All the places you're forgetting to clean in your entryway — pro tips for those easy-to-miss spots

From front door to shoe rack — check out these places you're forgetting to clean in your entryway

Bright entryway with mirror, table, hanging coats, stairs and white front door - for article on all the places you're probably forgetting to clean in your entryway
(Image credit: John Keeble/Getty Images)

Knowing all the places you're forgetting to clean in your entryway is key to achieving great guest first impressions.

In this article, our cleaning experts reveal the six places you're likely overlooking — providing step-by-step instructions to get them gleaming again.

When it comes to cleaning your home, why not start from the beginning? Make your entryway a clean, warm, and inviting place with this easy-to-follow guide. 

All the places you're forgetting to clean in your entryway

Armed with the best cleaning supplies, follow our expert guide for a fresh entryway that gives your guests a great first impression — and makes you thrilled to return home.

From your front door to the shoe rack, our industry pros will reveal 6 commonly-forgotten entryway spots, with step-by-step guidance to tackle each one.

Where our pros have suggested products, we've sourced high-quality items from trusted retailers.

All prices were correct at the time of publication.

1. Front door

Deep red front door with sunflower wreath

(Image credit: Melissa Ross/Getty Images)

Your front door is the gateway to your home, providing that all-important first impression, and deserves regular attention to maintain its appearance.

Hometalk editor Amy Poulton says, "This might sound obvious, but possibly the most overlooked part of your entryway is the front door itself! Yet it's the first thing guests will see and touch."

Remembering to clean both the inside and outside, start by dusting the door, focusing particularly on the ledge above, where dust most loves to accumulate. These Made By Design Microfiber Dust Cloths from Target are high quality, well-reviewed and make for a more eco-friendly option than disinfectant wipes. Alternatively, an extendable duster like Swiffer Dusters Heavy Duty Dusting Kit (see below) helps avoid back pain.

Amy says: "Mix warm water with dish soap or vinegar in a bucket. Dip a sponge (not abrasive!), wash the door, and rinse thoroughly. Dry with a microfiber cloth to prevent streaks. 

"If you have windows in your front door, use glass cleaner or the same dish soap or vinegar mixture. Then, use a squeegee in smooth strokes from top to bottom of the windows to remove excess water and prevent streaks. If you don't have a squeegee, simply dry the windows thoroughly with your microfiber cloth."

Amy recommends this Hiware All-Purpose Squeegee from Amazon, which boasts more than fifty-thousand 5-star reviews. 

For wooden doors, applying a furniture polish or wax after cleaning can protect the finish and enhance the wood’s natural beauty. This Orange Glo Wood Furniture 2-in-1 Clean & Polish Spray from Walmart contains Valencia orange oil and comes with more than a thousand 5-star reviews. 

2. Door handles

Golden front door handle on light green front door with glass panel

(Image credit: Nickbeer/Getty Images)

Door handles are high-touch areas that can harbor germs and bacteria. Regular cleaning is essential to maintain hygiene. 

Amy says, "Door handles are easily forgotten about all over the home, but passing on germs is the last way you want to welcome your guests! 

"Your front door handle — and any others in your entryway — are getting touched all the time as you come and go but are rarely cleaned, so make sure you add them to your weekly cleaning routine. 

"A quick wipe with a disinfectant wipe, a microfiber cloth with disinfectant spray, or even just vinegar and water will do the trick."

Amy recommends these Amazon Basics Disinfecting Wipes which come with 5-star reviews, a fresh scent and kill 99.9% of bacteria within 15 seconds.

3. Door mat

Front doormat welcome mat

(Image credit: Jeffrey Coolidge/Getty Images)

For most of us, it's the first thing we encounter when we enter our home, and it's a place specifically designed to get dirty. Yet your entryway doormat is often completely overlooked when it comes to your cleaning routine

Lina DaSilva, founder of Toronto Shine Cleaning, says, "To clean your doormat, start by shaking off any loose dirt outside. If you have a fabric mat, vacuum on both sides; for a rubber mat, spray it down with a hose, mix a solution of warm water and mild dish soap, and scrub with a brush."

Lina recommends the OXO All-Purpose Good Grips Scrub Brush from Amazon for its sturdiness and Dawn Platinum Power Wash Dish Spray from Target for its fresh scent and ability to cut through grime. 

Lina adds, "After scrubbing, rinse the mat with clean water and allow it to dry completely before placing it back. This prevents mold growth so it's a vital step." 

Some doormats are machine washable — always check and follow the manufacturer's instructions.

4. Light fixtures

Man on ladder changing lightbulb

(Image credit: Navinpeep/Getty Images)

Light fixtures in the entryway can collect dust and cobwebs, diminishing their brightness, along with those all-important first impressions.

Karina Toner, operations manager at Spekless Cleaning, says: "Ceiling or wall-mounted light fixtures in your entryway can gather dust and dead bugs over time.

"To clean, start by turning off the power to the light fixture at the circuit breaker to ensure safety. Carefully remove the fixture cover or shade then use a soft-bristled brush or vacuum attachment to gently remove dust and debris from the fixture.

"Wipe down the fixture with a damp cloth or sponge and mild dish soap. Dry the fixture thoroughly before reattaching the cover or shade. Turn the power back on and you're good to go."

To maintain a bright and welcoming entryway, look out for any dim or flickering bulbs that need replacing, and watch out for these small entryway lighting mistakes to avoid.

5. Baseboards

Baseboards are often overlooked but love to accumulate dust and dirt, making your entryway look neglected. 

Karina says, "Baseboards are often overlooked because they're low down and out of sight for the most part. However, they can accumulate dust, pet hair, and grime over time.

"To clean them, begin by vacuuming or sweeping the baseboards to remove loose debris. Next, mix a solution of warm water and mild dish soap in a bucket. Dampen a microfiber cloth or sponge in the soapy water and wring out excess moisture. Wipe down the baseboards thoroughly, paying attention to any stubborn spots and in corners. 

"Rinse the cloth or sponge frequently and change the water if it gets too dirty. Once cleaned, dry the baseboards with a clean towel or leave a fan on to air dry."

Regularly wiping baseboards with a dryer sheet can help repel dust and keep them cleaner for longer. These Bounce Fresh Fabric Softener Dryer Sheets from Target come with more than five thousand 5-star reviews. 

6. Shoe rack

Shoe rack full of pairs of shoes in the sunshine

(Image credit: Krit of Studio OMG/Getty Images)

Shoe racks can become cluttered and dirty, detracting from the entryway’s appearance and organization. 

To clean your shoe rack, begin by removing all shoes. Dust the rack with a cloth or vacuum attachment, then wipe down with a damp cloth and mild detergent to remove dirt and scuffs. You can also use a spray of equal parts vinegar and water.

Sort shoes by season or frequency of use, and consider donating or storing shoes that are rarely worn. Placing a tray or mat under the shoe rack can catch dirt and water from shoes, making it easier to clean and protecting your floors.

Finally, give your most popular shoes a sprinkle of baking soda (we love Arm & Hammer's Pure Baking Soda from Walmart, which is high quality and costs less than a dollar). This soaks up any moisture and removes lingering odors. 

For more inspiration, check out these these shoe storage ideas in a small entryway.

Meet our experts

Profile photo of Hometalk editor Amy Poulton
Amy Poulton

Amy Poulton is editor and home-improvement expert at Hometalk, the world’s largest home DIY community. It has 150,000 tutorial videos on everything from cleaning to decor provide inspiration, and shared expert guidance to more than 21 million members. 

Lina DaSilva
Lina DaSilva

Lina DaSilva is founder of the award-winning Toronto Shine Cleaning. With over 10 years' industry experience, she specializes in residential cleaning and home organization. Lina's venture focuses on offering living wages and empowering homeowners to enjoy cleaner, more organized spaces.

Profile photo of Karina Toner, operations manager at Spekless Cleaning
Karina Toner

Karina is an Operations Manager at Spekless Cleaning, a respected cleaning company operating across multiple US states. She has more than 10 years' cleaning experience and is an expert in professional cleaning solutions and helping clients with sustainable and effective cleaning.


By paying attention to these often-overlooked areas, you can keep your entryway looking pristine and inviting. 

Next, check out all the places you're forgetting to clean in a living room and all the places you're probably forgetting to clean in your bathroom

Andy van Terheyden
Freelance Writer

I'm a senior writer with an English degree and NCJ qualification, plus years of experience writing news, lifestyle and consumer articles for the national and international press. I'm also a copywriter, working on a breadth of consumer and corporate projects, and a private education consultant. I live in the quiet of the countryside and spend my weekends mooching around homeware shops, completing DIY tasks to breathe life into my small, newly-built home.

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