How To Keep Your Kid’s Bedroom Clean

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Parenthood comes with a never-ending list of responsibilities. From the day that children are born, moms and dads are consumed with keeping their little ones, fed, clean, safe and emotionally secure.

Beyond that, mothers and fathers are constantly busy ensuring that their children’s environments are also healthy and safe. This in large part, includes keeping children’s bedrooms neat, tidy and hygienic – in other words, clean.

If you’re a parent you know there’s a continuous effort to control the amount of clutter, dirt, allergens and pests in the home. A household that is neat, hygienic and pest-free is a healthy environment for kids to grow up in. But years of soiled diapers, juice spills, stray toy pieces, smelly sports equipment, dirty plates and more, mean you’re constantly challenged to keep your house or apartment tidy and especially to keep kid’s rooms clean.

picture of clean kids bedroom

The content, function and size of children’s rooms changes as they grow. For example, the make-up of a nursery is quite different than that of a teenager’s room. The rooms will share some attributes in common but also have different cleaning needs. Thus, it’s useful to know how to keep kids bedroom’s clean overall, and how to keep them clean at specific stages.

Keeping any room clean, including bedrooms, can be achieved through varying combinations of cleaning schedules, cleaning tools and cleaning tips. The frequency with which you clean, what you use to clean, and helpful hacks can all impact the cleanliness of your kids bedroom.

Let’s look at children’s bedrooms by stages, and consider different cleaning schedules, tools and hacks to get the job done!

picture of baby in crib

How To Keep Baby Nurseries Clean

From birth and throughout infancy, a child is likely to have a small room of its own, known as a nursery. A nursery is typically designed to be a serene and comfortable space for babies to rest, as well as, a space for mom and baby to bond, often at feeding time. Styles of nurseries vary, but most are minimalistic rooms that are airy and uncluttered. [1]

Common nursery furnishings

  • Crib and bedding
  • Change table
  • Dresser and shelving
  • Rug and drapery
  • Rocker, nursing pillow and side table
  • Small items and appliances (e.g. baby monitor, sound machine, humidifier)

Cleaning priorities and challenges:

As a parent or caregiver, you will be in and out of the nursery several times every day for feeding and nap times. The great news is that, at this stage, your baby is not mobile so will not be creating a trail of messes throughout the room or home.

On the other hand, although stationary, babies can easily have a room looking like a small tornado hit it. It’s not uncommon to be tackling spilled milk on nursing pillows, a disheveled changing table, piles of adorable but dirty onesies piling up in the laundry hamper, and unpleasant diaper odors. Hygiene is a big concern, especially for first-time parents of a nervous nature and when the baby’s health has been a concern. You can promote health by following hygiene recommendations for your baby as well as the things around them. [2]

And keep in mind that even simple tasks can become a greater challenge when you’re sleep-deprived and learning the ropes of new motherhood. There’s certainly a lot to deal with!

Maintaining a perfectly clean nursery can be an endless and near impossible task. Focusing on priority areas for regular cleaning can help you keep the nursery clean without overwhelming yourself at this already busy time. Top priorities should be areas in which you and baby are in contact. You want these areas to be comfortable as well as germ and odor-free.

Key areas for cleaning in your nursery include:

  • Crib bedding
  • Change table and shelves
  • Upholstery and air

Cleaning crib bedding:

Crib sheets will get dirty with regular use. They will also get soiled if you have issues with leaky diapers, especially overnight. Expect to be laundering sheets often. Any bunting bags or accessory blankets that are used in or near the crib are also subject to bodily fluids like urine and spit-up and may also require frequent runs through your machine washine’s delicate cycle.

Keeping changes tables clean:

Changing a baby’s diaper can easily become a juggling act when you’re handling diapers, ointments and the baby all at once. It’s easy for this area to become a mini disaster zone but keeping it organized will help make changes easier. Keep the change pad clean and free of clutter so you can always put your baby down easily.

Store your few go-to changing products such as rash cream or diaper covers on the lower level of your change table or an easily accessible shelf (i.e. within arms reach). Products that are not needed as regularly can be stored elsewhere to keep this changing area neat and clutter-free.

picture of pink baby nursery

Cleaning the nursery air and upholstery:

Dust, allergens and other pollutants can settle into upholstery and linger in the air, which is why it’s important to know how to choose the best vacuum cleaner for allergies and asthma.

Reducing the amount of dust and allergens in your nursery can contribute to better indoor air quality that’s a benefit to both you and baby. You can achieve this through regular cleaning and with appliances that include a quality HEPA filter, known to reduce a significant amount of allergens from the air. [3]

Helpful cleaning products and tools for nurseries

  • High-efficiency washer and dryer and laundry soap for sensitive skin
  • Vacuum cleaner with upholstery attachments
  • Diaper-genie
  • Air purifier
  • Natural or mild multi-surface cleaning solution

Cleaning tips:

Consider purchasing cleaning appliances like vacuums with silent or quiet operation so you can clean without disturbing your baby’s rest. Also consider using naturally light scented or unscented cleaning products that won’t be too harsh for baby’s senses. Lavender is a common scent for promoting relaxation.

picture of kid on phone in beed

How To Keep Children’s Rooms Clean

As babies grow to become toddlers, pre-schoolers, and eventually school age children, the nature of their bedrooms change. Children may need larger spaces as bedrooms are no longer just for sleep and restful moments, but also commonly a place of play, activity, storage and/or school work.


Common children’s room furnishings

  • Single, bunk or loft-style bed
  • Dresser
  • Shelves and storage units
  • Desk or table and chairs
  • Bedroom rug

Cleaning priorities and challenges:

As children grow, so does their collection of toys, books, clothing and other items. New types of messes begin to surface as well including anything from schoolyard sand to cookie crumbs make their way into bedrooms. How to keep your child’s room organized is very much related to keeping the bedroom clean. Having designated places for crayons, bedtime books and stuffies is helpful however young children and even older school-age children may not be the best at staying organized. Instead of being put in their rightful place after play, broken crayons, stuffies and tea cups may end up spilled across the bed, floor and other surfaces. Another challenge is dirt that makes its way from outside to in. Now that children are mobile and moving through all sorts of environments, they are also likely to track sand, mud, wet shoes, sticky fingers, dirty clothes, rocks, sticks, snails and all sorts of other items through your home. Tools like a mop cleaner can help you to clean hardwood of the dust and other particulates brought into your home by your kids. Top priorities are keeping the room hygienic and functional so children are able to work or play easily. Key areas for cleaning in your child’s room include:
  • Closets
  • Floors and rugs
  • Under the bed
  • Shelf, dresser and desk surfaces
picture of green kids room

Cleaning children’s closets, floors and rugs:

Keeping hardwood floors, bedrooms rugs and closets clean in children’s rooms requires constantly removing objects from floors, as well as removing any dust, dirt and other messes that accumulate.

Having designated places for storing books and toys will help keep floors clean. And having enough space to hang and store clothes will help keep closets clean.

Regular sweeping, mopping and/or vacuuming will get rid of sand, dust and spills on the floors and rugs. You’ll also be challenged to clean small bits of playdoh, craft materials, small toy pieces and other tiny objects found in crevices, along baseboards and under furniture in your child’s room. Cleaning tools with attachments for crevices and edges can be helpful, as well as mops and vacuums with low profile designs that can fit under beds and clean hard-to-reach places. 

Be sure to find the right tool or the surface whether you need a wet-dry vacuum or a vacuum for cleaning carpets.

Cleaning surfaces:

Dust will accumulate on dressers and bookshelves, just as it does throughout other rooms in the house. Regular cleaning will help reduce dust particles, allergens and germs in the air, making sure your kids have a clean, healthy living environment. If you or your kids have allergies or asthma, be sure to find a vacuum that can effectively get rid of these particulates. 

Vacuuming or cleaning with a microfiber cloth will help trap dirt versus dusting and further dispersing dust particles into the air.

If your child has an activity table or desk in their bedroom, you may also be tasked with figuring out how to remove paint marks, glue, juice rings or other materials from surfaces. Unless the material used in permanent, like permanent marker, you should be able to use a regular cleaning solution.

 Be careful not to use anything too abrasive on delicate pieces or anything that would ruin beautiful wood. If you have antique children’s furniture pieces, for example, be sure to use a cleaner that is recommended and safe for oak, maple or whatever wood it is.

Cleaning tips:

Daily cleaning or cleaning several times a week may be required to stay on top of messes in your little one’s room. Having effective, lightweight tools that are easy to use and easy to store will be helpful in this regard.

Lightweight cleaning tools like cordless stick vacuums are easy for older children to use and will make it possible for children to help stay on top of the cleaning demands. Bedroom cleaning can be incorporated into their weekly chores. [4]

teen boy in room

How To Keep Teenagers’ Rooms Clean

In many cases, a teenager’s bedroom becomes their primary place of residence. Some parents may feel like their teenage son or daughter hasn’t emerged in years. Suffice to say, teenagers spend a significant amount of time in their rooms compared to children. 

It often becomes a refuge from the world, where teens may be consumed with homework, music, video games, or other past times. A teen may remain in their childhood room or graduate to a larger space in the basement or attic of the home.

Common teenager room furnishings

  • Computer desk and chair
  • Electronics: computer, television, speakers
  • Dresser and/or chest of drawers
  • Chaise or beanbag chair
  • Night table and lamp


Cleaning priorities and challenges:

The extent of time in which teenagers spend in their rooms can make the space appear and smell very “lived in”. It’s easy for everything from clothes, sports equipment, cosmetics, food wrappers and concert tickets to accumulate into an overwhelming mess.

Generally speaking, teenagers aren’t the most energetic and enthusiastic when it comes to cleanliness and household chores. Your young adult may continue to dwell in sloppy conditions that would distract or disgust you as an adult. But step in to bring order to the mess and you may be accused of violating their privacy. Like many issues involved in raising young adults, it’s a fine line. Still, there are effective ways to clean up teenagers’ rooms.[5]

Key areas for cleaning include:

  • Floors
  • Surfaces
  • Closet

Cleaning bedroom floors:

Clearing and cleaning the floor alone can make a big difference in a teenagers’ rooms. Keep a laundry hamper and garbage bin in the room so that dirty clothes and waste do not settle on the floor. 

Wood floors should be vacuumed and mopped regularly, and there is a wide selection of vacuums for hardwood floors for you to school from. Carpets too, can be cleaned with a quality upright vacuum, stick vacuum or wet/dry vacuum for home. Consider home appliances with a low profile design that can reach under the bed, into the closet and other hard-to-reach places with dust, dirt and bits of garbage may hide.

pink teen bedroom

Cleaning bedroom closets:

Closets can be a great hidden storage space but can also become a hidden catch-all for dirty clothes, sports equipment, old stuffies, mementos and other items your teen may collect over the years. Add extra shelving, rods or bins as needed to help your child stay organized.

Closet floors and surfaces should be cleaned along with the floors and surfaces in the rest of the room. Use brooms or vacuum attachments designed to get into the corners and edges where dust and dirt can hide. 

You can also keep this area, and the entire room for that matter, smelling fresh with plug-in air fresheners or an essential oil diffuser to fill the air with a pleasant scent.

Helpful cleaning products and tools for teenagers’ rooms:

  • Wet/dry vacuum
  • Air purifier and/or freshener
  • Disposable wipes
  • Compressed air canister (suitable for computers)
  • Garbage bin with lid
  • Laundry hamper with lid

Cleaning tips:

Share cleaning responsibilities with your teen. For instance, your son or daughter may be responsible for routine weekly cleaning while parents may take on a seasonal deep cleaning including walls, windows, window coverings, etc. Encourage your teen to participate by linking chores to allowances or other benefits that incentify them.

Household cleaning can be a daunting task, and children’s rooms can be tough to tackle, but with the tips and tools mentioned above, your child will have a clean and comfortable space to call their own.

References

[1] Nursery checklist (TheBump.com)

[2] Baby hygiene (Kir.org)

[3] HEPA filters for allergies (WebMD.com)

[4] Age appropriate chores for kids (Latitudes.org)

[5] Teen space, teen privacy? (FamilyEducation.com)