Please enjoy this post, the first in our five part series on small changes you can make in your home and in your family to “Go Green.”
“Going Green” is one of those contemporary fads that can seem sometimes seem like a chore, but there are several small ways that you and your family can make a big impact for the environment and for the overall health of your home!
One of these options is to use DIY household cleaners in the place of chemical products. Using cleaning solutions that you make yourself have several benefits:
- DIY cleaning solutions are much more cost effective than commercial cleaning products, and they are just as effective;
- DIY cleaning products don’t have added fragrances, which potentially disrupt normal hormone functioning and can have carcinogenic effects;
- DIY cleaning solutions are safer for your family and pets, especially when you consider products used for kitchen counters and floors where little ones might play;
- Run-off into the water system of cleaning chemical can be detrimental to the environment.
Now, I’m not saying to toss out that bottle of bleach all together– there are certainly still “bleachable moments” where you are going to want to pull out the big guns. But the basic recipes below (all found on Pinterest) can replace some of your everyday cleaners with safer, more eco-friendly options. Check out some of the basic recipes here, and check out our Pinterest board for more reference on “going green” this spring.
All Purpose Cleaner
1 & 1/2 Cups Water
1/2 Cup Vinegar
5-10 Drops Essential Oil of Choice (Lemon, Lavender, Tea Tree, Peppermint)
Vinegar is a natural disinfectant, and when combined with water is a great natural alternative to counter and floor sprays. To overcome the strong aroma of vinegar, add some essential oils to you solution– or, you can use fresh circus fruits! You can squeeze fresh lemon juice into hot water and vinegar for a great mopping mix. Or if you plan ahead, you can soak orange peels in vinegar in a glass jar for two weeks, giving you a fresh citrusy vinegar to add to water.
Apply kosher salt to the cut half of a grapefruit and scrub away tub and shower grime.
Another option is to combine 1/2 cup baking soda, 1/4 cup hydrogen peroxide, and 1 teaspoon dish soap. This paste works well for bath tubs and showers, but also is a killer tile and grout treatment.
1/4 White Vinegar and 2 Cups warm water mixed together in a spray bottled with essential oils will replace your glass cleaners for a streak free shine on your windows and mirrors.
Baking soda is slightly abrasive and works well as a scrubbing agent. Start by shaking baking soda into and onto your toilet, and do an initial scrub with your toilet brush. Add 2 cups of vinegar and citrus juice/essential oils and scrub once more. Flush away the grime and spray your toilet brush with some of the remaining vinegar/citrus blend to disinfect.
Like the idea of using green cleaners but not so much into DIY? There are many brands you can purchase that are eco-friendly and non-toxic, probably even at your local grocery store.