Throwing open all of our doors and windows when the warmer weather arrives is one of life's biggest joys – there’s nothing quite like a warm breeze on a summer's day.
But the one downside of open doors and windows is the fact that it often means a whole host of bugs, flies and other such creatures soon join us inside our homes. And while there’s nothing necessarily wrong with insects venturing inside for a moment (so long as they leave eventually), it's not ideal, especially if there's food and drink around.
While there are plenty of ways to get rid of flies in the house, it feels like there are fewer tactics for how to get rid of ants. Though they are pretty harmless, their attraction to leftover food can be irritating, and sometimes, downright disgusting. Luckily, a recent TikTok video has shared a clever hack for steering them clear of your windows and doors.
The TikTok trick for getting ants out of your home
A TikTok video shared by cleaning brand Purdy & Figg – which has since amassed over 1.3 million views, and almost 9,000 likes – revealed a super easy trick for guiding ants out of your home.
In the short clip, the expert reveals that in order to stop ants from coming in, you first need to figure out where they are coming from. Once you do, the video advises pouring down a line of baking powder to block their route into the property.
The video says 'This should make them turn around without harming them.' Genius - and so simple!
This method should take just seconds to complete, but of course, you’ll need to uncover where the ants are coming from first. Charlotte Figg, cleaning expert and founder of Purdy & Figg, explained, 'Sadly there's no quick trick to find out where ants are coming in from - the best thing to do is to watch them and trace the line back to the original entry point.'
This should be easy enough though, as she explains that ants will usually always ‘follow the leader’, and track the same route as the guy in front of them.
So why does this trick work for detracting ants from your home? What is it about the baking powder that causes them to turn around?
'Ants always follow the same route,' Charlotte told Ideal Home. 'They do this by following the pheromone scent excreted by the ants ahead of them in the line - if they lose this trail of scent and deviate from the route, they end up going back on themselves and back where they came from.
'This is where the bicarbonate of soda/baking powder comes in - by sprinkling a non-food related powder, you can mask the scent of the pheromones and quite literally put the ants off the scent. We'd recommend replacing the powder every week or so!'
And if you want to do more to discourage all sorts of insects from coming into your home this summer, Charlotte also advised using naturally strong-smelling cleaning products around entry points in your home, which should help to put them off.
'Ants and other insects dislike strong scents, so it's always worth cleaning entry points to the house with strong, naturally scented products (perhaps our insect-repelling Citronella & Niaouli Counter Clean).'
This TikTok clip also reminds us of the very wise piece of advice that is not to leave food out in your home – as plenty of creepy-crawlies may be attracted to this scent.
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Amy Hunt is an experienced digital journalist and editor, now working in a freelance capacity specialising in homes and interiors, wellness, travel and careers. She was previously Lifestyle Editor at woman&home, overseeing the homes, books and features sections of the website. Having worked in the industry for over eight years, she has contributed to a range of publications including Ideal Home, Livingetc, T3,Goodto, Woman, Woman’s Own, and Red magazine.
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