It appears we get to open our doors and windows a few weeks earlier than usual this spring. With the mild winter we experienced as well as the unusually higher temperatures the last several weeks, transitioning into spring is on everyone’s mind. Not only does that mean searching for lighter clothing options, but in many households with colder winters it means cleaning the home to welcome the warm temperatures.
One might be tempted to reach for cleaning products off of grocery store shelves. That’s okay, as long as they are not the toxic/chemical laden products that shout out to us with promises of doing this and that. By purchasing some basic ingredients at the grocery store you can make all of the recipes to follow to create natural cleaning products for your home. You might also find them to be more economical as well. I have selected some of the following recipes from Natural Home and Garden’s March/April Issue.
Ingredients for creating your own cleaning products:
Sink Cleanser for Stains
Combine washing soda, baking soda and essential oil in an airtight container and shake well to blend. Sprinkle a small amount in the sink and scrub with a damp sponge. Rinse the sink with vinegar, then with hot water. For stubborn stains, allow the formula to sit on the stain for several minutes, then scrub and rinse with vinegar and hot water.
Citrus Dishwashing Blend
The wonderful lemony/citrus aroma is not only great to smell but it has benefits as a natural degreaser. Fill a clean 22 ounce bottle with castile soap (dilute according to directions if using concentrate). Add the essential oils and extract. Shake bottle before each use. Add 1-2 tablespoons of liquid to dishwater and wash as usual.
Automatic Dishwasher Powder
Combine all ingredients and store in a sealed container. To use, add about 2 tablespoons to the soap compartment of your dishwasher. If you find your glassware has a residual buildup, reduce the amount in each use to 1 1/2 tablespoons.
Combine all ingredients in a spray bottle and shake well. Spray on surfaces and wipe clean with a damp cloth or sponge.
Instead of using paper towels to wipe up spills or clean counter tops, store multiple squares of cotton cloth (old T shirt or pajamas). Fill a container with all of the ingredients (you may want to use a large glass jar), shake when ready to use, pull out a cloth, ring excess liquid back into jar and wipe surface. The cloths can be washed and returned to jar for reuse. Cap jar between uses.
Controlling Kitchen pests:
Germs-Be-Gone Toilet Cleaner
This antibacterial spray cleaner is specifically formulated for cleaning the general surface area of the toilet, and under and behind the seat.
Combine all ingredients in a spray bottle and shake well. Spray on toilet surfaces and wipe clean with a damp cloth or sponge.
Talk about chemicals and artificial ingredients – let’s talk the laundry aisle at the grocery store! I can not walk down it without a sneeze attack. The fragrances alone trigger a reaction in me. I began using fragrance and dye free laundry soap years ago. I don’t use fabric softeners nor dryer sheets with fragrance. Here is a simple recipe for washing powder and some additional tips.
Simple Washing Powder
This recipe makes enough powder to last a typical family of four for one year. You can easily reduce the amounts to make a smaller quantity for your use.
Combine baking soda, washing soap and soap flakes. If using, add essential oil and mix with a whisk. Use 1/8 cup per load.
If you don’t want to make your own recipes for cleaning products, there are several nontoxic lines that you might want to try:
Keep things simple and healthy – we are bombarded by so many chemicals and toxins, keeping our cleaning products as natural as possible within our living space is essential. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or 978.335.1140. Happy Spring!