So I looked on tons upon tons of websites and tried out different recipes for homemade cleaners.. did you know you can make just about anything yourself? Including laundry detergent -- although I haven't gone that far because I really like the detergent I use. I still have a boat load of Seventh Generation laundry detergent that I bought before Clara was born (yes, I haven't had to buy laundry detergent in over 4 months.. it was on sale & I had coupons, don't judge). All these recipes that I have listed is what I use in our home and I love them and they work wonderfully. You can make just about any cleaner yourself -- check out the sources at the bottom for a ton more of useful information.
Not only is this stuff more safe and more 'green'.. it cheap! I'm always up for saving money. Does anyone else make their own cleaners??
- 1 cup water
- 1/4 cup vinegar
- 3-4 drops of Dawn dish soap
Mix all ingredients in an empty spray bottle. I love this -- works great, and doesn't leave streaks. I will never use a store-bought glass cleaner again.
Surface Spray (Homemade '409')
- 2 tbsp. vinegar
- 1 tsp. borax
- 1/8 cup Dawn dish soap
- 1 cup hot water
Pour vinegar, borax, and hot water, and Dawn dish soap in spray bottle. Then fill spray bottle the rest of the way with cool water. Don't shake, just swish from side to side a little bit to mix. (do not use things containing vinegar on granite countertops/surfaces)
All-Purpose Cleaner/Grease Cutter
- 2 cups warm water
- 1/4 cup Castile Soap (like Dr. Brommers)
- 10 drops Tea Tree Oil
Mix together in a spray bottle and spray on surface, let sit for a few seconds then wipe off with a damp cloth.
Toilet Bowl Cleaner
- 1 cup Borax
- 1/4 cup vinegar
Let sit for a few minutes. Scrub with toilet bowl brush.
- Dampen with water
- Sprinkle generously with baking soda
Leave for 20 minutes, scrub until clean.
- 1/2 cup vinegar
- 2 cup water
Combine in a bowl and microwave on high for 3-4 minutes, remove bowl and wipe down inside of microwave.
- 1 cup baking soda
- 1 tsp. liquid soap
- 10 drops Tea Tree Oil (or Peppermint or Eucalyptus)
Add enough water to form a paste, use it with a brush/sponge to scour bathtub surfaces.
- 2 parts water
- 1 part rubbing alcohol
- 5 drop essential oil of your choice
Mix in spray bottle, do not spray on delicates. If you need to put more than 5 drops of essential oil in, then do so.
- Just use a microfiber cloth.
A few more tidbits of information for you --
- There are a few essential oils that have antimicrobial properties.. such as eucalyptus, tea tree oil, and peppermint. Good for use in homemade cleaners.
- Use crocheted or knitted dish cloths that you can wash and reuse instead of sponges/dish cloths that are meant to be thrown away.
- A lot of store-bought air fresheners contain phthalates.. not good for you, your children, or pets!
Sources: Martha Stewart, Young House Love, Maillardville Manor, HealthyChild.org, GreenerChoices.org (Consumer Reports), Farmers Almanac