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DIY Non Toxic Cleaning Recipes

Cleaning-Recipes

Having the right tools and some great cleaning recipes is all you need for a clean, green home. When you combine our DIY Chemical Free Cleaning Kit with these non toxic cleaning recipes below, you will have everything you need to keep your home clean without costly chemicals. If you have a favorite recipe not seen here we would love to hear about it so please comment below.

Cleaning Recipes for around the home

Window Cleaner
1/4-1/2 teaspoon liquid detergent

3 tablespoons vinegar
2 cups water
Put all the ingredients into a spray bottle, shake it up a bit, and use as you would a commercial brand. The soap in this recipe is important. It cuts the wax residue from the commercial brands you might have used in the past.

Daily All-Purpose Cleaner
1 cup white vinegar

1 cup seltzer water
8 drops of tea tree oil

1/8 cup hydrogen peroxide (the regular kind in a brown bottle)
Pour into a misting bottle if you have one, if not use a spray bottle. Besides cleaning, this mixture can be used to disinfect surface areas in your home. Hydrogen peroxide eventually turns to water, so make sure to add more each time you use the solution.

Multipurpose Cleaner:
1/2 cup peroxide (the regular kind in a brown bottle)

1/2 cup water
1/2 teaspoon castile soap
Mix ingredients in spray bottle, use for cleaning floors, dusting furniture, cleaning toilets and other hard surfaces. This is also a powerful stain cutter and odor pet neutralizer. Make sure to test on an inconspicuous spot before using over a large area of your furniture or carpet. I spray my furniture and carpet without issue, but all fabrics are different. The Sal Suds will cut grease better than a regular castile soap will, that makes it perfect for cleaning windows.

Spot Wipes (Disinfecting wipes alternative)
1/4 cup vinegar

1/4 cup club soda
8 drops of essential oil (for scent)
Combine ingredients and soak 20 heavy-duty paper towels in the mixture. Squeeze out the excess and store in a plastic sandwich bag. Use to clean spots and spills as needed.

Homemade Laundry Detergent
2 cups Washing Soda (found in the laundry aisle or make your own from baking soda)
2 cups Borax
1 bar of Dr. Bronner’s Castille soap, grated.
Once grated the bar of soap gives you approximately 2 cups. You can either buy it in the scent of your choice or scentless. I prefer the peppermint one, it’s such an energizing scent, and it makes the laundry smell just so wonderful!

Toilet Bowl Cleaning Recipes

Vinegar and Baking Soda
1 cup vinegar

1/2 cup baking soda
Pour the vinegar into the toilet bowl and let it sit for at least 30 minute. When complete, dip your brush in the toilet and sprinkle some baking soda onto the brush. Scour the inside of the toilet with the brush until the all baking soda is gone. Repeat as necessary.

Borax and Lemon Juice
1 cup of Borax

1/2 cup of lemon juice
Pour 1 cup of Borax into a small bowl then add 1/2 cup of lemon juice over the Borax and gently stir with a spoon into a paste. Flush the toilet to wet the sides, then rub the paste onto the toilet with a sponge (you might want to wear rubber gloves just to stay clean). Let it sit for 2 hours before scrubbing thoroughly. This is great for removing a stubborn stain, like a toilet bowl ring.

Borax and Vinegar
1 cup of Borax
1/2 cup of vinegar
Flush the toilet to wet the sides of the bowl then sprinkle a cup of Borax around the rim and sides of toilet. Spray 1/2 cup of vinegar over the Borax and allow to sit for several hours or overnight. Scrub thoroughly with a toilet brush until the bowl gleams.Sometimes, hard water just leaves a stubborn ring that no amount of scrubbing or rubbing can eliminate. Use the pumice stone at this point  and rub lightly on the stain.

Cleaning recipes for the car

Car Wash Solution
A bucket of water
Liquid castile soap
Add a couple drops of liquid castile soap to a bucket of water, and wash.

Window Cleaner
White vinegar
A spray bottle
Newspaper
Spray full strength vinegar onto the windows. Allow it to sit for a few minutes. Then, wipe dry with a piece of newspaper.

Chrome Cleaner
White vinegar
Water
A spray bottle
A sponge or cleaning rag
Mix together equal parts white vinegar and water. Then, spray it on your wheels; and work it in with a sponge or cleaning rag. Note: Vinegar should not be used on aluminum alloys.

Tire Cleaner
Baking soda
Water
A scrub brush
Mix baking soda and water together to form a paste. Then, work the paste into the tires with a scrub brush. Let it sit for several minutes. Then, rinse off.

Carpet and Upholstery Stain Remover
White vinegar
Baking Soda
A scrub brush
Mix white vinegar and baking soda together to form a paste. Then, work the paste into any carpet and upholstery stains with a toothbrush or something similar. Allow the paste to dry. Then, vacuum up the baking soda, and the stains should be gone. Note: Some stains may need to be treated more than once.

Car Interior Cleaner
White vinegar
Water
A spray bottle
A cleaning rag
Mix together equal parts white vinegar and water. Then, spray it on any vinyl, plastic, wood, or leather surfaces in your car that need cleaning. Allow it to soak in. Then, wipe dry with a clean rag. Note: As with any leather cleaner, you should test on a small area before applying to the entire surface.

Car Interior Protectant
1 cup olive oil
1/2 cup lemon juice
A spray bottle or bowl
2 cleaning rags
Combine olive oil and lemon juice in a spray bottle or bowl. Then, use a clean cloth to wipe a small amount of the protectant into the dashboard and any other plastic or vinyl surfaces. Finish by wiping off the excess with another cleaning rag. Do not use on the steering wheel, pedals or any other controls where slipperiness could pose a hazard. Also be careful not to get in on windows.

Warning: Since these are general tips and the materials in your home and car can vary, it is suggested that you always test these tips out in an inconspicuous area first before treating the entire stain. Some ingredients such as lemons will have a mild bleaching effect and should only be used on light colored fabrics/carpets after testing a small area for colorfastness.

Protecting baby’s skin with a green laundry routine

You’re using WHAT on my clothes?

When I first became a mommy there was a lot of little things that I did not prepare myself for. The lack of sleep. The lack of time. The mounds and mounds of laundry that little, sweet cherub produced on a daily basis. I truly had no idea how many times I would have to change the clothes on my infant son. I fully expected the change of clothes from pj’s to daily clothes back into new pj’s at night but I think I was in serious denial. There were days that I would put a fresh onesie on my son only to have him soil it within minutes and then again an hour later. This went on for months! I needed to keep up on all this laundry but I knew that I had to change my washing ways.

Most people spent hundreds of dollars baby proofing their homes but don’t necessarily think about doing the laundry different. Baby stains can be hard on clothes and since children can have ultra sensitive skin you have to be careful what you use. Keeping your laundry routine green for baby is the best bet to avoid any skin reactions. Making a few careful decisions on what to buy and what to avoid can make the difference between a happy healthy baby or a cranky, itchy one.

The dirty little secrets of your laundry room
When choosing a detergent, opt for a green, fragrance and dye free formula that is free of toxic chemicals like Benzaldehyde, Quaternium-15, Nonylphenol ethoxylate, Linear alkyl sodium sulfonates (LAS) and Petroleum distillates (also called naphthas). These chemicals can leave toxic residues on clothing which can cause irritation and are linked to cancer and reproductive problems.

Green detergents and soaps are not just better us but for the environment as well. Most conventional laundry detergents are made from  nonrenewable resources such as petroleum. These chemicals aren’t biodegradable and threaten wildlife after they go down the drain. Chemical fragrances and phosphates build up in streams and lakes, upset the natural balance, and can starve fish of the oxygen they need to survive.

Avoid using chlorine bleach and fabric softeners. While bleach it is an effective whitener and disinfectant is is also highly caustic, damages the environment and is a suspected carcinogen. Fabric softeners might smell nice but come with the unwanted bonus of skin irritation and even worse. Chemicals like: Benzyl acetate (linked to pancreatic cancer), Benzyl alcohol (an upper respiratory tract irritant), Ethanol (linked to central nervous system disorders), Limonene (a known carcinogen) and Chloroform (a neurotoxin and carcinogen) are regularly found in fabric softeners and dryer sheets.

So what should you use?
There are many green laundry detergents on the market today but you need to carefully read the label and educate yourself on all the ingredients to make sure you don’t get more than you bargained for. Consumer Reports has a great tool you can use to make an educated decision before you buy.

To play it completely safe you can make your own non-toxic laundry detergent using: washing soda, Borax and a bar of Dr. Bronner’s Castille soap using this recipe. Making your own cleaning products is usually much cheaper than buying a pre-made product and you always know exactly what is touching your baby’s skin.

If you want to make the change to a greener lifestyle but are not quite ready to take out your cheese grater to make the above recipe you can opt to use a straight, eco-friendly, green soap. Using a castile soap such as Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap in place of detergent is a great choice (use the same amount of soap as you would detergent.) Please note: when switching from detergent to soap for the first time you will want to add ½ cup of white distilled vinegar to prevent yellowing for the first few washes. The yellowing is a result of detergent residues reacting with soap and is temporary.

For whites with stains try soaking fabrics in water mixed with one of the following: Borax, lemon juice, hydrogen peroxide, or white vinegar. Some of these methods will have a mild bleaching effect so use caution while soaking darks or colors. To avoid baby stains from setting, try using a damp washcloth that has been dipped in baking soda on the stained area as soon as possible. When possible, hang or place garment outside in the sunlight to help lighten/remove any remaining stains. Once again, the sun will have a bleaching effect on dark colors so use this method only on light colors and whites.

Instead of using fabric softener, add a 1/4 cup of baking soda or 3/4 cup of vinegar to each wash. This will not only give your detergent a boost to help lift stains but will also remove odors and soften your clothes as well…safely.

You have enough to worry about besides what is lurking in your laundry room. Save your worries for the time when that sweet baby turns into a teenager…