Let’s face it: House cleaning doesn’t usually make the list of favorite past times. And commercial cleaners often bring a whole list of concerns with them, from irritating your skin to concern for children and pets who may come into contact with them.
But doing the weekend chores doesn’t have to mean using harsh chemicals. In fact, you probably have many natural cleaning ingredients around your home and may not even realize it. Making your own homemade cleaners is inexpensive and easy – and best of all, you’ll know where all the ingredients came from. They can be just as effective at removing fingerprints and grime, while leaving no streaks. Let’s take a look at a few ingredients that you probably already have around the house.
1. Lemon Juice
The juice of the lemon can dissolve soap scum and hard water deposits. There are many ways to use this vibrant fruit in homemade cleaners. Mix lemon juice with vinegar or baking soda to make pastes. Lemon juice is good for cleaning and shining brass and copper. Cut a lemon in two, then sprinkle baking soda on the cut side of the lemon. You can scrub dishes, stains and all other surfaces. Again, it is a good idea to test on a small area first, as lemon juice can sometimes act as a natural bleach (which makes it great for removing stains!).
For a natural furniture polish:
- 1 cup of olive oil
- 1/2 cup of lemon juice
2. Baking Soda
Not only can baking soda be used in baking, but it’s an impressive cleaner as well. It works just like a commercial abrasive cleaner, but it’s gentler on you and the environment. Baking soda is also a great deodorizer. If your fridge is smelling less than fresh, place an open baking soda box in there and the odors will be absorbed. You can also put it in freezers, trash cans, even smelly shoes.
It’s also good for scouring pots, pans, sinks and stainless steel. You may need to scrub a little harder, but it works well. You can even help with a mildly clogged drain. Just pour some baking soda down the drain, add a little vinegar, and cover the drain. There will be foaming that will push the clog out.
Below is a recipe you can use for an all-purpose abrasive cleaner:
- 1/2 cup of baking soda
- 1/4 cup of vinegar
- 10 drops of tea tree oil
3. Olive Oil
This tasty oil is wonderful for more than just salads. It can also be used for polishing wood. You don’t need to go out and buy top grade olive oil, either; any grade will do for polishing. You can also combine it with vinegar and lemon. The amount of each you decide to mix will vary depending on the wood type and the finish.