Why You Don't Want To Clean Windows With Newspaper Anymore

Back in the day, cleaning your windows was a no-brainer. After reading the morning paper, it became the magic wipe to get your looking glass spotless. You didn't have to worry about lint and particles staying behind like with a rag. Streaks stood no chance against the sports section, and it was easy to get your hands on a publication. Plus, you didn't have the extra task of washing afterward like you would with a cloth.

While a newspaper was once great for getting the toothpaste specks off the bathroom mirror, it is no longer ideal for a thorough cleaning — the type of paper used to print today's current events can leave your glass worse than before. It is one of the biggest mistakes to make when cleaning windows. Not to mention most of us might have only seen a newspaper in the movies, as they're not on every street corner like once before. It's time to update the newspaper window-cleaning hack once and for all.

Modern-day newspapers aren't right for the job

Brad Roberson, president of Glass Doctor, a home repair company, suggests reading the newspaper and keeping it out of your supply closet. "While this was a common technique used in the past, newspapers were once much thicker than they are now," the service expert told Real Simple. "Today's newspapers can quickly deteriorate when wet and leave newsprint spots on your mirror frames and window sills, not to mention your fingers."

Rubber gloves help you avoid getting ink on your hands, but scrubbing the black dye out of your window frame is not something you want to add to your to-do list. The ink from the latest catchy headlines can also smudge onto the glass of your windows and mirror. Ultimately, the manual labor of wiping every glass surface with newspaper until it's streak-free isn't worth it. There are innovative tools to get the job done quicker and more efficiently — and you won't have to scour the magazine aisle for your cleaning supplies.

The best way to achieve spotless windows

For a fast and easy clean, try a squeegee. This professional cleaner's tool is best for shining the exterior of your windows as excess water drips to the ground. After all, you don't want rain on your hardwood floors. To wash, dust off any debris on the glass and panes before spraying your solution, then swipe the squeegee across your window for a streak-free finish.

However, while the professionals always have a squeegee on hand, a good ole microfiber cloth does the trick just as well and is perfect for the interior. Home care and cleaning lab executive director Carolyn Forte told Good Housekeeping, "They are super absorbent, washable, and leave the glass shiny and streak-free." Just spray the mirror with glass cleaner and wipe it off with the microfiber cloth — there will be no lint or ink residue.

Whether your pro-squeegee or microfiber cloth, the washing solution is the main ingredient to an effective polish. You can even make your own homemade window cleaner — mix ¼ quarter cup of white vinegar and ½ teaspoon of dish soap for every 2 cups of water. You can substitute the vinegar for lemon juice to get the same acid power but with a fresh scent. It makes for an easy DIY and leaves your windows spotless, no newspaper required.