Parents, and parents of furry friends, are understandably cautious about what they use to clean their home. When children and pets crawl around and explore the home, they could unintentionally be exposed to harmful chemicals. If you’re questioning the ingredients in cleaners like stain removers or all-purpose sprays, then it may be time to make the switch to natural ingredients. Luckily, this swap is better for the environment and easier on the wallet, too.
Take a quick peek in your cleaning closets and cupboards. You most likely have all the ingredients needed to make several variations of cleaners that are simple to make and safe for kids and pets. Read on for a complete list of DIY cleaners that you can put together in less time it takes for you to clean your entire bathroom.
Every household needs a good all-purpose cleaner. Its versatility means that you can use it to clean sinks, children's highchairs, tabletops, and most counters.
Because this natural concoction uses vinegar, make sure you avoid spraying it on stone surfaces such as granite or marble, cast iron, aluminum, or waxed surfaces. The acidity can scratch the material and remove protective coatings. If you’re uncertain whether your countertops or other surfaces can handle the vinegar without damage, do some quick research before you spray. Nobody wants to replace expensive marble countertops.
- 3/4 cup hydrogen peroxide
- 1/2 cup distilled white vinegar
- 1 teaspoon unscented liquid Castile soap
- 10 drops tea tree oil
- 20 drops lavender essential oil
- 2 cups water
Mix ingredients together and pour into a spray bottle. Store in a cool, dry place, such as a cabinet or cleaning closet. Spray on the desired area and wipe dry with a soft cloth.
Smudged and streaked mirrors can make even the cleanest bathrooms look dirty. How can you perfectly apply your liquid eyeliner if you can barely see your reflection? Stash a bottle of this DIY glass cleaner under each bathroom sink so you can quickly touch up any fingerprints between your weekly cleanings do a quick wipe before guests come over.
- 1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar
- 1 cup rubbing alcohol
- 1 cup water
Mix ingredients together and pour into a spray bottle. Store in a cool, dry place, such as a cabinet or cleaning closet. For best results, spray the solution onto a mirror or glass, and then wipe off with dry newspaper or clean coffee filters. This will avoid those tiny rag fibers from adhering to the surface and making the glass look fuzzy.
Bathtub and shower cleaner
Without weekly cleanings, soap scum and dirt can build up in your bathtub, causing dark discoloration and mold. Even the most powerful chemicals, like bleach and ammonia, can’t always scrub through these tough stains. Plus, these cleaners are toxic and can be irritating to the eyes and lungs. Fortunately, there is a holy grail solution that will solve your dingy tub and mildewy shower.
This natural solution of dish soap and white vinegar is a powerhouse in removing mold, mildew, and soap residue. Plus it will restore that sparkling white porcelain tub. After you use this mixture, your tub will look cleaner than the day you moved into your house.
- 1 cup blue Dawn dish soap
- 2 cups distilled white vinegar
Mix ingredients in a spray bottle and shake until well combined. When cleaning your bathtub or shower, spray generously and let the solution sit for about 10 minutes. Lightly rinse with a bit of hot water, then scrub with a Magic Eraser or bristled brush. Rinse off the excess cleaner with more hot water and let dry.
Stain remover spray
Oh no, you spilled spaghetti sauce on your favorite blouse. Or those cute skinny jeans are covered in grass stains. No problem. Just spray on some DIY stain remover before throwing them through the rinse cycle.
- 1 tablespoon blue Dawn dish soap
- 2 tablespoons hydrogen peroxide
- 1 tablespoon baking soda
Mix ingredients together in a small glass Mason jar. Use a small brush to scrub the mixture into the stained area. Rinse with cold water, then put in the washing machine. Let the mixture sit on the stained area for an hour or so for tougher stains, then launder as usual.
While Japanese cherry blossom- or Caribbean coconut-scented air fresheners sound heavenly, they're full of chemicals that can cause respiratory irritation and migraines. These factory-made scents never last long enough, and they're expensive to replace. Swap out your plug-ins and waxy candles with a fresh room spray that is completely natural (and easy on the nose).
Fresh citrus air spray:
- 3/4 cup water
- 2 tablespoons real vanilla extract
- 5 drops orange essential oil
- 5 drops lemon essential oil
- 5 drops lime essential oil
- 5 drops grapefruit essential oil
Mix ingredients in a glass bottle and spray whenever you want to freshen up a room.
Is it even the holiday season if your home doesn’t smell like a combination of cinnamon sticks, fresh pine, and warm vanilla? You most likely have all the ingredients in your cabinets to make this delicious air freshener that’s completely natural.
- 1/2 cup fresh cranberries (more if desired)
- 1 orange (sliced)
- 4 cinnamon sticks, broken in half
- 1 tablespoon cloves
- 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
- 2–3 cups water
Combine ingredients in a small pot and simmer over low heat for a few hours. You can also place the ingredients in your slow cooker on the lowest setting and add a little more water if it gets too low.
Making the swap to household cleaners with more natural, wholesome ingredients will give you peace of mind that you’re protecting your children and pets from possible exposure to chemicals. Natural cleaners are much better for your health, your wallet, and your environment, and it’s easy to make the switch, so do it today.