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Why the latest obsession with giving our homes an Instagram-friendly scrub & sparkle could actually be bad for our health

20 November 2018

There’s a brand new craze sweeping the nation: housework!

It’s due in part to Mrs Hinch — aka Sophie Hinchcliffe — a rising social media star who just loves cleaning.

Mrs Hinch is just one of many on social media who demonstrate how simple housework can be. But as we rush to follow their advice and scrub our homes clean, could we actually be doing more harm than good?

A study on Trust Me, I’m a Doctor found that some cleaning products, along with air fresheners, plug-ins and scented candles can be potentially harmful when we use them in our homes.

Chemicals in some fragrances don’t dissipate once they’re released; instead they can react in the air to form new chemicals which can be bad for our health.

The problem is exacerbated at this time of year, when colder weather means we’re more likely to keep windows closed, leading to poor airflow around the house.

What steps can I take?

Introducing houseplants can help. The study found that some plants, including lavender and spider ferns, can absorb and reduce the chemicals released into the air.

That, combined with a reduction in the use of fragranced products and more open windows means that we don’t have to abandon our new-found love of a clean house just yet.

Who is Mrs Hinch?

Essex woman Sophie Hincliffe has become hugely popular on Instagram since she began posting short videos of her cleaning tips.

Over one million followers await her regular updates and product recommendations.

Key to her popularity is her use of items found in most supermarkets and high street shops.

In fact, Mrs Hinch’s influence is so great that her recommendation of certain products has led to shortages and empty shelves!

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