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Living Space: 7 easy styling tricks for a cleaner-looking home

By Katie Holdefehr, realsimple.com on

How is it that magazines manage to make real homes look so impossibly clean? Besides disinfecting the counters, scrubbing the grout and mopping the floors, there’s one more secret photo-ready homes are hiding: the styling tricks that make a home look neat and tidy.

These are little details stylists never fail to notice but most of us wouldn’t immediately pick up on. Small things like neatly folded towels and carefully arranged throw pillows add to the overall impression that your home is clean, even if they don’t actually reflect whether your shelves are dust free or your counters are germ free.

An added bonus: All of these styling tricks can be achieved in a fraction of the time it takes to actually deep-clean your entire home. Once you’ve completed your weekly cleaning routine, take an extra 15 minutes to complete these styling tricks. It’s amazing what a difference a few folds and fluffs and some fresh flowers can make.

1. Fold your bath towels.

Some of the best clean-home styling tricks are likely to be spotted in your favorite hotel. You know when you walk into a hotel bathroom and are greeted by a pile of clean, fluffy, white towels? You can create that same feeling in your home bathroom. Follow these steps: Fold clean towels lengthwise into thirds. Then fold them in half widthwise and repeat the fold a second time. Position the towels so the rounded side (rather than the folded edge) faces the room.

2. Buy fresh flowers.

 

Check out any home featured in a magazine, and you’ll probably notice one thing they all have in common: fresh flowers. Besides being pretty, there’s something about fresh flowers that gives any room the impression that it’s clean and thoughtfully cared for. Choose a fragrant variety, like roses or hyacinths, for a floral aroma, only adding to the impression that the room is clean.

3. Fluff the throw pillows.

A clean-looking living room is often more about styling than it is about actually disinfecting. Fluff the throw pillows so that they don’t creep into the crevices of your couch. It’s a small thing, but position the pillows so that the zipper of the cover or the back seam is facing toward the couch, rather than facing the room. Neatly refold and arrange any throw blankets. If you have extra blankets, stow them away in a basket or bin.

4. Load the dishwasher right away.

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