As the world of green cleaning grows, the shelves are being lined with products that claim to be natural and eco-friendly. Some companies are actually taking the time to research and utilize natural plant-derived ingredients and use recycled and bio-degradable bottles. For the rest, the term green-washing comes to mind as the best way to describe their new cleaning products. Just creating a beautiful label with wild flowers and leaves does not mean the product is natural. Just as with food and skin-care the best way to know if a product is green is to read the label. Watch for my next post on a list of cleaning products I am currently reviewing to see which are truly eco-friendly, safe-to-use and work!
If you want to be sure of what is in your household cleaning product, another option you have is to make it yourself. With a few key items you can find in your kitchen pantry, you can create a sparkling, clean and eco-friendly environment in your home. You may have already heard about the amazing cleaning properties of baking soda, vinegar and lemon. Here are a few trust tips and uses that you may not have heard of:
Keep Your Coffee Pot Clean Naturally
After weeks or months of a daily (organic) grind, your coffee pot may need a bit of freshening up. Your coffee will taste better when the coffee maker is clean, naturally.
- Fill the water carafe with one part white distilled vinegar (organic if possible) to two parts water and turn on the machine
- Once the cycle is complete, let the water/vinegar solution cool in the coffee pot.
- Next, spill the water/vinegar and run 2 cycles with using water
- Finally, rinse the coffee pot with warm water and soap
- Enjoy an amazing cup of coffee once again
Clean That Cutting Board
Cutting boards tend to build up stains and smells over time. Especially for those of us who love adding garlic and onions to our cuisine, that cutting board can become a lovely array of odors. To get those smells gone, try this simple solution.
- Cut a lemon in half
- Rub the surface of the cutting board with the lemon (use it as a sponge)
- Just rinse and wipe dry…sniff test…and voila, no more smell
Got A Clog?
Traditionally, a clogged drain means one of two things; either a call to a local plumber or reaching for a poisonous bottle of a drain cleaner. There is another option to try naturally before turning to the toxic solution. (If you have already used the commercial drain cleaner and it is still in the pipe, this is not a good option. It might be time to call in a professional).
- Try to remove as much of the clog in the drain as you can reach
- Mix 1 cup of baking soda, 1 cup of salt, ½ cup of white vinegar
- Pour the solution down the clogged drain and wait 15-20 minutes
- Pour a pitcher of boiling water down the drain
Clean Those Countertops
The store shelf filled with countless kitchen cleaning products will definitely get your countertops clean. But, so will baking soda. A quick easy way to get those countertops and porcelain sinks gleaming again is a simple paste made from baking soda and water.
- Simply mix the two ingredients in a bowl until the consistency of a thick paste is reached
- Use small amounts to rub the entire surface
- Finish with a wash of warm water and enjoy!
The Toilet Bowl Blues
One of the most frequently asked questions I hear about eco-friendly cleaning is aimed at the toilet bowl – “Will natural cleaning options be good enough to really clean the toilet?” The answer is yes, you can turn to vinegar, baking soda and a bit of citrus oil to keep the toilet dazzling and clean. Here are a few key tips to implement without the use of harsh toxic commercial products:
- Make a paste out of borax and lemon juice
- Flush the toilet bowl then rub the paste in with a toilet brush
- Let it stand for two hours, then scrub it off
- Flush and enjoy!
- Once a month, pour in around ½ gallon of white vinegar and let it sit overnight
- The next morning, flush and enjoy the clean!
- Pour in one cup of baking soda
- Let it sit for 15 minutes
- Flush and enjoy your odor free bowl