiss like a snake and make sure to do this from your diaphragm (your stomach) for as long as you can.
          • Step 3 — Breathe and push your stomach out for more air when you are belting notes, kind of like you would if you were singing.
          • Step 4 — Try different ways to let out air to control how long the note will last, just make sure not to let out too much air.
          • Step 5 — Distort your voice by pushing air out from your throat, just be careful not to strain yourself.
          • Step 6 — Play around with the pitch of your screams and how wide your mouth is open – the wider your mouth is open, the higher the screams will sound. The narrower or rounder your mouth is (and most likely shaped like an “o”), the lower the screams will sound.
          • Step 7 — Start screaming to metal music. If you’re not a huge metal fan, it’s okay. You don’t have to use this method if you don’t want to.

          If you want a more thorough walkthrough of how to scream sing, here’s a good video tutorial. If this method is too strenuous on your vocal chords, stop. Also, make sure to stay hydrated when scream singing and drink lots of water.

          Scream into a pillow

          Grab a pillow and scream into it. This method is probably the fastest and easiest way to practice screaming. Just make sure to come up for air.

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          Always remember to make sure that you’re not going to disturb anyone while practicing any of these methods of screaming. And with that, happy screaming!

          Featured photo credit: Sharon Mollerus via flickr.com

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