Dishwashing 101!

Today as I was looking at my coffee mug with its coffee stains, I was recalling how those stains used to be difficult to get off.  So I decided to write a little note today about how we wash dishes with Norwex!  Most of us have an automatic dishwasher, but if you’re like us, there are some dishes that you still choose to do by hand.

The Norwex netted dish cloth is for cleaning your dishes with dish soap.  (I love the Norwex Dishwashing Liquid!  It’s low-sudsing (takes a bit of getting used to), and it does a GREAT job at getting dishes clean!) I guarantee that if you try to wipe your counters with this cloth you will leave puddles!  It’s not intended for that purpose.  It does provide great scrubbing power for washing dishes, dries quickly, and doesn’t provide germs an area to “set up house” & multiply! Norwex Netted Dish Cloth A very common error when using Norwex products is when our customers use our Kitchen Cloths to wash their dishes!  They then tell me that their Kitchen Cloths have gotten very smelly!  And how we all hate the “stinky dish cloth”!   But if you’ve been to one of my Norwex parties, you already know that I educate you in using TWO separate cloths in your kitchen.  One for washing dishes (the Norwex netted dish cloth) and one for wiping counters, tables, etc, using JUST WATER (either a Norwex Enviro Clothor Kitchen Cloth).  Yes, this takes a bit of getting used to, but it’s very exciting to discover a “stinky-dish-cloth-solution”!!

I must also mention the fantastic NorwexSpirinetts These are our amazing no-rust stainless-steel scrubbers that provide some serious & quick “elbow grease” for cleaning pots and pans!!  (Spirinetts should not be used on surfaces that scratch easily, such as Teflon or porcelain though!)  Not only do customers love these for cleaning pots & pans, but also for oven cleaning (AWESOME in combination with our Oven & Grill Cleaner!)! Fantastic Stainless-Steel Scrubbers for Pots & PansAnd if you’re a “sponge person”, you will likely love our Spirisponge.  It can be washed in the top rack of your dishwasher (as can the netted dish cloth & the spirinetts).  It is a more disposable item than our cloths, so you’ll occasionally need to replace it.  Some people even use this sponge to scrub their flat-top stove.  Norwex Sponge safe to use on Teflon & porcelain

The Norwex Kitchen Cloths (the ones that come in green, tan & yellow) are to be used with WATER ONLY to wipe and sanitize your counters and tables.  (They also serve as great little-hand “napkins” at our house!)  However, as I mentioned above, IF you decide to use this antibac kitchen cloth to wash your dishes, you will find that it quickly takes on an odor!!  The grease & dish soap residue will quickly coat the silver agent that’s embedded in the fibers, making it ineffective against germs.  If you have done this, try soaking your cloths in concentrated Norwex Laundry Detergent overnight and then boiling them in a kettle on the stovetop for about 12 minutes.  This should help them release all the soap build-up, grease, and so forth.  And then begin using them properly… with just water.  Here’s a helpful tip that one of my good customers passed on in regards to the Kitchen Cloths:  “After each use, I scrub it (didn’t do this before, as with a regular counter cloth, I didn’t…had to change my habits), then I let it dry over the oven door handle, each time, so it does not sit wet.  This way, I can go one week without a sour smell to the Norwex kitchen cloth.  Before it would sour in about 3 days…love the cloths!!”   So remember to scrub it well against itself under water, wring it out well, and hang it to dry!  This will make for less frequent washing and boiling necessary!  And remember,use them just for wiping counters and tables with JUST water!

So back to my coffee stains.  I simply took the white netted dish cloth with the Norwex dish soap and scrubbed out the cup.  Then I dried it with the Norwex Suede Envirotowel (mint green).  (It makes a great dish-drying towel, especially if you’re a flour-sack dish towel fan!)  And my mug was sparkling clean and stain-free again!    In the photo, you’ll see the Dish Liquid, Netted Dish Cloth & Envirotowel setting by the mug.  I love Norwex kitchen towels as a “hand towel” for wiping hands in the kitchen or bath!!  And I use the kitchen cloths to wipe counters (again, NOT for washing dishes!).

Coffee Mug with Stains Sparkling Clean Dishes!

I mentioned above how most of us have automatic dishwashers.  So I’ll take a moment to talk about the Norwex Dishwasher Detergent.  This one Norwex product that I get some mixed reviews on.  In certain homes/ water, it seems to work beautifully and customers are thrilled with it!  (I must add that most of my customers who love it also use the Norwex Magnet Ball in their dishwasher.)  And some people simply aren’t so crazy about it!  So it’s not a product I sell a lot of.  If you’re purchasing it, you have to remember that it does not have all the chemicals that you’ll find in many other detergents, so it is a safer choice, but also may not be quite as effective as those with bleach, etc.

Our Dishwasher Detergent is NOT recommended for dishwashers that have a stainless steel interior, as it may lead to discoloration of the stainless.  In our previous home, we had an older dishwasher that wasn’t fantastic, but after playing around a bit with the amount of Norwex detergent I was using, I eventually found an amount (used in combination with the Magnet Ball) that did the job.  And in fact, it also started to remove the yellow build-up that was all over the interior.  But in our new home, we have a dishwasher with a stainless interior, so I have not been using the Norwex Dishwasher Detergent.  But the Magnet Ball works great in all dishwashers!!  I have found it has really decreased my water spots on my glasses and I no longer need to use Jet Dry!  Wooo Hoo!!  :)  When you use the Magnet Ball, be sure you are DECREASING the amount of detergent you are putting in!  This is whether or not you’re using the Norwex Dishwasher Detergent.

When I used the recommended amount of non-Norwex dishwasher detergent in combination with my Magnet Ball, I began getting a bad soap buildup on my dishes!  But when I decreased the amount, they began coming out beautifully clean!  (The Magnet Ball is sort of a crazy little thing, but it can really save you a lot of money given that you cut your detergent use by about 1/2!!  It pays for itself very quickly.  It can also be used in a standard (non-HE) top-loading washing machine.  Again, cut your laundry detergent approximately by half.)

As always, I hope this has been helpful!  Please contact me if you have any questions or would like assistance with placing an order.  And if you want to help us share Norwex across the USA and help us get chemicals out of our kitchens, our homes, and our environment, while earning a very good income, I am very honored to help you start your very own Norwex business!

Sonya

Dealing with hard water

Hard water definitely poses its own challenges…
Here are some great tips!

Stiff Cloths?

Hard water can result in lime (calcium and magnesium) buildup over time. This may result in your Norwex cloths feeling harder or perhaps almost seeming to repel water and not wet as easily.  You can soak your cloths in undiluted vinegar for a few minutes, wring out well, and then launder. If you add vinegar to your rinse cycles, it may help reduce this problem in the future and will soften your other fabrics as well.  Please note: If you are still using a commercial laundry detergent which contains ‘fillers’ (read: added stiffness and static) then the vinegar will help counteract both the static & the stiffness.   Also note, we have hard water, and I was noticing that my cloths were stiffer and less quick to absorb.  Since I have been adding vinegar to my rinse cycle, I’ve noticed that they are once again soft, fluffy and absorbent.  I also LOVE to do the “Deep Clean” soak method in a concentrated bath of Norwex Ultra Plus Laundry Detergent… (“Deep Clean” = 1-2 scoops in a large bowl filled with hot water & then let cloths soak there overnight.  Then launder, but without the usual detergent since there will be quite a bit of detergent yet in the cloths.)

Stinky Cloths?

I’ve been amazed by the Norwex dish cloth and microfiber cloths because I can use them longer between laundering without them starting to stink.  The silver agent in the fibers is absolutely incredible at keeping the bacteria-count low.  However, if you have experienced some stink issues with your cloths, please read on for some helpful hints.

With any cloth that has developed an odor in which normal laundry washing does not fully remove: rinse in vinegar, then boil the cloth(s) in a pot on the stove for 10 minutes to thoroughly allow the fibers to swell open and release anything they are holding onto including anything coating the silver, making it ineffective against killing bacteria or organisms and allowing odors to occur. Then launder as normal and the cloths will be fresh. I find that I need to boil one or two of my cloths occasionally…usually it’s my own fault as I’ve washed dishes with an incorrect cloth and allowed the silver to be coated in oils that are in dirty dish water, or haven’t rinsed out my cloth well after cleaning before hanging it to dry.  Another thing to note:  when the Face Cloth is used to cleanse oily skin, it may need to be soaked in vinegar & laundered more often.  As it collects the oil from the skin, it will coat the silver in the fiber, making the antimicrobial properties ineffective.  When this happens, the bacteria can thrive.  Be sure to RINSE OUT your cloths well, wring out tightly & HNG TO DRY between uses for the best results!

Note on Well Water: Because well water does not contain any chlorine, this may result in odor issues with any cloth, including Norwex cloths.

Other Hard Water Solutions

For deep-cleaning toilet bowls use Norwex DeScaler:  quickly pour a bucket of water into the toilet so the toilet will automatically flush down most of the water.  Spray the built up area with DeScaler, let sit for about 2-3 minutes, then clean with the Sanira Brush.  A good quality pumice stone (you can find “Toilet Pumice” made just for this purpose!) is also great at removing tough stains in the toilet and it won’t scratch the porcelain (see tips below).  Another great use for the Norwex Magnet Ball is to place it in the toilet tank to soften water so that hard water stains are not left in bottom of bowl.

For tough soap scum and hard water marks in your tub and shower or any other difficult job there are a number of things which work…some requiring more elbow grease than others but all effective.

• Damp enviro cloth and some good old-fashioned elbow grease!
• Cleaning Paste and damp enviro cloth, or damp kitchen or bathroom scrub cloth, or damp white dish cloth….a Spirisponge can be wonderful to get “gunk” out of shower door tracks.
• Damp micropad
• Descaler and damp enviro cloth, blue kitchen scrub cloth or white dish cloth (amazing elbow grease in a bottle)….wet shower or tub, spray Descaler, wait about 3 minutes, wipe away easily with enviro cloth, blue kitchen scrub cloth or white dish cloth, then rinse. Use caution on grout around tiles…a few people have had concerns with staining and I’m not positive if they have left it on too long or whether it is an issue of some grout being unsealed vs. sealed.

For top load washing machines where no water softener is present, the Magnet Ball can trick you water into behaving much softer than it is. Place it in bottom of washing machine, where it can stay permanently or can be used between dishwasher/ washing machine/ bathtub. You now cut the amount of laundry detergent used in half.  Water molecules are changed so that they behave like soft water and your detergent works so much better. With a bag of Norwex laundry detergent you would normally get 40 loads from one bag in an area of hard water. With the magnet ball you will now get 60-80 loads from that same bag!   Note: do not use the magnet ball in a front load HE machine….it is not necessary and the drum spins so much faster you could damage a wing.

In your dishwasher: place magnet ball in bottom over a rung so it stays in place- and allow it room for water to pass by it (i.e. not covered/blocked by dishes!). Use 1-2 teaspoons of Norwex dishwasher detergent; no rinse agent (i.e. Jet Dry) is needed (but vinegar can be used if desired). Dishes and glasses often come out sparkling and clear without the need for chemical rinse agent sprayed all over them.