The Best Mother's Day Gift is a Clean Car

Most moms will you tell you they spend just as much time in the car as they do anywhere else. Shuttling kids back and forth to practice, driving to weekend tournaments, playing Uber to everyone's friends, mom's car is sure to be a mess! That's why there's no better gift this Mother's Day than to clean it from top to bottom. If you can't afford to have it professionally detailed, or your love language is putting in the elbow grease and doing it on your own, here's how you can have mom's car looking good as new in no time:

Unlike cleaning the house, work from the bottom up when detailing the exterior of a car. Clean the wheels, tires, and wheel wells first. Polish those wheels until they shine!

Wash the car's exterior, paying special attention to the grill (where bugs have met their demise and are now baked on!)

Dry the exterior completely before applying wax, then wax-on, wax-off quickly so it, like the bugs, doesn't bake onto the paint!

Once the outside of mom's car is sparkling, turn your attention to the interior. Try not to cry-it's a big mess and this will take some time! Start by removing everything: floor mats, kids' seats, and certainly all the garbage and dirty socks that shouldn't be there in the first place!

Vacuum the interior thoroughly, especially the nooks and crannies where crumbs and dirty hide. Then get to work washing the seats and floors. Work from the front of the car to the back, moving the seats back as far as they go so you can clean the tracks. If mom has cloth seats, mix a solution of three-parts water to one-part laundry detergent-it'll smell great, too! If you're dealing with leather, be sure to use the proper conditioner for the material. Rubber, vinyl, and plastic can be treated with the same product. The goal is to make it all shine!

Dust and polish the dash and console area, including the knobs and gearshift. When it's time to clean the windows, a professional tip is to dry the interior and exterior glass in opposite directions, one horizontal, the other vertical. This way, if there's a smudge, you'll be able to quickly identify if it's on the inside or outside. Mom deserves smudge-free glass, so don't forget to roll down the windows to properly clean the tops of them, as well as their surrounding rubber trim.

Now that everything's clean, consider going the extra mile and putting Mom's favorite scent somewhere in the car. Buy a hanging or clip-on deodorizer or make one of your own! Dryer sheets are an easy, inexpensive way to freshen up the place and believe me when I say, moms appreciate the smell of clean laundry!