Today I walked into the laundry room and pulled my cleaning bucket out from under the plastic laundry tub in the corner.
As I peered inside it, I realized that there were no harmful or toxic chemicals in it, and thought this would be great information to share with those who cared about making green lifestyle choices.
To start this article, I first pulled out all the contents and spray bottles in my bucket so that I could provide the reader with an adequate list of what you would need to make all the environmentally safe cleaning products that I use around my home.
All of these products are safer for the environment, my children, my grandchildren, and my pets, plus they cost much less than store purchased chemically-based products. I even use them to clean several commercial spaces for catering Houston, so I know these are powerful.
The ingredients I used to mix up the various cleaners in my cleaning bucket include baking soda, borax , vinegar, salt, lemon juice, vegetable oil, cornstarch, toothpaste, liquid soap (vegetable based castile soaps are best used here), glycerin, and scented oils, also referred to essential oils, which are mainly used to deoderize or disinfect.
Most of these oils can be found in health food or herbal supply stores and can include, but at not limited to, lavendar, mint, rose, lemon, and tea tree oil, which is best used as a disinfectant.
Below I have listed the use of the product, and the recipe to make it:
All-purpose Cleaner: 3 tablespoons vinegar, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1/4 cup liquid soap, into 2 cups of water. This recipe will clean and deodorize all surfaces in your kitchen and bathroom. This can be poured into a spray bottle and used daily.
Scouring Paste: 3 tablespoons vinegar, 1/3 cup liquid soap, and 2/3 cup baking soda. This can be used to scrub pots and pans. Keep this scrub mixture in a plastic tub and store under your kitchen sink. You will find a million uses for it. Best used with a teflon scrub pad with degree of roughness required to easily handle the job.
Disinfectant: 1 teaspoon of tea tree oil, 1 cup of baking soda, and 1/2 cup of water. Mix together and put in small spray bottle. Can be used to deodorize or disinfect most surfaces.
Oven Cleaner: 1/2 cup of water, 2 teaspoons liquid soap, 1/3 cup salt, and 3/4 cup baking soda. Mix and place in spray bottle. Spray oven thoroughly and leave overnight to soak. Personally, I perfer to foil line so this product is obsolete.
Glass Cleaner: 1/4 cup vinegar to 1 cup water. This works best using newspaper as opposed to paper towel and a little 1 teaspoon amonia added will cut any grease build
up or smoke film on windows.
Rust Remover: 1 bottle of coke soda pop. Wipe or soak the rusted area and then rinse…this method is still being used by those who use wells in rural locations.
Stain Remover for materials: 1/4 cup glycerin (glycerin helps oil and water mix for removing tough stains) 1/4 cup liquid soap, and 1 1/4 cups water. Mix together and place in spray bottle. Spray affected area and leave to dry – wash or vacuum as required.
Wooden Floor Polish: 1/4 cup olive oil, 1/8 cup vinegar, 12 drops of scented oil (optional). Mix and wipe clean or polish.
Removing Crayon: To remove crayon marks on walls, floors, and tables, use toothpaste on a damp cloth and rub until the mark disappears. Not for use on porous surfaces like wallpaper.
Removing Grease: Immediately pour on salt. Let sit a few minutes and brush off.
Removing Scratches: Use equal parts of lemon juice and vegetable oil and apply to a soft cloth. Rub until they disappear from the wood.
This completes my regular cleaning products. I still use laundry detergent purchased at the store, but I am always careful to find a low phosphate liquid brand, as this is easier on the environment.
I hope this list helps you decide to make a green lifestyle choice and use homemade environmentally friendly cleaning products the next time you pull out your cleaning bucket.