If you're like us, thyme makes frequent appearances in your home-cooked meals. But did you have any idea you could clean with it? Yeah, we didn't either.
"I want thyme to be the new smell of clean," said Joy Mangano, the famous inventor and product creator who you probably recognize from her 20-plus years on QVC. "How did we ever get used to the smell of bleach and ammonia?," she said.
Mangano is back with a newish product line, CleanBoss by Joy. The collection includes hand sanitizer products, an antibacterial foaming hand wash, antimicrobial cloths (12-pack), and washable face masks—all things we've seen a lot of brands launch in the last year or so. We thought the most interesting product was the thyme oil-derived Multi-Purpose Disinfectant & Cleaner.
We know what you're thinking: A botanically-derived cleaner just isn't powerful enough to get my home clean!
We get it. We thought it, too. So we put the disinfectant to the test.
How We Tested the CleanBoss Disinfectant
We tried it on everyday areas such as countertops, light switch plates, and even long-neglected base boards (we were gifted the entire collection). It removed stains and grime just fine and didn't leave a filmy layer on my kitchen countertop. Because it contains no hazardous ingredients, it was safe to use while my toddler was in the same room. I felt I had to use a little more elbow grease than I would use with a bleach-based disinfectant, but that was not a dealbreaker for me.
The fact that it cleans surfaces and disinfects without needing to be rinsed away more than compensates for a little extra work. Mangano said it's not necessary to rinse it from eating and cooking surfaces, either. It smells of thyme, not a heavy bleach scent that can be harmful to inhale. Big pluses in my book.
What the Bottle Is Like
The bottle felt sturdy and durable, and the spray attachment was a regular screw-on, with the spray and stop options in the nozzle. I prefer this kind of bottle-nozzle combo, because it's easy to use; some of the newer refillable bottles—I'm looking at you, Lysol—are little more complicated (you have to align slots to the bottle ridges and the nozzle), and I feel I always end up wasting cleaning product from attaching them incorrectly... and repeatedly.
Alternative Uses for CleanBoss Disinfectant
We also tried the disinfectant cleaner and the foaming hand wash on some unexpected areas in which Mangano said the products work extremely well. Here's how they worked in my home:
On Stainless Steel
The disinfectant cleaner "works like a dream on stainless steel," Mangano told us during our Zoom call. As a mom of a toddler, I'm constantly wiping finger prints and dried food bits from my fridge and dishwasher. Like most people, I have a dedicated stainless steel cleaner that works just fine, but it's always bugged me that it left a slightly oily residue on both my appliances and wood floors. So I was eager to try this hack to see if the product delivered.
It did. Check out the before and after photos of the dishwasher below. See all those little spots on the left? All were easily wiped away, and it left zero residue:
On Sealed Wood Furniture
A video show on the site showed the Multi-Surface Disinfectant Cleaner being used on wood. I would never think to use my current arsenal of cleaners and disinfectant sprays on my wood furniture, but Mangano said it was fine, and the bottle lists "sealed wood" as a safe-to-use surface. I gave it a shot on my daughter's activity table and chair, which, though new, is covered in marker, crayon, and paint. Worked like a charm.
To Remove Static Cling and Wrinkles
"It’s amazing for static on clothing... and to get rid of wrinkles on most things," Mangano said. Both uses worked for me. I lightly sprayed a t-shirt and washcloth that were stuck together from static cling, and they stopped sticking to anything else—without the spray they definitely would've reattached themselves to other items. Not so with the spray.
And I sprayed a cotton pillowcase that was wrinkled and let it sit for about a half hour (Mangano didn't suggest a time; this was just how long I need to complete an unrelated task). I saw a huge reduction in wrinkles. Game changer! See the before and after photos below:
As a Window Cleaner
I used it on bathroom mirrors as well as windows that had toddler-sized handprints all over them. This was a great use, in my book. The windows were sparkly with minimal effort.
As a Jewelry Cleaner
"It's an incredible jewelry cleaner," Mangano said. "The way it makes your windows sparkle it makes your jewelry sparkle," for both fine and costume jewelry, she said. I sprayed it on a pair of sterling silver hoops, let is sit for a few minutes and wiped away. Now they are shining like new.
The Foaming Hand Wash as a Makeup Tool Cleaner
Mangano, who said she prides herself on knowing everything about her products, was pleasantly caught a little off guard by a suggested use: A makeup artist said the foaming hand wash worked wonders on her makeup brushes. I tried it on my makeup sponge—I wet it, added a few pumps of soap and lightly massaged it in and let it sit for 10 minutes. After that I rinsed it several times, added a couple more pumps of soap, and the sponge—which is admittedly a challenge to clean—was mostly free of makeup.
An Area for Improvement
Lately I've been looking for opportunities—beyond recycling and composting—to reduce waste and lower my carbon footprint. One way I've been doing this is buying more sustainable products. For example, instead of buying two 8.5-ounce bottles of foaming hand wash, I would prefer to buy tiny concentrated vials or tablets—weighing no more than a few grams—that I can add to my own filtered water. This would reduce the use of plastics and carbon footprint for shipping.
Our Final Thoughts
Overall we loved this line of products for its cleaning ability, its use of nonhazardous ingredients in the disinfectant, and the fresh, herbal scent.