Furniture-free Extreme Minimalist Apartment Cleaning Routine

Furniture-free Extreme Minimalist Apartment Cleaning Routine

Hello, friends, this is Youheum. I’m an extreme minimalist practicing furniture-free living. Today I’ll be sharing my
apartment cleaning routine including surfaces, bathroom, dishes, and laundry.
I’ll also share my low-waste and sustainable cleaning tools including my
non-toxic all-purpose cleaning solution. In my space, I use these a zafu instead of
a couch. And I have a collapsible floor desk instead of a full writing desk.
Since I’m on the floor often practicing active sitting, meditating, eating on the
floor, and just chilling, I try to keep the floor clean as much as possible. Also
if you want to full tour of my furniture-free apartment, feel free to
check it out. I don’t own or use a vacuum cleaner but I have used it in the past.
I no longer have it since I gave it away and the reason why is because I do
enjoy cleaning in silence. This allows me to be mindful the practice of cleaning. Sometimes I notice that I’m just cleaning away without a single
distracting thought entering into my mind when I clean in silence. I also
think that my cat values quietness and calm vibes more than anyone in this
house. For me, I tend to go for collapsible and compact items,
this includes my cleaning tools for a floor cleaning. I have a simple
microfiber rag, a detachable quick loop mop, and a plant-based brush. I also have
a dustpan that comes in handy for cat litter. First thing I do is to sweep the
dust into the corner. Sometimes I skip this if I feel lazy. It is important
for me to keep up with my weekly cleaning schedule but it’s also good to
listen to my own level of comfort and my needs. So if I feel tired,
I don’t really force myself to clean. When all the sweeping is done, I use the
dustpan to collect everything. At the moment, these are being thrown out as
regular trash but feel free to share any sustainable methods with us because I’m
currently wondering if dust can actually be composted and if it’s okay to take it
to my community garden. After step one and two, I use my wet mop to go over the
floor once again. This collects all the dust that I missed
and I use my all-purpose cleaner while I go. I also make sure that there’s good
ventilation since I don’t really want my cat to be uncomfortable. I am aware that
some people, they love having the convenience of a vacuum or an efficient
chemical cleaner and that’s completely ok. I know that certain tools are
necessary especially if someone is physically limited in movement. So I’m
simply here to share what works for me in this present moment. I do spend more
time cleaning because I’m not relying on vacuum cleaners or other useful things. For me, cleaning is also a part of my mindfulness practice. I also like how I
can sneak in some natural movement like squatting and stretching while cleaning.
I have noticed that when I get close to the objects that I own, for instance, when
I get close to the floor, I notice all the patterns, spots, and marks. I
sometimes see what I often miss when I simply slow down and look closely at
what is already here. So cleaning definitely allows me to be more grateful
and more aware of what I own in my life. Also, be sure to share with me what
changes you made in your own cleaning routine or what changes do you hope to
make in order to align with minimalism and sustainability. Let us know in the
comments below. Some of you already know that I use my Scrubba bag and homemade laundry detergent for hand washing. I’ll leave a link in the descriptions for the
recipe if you missed it. I tend to do small batches of laundry with my
Scrubba but of course I use my apartment communal laundromat for large loads like my hammock bed, cotton throw, and area rugs. I do hand washing three to
four times a week for socks and undies. But for my outfits, I do it once a week. I
know that some of you asked me how clean it gets. So far I’m very satisfied
with my detergent and handwashing method. It does smell and feel fresh at
the end. I can also add some essential oil fabrics spay if I want.
I think the Austin heat and sun gets rid of the germs too. So I choose to do
laundry by hand mainly because I have a 15 item capsule wardrobe. I just
don’t have enough clothing to fit in the laundry
machine. I have to wash my clothes frequently. If you want, feel free to
check out my capsule wardrobe video. I will also be doing a step-by-step video on
how I fold my clothes compactly in the future. I’ve been using diluted vinegar
as a cleaner for many years. I love how simple, low-waste, and cost-effective it
is. It’s just filtered water and organic vinegar. I don’t put any essential oils
any more since it can be toxic to my cat. But if you don’t have a pet, feel free to
add a few drops in it. I don’t really think that the smell is too strong and
it goes away very quickly. So if you’re hesitant about that, it’s not too bad.
I’ll leave a link to my blog post with all the natural cleaning tools and also
this recipe so feel free to head over after watching this video if you want
the full list. I used the same solution and an organic bamboo rag for cleaning
other surfaces like the top of my mantle. But not on the marble counter top since
the vinegar can be too strong. So I’m currently just using water and a
bit of soap. Feel free to share any natural ways to clean marble tops. You
might have already guessed how much I love soap! I use a bar of soap for
everything including washing my dishes. I also have a crocheted hemp scrubber and a Japanese Tawashi scrubbing brush. This lasts very long, its plant-based, and it’s very durable. I’m enjoying it so far. My cultural
background definitely influenced my decision to become an extreme minimalist. This is mainly because most Korean people are used to sleeping on the
floor, sitting, and eating on the floor, also cleaning the floor by hand, and
doing small batches of laundry by hand. That’s why I’m open to other people’s
approach when it comes to lifestyle choices and their unique method of
maintaining their space. The bathroom is usually the last place I tackle since
this is my least favorite. I used the same all-purpose cleaner, a wooden
coconut fiber brush, and my silicone washing gloves. I found this after
searching for a reusable long-lasting dishwashing glove that doesn’t tear so
easily. For the tub, I’m using a short natural brush but the only downside to
wooden brushes is that it becomes moldy and it becomes discolored if it’s not
dried properly. So I recommend giving it plenty of sun after use. I do try my
best to align with my low-waste goals. That’s why I go for natural cleaning tools and try to be chemical-free as much as possible. But I know that it’s difficult
to be 100% sustainable within budget. So I simply focus on trying my best
without striving for perfectionism. I know that being organized and clean
might not matter for some people. That’s completely okay and I’m happy that
you are content with where you are. If cleanliness matters to you at this
moment in your life, I can completely relate. In the past, I thought that if I
can’t clean and live in an organized way that I am a bad and irresponsible person.
That’s why I hated a part of myself that allowed things to pile up. Now I
believe that cleaning is not really about removing bad things in order to
become the perfect minimalist adult. For me, it is about embracing all parts of
myself including my clutter, my messiness, and the distractions in my life. When
I am able to embrace all parts of myself I can see that cleaning is not really
about arriving at the ultimate cleanliness but it is about my own
process and my own folding. I think it only matters that I took some time in my
day to commit to this practice as much as I can with intention and
mindfulness. It really doesn’t matter what it looks like and it doesn’t matter
that my life is not perfectly organized in all aspects. I’m glad to share this
message with you. If you enjoy this video please like and subscribe to my channel.
Also, if you need more tips on getting unstuck with decluttering and organizing,
feel free to get started with my Minimalist Workbook. Thanks again for
being here my friends and I hope to see you again soon.


  1. Post
    Heal Your Living

    Hello friends! What changes did you make in your cleaning routine? What changes do you hope to make in your journey? Share with us 😆

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    Really nice video, but I'm a little bit concerned about this hemp scrubber. Can you imagine how many microorganisms are living in there??? And I suppose that you have an extreme minimalistic social life and intimacy too. I love hammock ( I have one too!) but how do you and your partner manage do sleep in it? Make a video about it!

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    Nina Rigné

    Your videos are so calm and mediative! Like them a lot! Even if I am not so extreme as you are I am a minamalist and like the calmness less things give me.

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    Chris Desatoff

    “I gave [my vacuum] away because I do enjoy cleaning in silence…”

    That’s interesting to me because I recently realized that I am sort of the opposite. But it’s not that I don’t like silence.

    We use a Roomba vacuum cleaner. A couple weeks ago, I was just chilling in the living room while the Roomba was cleaning the floor. And after awhile I felt SO RELAXED.

    I guess the noise of the Roomba itself – as it slowly worked it’s way around the room – provided like “white noise”. It was like peaceful background music that helped me relax.

    It was so calming lol.
    Anyway, it’s just funny how different people can take totally different paths to achieve the same thing.

    I hope you’re enjoying your trip. Stay safe and have fun!👍

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    Baba Booie

    Wow your cleaning routine is way more calming than mine. I listen to very loud music while I clean bc it gets me hyped up🤣

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    Allison Wall

    Bleach and other cleaner smells are totally overwhelming to me. Just cleaned my bathroom yesterday with vinegar/water, baking soda, and a little lime juice. It felt very refreshing to use natural cleaning products! I love the utility of using products I would have in the house already, too.

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    Please be careful! Snake plants can be poisonous to cats!

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    Vicki Morton

    I can relate to your quiet sweeping routine. I bought an expensive mele vacuum cleaner to clean my tile floors.
    It works great. But I like the quietness of sweeping so I rarely get that vacuum out.

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    Andrew Morrison

    High quality videos :] While I've noticed that your videos focus on your practices and how they help/affect you specifically, it would be cool to see a video geared towards minimalism and sustainability as action against the current climate crisis. Your influence and message would be very powerful and wide-reaching in that respect. Thanks!

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    We’ve been switching to fragrance free over the past year and it’s been wonderful! I can tell a difference. I actually find that natural products work better than the chemical laden ones. I use diluted vinegar for the kitchen and will use for the rest of the house once we run out of our method cleaners. I’m also looking into a steam mop.

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    I really appreciate your open perspective about cleaning. I think letting go if the judgement about my messes will also help me to do just a little bit of cleaning and be content i did something to make me feel more comfortable in my environment and take care of my things. Perfectionism can be paralyzing. Thank you for being such a kind human being and spreading this mindset of acceptance of everyone and curiosity about life 🙂

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    Oak Leaf Wellness & Botanicals

    I wish I could get rid of the vacuum, but with several dogs that shed and young children; it wouldn’t work for me. I do make my own cleaner.

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    Wild Meadow Therapy

    Your Cat looks sooo happy, peaceful and content. You do must have a very positive vibe and good aura girl! Keep sharing your ways as it’s so refreshing and also listening your voice is so relaxing 🙂

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    Where is the floor desk from? I think this would really help me out with supporting correct posture while I’m using the computer 🙂

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    Your coffee looks delicious. Is it instant coffee or a cold brew of some kind? Can you please share the brand or your method for brewing? 🙂

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    Mishma Lubabi

    In Bangladesh we wash our clothes by hand and air dry them under the sun. We also clean our floors and furniture by hand and just water

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    Lax Vce

    Minimalist does not mean living with no furniture, hey why you are using internet, and youtube, and cameras,???? You dont need all that to live!

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    Antonia M

    I would like to know what makes people want the minimalist life style. I think everybody should live what life they want etc but i also want to understand or find out about different choices if I can. So can someone please explain me what they like about minimalism? Thank you! Please keep in mind i don t hate i just want to educate myself a little!

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    Jennifer Ringsparr

    I have made some cloths for cleaning our apartment and for washing my face, all with secondhand yarn. I also bought baking soda, soda crystals, citric acid and salt so i can make our own dishwasher powder, toilet cleaner and im gonna buy white vinager for our all pourpose cleaner (we also bough essential oils while on vacation). And when our laundry powder is done, we are buying soap nuts from our local organic shop, we also grow our own produce and batch cook our food.

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    Neva Johns

    If your local area doesn’t accept the dust as compost you can always put it outside. Birds will use the larger bits like animal and human hair to make their nests.

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    Ma Rose

    Hello, Love your videos.
    Do you think you could one day make a video explaining how you make your dandelion root beverage. It seems interesting and would help a friend of mine. I wish you all the best. Take care of yourself. Thanks again for the great content!

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    Cynthia E. Greenberg

    Awe-inspiring. It appears you have made cleaning a form of meditation as well. So calming and soothing. I definitely need to make some changes. I clean with such ferocity, it's extremely unsettling! 😔

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    Beth 1975

    We are using up our cleaning supplies as I’ve found water and a bit of soap does the job. I’m going to clean the ALL the floors in one go, as opposed to some floors during the week – in order to save water. I have reduced the clothes I own, by discarding worn and damaged ones and not replacing them. Going to finish reading the books I own and donate them. Keeping staple classics like a complete Sherlock Holmes, complete jules Verne etc. Any new books – library or kindle.

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    Wanda Katz

    Hi, can I ask where you got the outfit that you were for your yoga? Long sleeve with belt and bottoms? Namaste.

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    Angel He

    I am a minimalist and I am trying to downsize to the point where I can carry a majority of my belongings in a backpack, but I’m still a college student and living with my mom, who is a hoarder, and it stresses me out. I can’t want to move out and practice low waste and experience extreme minimalism close to yours!

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    Testtest Test

    I don't want to waste my time on hand washing of clothes. I'm so happy and grateful that there are machines to do this instead of me =]

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    Shelby Blystone

    Of course floor debris/ dirt/ dust/ pet hair and dander, as long as theres no foreign plastics, can be composted

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    Arnót Hugyecz

    dust is mainly your dead skin you can compost it, mix it with the compost and/or spray water on it so the wind won't take it away

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    When you mention something in Korean can you write it in Hangul on the screen aswell. For those who would like to research it further.

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    Umm Craig

    I never see books or evidence of hobbies in minimalist homes. Do you think they are "put away" or the people who live this way just tend to not keep books or have hobbies. Thanks.

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    Hannah Prince

    Hi! I am not entirely sure of this, but I think you can indeed compost dust. It is essentially human skin and little pieces of fabric. Since all of your fabric is plant-based, it should be perfectly compostable.

    I'll check my facts and get back to this comment when I know more.

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    Nom Poo

    Thank you. I'm interested in the collapsible floor desk you have. If you're willing could you share a link for it, or where you got it sometime? Thank you either way

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    Dumb Ass

    Wow imagine the what the planet would be like if we all lived like this. Native American used to live like this only take what you need from the planet and always keep it in balance.

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    Jessica Hunziker

    Dear Youheum, I have been searching everywhere for your recipe for the washing powder.. 🙈 I did not find it in the description box after looking several times.. I really need it! 😱🙊❤

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    L C

    I just moved to a new apartment and a new city, I wish I had seen this before buying a cheap plastic floor mop, but I also will remember that it's not about perfection but about perseverance! Your videos have inspired the way I moved into my new space and in my purchase decisions. Thank you! 🙂

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    Not trolling here but as a Korean please let me know if North Koreans are just minimalist. As a minimalist vegan communist myself living in the states I often see anti North Korean and pro capitalist propaganda videos and sometimes wonder if North koreans are happy and prefer their lifestyle. Please tell me you thoughts @heal your living.

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    Ayman Salim

    If ur hesitant about ur how u wash ur laundry literally put water and soap in a bucket or a basin basically a dish scrub ur clothes with hands if stains are strong use more pressure or soap then rinse it with water if u wanna get rid of the smell put essential oils after rinsing we do that in Kenya and has been working wonders for generations

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    jonas halili

    im a minimalist as well, frugal, efficient, i wish i meet a simple woman like u that will appreciate each others simplicity, best wishes…

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    LaLa Smith

    I feel bad for your cat. You should really buy a cat tree for him/her. You should buy a nice comfortable couch to relax on. I know these are your choices to not own a couch but for me I could never ever live like that.
    I have to add that I like your videos a lot! I like how clean and neat your apartment looks and how you clean with all natural stuff. I however is totally opposite from you.

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    Isabella Clague

    Your videos are so calming, even though they are only 10 minutes long, I get so much satisfaction out of them, they feel like 1 hour long

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    Hermoine Jean Granger

    Being minimalistic would be so hard for me since i love art and crafting things. Yet i am still trying to produce no plastic waste if its avoidable

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    Sarah Boyd

    I love the whole concept and lifestyle! But when she got to the bathroom I just thought pleeeeease have some organic bleach (idk if that's a thing) because that's the only thing that makes me feel the cleanest in there! Thankfully you use TP, saw a video of a lady who did not and just sprayed herself down with water😷😷😷

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    Kristy Wood

    If you're really a minimalist why must you take up space in an apartment. Go live in the woods you'll have all you need.

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    Ca'Lia Harris

    Could you provide the link for the collapsible floor desk? That looks so neat & handy for complete desk work. Thank you!

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    Marium Angel

    Hey. First I would like to appreciate you for being so disciplined. You asked what changes we had made in cleaning routine. What I did was I had a long broom for sweeping as you did. And I changed it to a shorter one so that when I bend myself and sweep the floor it gives a good exercise for my tummy and reduces belly fat. It is good for your entire body for your stem hands and thighs you ll feel more tired but it leads to a healthy living. I'm trying my best to be a minimalist I'm an Indian it is difficult if I you have a family who doesn't change with you or they being uncomfortable with minimal items but I feel it is better and best to live a more orderly life which is benefiting them too. Way to go wish me the same. Kudos

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    I thought i would share with you some amazing cleaning solution.
    Orange peels of one medium orange 1/4 cup of white vinegar, and 2cups of hot water. Then let it cool before useing it. It works great with cats. It is safer as well I have two cats and a 10 month old

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    As long as what is in the dust is compostable then you're good. Plastic hair spray particles contaminate. Plastic clothing fibers contaminate. Any particulates.. eyelashes coated with mascara… wood plastic laquer bits.. nope.. If it's just skin cells and natural bits. Then you're good!

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    Lemon is good for marble. As for dust toss it outside of the front door. Think of this as tossing out any negativity. I wouldn't necessarily recommend it for gardening but if you're living with a high level of natural products it would be alright to some degree (dust is often made of dead skin cells. It's also already dirt when it comes to the floor.

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    Marie Jc

    I think if I ever became minimalist the last thing I'd ever do is clean the floor by hand. Right now I have 2 robots doing that lol

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