By Lisa Van Orman Hadley
What’s better than non-toxic cleaners that are gentle on the earth? Homemade cleaners that are gentle on your wallet so you can save your pennies for more exciting things.
You’ll only need five ingredients for these recipes and you probably have most of them in your kitchen already: baking soda, Castile or other liquid soap (I recommend Dr. Bronner’s), lemon, white vinegar and oil. If you want to make them smell nice, try adding essential oils to these concoctions. Lavendar, eucalyptus and tea tree are particularly good choices not only because of their fragrance, but because they are natural disinfectants and antifungals.
Natural All-Purpose Scrub:
1/2 c. baking soda
Plant-based liquid soap
1/2 of a lemon
Directions: Pour baking soda into a bowl. Add just enough liquid saop to make a creamy paste. Spread mixtrue on the flat side of lemon and scrub. The lemon acts as a sponge and leaves a natural citrus scent. Use a damp rag or sponge to wipe away excess residue. The paste will stay moist for a few hours.
1/4 c. distilled white vinegar
A few drops olive oil
Directions: Pour vinegar and olive oil into spray bottle and shake. Spray onto furniture and wipe clean.
1/2 teaspoon liquid soap
3 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
2 cups water
Directions: Pour all ingredients into a spray bottle and shake. Spray onto window and wipe clean.
1/8 cup liquid soap
1/8 cup distilled white vinegar
1 gallon water
10 drops essential oil (scent of your choice)
Directions: Mix all ingredients in a bucket and mop as usual. For ceramic and stone floors, eliminate soap (which leaves a film) and use 1/4 cup of vinegar with 1 gallon of water. Don’t use water on unsealed wood floors. Instead, combine 2 cups of vinegar with 1 tablespoon of olive or jojoba oil in a bucket. Spread a thin coat over the floor with a mop or soft cloth. Let it soak in for 20 minutes; dry mop to absorb excess liquid. Open windows to air out the vinegar smell.
Mold & Mildew Spray:
2 cups distilled white vinegar
Directions: Pour vinegar into a spray bottle and spray on infected area. The smell will dissipate in a few hours (open a window to speed up the process). For areas with persistent mold problems, use tea tree oil instead of vinegar, combining 2 drops of tea tree oil with 1 cup of water in a spray bottle.
Recipes from marthastewart.com