20 Stories

Japan's Fans 'Make Statement' at World Cup—With Trash Bags

Japanese fans came armed to clean up the stadium after their team's match

(Newser) - They showed up at the World Cup match sporting trash bags. That's what the BBC is reporting about fans of "Samurai Blue," the Japanese national soccer team that beat Colombia's players 2-1 Tuesday in Russia. After the soccer teams' jobs were done in Saransk's Mordovia... More »

Women Who Use Spray Cleaners May as Well Smoke Pack a Day

Study finds decline in lung function among women who regularly use spray cleaners

(Newser) - Women who regularly clean at home or professionally are damaging their lungs in a way comparable to smoking a pack of cigarettes every day for 10 to 20 years due to the inhalation of cleaning sprays, according to a recently published study out of Norway. "We feared that such... More »

Scientists Pinpoint a Simple Way to Help Us Start Anew


(Newser) - Looking for an easy way to clear your mind and refocus? Scientists say they've found a simple activity we should all be doing daily anyway that will help get us there: clean your hands. Researchers at the University of Toronto call it "reorienting one's priorities," and... More »

Why Consumers in India Will Love This Washing Machine

Panasonic washer has a 'curry' button, 'daily sari' setting

(Newser) - Consumers in India may have to pay a little more for a just-debuted Panasonic washing machine, but those desperate to get a certain type of stain out may find the appliance worth the extra outlay. In what Gizmodo UK calls the "corporate holy grail" of customer-tailored service, the electronics... More »

What the Dust in Your House Says About You

Our dust contains, on average, 9K unique species of microbes

(Newser) - Last year, volunteers mailed in dust samples taken from above interior and exterior door frames in 1,200 homes across the US as part of a citizen science project called Wild Life of Our Homes . Now, scientists are reporting in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B that our... More »

Men, Women Equal With One Exception: Cleaning

Jessica Grose calls housework 'the final feminist frontier'

(Newser) - The world is becoming more egalitarian, with men doing a much larger share of things like cooking and childcare these days. "It’s seen as socially admirable and masculine for a man to be on diaper duty or to sous-vide a steak," writes Jessica Grose, whose own husband... More »

Woman Breaks Into Home, Cleans It

She also left a bill and has pleaded guilty to burglary charges

(Newser) - Talk about invasive marketing. A woman in Ohio allegedly broke into a home, tidied up a bit, then left a bill for $75 written on a napkin with her phone number, reports the Chronicle-Telegram of Elyria, Ohio. Police say Susan Warren took out the trash, vacuumed, dusted, and washed a... More »

Confused Cleaner Scrubs 'Stain' Off $1.1M Sculpture

Kippenberger work damaged beyond repair: museum

(Newser) - She thought she was just doing her job; instead, she was forever altering a $1.1 million artwork. A cleaner in a German museum spotted what she thought was an unintended stain on a sculpture and decided to wash it off. The piece by the late Martin Kippenberger, “When... More »

There's More Dust Than There Used to Be

And there's no good way to get rid of it

(Newser) - If you feel like your house is only getting dustier, you may be right: There’s more dust in the world now than there once was, a study finds. In fact, the amount of airborne dust doubled in the 20th century. Where's it all coming from? There are a few... More »

Don't Hate Me: I'm Just Here to Clean Up

Clearing the detritus of owners' dreams from bank-owned homes

(Newser) - Cindy Reid doesn’t want you to think she and her boss—and boyfriend—are the “bad guys.” But it is difficult when her man is the one “you never want to see pull up to your house. He has eyes that go flat when you offer ... More »

Pinched Writer Picks Up the Toilet Brush

(Newser) - Even with two degrees and a book deal, Rebecca Golden has had a tough time keeping her bank balance above zero, she writes for Salon, so she's turned to an edifying, if often terrifying, sideline: cleaning houses. “I suppose I could find other ways to make ends meet,”... More »

Your Shampoo Is Chock Full of Toxins

Few ingredients contribute to cleaning

(Newser) - Most of what’s in shampoo does nothing to cleanse—instead, it “strokes your emotions,” writes Bill Bunn in Salon. If your hair is greasy, you simply need detergent. But shampoos contain a variety of other ingredients—two-thirds by volume—intended to make you feel good about the... More »

Cheaper Tide Rises in Hard Times

Procter & Gamble agonizes over risky move

(Newser) - A cheaper Tide is rolling in: The recession-friendly Tide Basic drops some of the high-tech cleaning components—like anti-pilling ability—contained in the detergent’s traditional form, in exchange for a 20% lower price tag, the Wall Street Journal reports. But the decision to release the new Tide was no... More »

In Today's Economy, Nannies Must Multitask

(Newser) - As affluent Americans downsize their household staffs, the once distinct lines between nannies and housekeepers are getting a little fuzzy, the Los Angeles Times reports. More and more, nannies are being asked to scrub the toilets along with watching the kids, and housekeepers are being asked to vacuum with a... More »

Finally, It's a Cleaning Fluid You Can Drink

Electrolyzed water washes, degreases, cures athlete's foot

(Newser) - In essence, it’s salt water, but a new drinkable cleaning fluid has been deemed a “miracle liquid,” the Los Angeles Times reports. So-called electrolyzed water is the result of sending current through a mixture of table salt and water. The cleaner, degreaser, and athlete’s foot cure... More »

Companies Spice Up the Smell Of Clean

Moroccan bazaar scent says you tidied up ... even if you barely did

(Newser) - Makers of household products are constantly working to redefine the smell of clean, the Wall Street Journal reports, even as Americans are spending 40% less time actually tidying up than they did 40 years ago. One of the newest is Procter & Gamble’s Moroccan Bazaar, a ginger-edged scent for... More »

Chemists Sniff Out Household Stinks

Smell squad recreates odors to wipe them out

(Newser) - Chemists are trying to replicate the odors of stale smoke and rotting garbage in a quest to make America a better-smelling place, the Wall Street Journal reports. A specialist squad working for the International Flavors and Fragrances company captures common bad household smells, brings them back to the lab, and... More »

Keyboards 'Dirtier Than Toilet Seats'

Microbiologist warns that filthy keys can make people ill

(Newser) - A microbiologist studying computer keyboards discovered that some of them harbored more bacteria than the average toilet seat, the Guardian reports. The dirtiest—which had to be removed from an office—had 150 times the level of acceptable bacteria, putting the user at risk of catching bugs that cause diarrhea... More »

When Green Doesn't Mean Safe

Americans rush to eco-friendly cleaners, but dangers remain

(Newser) - Americans are increasingly buying eco-friendly cleaning agents, the Los Angeles Times reports, in an attempt to limit exposure to toxic chemicals. But consumer advocates urge caution in embracing the “green” label on cleaners, which is more marketing lingo than strict scientific criteria. A recent study found a common carcinogen... More »

Cleaners May Trigger Asthma

Common household products blamed for 1 in 7 cases

(Newser) - Cleaning products with bleach and air fresheners may cause asthma, or aggravate symptoms, even if those products are used only once a week, according to new research. As many as 1 in 7 asthma cases may be caused by exposure to household cleaners, says a study in the American Journal ... More »

20 Stories