The Best Cleaning Products for Every Kind of Mess, According to Cleaning Experts

The hardest part about cleaning is finding the right — well, best — products to get the job done. Because, let’s face it, a pesky wine stain isn’t going to remove itself. Whether you’re dealing with stubborn soap scum, hard-to-clean streaks, or burned-on spills, these cleaning products selected by the Good Housekeeping Cleaning Lab will make everything in your house — clothes, countertops, and carpets, included — look just like new. Right this way to a cleaner, mess-free home…

For more top picks, check out The 2019 Good Housekeeping Top-Tested Cleaning Awards.  DISHWASHER DETERGENT Platinum Action Pacs Detergent Cascadeamazon.com $16.97 SHOP NOW

Not only does this GH Seal holder dissolve stuck-on food without a problem, but it leaves glasses spot-free and shiny. Thanks to Dawn’s grease-fighting power, these do-it-all pacs clean baked-on messes in one wash, which means there’s no pre-wash necessary.

RELATED: 10 Dishwashing Detergents That Leave Nothing But a Sparkle Behind ERASER SPONGE Magic Eraser Extra Durable Mr. Cleanamazon.com $9.98 $7.97 (20% off) SHOP NOW

Crayon on walls, scuffs on floors, even dried-out refrigerator spills wipe up easily with this tool. “We haven’t found another eraser that lasts as long or works as well as this GH Seal holder,” says Carolyn Forte, director of the Good Housekeeping Institute Cleaning Lab.

RELATED: How to Clean a Couch Like a Pro DISINFECTING WIPES Disinfecting Wipes Lysolamazon.com $12.47 SHOP NOW

Antibacterial wipes are the superheroes of cleaning supplies: they’re easy to grab, disposable, and clean while they disinfect. To get rid of germs, use them on faucets, toilets, and appliance handles; light switches; doorknobs; remote controls; and other common areas. 

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LAUNDRY DETERGENT ProClean Stain Fighter Liquid Laundry Detergent Persilamazon.com $7.99 SHOP NOW

If you’ve stayed true to liquid laundry detergent, Persil ProClean Stain Fighter is the best of GH’s test. This detergent beat out 42 other formulas because it can remove even the most stubborn stains — yep, even coffee.

RELATED: 9 Best Laundry Detergents to Buy in 2019, According to Cleaning Experts HARDWOOD FLOOR CLEANER Hardwood Floor Cleaner Spray Bonaamazon.com $7.97 SHOP NOW

Give your hardwood floors a much-needed clean without taking away their shine — literally. A leader in our Cleaning Lab tests, Bona dissolved dried-on stains and left our test wood floors looking good as new. 

RELATED: 7 Best Hardwood Cleaners to Buy in 2019, According to Cleaning Experts STOVETOP CLEANER Cooktop Cleaning Kit Affreshamazon.com $7.99 SHOP NOW

Cleaning your stovetop doesn’t have to be messy or complicated. This cleaning kit, complete with cream cleanser, scrubbing pads, and a scraper, gets rid of burned-on spills without streaking.

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FLOOR MOPPING CLOTHS Disinfecting Wet Mopping Cloths Scentivawalmart.com $7.97 SHOP NOW

Sure, that mop tucked away in the closet does the job, but it doesn’t disinfect like these scented Scentiva cloths. If you need to kill germs (think: bathrooms, pet areas, or anywhere that kids roam), then these are your best bet. 

RELATED: How to Clean Your Laminate Floors (Without Ruining Them) BATHROOM AND KITCHEN CLEANER Bath and Kitchen Foaming Action Cleaner CLRwalmart.com $3.83 SHOP NOW

If you dread cleaning the bathroom, CLR is for you. “This is my favorite cleaner, because it dissolves soap scum and whitens grout with very little scrubbing or effort,” says Forte. Another bonus:  It carries EPA Safer Choice certification, so you don’t have to worry about harsh fumes.

RELATED: The Best Shower Cleaners to Leave Your Bathtub Spotless ADHESIVE REMOVER Goo Gone Original Weimanamazon.com $6.22 SHOP NOW

Life’s stickiest moments are no match for this tough cleaner: “Goo Gone is best for removing sticky stuff, like tape residue, gum, and candle wax,” says Forte. You can even use it on hard surfaces, carpeting, and clothing.

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STAINLESS STEEL CLEANER Stainless Steel Cleaning Spray Affreshamazon.com $4.99 SHOP NOW

Your kid’s fingerprints are no match for this spray: Make your dishwasher and refrigerator sparkle and shine by removing marks, smudges, and smears. 

RELATED: 10 Best Refrigerators to Buy in 2019, According to Kitchen Appliance Experts GLASS CLEANER Glass Cleaner Invisible Glasswalmart.com $5.06 SHOP NOW

This spray goes on glass, windows, and mirrors like a fine mist, so you don’t have to worry about cleaning up a drippy mess. You know what that means: a streak-free shine. 

RELATED: The Best Way to Clean Windows, According to Our Cleaning Lab STAIN REMOVER Shout Stain Remover Wipes Shoutamazon.com $11.23 SHOP NOW

Spills are inevitable. Walking around the office with a massive coffee stain on your shirt? Well, nobody’s got time for that. Get rid of stains on-the-go with these individually wrapped towelettes.

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DISHWASHING LIQUID Platinum Dishwashing Liquid Dawnamazon.com $4.88 SHOP NOW

“Dawn cuts grease best and has suds that last a long time,” says Forte — which is exactly what you want in a powerhouse soap. Grease aside, it’s also used to dissolve oily splotches on washable fabrics, hand-wash delicates, and even remove carpet stains.

RELATED: 9 Homemade Cleaners That Actually Work, According to Cleaning Experts FURNITURE POLISH Clean & Polish For Wood Furniture Guardsmanwalmart.com $6.37 SHOP NOW

In the Institute’s test of furniture polishes, Guardsman took the “Best Aerosol” spot for drying quickly and removing pesky water rings and crayon marks without streaking. 

RELATED: The Best Furniture Polishes to Make Every Surface Shine LEATHER CLEANER Leather Cleaner Furniture Clinicamazon.com $9.95 SHOP NOW

When it comes to leather, gentle is best. This cleaner removes dirt and grime while leaving leather looking smooth and supple. 

RELATED: How to Clean Leather Shoes, Furniture, and More

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