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Natural Cleaning Basics

As we saw with our last post, products we often use to clean house can be anything but clean. But there are quite a few natural, non-toxic substances you can use to clean with confidence. A few common, natural cleaning ingredients you can stock your cabinets with are white vinegar, Borax, baking soda, lemon juice, essential oils (lavender, lemon, tea tree, eucalyptus, and rosemary are all great), microfiber cloths, and old rags (torn t-shirts are great). With these items, you can create a handful of safe, effective cleaning solutions that are easy on your body and your wallet.

Let's take a look at how to make each one.

Household Cleaning Spray

Combine white vinegar and purified water (1:1 solution) in a clean spray bottle.

If you want fragrance, you can add a few drops of an essential oil such as lavender, wild orange, grapefruit, tea tree, or clove. Tea tree is especially effective as a cleanser, as it is antibacterial, antimicrobial, antiseptic, and antiviral. You can use this spray to clean kitchen countertops, floors, sinks, tubs and showers, windows, and mirrors.

All-purpose Glass Cleaner

Combine white vinegar and purified water (1:1 solution) in a clean spray bottle.

You can also add a splash or two of rubbing alcohol, inexpensive vodka, or lemon juice to reduce streaking.

Toilet Cleaner

You can sprinkle Borax or baking soda into the bowl, scrub, then flush. Adding a few drops of tea tree oil prior to scrubbing makes for a good-smelling and very clean toilet.

Liquid Dish Soap

  • ½ cup liquid Castile soap

  • 1/8 cup water

  • 4 drops essential oil of choice (orange, lemon, lavender, tea tree, grapefruit)

  • 1 tsp vinegar

Combine ingredients and store in an old soap bottle.

Furniture polish

  • Juice of half a lemon and olive oil (1:2 solution)

  • Small splash of white vinegar

Whisk together and rub on wooden furniture with a soft dusting cloth.

Natural Moth Ball

  • 2oz. dried rosemary

  • 2 oz. dried mint

  • 1oz. dried thyme

  • 8 oz. whole cloves

Place in sachet and hang in closets or place in drawers - it smells heavenly!

Air Freshener

In a clean spray bottle, combine distilled water and witch hazel (1:1 solution) with your choice of essential oils. For every 12 oz., add 3-4 drops of oil.

  • Lemon and Rosemary add a refreshing and uplifting scent.

  • Lavender and Chamomile calm and relax.

  • Eucalyptus, Peppermint, and Lemon infuse the air with a clean, minty fragrance.

  • Grapefruit, Wild Orange, Lemon combine to form a fresh and energizing citrus medley.

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