First Click: My filthy love affair with a Muji broom

April 20th, 2016


Let me clear something up right away: my love affair with a Muji broom is strictly platonic. Though it’s not strictly monogamous.

See, my affections extend to the entire family of Muji cleaning items. The Muji Cleaning System consists of a complete range of well-designed products that are interchangeable, compact, inexpensive, and easy to store. It's the epitome of "high tech" only without the electronics. And it's the perfect solution for small big-city apartments.

I’ve lived in many a shoebox and recently took possession of a "tiny home" located on a blustery beach battered by North Sea rains. The mixture of humanity, water, and blowing sand makes it one of the filthiest places I’ve ever lived. It’s a battlefield: me vs. Mother Nature. Her, armed with thunderbolts and squalls, I, a $7 plastic broom attached to a $5 aluminum pole.

Muji cleaning system diagram

Each Muji Cleaning System head can be mixed and matched with a variety of poles to suit just about every household cleaning scenario. Head choices include a broom with an adjustable joint for sweeping under couches, a microfiber mop, a sponge, a squeegee, a lint roller, duster, and floor brush. You can even choose a few different storage containers to hide the yuck invariably collected by some of the grubbier heads.

Yeah, I know Ikea sells its own cleaning system by the name of Skvalpa. But the Muji set is better, albeit a tad more expensive. I’ve tried the Skvalpa and its components feel cheaper, the overall design is less thoughtful, and the ergonomics of the dustpan and broom kind of stinks (though Muji makes you bend over to sweep up your dirt piles — gasp). Besides, do you really want a cleaning system that sounds like something scraped off the bottom of the creatures you scrape off the bottom of a Swedish fishing boat? No.

Say it with me: Muji. Muji. It’s cheaper than a ticket to Tokyo and almost as satisfying.

muji cleaning system

I purchased what I consider to be a core cleaning package you’d find in most homes: a telescopic pole that extends from 26 inches (67cm) to 42 inches (107cm), the aforementioned broom head which doubles as a hand broom when detached from the pole, a dustpan that attaches to the broom when not in use, a squeegee, a duster, a microfiber wet / dry floor mop that doesn’t require a bucket (just rinse in the sink), and a case that’s designed to open and close automatically when inserting or removing the mop. That’s one pole instead of several that would all require storage I don’t have, and maybe you don’t either.

But it’s the Muji broom that I love so dearly. Each time a child opens the door or window is another chance for Mother Nature to vomit her lunch onto my floors. I must use my broom and dustpan a dozen times each day as I fight the endless battle to keep sand out of my bedsheets. And so far, I’m winning.

I don’t know that I’ll ever need a matching lint roller on the end of a meter-long telescoping pole. But that checkbox can be easily ticked should the day ever come. And isn’t that what consumerism, and life come to think of it, is all about?

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