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I am a relatively recent convert to the Astonish range of cleaning products. I was attracted first by the low price, but I have continued to buy them because the products work well. I also like the fact they are made by a British company, and one that is strongly against animal testing. Today I am reviewing the Shampoo for Carpet and Upholstery, which costs just £1 in Wilkinsons. [750ml]
WHAT THE SHAMPOO IS INTENDED FOR.
Yet another reason that I like this product is the fact the spray is a good multi-tasker. It can be used on both natural and synthetic materials, and is declared to be wool-safe. It cleans, deodorises and disinfects, and prevents the formation of mould and mildew. Not bad for one spray!
The shampoo comes in a spray bottle which makes it easy and accurate to use if you need to target a specific area. The spray is responsive and reasonably powerful. As it doesn't need to be diluted, the shampoo is used directly from the bottle. I like the fact it is easy to quickly spray a fresh mark on the carpet as the sooner you apply a cleaner the easier it usually is to remove any dirt. The shampoo is clear, and so is the bottle so it is easy to know when you need to buy some more.
USING THE SHAMPOO
I mainly use this on a couple of rugs in our living room and passage that get a constant foot and paw traffic passing over them. They are not machine washable due either to their size or because of the materials they are made from. I have used it to deal with marks on large fitted carpets, but I would find it too time consuming to work over the whole floor using the spray. In those circumstances, we use an electric carpet shampooer as it involves less time on our hands and knees.
The process of using the shampoo involves going through several stages so it is not especially quick. After an initial vacuuming of the floor, you are instructed to apply the spray, rub it in, and then remove it with a damp cloth. I find that a sponge that is quite wet actually produces the best results when it comes to removing the foam, although this obviously makes the surface wetter and therefore it will take longer to dry. After this, you are told to both dry the floor with a cloth, and to leave the floor to dry. I take this to mean you should try to remove the worst of the dampness, and then leave the remainder to dry out in time. Lastly, you vacuum the floor again. The process is the same for upholstery. When the shampoo is sprayed it foams up a lot, so it easy to see where you have applied it. As it does not spread over a wide area, I find that I need to spray several times to cover even a small patch. This is why I wouldn't recommend this if you have a large piece of carpet or upholstery to clean.
The shampoo doesn't smell too strongly. It isn't perfumed in the sense of being made attractive to the nose, but it isn't awful either. It smells "chemically", but this is mostly apparent when you are rubbing it in. I have to bend close to the carpets to smell it once it is drying. I do think it leaves the carpets smelling generally fresher though.
DOES IT WORK?
I find that the shampoo works very well on everyday dirt and mud, especially grubby pawprints from our visting cats and dogs. The difference between areas of a rug that I have and haven't treated are proof of this. The suggested amount works fine, it is just if you need to cover a wide area that you find yourself spraying a lot. It doesn't pretend to repel dirt, so I still need to clean the area again by the end of a week. If used immediately, I have had some success using the spray as a stain remedy on food spills, but it didn't work on an old coffee stain on a cushion, even after 2 treatments. To be fair, it doesn't claim specifically to be a stain remover, so I think it works best as a surface cleaning shampoo. I can't put the mildew provention claim to the test, as my carpets and upholstery have never suffered from this or mould. Therefore I can't put their continued absence down to the shampoo!
I haven't had any trouble with the shampoo leaving behind any residue. The carpets, when dry, feel just as soft as they did before. I did a small patch test before using the shampoo on each rug just in case it faded or damged them in any way, but there were no problems.
WOULD I RECOMMEND IT?
I would, as it certainly cleans my carpets well. It is easy to use, if not quick when using on larger areas. I like the convenience of a ready to use spray even if this means getting down on my hands and knees a lot. Knowing that it is suitable for the vast majority of materials means it is a one for all solution to my cleaning needs. The fact that the shampoo is British made, not tested on animals and suitable for vegetarians and vegans is a definite bonus for me. The company say that they do not use any ingredients that are harmful to the environment, and that all their packaging can be recycled. This shampoo is also BUAV and Vegetarian Society approved. I will aim to buy more of my cleaning products from the range in the future because I like to support ethical companies.
I buy my Astonish in Wilkinson. I also frequently see it in 99p Store, Poundstretcher and Poundland, and occasionally in supermarkets and Savers.
[This review is also under my user name on Ciao.]