With three kids and two dogs running around I am always conscious of the dangers they are exposed to. I never thought about chemical household cleaners. According to the EPA many homes are contaminated with 200-500 times more of cancer-causing toxic chemicals than outdoor air. What is causing this contamination? Cleaning products.
Scary, right? The thing is, you don’t NEED chemical cleaners to keep your home clean and germ free! I have been using natural cleaners for several years, and my home is cleaner and fresher than ever. I have a lot of germaphobe tendencies, and some OCD tendencies, so it was quite a process for me to transition away from bleach and toxic cleaners. This winter we had a mouse in our apartment, which was a serious trigger for me. After dousing my apartment with bleach daily, I ended up on prednisone because I burned my lungs. I knew it was time for a change.
I have been easing into a chemical-free home, but now I can say that we don’t use ANY chemical cleaners! I already showed you the steam mop I use on my linoleum, but today I am sharing the recipes for the other household cleaners I use. My All-Purpose Cleaner will take care of almost every surface in your home, but I have a few speciality cleaners I use as well.
Please note that any citrus essential oils need to be used in glass bottles or containers, because they will break down the phyto-chemicals in the plastic. You don’t want your bottle springing leaks, or for the chemicals to be leeched into your cleaner.
Lavendar “Soft” Scrub
1/2 C baking soda
1/4 C vinegar
2 drops lavender oil
Mix ingredients together, wait for frothing to subside and clean the crap out of your sinks and tubs.
All Purpose Cleaner
1 C vinegar
3 C hot water
1 squirt Dr. Bronner’s liquid castile soap
2 drops lavender essential oil
Add ingredients to a spray bottle, in order. Shake before use. This makes a great glass cleaner as well.
My favorite concoction to use in my steam cleaner is hot water and vinegar. I add about 1 cup of vinegar to the reservoir and then fill it the rest of the way with hot water. This gets my carpet cleaner than anything, and I think I have literally tried everything. It doesn’t leave a residue on your carpet like shampoo either.
For stains I love lemon essential oil. My daughter is a pro at getting marker, gum, and who knows what else on her carpet, and lemon essential oil is the only thing that has removed some of these stains.
This was one such stain after going over it with the carpet cleaner, but before the lemon essential oil. I put one drop of oil on it, and rubbed it in with my finger. I let it sit for a few minutes, and then scrubbed at it with a damp, soapy rag. It got the stain completely out. I would have taken an after picture, but I couldn’t find the exact spot again after it dried. DON’T use lemon oil in your carpet cleaner, citrus oils will deteriorate plastic!
I use a steam mop on my linoleum, but if you don’t have one, straight vinegar is a great floor cleaner. The smell dissipates quickly, and your floors will be squeaky clean. A little Dr. Bronner’s in some hot water is a great cleaner as well.
To purify the air in my home or get rid of foul odors, I diffuse Purification essential oil. Tonight my husband made some shrimp ramen noodles (I don’t think those can even be classified as food) and they smelled as bad as they sound. Within a minute of turning the diffuser on I was able to breathe without holding my shirt over my nose, and it removed the smell from the whole house! Not only are we not adding toxic chemicals into the air with traditional air fresheners, we are actually purifying the air and getting medicinal benefits from diffusing the oils.
If you are new to essential oils I highly recommend the Young Living brand. In my opinion they are the highest quality of oil available, and each oil has so many different uses. Check out my Young Living page to take a peek at the products, and check out this post to see which buying option you should choose. As always, feel free to contact me with any questions!