I’m sure we’ve all been there – busy week, kids, pets, holidays, maybe company…or we’ve been sick and are feeling better and can’t wait to give the house a good going over! So, we open the child-proofed cabinet and pull out the poison products…WHAT?!
Unfortunately, it’s all too true! If we are honest with ourselves, we know that our favorite, super-easy-cleaning, super-smelling products are truly toxic to us and all those we love in our home! According to Brian Vaszily’s “25 Surprisingly Toxic Everyday Products” e-report:
“Cleaning Products – This is a big one and includes dozens of top offenders, from oven cleaner and bleach to ammonia and toilet bowl cleaners. They release caustic chemicals such as hydrochloric acid, phosphoric acid, sodium or potassium hydroxide or ethanolamines, which cause lung irritation and inflammation.
If you’ve ever felt dizzy, gotten a headache or had trouble breathing while cleaning your home, the cleaning chemicals were likely to blame. Further, EWG has found that 53% of cleaning products contain chemicals that can harm your lungs, with toilet bowl cleaners, liquid laundry detergents, tarnish removers and floor cleaners among the worst offenders.
For people who regularly use such products, long-term exposure has been linked to accelerated decline in lung function, which may damage lungs as much as smoking a pack of cigarettes daily for 10 to 20 years.
Homemade cleaners often work as well as the store-bought kind and can save your lungs and overall health. Vinegar, baking soda, essential oils and lemon juice are inexpensive and readily available to create a number of natural DIY household cleaners.”
I personally knew a lady years ago that was undergoing medical treatment for her lungs after cleaning houses for years, and she was told it was a result of the regular, household chemicals she was exposed to on a daily basis! It’s just not worth it! Especially when, as mentioned, there are many easy, super safe alternatives:
Baking soda replaces powdered scrubs! And it won’t scratch surfaces! It’s so inexpensive too! (Bonus!) Start with a cup of baking soda, add a few drops of essential oils such as Tea Tree oil, Rosemary, Eucalyptus for extra antibacterial properties! Stir it up and use in sinks and counters as you would powdered cleansers, give a final rinse and voila! Sparkling, wonderfully scented, and you aren’t coughing or gasping for breath!
Liquid Castile Soap replaces all liquid soaps. Really. Check out this link to a very informative page by Green Cleaning Hacks:
Vinegar replaces window cleaner.
For spot-cleaning carpets and rugs, sprinkle baking soda on the spot, pour a little vinegar (amount depends on size of stain!), let it bubble for a few minutes, scrub with a cloth or sponge, let dry and vacuum!
Since we’re coming up on Thanksgiving, if you’re like me, the oven could use a little attention! Here are some awesome natural oven-cleaner recipes! Happy healthy cleaning!
Here’s a recipe from one of my favorites, Mama Z!
Homemade Oven Cleaner Spray
- ½ cup liquid soap
- 1 cup baking soda
- ½ cup hydrogen peroxide
- 2 tablespoon white vinegar [additional vinegar for rinse]
- 10 drops of lemon essential oil
- 10 drops of tea tree oil [optional]
Some helpful items: a spatula for scraping, gloves to protect your hands
- Empty everything out of the oven including the racks.
- Wipe the oven down with hot, soapy water.
- Mix together all the ingredients to make a paste.
- Spread the paste all over the inside of the oven except on the heating elements.
- Let it sit for at least 4 hours; the longer you let it sit, the more it can work. You can leave it on overnight and it won’t hurt anything.
- Remove the paste with a rag, brush, or scrub sponge.
- You can do a final rinse with a mixture of ⅓ vinegar and ⅔ water in a spray bottle.
Natural Oven Cleaner
(I’ve made this before and was so impressed at how well it works!)
- Orange Peel
- Lemon Peel
- Baking Soda
- Distilled Vinegar
- Rosemary (Optional)
You’ll also need a spray bottle. You can find these for a buck at the dollar store.
- Peel an orange and lemon.
- In a mason jar, combine the orange peel, lemon peel, and distilled vinegar. You can also add rosemary to remove the vinegar smell.
- Let the ingredients infuse in the mason jar for five days. Then, using a funnel, pour the liquid into a spray bottle.
- When you’re ready to clean your oven, apply baking soda to the spots in your oven you wish to clean. Spray your natural oven cleaner on the baking soda. It should start to fizz or bubble.
- Wait 20 minutes before wiping down your oven with a clean wet sponge.