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Natural House Cleaning Guide

Natural House Cleaning will reduce your exposure to the many toxic chemicals in cleaning products. Because, although cleaning probably isn't your favorite chore, it doesn't have to be a toxic chore.

Natural House Cleaning will reduce your exposure to the many toxic chemicals in cleaning products. Because, although cleaning probably isn't your favorite chore, it doesn't have to be a toxic chore. 

Why Natural House Cleaning Matters

Conventional household cleaners are toxic. The chemicals in cleaners cause allergies, asthma, lung inflammation, asthma-like symptoms and other respiratory problems.

In fact, a 2018 study found women who used sprays or other cleaning products at least once per week had a steeper decline in lung function than women who didn’t.

They also contain endocrine disrupting chemicals and fragrance and other unknown chemicals.

Fortunately, cleaning your home doesn't have to mean filling it with dangerous toxins. You can have a clean home and cleaner indoor using this natural house cleaning guide.

Now this is not a "I live to Clean" type of guide. This is a natural house cleaning guide for people like me, who would rather be doing anything else but cleaning.

How To Get Started

Natural house cleaning is based on easy to find ingredients and very simple recipes. And while making your own is the best and cheapest option, I’ve included a few natural cleaners you can buy. Because sometimes life gets in the way of our best intentions.

The following recipes use a few essential oils for their disinfecting and cleaning properties. Not for their scent.

Be aware there are a lot of cleaning recipes on the Web that recommend using lemon, lime, orange and pine essential oils in cleaning recipes.  DON’T DO IT.

The major constituents in these oils are limonene, pinene and linalool. They are known allergens but they also react with the ozone in your air to create formaldehyde, a carcinogen, and particle pollution, linked to many health problems.

To get started gather everything you’ll need for your Natural House Cleaning Kit.

Vodka, Vinegar, Water, Baking Soda, hydrogen peroxide, Dr Bronner’s Castile Soap, grated castile soap, washing soda, borax and Bon Ami Powder Cleanser (optional) and a grout cleaning brush.

Essential oils - Tea Tree Oil,  thyme essential oil, Cedarwood Oil

Collect at least 6 new or used spray bottles and 1 mister bottle. Make up and label the bottles with each of the following recipes.

To simplify things, keep all your supplies for making the sprays and additional recipes together. Jot the additional recipes down on 3x5 cards and keep them with your supplies.

6 Spray Bottle Recipes

All Purpose Cleaner Germ Fighting Cleaner 

Ingredients - Dr Bronner’s Castile Soap, Water, Baking Soda, Tea Tree Oil, Vodka  

Directions - Mix 1/4 cup of castile soap into a quart of water. Add 1 teaspoon of baking soda, 1 teaspoon of tea tree oil and 1/2 cup of vodka. Pour into a spray bottle. 

Disinfectant Spray (also good for mold and mildew)

Mix 1/2 cup of hydrogen peroxide into 1 cup of vinegar. Add 10 drops of thyme essential oil and 15 drops of tea tree oil. Spray on moldy surfaces. Wait 15 minutes and wipe. Also works on porous mold prone surfaces. Just spray on and don't wipe.

Shiny Surface And Glass Spray

Mix 1 cup water, 1 cup vodka and 1 cup of vinegar in an empty spray bottle. Spray on windows, showers and mirrors. Keep a bottle of this in the bathroom to spray in the shower after each use. This will reduce mold, mildew and soap scum buildup between cleanings.

Upholstery and Carpet Cleaner

Ingredients - Water, Dr Bronner’s Castile Soap, Baking Soda, Vinegar 

Directions - Mix 1/8 cup of castile soap, 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda and 1 tablespoon of vinegar into 1 cup of water. Stir thoroughly (it will be foamy). Pour into a spray bottle. To use - shake well, spray on upholstery, lightly scrub with a damp sponge. 

All Purpose Floor Cleaner

Ingredients - Water, Dr Bronner’s Castile Soap, Washing soda

Directions - Mix 2-3 drops of castile soap and 1 tablespoon washing soda into 2 cups warm water. Pour into a spray bottle and use for quick cleanups.

Homemade Air Freshener


Ingredients - Vodka, Cedarwood Oil

Directions - Pour 2 cups of vodka into a mister bottle. Add 1 teaspoon of cedar oil (optional). Spray throughout your house to remove musty odors.



Additional Recipes For Natural House Cleaning (and some store bought options)


Carpet Cleaning Foam 

Ingredients - Water, Dr Bronner’s Castile Soap 

Directions - Whip 1/4 cup of castile soap with 3 tablespoons of water in a bowl with an egg beater. Rub the foam into carpet stains. Rinse well. 

Dusting

A repository for most of the toxins in your home is dust. Air fresheners, cleaning and personal care products, furniture, flooring, carpets, electronics and pesticides contain chemicals that can leach, migrate, abrade, or off-gas into your air and attach to dust.

And while Swiffer style dusters are easy to use, the most effective way to remove dust is by wiping surfaces with a damp microfiber cloth.

Grout Cleaner

To make homemade grout cleaner you'll need a good grout cleaning brush, a spray bottle, white vinegar, baking soda and possibly hydrogen peroxide.

Fill a spray bottle with a half-and-half solution of vinegar and warm water. Spray on the grout, let it stand for five minutes, then scrub with the grout brush.

For more powerful cleaning cover grout lines with a paste of baking soda and water, then spray on the vinegar solution listed above. When the mixture stops foaming, scrub with a brush and rinse with plain water.

For tough stains apply Hydrogen peroxide straight out of the bottle to grout, or apply a paste made from baking soda and hydrogen peroxide.

Toilet Bowl Cleaner

Keep a spray bottle of disinfectant spray and a shaker-top bottle of baking soda in your bathroom. When toilets need cleaning, spritz thoroughly with the spray and allow to sit for several minutes. Sprinkle baking soda inside the bowl, scrub the inside of the bowl, and flush toilet. To clean the outside surfaces just spray with the disinfectant spray, let stand a few minutes, and wipe clean.

Oven Cleaner

You can clean your oven with nontoxic homemade options. The simplest method is to apply a layer of baking soda to a damp oven (spritz it with water). I like to put a pan of water in the oven at 250 degrees for a half hour first to soften up the grime.

Leave the baking soda on as long as possible then wipe away the grime. You can spritz the baking soda with white vinegar for some fizzy fun. White vinegar will also remove any baking soda residue.

For heavy grime, make a paste with 1 part castile soap to 4 parts baking soda and 2 parts sea salt or borax. Dip a sponge into the paste and scrub.

Scouring Cleaner

Dip a damp sponge or scrub brush in baking soda or Bon Ami Powder Cleanser and scrub.

All Purpose Stain Removers (for common stains, pet stains, wine and blood)

Dampen the stained area with water, sprinkle on borax and clean with a brush. Let dry, then vacuum.

Make a spray with 1 cup white vinegar and 4 cups of water. Spritz on the stains then dab them away. For blood stains use cold water.

Ink Stain Remover

Soak a cloth in vodka and dab on the stain.

Natural Clothes Cleaning

Powdered Homemade Laundry Detergent

16 cups baking soda
12 cups washing soda
8 cups grated castile soap 

Combine baking soda, washing soda and soap flakes. Use 1/4 cup per load.

Liquid Homemade Laundry Detergent

1/2 cup Borax or Washing Soda
1/2 cup of vinegar
1/2 cup of Dr Bronner's (or grated soap)
3 pints of hot water

Leave for 24 hours to thicken. Use 1/2 cup per load.

To Whiten and Remove Stains

To whiten whites, pour hydrogen peroxide directly into the washer. To remove tough stains, make a mixture of equal parts hydrogen peroxide, water and baking soda. Rub on the stain with a brush. Let sit for 10 minutes, then wash the garment in the regular wash cycle.

Instead of Fabric softener, try wool dryer balls to soften clothing and reduce static.

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