Spring is here! But before you snap on those gloves for a top-to-bottom house scouring, check out the labels on your cleaning products. Most conventional cleaners are dangerously toxic, with the average cleaner containing over 60 toxic chemicals! Here are just a few ingredients that may be lurking under your kitchen sink:

  • Sodium Hydroxide
  • Propylene glycol
  • 2 Hexoxyethanol
  • 2-Butoxyethanol
  • Ammonium Hydroxide
  • Viden EGM
  • Liquitint Sky Blue Dye
  • Perchloroethylene
  • Triclosan
  • Quaternary Ammonium Compounds

Manufacturers of conventional cleaners tend to note that in small quantities these ingredients aren’t likely to be a problem. However, when exposed to them routinely and in combinations that haven’t been studied, there is no good way to accurately assess the risks. Individual chemicals do get studied, and many of those that have ended up in our household cleaners have been found to be hormone disruptors, neurotoxic, and toxic to the reproductive system.

More and more people are finding that they are “chemically sensitive” and cannot tolerate household cleaning supplies, fragrances, and body care products. Headaches, skin burns, dizziness, breathing problems, nausea, and instant-onset fatigue are some of the symptoms associated with exposure.

If you want to get toxins out of your home, protect yourself and the environment, here are a few simple recipes to replace conventional cleaners, at a fraction of the cost. And, they’re fun to make!

 

Window Cleaning Recipes

Combine in a 16 oz spray bottle:

  • ¼ cup rubbing alcohol
  • ¼ cup white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 ½ cups distilled water
  • 10 drops of essential oil, if desired- lemon, orange, lavender, bergamot, tea tree

Spray and wipe. This cleaner is good for windows, mirrors, stainless steel, aluminum, chrome, ceramic, and plastic.

 

All Purpose Cleaning Recipe

  • Combine in a 16 oz spray bottle:
  • 1 cup white vinegar
  • 1 cup distilled water
  • 20 drops essential oil, depending on preference: oregano oil, clove oil, lavender oil, lemon oil, orange oil are some options

Shake until mixed, then spray on and wipe.

Note: for cleaning marble or granite, substitute ¼ cup castile soap and 1 ¾ cup water for the vinegar/water combo, as vinegar can be tough on these surfaces. Do NOT use vinegar on granite or marble surfaces!!

 

Toilet Scrub Cleaning Recipe

Combine in a 16 oz bottle:

  • 3/4 cup baking soda
  • 1 cup white vinegar
  • 20 drops of your chosen combination of essential oils- consider lavender, grapefruit, lemon, tea tree, rosemary

Squirt into basin and let sit for a few minutes before scrubbing the bowl with a brush.

 

Wood Floor Cleaning Recipe

  • 1 cup white vinegar
  • 1 tsp vegetable oil
  • 1 cup distilled water (leave out of you have waxed floors)
  • 10-20 drops essential oils of your choice

Gently wipe floor with a microfiber sponge or wrung-out mop.

 

Tile and Grout Cleaning Recipe

  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • 2 cups hot water
  • 10 drops essential oil- consider lemon, orange, grapefruit, bergamot
  • Moldy Grout Cleaner
  • 1 part 3% hydrogen peroxide
  • 1 part water
  • 20 drops each of tea tree and lavender essential oils

Spray and let sit at least an hour, then wipe down with a sponge

 

Homemade Dishwasher Soap Cleaning Recipe

  • 1 part borax
  • 1 part washing soda or SAL soda. Increase if your water is hard

 

Have fun cleaning the toxin-free way!