23 of the best cleaning products we've tried and tested at home

Buys we repurchase again and again

Best cleaning products graphic with Astonish mold remover, Bower collective washing up liquid and Method wood cleaner
(Image credit: Future)

If ever there was a time to invest in the best cleaning products it surely is now. In a post-pandemic world it can be good to know which products actually work to kill germs, and for those with busy lives and even busier households, how are you to know which solutions require the least effort? Luckily for you, the Real Homes team has pooled together their most favourite cleaning products they use at home, day in day out. We're talking everything from eco-friendly solutions to cleaning pastes and luxury cleaning products, too (yes, such things exist!).

So, whether you're looking to switch up the cupboard under your sink, or perhaps you'd like to invest in more eco-conscious solutions. Maybe your collection is looking light at the moment? If you prefer to buy your cleaning bits online (Amazon Prime has our heart, too) then you're in the right place. Buying cleaning products online is totally worth it, which we've only recently found out, once you add in petrol and car parking fees. Also, most of the time you can buy online in bulk, which ought to make your bill even cheaper if your undersink storage allows.

Every single one of the 21 cleaning products we've listed in this guide, from concentrated cleaners to floor cleaners to use with your favourite mop, has been tried, tested and approved by our team of cleaning fanatics. Living in flats, family homes, pet households and everything in between, these are the products we use inside our real homes (no testing labs in sight) to clean everyday spills and dirt. And they work! A lot of these products we've repurchased time and time again, and they'll be sure to leave your home sparkling (in looks and scent!) with minimal effort required from you. 

Make sure your cleaning arsenal is stocked with the best cleaning products around, and get your pad out to start taking notes. Click through to stock up.

The best cleaning products

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Cleaning products in Annie's kitchen beside sink - Astonish Mould & Mildew Remover, Tincture washing up liquid, Ocean Saver Drops Anti-Bac, Neat Glass & Mirror cleaner

Cleaning products in Annie's kitchen beside sink - Astonish Mould & Mildew Remover, Tincture Washing up Liquid, Ocean Saver Drops Anti-Bac, Neat Glass & Mirror Cleaner

(Image credit: Future)

We've pooled all of the favourite cleaning products from the whole team at Real Homes to show you which sprays, aerosols, foams, powders and concentrates we actually use in our homes. So, rest assured we can give you our honest opinion on how they work. All of the solutions we test are used for a number of weeks inside our homes, to clean every nook and crevice we deem dirty. We try to test these supplies on all sorts of fabrics, flooring types and appliances.

Whilst testing these branded items, we consider everything from size to price, ease of use, cleaning quality, and most of all: how much product do you have to use for it to work?

Here are the team's top favourites...

Christina author photo
Christina Chrysostomou

Christina Chrysostomou has tried a number of these products in her 2-bedroom maisonette, which she shares with her husband-to-be, George. While she's pretty careful when handling strong solutions, a big fat Greek (and Mauritian) family means she's on the look out for natural products that are pet and child-friendly, and favours essential oils over synthetic scents.

Her favourite cleaning products have to be the Mrs. Meyers Clean Day Washing-up Liquid (Peony scent) (opens in new tab) which makes her kitchen smell like the seasonal British blooms all year round. Despite having a dishwasher, she'll use it to wash Tupperware, if she's prepped lunch for work. Christina enjoys a muddy lunchtime forest stomp, much to the demise of her trainers. However, she's been 'astonished' by how effective The Good One (opens in new tab) is at bringing her kicks back to life. She loves using Method's multi-surface concentrate (opens in new tab) (in bing cherry and bergamot) and finds that the small size is easy to carry if she hasn't commuted to the supermarket by car.

Annie Collyer illustration
Annie Collyer

Annie lives in a spacious two-bed flat in South London, along with her husband-to be-and two pets. Annie's always on the lookout for eco-friendly alternatives, and she's always up for testing something that will make her chore list a little shorter.

Her favourite cleaning products have to be the Ocean Saver Drops (opens in new tab), which she repurchases every time she runs out. She also loves her Smol dishwasher tablets (opens in new tab) that she's been getting delivered for years. And last but definitely not least (or very eco-friendly but it does work), the Astonish Mould & Mildew Blaster (opens in new tab) is a cleaning cupboard staple for her, too. It works wonders in her windowless bathroom.

Lindsey illustration
Lindsey Davis

Lindsey lives in a cute (but dusty) Victorian cottage. She lacks storage space so loves to streamline her cleaning supplies by looking for multipurpose buys.

Lindsey loves The Pink Stuff which can be used for everything from cleaning to the oven, to polishing tiles. It is made not far from where she lives and is based on natural ingredients. Zoflora is another under-the-sink essential for her. She uses a drop in her spray mop to clean the floors and a diluted spritz around the home to bust nasty niffs.

Image of Molly Cleary author photo
Molly Cleary

Molly lives in a two-bedroom flat in London and has a cleaning cupboard that's fit to burst after trying out a strong selection of products in this guide. 

Molly is constantly battling against a damp windowless bathroom and a kitchen sink that suffers from limescale due to hard water. To combat these issues, she loves to use Astonish's The Good One (opens in new tab) to refresh surfaces, and the Mold and Mildew spray (opens in new tab) from the same brand.Her other favourite brands have to be Method, especially thanks to their multi-surface concentrated cleaners (opens in new tab), and anything from Zoflora (opens in new tab), who really have the best smelling cleaning products out there. Another brand that can do it all is Homethings (opens in new tab), and Molly would recommend anyone trying to be more eco-friendly to pick up their incredible cleaning bundle (opens in new tab).

3 things to consider when buying cleaning products

These are the essential things we keep in mind when restocking your cleaning caddy. 

1. What does it smell like?
We know there's more to a spray or toilet cleaner than its scent, but at the end of the day, it is still important to like the smell of whatever you're spritzing in your home. Work out which scent profile you like, whether that's fresh cotton, a citrus burst or something more specific like lemongrass and try and line your products up with that smell, to avoid a headache when you're deep cleaning. Also, don't forget that seasonal scents are normally released by brands, so around Christmas time you might want to go for a festive-scented anti bac.

2. Does it have eco-friendly credentials?
For a lot of us, it's becoming increasingly important to ensure that the things we buy for our homes are certified as being good for the planet in the long term. There are so many great brands you can invest in that have starter bundles featuring glass bottles and cheap refill programs for when you run out of your favourite cleaners so that you can overhaul your whole set of products. Otherwise, always check if the plastic bottle or tub that you are buying is recyclable, and how to recycle it after use.

3. Don't forget about hazardous chemicals
Understandably, people have different viewpoints when it comes to using chemicals to clean their homes. While some won't mind using a stronger cleaner to shift bleach or mould, others will want to avoid it entirely. Always check the hazards involved when it comes to cleaning supplies, and prepare yourself with rubber gloves and protective clothing if necessary. If a pet or child does ingest it, or you suffer from a skin or breathing reaction, dial 999 immediately and seek medical advice. Be sure to take the bottle/packaging with you to show the health professional.

Where to buy cleaning products online

Here's where we suggest shopping for your cleaning products online. In some cases, it might be best to bulk buy as prices may work out to be cheaper, so long as you've enough storage space.

Molly Cleary
Ecommerce Writer, Homes

Molly is the Ecommerce Writer for RealHomes and spends her time searching the internet for the next best thing for your home. With previous experience within the Home section of TopTenReviews, another Future site, writing about everything from ride-on lawnmowers to robot hoovers, she has knowledge of all of those niche areas of your home and garden that you might need a new purchase for. Shopping and buying content are now her biggest area of focus, with an emphasis on cleaning products and home gym equipment. 

With contributions from