Easy Upgrade: Ditching Swiffer Dusters For Microfiber Cloths

We did it. After a few months of passively wishing that we were using reusable microfiber cloths to dust our house (instead of disposable Swiffer duster pads) we finally made the switch. We’re use-up-what-you-have-before-getting-something-new people, so we were counting down those last few Swiffer pads until the box was finally empty (here it is in our recycling bin)…

…and we could replace them with a five pack of white microfiber cloths (snagged for just $5 at TJ Maxx).

Why is this big news for us? Well since we were going through a few Swiffer duster pads a week (remember our detailed cleaning rundown right here?) we realized that if microfiber cloths are just as good at attracting dust and can easily be washable we can save around 150+ Swiffer pads, plus their packaging each year from landfills. And that might seem like a tiny upgrade to you guys, but every little bit helps. And just imagine if a few of you also make the switch to washable microfiber cloths (which are also great for polishing things, wiping down computer screens, cleaning up spills and even doing dishes in lieu of disposable sponges). All that reusing could really start to add up.

Plus we’d been meaning to make the switch for a while, and when a few helpful readers commented that microfiber cloths were their secret dusting weapon (back on our cleaning post) that was all that it took to confirm that we should go for it. And I must admit they’re pretty darn awesome. They definitely attract just as much dust as our old Swiffer pads did and they just feel like such a nice little upgrade since they’re plush and fluffy and not scratchy and disposable. Not that we rub our dust rags all over our bodies or anything, but you know what we mean…

So what do you guys think? Any takers? Anyone else making a simple switch like that around their house to save some pennies or reuse something wisely? We’re definitely sure there are other cleaning upgrades out there that we have yet to discover. Do tell.

Comments

  1. Nikki says

    yay for the green switch! I also use microfiber clothes and have never looked back. Also, i see your method stainless steel cleaner. Isn’t that stuff the BEST!? It works better then any chemically version I’ve ever tried.

  2. Amanda M. says

    I cut up old t-shirts and use just a touch of dusting spray on the rag itself. Works like magic! Three cheers for reusing clothes that might eventually wind up in landfills, and using less of the harmful chemicals in dusting spray.

  3. Jen says

    We switched to fabric cloths for cleaning and only organic cleaners awhile back for both the penny pinching savings and also the environmental factors (yes every little bit does help!), but also because myself and our youngest son have allergies and asthma. This was no miracle cure, so I do not want to mislead anyone, but my son has had far less symptoms this allergy season and his extremely sensitive skin has not broken out once since we switched laundry detergents to an organic product.
    We also stopped buying all paper products with the exception of toilet paper (for obvious reasons with 6 people in our home). I found all of our fabric napkins at second hand stores or garage sales, washed them once with hot water and bleach, and now just launder normally. I bought some very inexpensive plates to use for the kids instead of paper plates, same with cups. All in all I would guess our yearly savings will be something like $300. That’s almost a months worth of groceries!

  4. Jean says

    So, can you use the microfiber cloths in your Swiffer broom/mop thing just like you would the Swiffer cloths? Thanks for the many, many helpful tips you write about every day.

    • says

      Hey Jean,

      You know what, you probably could! We don’t actually use a Swiffer broom or mop (we just used the duster pads because they seemed to attract dust like magnets) but perhaps you can use elastics or velcro or some other method (just sticking the edges into the tabs that the Swiffers get stuck into) to make it work? That would be another great way to reuse them- plus they’d probably clean more thoroughly and last a lot longer since they’re thicker. Hope it helps!

      xo,
      s

  5. Cathryn says

    We also love our microfiber cloths!

    Savings suggestion: If you buy your cloths at a big box store (Target, Walmart, etc.), you can save several dollars by buying them in the automotive section. Same cloths, lower prices. Win win!

    Happy dusting!

    • says

      Thanks for all the tips guys! It’s so great to hear all your secrets, from cutting up t-shirts to hitting up the automotive department for cheaper cloths!

      xo,
      s

    • jeniver says

      They even sell them at Sam’s club. I believe 25 cost about 13$. I used them for years as diaper inserts so now the old inserts are great cleaning rags. Thanks for a great website. Today was my first visit but I will return often.

  6. Amy says

    I love the microfiber clothes…I’ve used them for years! Got my first one my freshmen year of college to wipe dust in the dorm!!

    I’ve slowly been switching over to eco-friendly cleaning products, comparing prices at different stores, etc., and just wondered what you use for mirror/glass cleaner and toliet bowl cleaner. I see 7th Gen & Mrs Meyers makes a version.

    Any one else recommend anything?

    • says

      Hey Amy,

      We use Mrs. Meyer’s All Purpose Soap for mirrors (love a product that multitasks- we also use it on our counters, floors, etc) and Mrs. Meyer’s Shower Spray actually comes in handy when we’re cleaning the toilet. You can check out our exhaustively detailed cleaning post (which we linked to in the bottom of this post) for more info.

      xo,
      s

  7. says

    I recycle my used dryer sheets. They are a great duster. I found this out when I used them to wipe the dusty lint off the top of my dryer. They are also great to dust the front of the TV screen which just attracts the dust.

  8. T Garr says

    There are directions to make your own Swiffer pads and duster that you can throw in the washer. On Ohdeedoh…look at Two Reusable Swiffer Tutorial…that’s if you want to go as far as sewing your own. They fit right on the the mop and the duster. In case anyone is interested.

  9. Jennifer says

    I have used microfiber cloths for a while and I love them, but I am so glad Heather commented – that makes me feel so much better – I thought something was seriously wrong with me!

  10. says

    We made the switch recently, too. I got so sick of throwing away Swiffers, and they’re not exactly cheap, either.

    Now I just need a better quick & easy solution for my tile floors. I’m still wet-swiffering those. What do you guys use for your floors?

    • says

      Hey Cindy,

      You can read more about our cleaning play-by-play on the post we linked to at the bottom of this one, but we generally use a Dirt Devil Kurv to suck up all the dust bunnies in the corners and under things quite often and every once in a while we use cloths and Mrs. Meyer’s All Purpose Cleaner (watered down a bit) to really scrub things down (our tip would be not to leave anything too wet since our floor guy said that’s murder to hardwood). Hope it helps!

      xo,
      s

  11. Lauren says

    I think this is a great idea! We have a golden retriever and use a TON of swiffer refills. Only question-does anyone know how the microfiber cloths do on dog hair?