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Are you the type to religiously wash your bedding and towels every week? It’s good to keep belongings clean on a regular basis – but you might want to know about a few, maybe more unexpected, things which need a good spruce up.

1. Pillows

A previous study found they can hold types of asthma or sickness-causing bacteria that leave you feeling unwell. There are also mites, mould and dead skin hiding in the stuffing, with the synthetic type collecting a lot more germs than other pillows, as the fibres aren’t woven as tightly, thus allowing things to seep in.

To give them a good rinse, simply check the label for washing instructions, as it depends on the type you have. It may even have to be taken to the dry cleaners; but think of the illnesses you could be avoiding.

2. Toothbrush holder

Your toothbrush holder is another culprit. Yes, the bristles may be shiny and toothpaste free after a brush, but if you’re putting it back into a dirty container, then you may as well neglect it. Bacteria such as Staphylococcus, which can cause infections such as boils, have been linked to grubby holders and scientists previously concluded that people often put their toothbrush in the dirtiest spot in their bathroom.

This one is simple; simply rinse it out and give it a good clean with washing up liquid or pop it in the dishwasher. Leave to dry thoroughly until no drips of water are left and repeat this process around twice a week.

3. Keys

From being in your pocket to twisting through a lock, they’re coated in germs and it’s likely that you don’t think to clean them or to wash your hands after holding them.

Just give them a once over with a wet wipe every now and then to keep them shiny.

4. Shoelaces

Something else you may not think about, but it isn’t so surprising, is your shoelaces. On a rainy day they can get splashed with all sorts of germs and dirt, especially if you’re in particularly muddy grounds. Tying them could be a recipe for disaster and may give you all sorts of illnesses.

Unlace your shoes and place the strings in hot soapy water to clean them out before washing them with the rest of your clothes. But make sure they’re tucked into something, so they don’t catch the inside of machine – you don’t want dirty laces and a broken washer.

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