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5 Green Ideas For Naturally Clean Kitchen

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Dishes in a DishwasherGreenwashing in the newest term around the green shopping aisle and it refers to the marketing practice by companies who are creating products and hoping that you think they are eco-friendly and healthier for you simply because they look “green”. This can include the simple addition of the word “natural,” which is currently not defined or regulated by the FDA. This sneaky marketing practice is certainly not in the best interest of the consumer, but it’s not illegal. It’s just dirty and not very ethical or honest. The best way to learn about a product is to look past the wildflowers and butterflies fluttering on the box and to actually read the label of everything you purchase. This will help you avoid common dangerous ingredients and learn more about what you are bringing into your home.

Now, if you’re looking looking for ideas to be green while washing around the kitchen, here are some ideas you consider:

Dish-washing Liquid Gone Green

Choose vegetable-based detergents whenever possible. When reading the label on dish-washing liquid, even the so-called natural bottles, avoid for undesirable ingredients such as:

  • fragrance
  • sulfates
  • formaldehyde
  • color added

Add A Little Borax

A great trick to getting the natural dish-washing liquid to be more effective without the nasty chemicals is to add a little borax to the water before washing the dishes.  Borax, or sodium borate, is a naturally occurring alkaline mineral first discovered over 4000 years ago. Here are some other little known benefits of borax:

  • cleans
  • deodorizes
  • disinfects
  • softens water
  • repels bugs

Wear Gloves

If you are still using some of the mainstream dish-washing when cleaning the dishes, don’t despair, you can wear gloves. This will help prevent any skin irritation and prevent absorption of harmful ingredients in the such as dioxanes, dyes and perfumes. Then you can move on to the more natural products as soon as possible.

Dilute, Dilute, Dilute

Most brands of cleaning products on the market today, including the natural choices, are very concentrated. Most of us tend to use too much product when we clean. As a way to make your products last longer, dilute your vegetable based dish-washing liquid with water. This will not lessen the effectiveness by very much. You can add a bit of salt and pour the mixture into a spray bottle to make it last longer and use less with each spray.

Another great option is to choose the multi-talented and uber-concentrated castille soap by Dr. Bronner’s, which comes in a scent free option.

Stinky But It Works – Vinegar

In my last post, 5 Green Ideas For A Naturally Clean Home, I sang the praises of using vinegar as an effective alternative to conventional cleaning products. The response was clear, it works but boy is it stinky. While that is true, the fact remains that vinegar is quite the amazing little cleaning tool.

A great addition to your dish cleaning arsenal is a dash of vinegar to the cleaning liquid. It will cut through the grease like a pro. And, you can always add a bit of your favorite essential oil if the smell is a huge issue for you.

Do you have great green kitchen tips? I’d love to hear from you in the comments section below.

Enjoy!

Signing off… EcoDiva

(Photo: Editor B)

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11 Responses to “5 Green Ideas For Naturally Clean Kitchen”

  1. Miranda says:

    Sometimes we forget that going green can save money as well. Diluting chemicals, as well as using things you have already around the house (like vinegar) can help you stretch your dollar while you live a more sustainable life.

    • ecodiva says:

      HI Miranda,

      I completely agree. I have begun to actually check my pantry and fridge before going to the store. Many times I am surprised that I already have what I was ready to buy again.

      Awareness is great for sustainability.

      Thanks so much for your comment.
      Elena

  2. Martha says:

    Growing up we always washed the windows using vinegar and newspapers. It was the best thing to make the windows nice and clean and streak free. But boy did it stink! :)

    • ecodiva says:

      Hi Martha,

      I haven’t tried the newspapers…but I have heard that they leave windows really shiny. I’ll have to give it a shot.

      Best,
      Elena

  3. Caesia says:

    I think you’re missing one of the most obvious ideas – cutting back on the use of paper towels and other disposable items (swiffer refill, magic erasers, etc.) For example, using microfiber cleaning cloths not only reduces the use of paper products, but often allows you to get the same results with less or even no cleaning products. And then you wash and reuse them.

    • ecodiva says:

      Caesia,

      Excellent point. I stopped buying paper towels about 2years ago. I use cloth organic(mostly) cotton & hemp towels for everything now. I have a special set for cleaning the bathrooms and a set I use for kitchen only.

      I simply throw them in with the laundry. It’s an amazing way to cut the waste.

      Great comment. Thank you!
      Elena

  4. Jesse says:

    I second the newspapers. As a kid my mom always saved newspapers and we used them every saturday to wash the windows in the house and car.

    When I got married, my wife’s family just used paper towels and they really didn’t do a great job. I got funny looks suggesting newspapers but they work!

  5. Jesse says:

    Haha maybe I need to scale it up with an LA Times or something rather than the stuff I find in the shopping cart at the grocery store ;)

  6. Patrick says:

    All great idea. I particularly love vinegar. It can be used to clean just about anything and is so cheap compared to expensive cleaners found in stores.

  7. The Dao of Chemicals says:

    “…more effective without the nasty chemicals is to add a little borax…”

    Borax is a nasty chemical! See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Borax#Toxicity or just do a web search for “borax toxicity.”


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