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French people have figured out a lot of life’s greatest mysteries, including how to bake a perfect loaf of bread and the meaning of romance (spoiler: It’s not a date at the Eiffel Tower). Here in the States, we get plenty of cooking inspiration from our French friends. So naturally, we were deeply curious to learn what they use for cleaning their kitchens.
We spoke with with Hélène Rocco, a France-based food and lifestyle journalist who always has her finger on the pulse of all things chic. She surveyed a wide group of her friends and shared this list. Ready? Here are the six everyday cleaning products and tools that French homeowners just can’t live without. And, to make it easy, we’ve figured out how you can get your hands on these goods in the United States!
1. L’Arbre Vert Mint Basil-Scented Dish Soap
Leave it to the French to make a dish soap that’s not only eco-friendly and hypoallergenic, but also smells like mint basil. “It’s a brand you’d find in any supermarket,” says Rocco. If you’re shopping in the States, we found it online for you.
2. A Marseille soap-based floor cleaner
This floor cleaner is made with Marseille soap, which is prized for its ultra-pure composition. It’s also known for its effective degreasing and hypoallergenic properties.
3. Stainless steel sponges
Super heavy-duty, these sorts of stainless steel scrubbers are Rocco’s saving grace for crusty pots and pans. For extra-tough jobs, she says to soak the dishes first, in a mixture of baking soda and water.
4. A Marseille soap-based all purpose cleaner
This is a favorite French cleaner when it comes kitchens and bathrooms, according to Rocco. It contains baking soda and that beloved Marseille soap. While Rocco’s pick is not available in the States, we recommend Les Choses Simples, which translates to Simple Things. It’s also made with Marseille soap and lightly scented with pink grapefruit.
5. A cotton dusting cloth
The movie Beauty and the Beast may have permanently seared the image of a French feather duster in your brain, but Rocco prefers these inexpensive cloths to dust surfaces in her house. You can find these similar Ritz dust cloths in the U.S. Tip: Shake them outside before washing in the machine and reusing.
Save the flaky sea salt for finishing your chocolate chip cookies, but also stock up on inexpensive coarse salt. Rocco uses it to lift clothing stains before doing the wash.
Which of these French products do you want to try? Tell us in the comments below.