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What Is the Five Things Cleaning Method?

A woman holds a bucket of cleaning supplies in one hand and a mop in another.
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Sometimes cleaning your house can be overwhelming. You’ve got a busy schedule, and unfortunately, things have piled up. But there might be a cleaning method that’ll make things easier.

The five things cleaning method allows you to break tidying down into five components, do them one by one, and by the end, your space is clean.

The five things method was created by KC Davis, a TikTok content creator and author of How to Keep House While Drowning. In her video—which originally went viral back in 2021—Davis explained that you break down your mess into five distinct categories: trash, dishes, laundry, things that have a place, and things that don’t have a place. Then, take on each category one at a time.


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Davis explained that most rooms only have these five things in them when dirty, and by breaking down your cleaning into these categories, you reduce the sense of overwhelm caused by a dirty space. You’ll see progress immediately after starting with trash and feel more and more motivated as you go through the other categories.

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Keep all your supplies nearby and organized as you clean.

The idea here isn’t to make your space spotless. It’s to make it livable. You’ll clear clutter, take care of the most important things to wash and clean (trash and laundry), and then, if you want, you can go back and do things like clean countertops, vacuum, or mop.

Essentially, slow and steady wins the cleaning race here. If you’ve been feeling overwhelmed by your weekend cleaning duties, this method might help.

Shea Simmons Shea Simmons
Shea Simmons is the Editor In Chief of LifeSavvy. Previously, she worked as a freelance writer with a focus on beauty and lifestyle content. Her work has appeared in Bustle, Allure, and Hello Giggles. Read Full Bio »
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