Sunday, February 13, 2011

Puttin' on the Ritz

20 large windows and 10 glass doors add up to a lot of window washing. A professional cleaning job sets me back about $300.00. As I need the exercise and today was another stunning day, I decided to save the money and clean the windows myself. A new product from Windex was the initial inspiration. The Outdoor "All-In-One" window washing tool: It's a pad thing attached by velcro to a swivel head on the end of a long pole. You're instructed to blast the windows with a hose, use the pad thing to clean the glass (up to 20 windows per pad) and then blast again. The sheeting action in the cleaning formula they claim, will result in non-streaky clean windows. I tried cleaning a set of windows and waited a while for the sun to shine through them. The windows were horrible, full of streaks and the dirt was still there.

Disappointed and resigned to using $300 worth of elbow grease I rooted around in my cleaning closet where I have a number of window cleaning devices/schemes (I'm a sucker for these) and happened upon the Ritz Window Cloth no. 909.  Ritz has been around since 1892 " the quality name for household cleaning textiles", the label reads.  The graphics on the package lead me to believe it's something I bought at the hardware store.. not one bit glamorous. And the name "Window Cloth" is so homely and uninspired! There's a footnote which says "Cleans like Magic" and goes on to say "get instant sparkle on windows, mirrors and windshields". These are understatements -  but the claims probably motivated me to purchase the product OR it was a demo. I almost always buy demo'ed products - food, cleaning stuff - if I see it work with my own eyes or I connect on some level with the demonstrator, I'll usually part with the cash. I guess you'd call me an easy sell.

This cloth is fantastic. As instructed, I wet it, wrung it out and used it to clean all the glass.  No streaks - just wiped down the window and used a lintless cloth to dry. Way better than Windex or any other glass cleaner spray-on I've tried. Best of all and almost unbelievable in these days of engineered obsolescence, they claim on the back, "good until the cloth itself is worn out!!" "You will surprised at how long it lasts". Well, Mr. Ritz, I'm both surprised and astonished. The last statement is "surely you will want to tell your friends about it".. I do, I do -  I am, I am.

And the price? You can purchase the "Window Cloth" online for between $2.99 and $3.50 depending on the web site you choose-Kitchen Collection, The Kitchen Store and Amazon all carry them. I've reached the stage in life where I'd rather have one of these useful cloths as a gift than some silly bauble I'll never wear - so I'm buying 10 and hoping my friends and family feel the same way and will enjoy these Ritzy things as much as I have.

"Puttin' on the Ritz" is a popular song written and published in 1921 by Irving Berlin and introduced by Harry Richman in the musical film Puttin' on the Ritz (1930). The title derives from the slang expression "putting on the Ritz," meaning to dress very fashionably. The expression was inspired by the swanky Ritz Hotel.


  1. Anonymous10:17 AM

    yes, i want one. i never clean my windows because they always come out worse than they were before. always streaky. I'm willing to try this one. thanks for the tip.

  2. Thanks for the tip, I always wondered how well the Windex-swiffer thing worked.

  3. I thank you also it really help me a lot..