Household cleaners are some of the worst offenders for harmful chemicals. Loaded with the most toxic of chemicals these products are poorly regulated and their long-term effects on humans are rarely studied. Getting dizzy from the fumes while scrubbing your shower, or getting skin irritation when a drop of drain cleaner lands on your arm is considered completely acceptable. Fortunately it’s incredibly easy to make your own effective cleaning products from items you may already have in your cupboard, many of them safe enough to eat, all of them far cheaper than commercial products. Better for your health, better for the environment and better for your wallet!
Vinegar is the powerhouse of natural cleaners – it disinfects, it cuts through grease and stains, it tastes great on fish and chips. Here you can make an easy cleaner for windows, mirrors and glass tabletops by mixing 1 part white vinegar with 4 parts water in a clean spray bottle. If you’re not a fan of that vinegar-y smell add a tbsp or two of lemon juice.
Clogged drains become a fun science project with this recipe. Pour half a cup of baking soda directly into the drain and then follow with an equal amount of white vinegar. Enjoy the fizz as these two household products express their natural chemistry! Wait 10 minutes and then flush out the drain with a kettle-full of boiling water. If the clog is stubborn you may need to repeat. This is also a good way to freshen smelly drains.
Stained grout, soap residue, mildew – it can make your bath or shower time quite unappealing! This scrub is easy, safe and smells good. It won’t make cleaning the bathroom fun, but it will make it healthy. Mix a ½ cup baking soda with a ½ cup liquid castile soap so that it’s a thick paste. Castile soap is a completely natural soap made only from plant oils. Add in 10 drops of tea oil to help remove mildew and some lemon or peppermint essential oil for a fresh smell. Put the mixture directly on grout and tiles with a sponge or cloth. Scrub and rinse. For tough mildew try putting pure white vinegar directly on the spot, then letting it sit for 10-20 minutes before rinsing with warm water.