Day 25: Cleaning Products

I'm sure I'm not the only one who likes a clean house (or apartment in my case), right?! But sometimes it's so hard to choose which product, and if you want to be green about it, it's even harder because you can't always trust the companies to tell you the truth. So it's best to just bypass them, and make your own.

The truth IS that they don't have to list what is in the cleaning product, there is absolutely no regulation regarding that. They can SAY it's natural but it might not actually BE true.

Case and point: Vim PowerPro Naturals Bathroom spray

It says on the bottle that it's 98% natural ingredients, but tests show once you remove water content, 24% is petroleum based, and petroleum is really bad for your skin and can lead to cancer. This is just one example of many where the label says one thing, but the truth is something completely different!

If you want to know more, check out this video of The Marketplace which debunks some "natural" house products, like the one mentioned above. (It's a Canadian show, but I've checked that even people in the US can view it! Seriously worth your time!!)

I'm not saying all green cleaning products are bogus, just be careful. They can also be pricey, so making your own will most probably save you some cash.

Alright, so off my soap-box I get, but I hope I showed you that the best way to be green when it comes to this stuff, is to just make it yourself! That way you really know what goes into the product. I want to open your eyes to a few simple, really natural and non-toxic cleaning solutions that you can make with common household items. We're talking baking soda, vinegar, lemons and oranges, essential oils, alcohol (isopropanol or ethyl alcool), hydrogen peroxide, nail polish remover (aka acetone). All these have very natural or non-toxic cleaning properties.

We'll start in the laundry room. There are so many DIY recipes for homemade laundry detergent, both powder and liquid, as well as stain removers, it's kinda hard to decide which ones to share with you! So at any time, if you want to see even more of these type of recipes, head on over to my Cleaning board on Pinterest, I pin some a lot!

Here's a great, simple, and cheap powder laundry detergent recipe at DIY Natural.

All you need is Washing Soda, Borax and a bar of laundry soap (Fels-Naptha or other, like Ivory here). As soon as I can find these ingredients, I'm trying this one out. And it's good for HE washers! No more buying that super expensive special soap ;)

Liquid laundry detergent recipes usually make a really big batch, so you need more space to store it. It uses the same ingredients, but because you dissolve it, it makes more in mass. Your choice! I would probably do this one if I could store it, would have to make some less often, too.

from Why Not Sew

I also saw this post from Whole New Mom not too long ago about Soap Nuts and thought it was interesting. It's natural and you don't have to make your own laundry detergent. It's an other option!

How about stain removers? I've been meaning to try this armpit stain remover (that also works for other stains) for a while now. I don't wear a lot of white because of this problem...

One Good Thing by Jillee
Jillee is really awesome when it comes to DIY recipes, you should really check out her site if you've never ran accross it!!

You can also make your own Oxi Clean to help fight those other tough stains.

from Creatively Domestic

Using vinegar for laundry can help with softness, keep bright colored clothes, really soiled clothes and linens, static and lint, and much much more!!

image source

Moving onto other household cleaners, we'll start with this Shower and Tub Magic cleaner. I've been using this for 6 months. It works just as well as what I had before (Vim cream for bathrooms), but the vinegar does smell strong. I need to try adding some lemon juice or essential oil to kill the vinegar smell. I chose this one because I had everything on hand to make it, and I was looking for a spray. It's got really awesome reviews, but I think I'm not the best person to ask how good it is because I'm not entirely sure how to evaluate it...

recipe for Shower and Tub Magic

Also, remember when we talked about the not-paper towels? Well, this is as good a time to use them! I have some old clothes rags and some cheap microfiber rags that I use for cleaning.

How about using your reusable rags for cleaning windows with this homemade window cleaner?! Microfibers seem like the best option, though, for getting a streak free shine. You'll need vinegar and essential oil, and of course water.

recipe at Money Saving Mom

You'll also want an all-purpose cleaner, which is again super simple to make yourself! Though there are a few different recipes, ranging in complexity, I like the simple and effective type, which I think this one from Natural Nesters is.

I also really like the idea of this degreaser! So simple to make, though it does take 2 weeks of incubation time to get the full effect. My kitchen is covered in a film of oil from stir-frying, so I really need to try this!!

fromTried and True

Here's a simple recipe for homemade furniture polish. All you need is oil and lemon juice!

from Our Homemade Happiness

Finally, once you've made all those recipes, you probably want to label your containers, so here are a few cute labels around the webs.

at Design Finch (bottom of post)

Some of my favorite blogs for DIY Homemade recipes like the ones shared here are:

Now this gets me excited to clean! What? I'm the only one?! :P Do you make your own cleaners? If there's a recipe you'd like to share, link it in the comments please!!

Check out all the posts in the series (must be on blog to see):

I party at these parties.


  1. Gen, another amazing post! I posted a link on my facebook page and tweeted! Too good not to share

  2. A great post filled with information I did not know before. Thanks for keeping us all so well informed.

  3. Great tips!
    I will definitely use them next time. I used to think that it is enough to check the chemicals mentioned on the product before buying them but you have really open up my eyes. I will search more about the chemical content in various cleaning supplies before buying them in future. In fact, I will try to avoid them as much as possible.
    New Cleaning Supplies

  4. Perfect post for cleaning supplies usually people share 1 or 2 tips but your post is full of information and am happy that you shared home remedies.

  5. Wow! What a great list of green cleaning products…This is helpful for us…Thanks for sharing...
    Best Green Cleaning Products


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