6 Tips for Spring Cleaning Like the French

by Maddy Piggott
French Spring Cleaning Tips French Interior Inspiration

March has arrived and there’s a palpable sense of renewal in the air. For the French, like many of us, the spring season means a time to prepare the home for the warmer months ahead.


At the heart of the French approach to spring cleaning lies a profound appreciation for simplicity and quality. Rather than viewing cleaning as a mundane task, the French approach it as an opportunity to honor their living spaces and cultivate a sense of harmony within them.

So, drawing from the tried and true methods of the French, here are some tips to enhance your spring cleaning experience this year along with suggestions for premium cleaning products from French brands available on the MFCH Boutique.

Use the code MFCHMAG10 for 10% of your purchase on the boutique!

1. Declutter With Purpose

Before diving into the deep clean, take a cue from the French and embrace the philosophy of “less is more.” Carefully assessing each item’s significance and parting ways with those that no longer serve you not only makes your clean up quicker, but helps to create a meaningfully curated space, allowing your most cherished possessions to take center stage.

2. Invite in the Elements

The French understand the transformative power of natural light, harnessing its luminosity to brighten their homes all year round through clever interior design and to rejuvenate their living spaces during the spring. Make it a priority to invite ample natural light into your home by drawing back the curtains and letting the sunlight infuse your space with warmth and energy. 

The French not only uphold their commitment to cleanliness but also honor their connection to nature. A facet of spring cleaning, therefore, is to foster a sense of balance and harmony within the home. Keep windows open as you move through different areas of your home, you’ll not only invite in sunlight, but generate a revitalizing breeze which will dispel any stagnant winter air and allow your space to heat and cool naturally.

3. Embrace Traditional Methods

When it comes to cleaning, the French swear by timeless techniques that have been passed down through generations. From the slow art of hand-washing linens to the gentle polishing of antique furniture and kitchenware, each task is approached with care and reverence for tradition, and their cleaning products are chosen with equal care.

Prioritizing natural ingredients for their effectiveness and environmental friendliness, cleaning cupboards in French homes typically contain bicarbonate of soda, white vinegar, Savon de Marseille, Savon Noir, bentonite clay, and beeswax. Experiment yourself by blending equal parts of vinegar and water to craft a potent, eco-friendly all-purpose cleaner, perfect for countertops and floors.

4. Scents from Nature

This preference for natural ingredients also extends to how the French interact with fragrances. Rather than synthetic fragrances, many homemade and store bought products use essential oils, whose subtle scents foster a sense of balance and harmony within the home. Add a few drops of a fresh, soothing, or uplifting scent, such as lemon, lavender, eucalyptus, orange or pine to your vinegar cleaning spray or an oil diffuser, enhancing the ambiance while you clean and promoting a sense of well-being.

5. Savor the Ritual

In the hustle and bustle of modern life, it’s all too easy to view cleaning as a chore to be rushed through. However, the French approach to spring cleaning encourages savoring the ritual, transforming it into a mindful practice that engages the senses and nourishes the soul. Take time to set the scene with a candle, soothing tea or gentle music, then take a mindful pleasure in the rhythmic motions of sweeping, dusting, and polishing.

6. Prepare for Al Fresco Living

Lastly, as spring transitions into summer, the French once again begin to embrace the outdoors as an extension of their homes. Prepare your outdoor spaces for leisurely gatherings and moments of relaxation by giving them the same level of care and attention as your interiors. Sweep away errant leaves, spruce up your potted plants and flowers, and adorn your patio or balcony with furnishings that invite guests to linger and enjoy the sunshine.

Written by Madeleine Piggott

Read Next: 10 Expert Tips to Planning a French Country Garden 

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