Over the last century the western world has been constantly reminded of the must-have-items that they need in their lives. This may be the latest magazines, a new cleaning product or a device that will cook the perfect egg, every time. These things may seem like a fantastic idea at first, but over time these items take up valuable space in our homes and are very rarely used. There is a modern movement towards living a simplified life, where we own less and do more. This is not as difficult as it sounds. There are many items in your house that you can do without, and you will be surprised what they are. They are not items such as the bread maker or stainless steel wipes that you have never used, they are items that may sit prominently in your house, but may rarely be used. Homify has asked the experts and found the top 6 common household items that you do not need.
When we are cleaning difficult items in our home, like the bathroom or the oven a strong and abrasive cleaner can seem like a good option. It states on the packaging that it will get rid of bacteria, or it will break down stubborn grease and grime. This may be true, but some of these products can do more harm than good when used regularly. Abrasive cleaners can not only remove the grease and grime, but damage the surface you are trying to maintain. These products can also take up valuable space in your home. The best alternative are items that you already own, and are probably sitting in your pantry or fridge. The simple lemon, vinegar and baking soda are some of the most effective cleaning solutions available. For the grease and grime in an oven; cover the grime with baking soda then spray on a layer of vinegar. Leave overnight. By the morning simply wipe off to reveal a clean and shiny oven.
In recent times there have been a dramatic increase in the sale of single use cleaning wipes. These are often marketed with a specific use labeled on each product; toilet wipes, glass wipes, kitchen wipes, stove wipes, in order to encourage multiple sales. These are one of the most wasteful items available today. Manufacturers encourage customers to use a wipe once before discarding it. This is not only a waste of money, but an environmental disaster. An average house clean may use up to 20 of these wipes. Compare this with the alternative; a simple micro fibre cleaning cloth, which is reusable. Once washed, it can be used for all purposes in the same space. Consider investing in five simple microfiber cleaning cloths instead of the costly and environmentally unfriendly cleaning wipes.
Kitchen appliances have increased in popularity since the 1950s. Each year new time saving appliances are invented to streamline our lives. However, many of these appliances are rarely used, and end up taking precious space in our cupboards and bench tops. The plate warmer fits into this category. The plate warmer was marketed as being able to pre warm your dinner plates, ensuring that your food stayed warm for longer. The ability for your food to stay warm for longer has merit, although there are other ways this can be done. The oven is a wonderful alternative for a plate warmer. If you are already cooking a meal there is a good chance that it is already on and hot. This means that using the oven to warm plates will not use any extra power, meaning a saving of power and space in your kitchen. For more ideas see Remodel your Kitchen to Suit your Lifestyle.
Another appliance that has been marketed on saving you precious time in the kitchen is the egg cooker. The egg cooker has also been sold as being able to cook the perfect egg, every time. This can be a very useful appliance if you eat eggs everyday. For many people who purchase these appliances their appealing features first inspire the purchase of the product. There is then the initial honeymoon period where the product is used on a regular basis. This is sometimes done to simply justify the purchase. After this period the appliance is often put in a cupboard where it is forgotten. Instead of an egg cooker, consider a simple pot on a stove and a timer. Cooking the perfect egg is a simple matter of timing.
There are many items that you have in a kitchen that can be classed as the essential staple items. These are things that it would be difficult to do without. One such item is the tin opener. This is a simple, small devise that is used to open cans and tins. In the age of electricity big business saw a market and invented the electric tin opener. This bulky and awkward devise was advertised as taking the effort out of opening a tin. While this devise could be beneficial to the elderly and those with dexterity issues, for everybody else it seemed to make a simple task abnormally complicated. It also used power that was unnecessary, making it an environmentally unfriendly appliance. Consider instead returning to the traditional tin opener. It can be used simply and fast with the twist of the hand.
For those of you who have everything, and still want want yet another item to stuff into your overfilled drawers and cupboards, the steamer is for you. The steamer is advertised as the healthy alternative to other food making appliances. Many people purchased these appliances believing that simply owning a steamer would miraculously make them healthier and happier. Although the steamer is only an appliance; a pot which is filed with water, with a basket on top, which the food is placed and subsequently cooked. This can be done simply and just as efficiently with the items you already have in your kitchen. A simple pot and strainer work very effectively to steam food. For more ideas see Make your kitchen a convenient place.
In this modern age we are slowly understanding that a more simple way of life is the better alternative. To achieve this many people are reducing the possessions that they own, keeping only the essential items. This can be done very easily. There are so many items in our homes that are necessary. The kitchen is one room that is commonly full of items that are rarely used. Consider getting rid of many of these items. First look through your cleaning products, the harsh abrasive cleaners are not necessary, the cleaning wipes are also not needed, this can be done with a cloth. The plate warmer can be given away as plates can be warmed in the oven. The egg cooker is not needed as eggs can be cooked on the stove. The tin opener is not needed as there is a smaller and more convenient hand can opener. And that food steamer is just taking up space, food can be steamed in a pot. These are just a few tips for a simpler kitchen life. For more inspiration see Kitchen Storage.