A to Z of Eco: H is for Home cleaning

Welcome to the A to Z of Eco! I’ve set myself the challenge of coming up with a list of sustainability-related words to help those of us getting started on the journey. H is for home cleaning.

Over the last few years, I have been trying to find ways to remove the chemicals that I clean my home with. Like it or not, the commercial cleaners that we buy for home cleaning contain things that, not only effect our environment. They also are causing the air in our homes to be unhealthy. Also, there’s the added plastic problem.

Home Cleaning: The Toxin Problem

Did you know that the average household contains about 62 toxic chemicals? These chemicals can be found in everything from kitchen cleaners to laundry detergents. Many of these ingredients have been linked to various health issues: respiratory problems, skin irritation, hormone disruption and cancer. Furthermore, when these chemicals are washed down the drain, they do not break down. In fact, cleaning products containing phosphates can contribute to an increase in blue-green algal blooms. This has been found in our rivers and cuts off vital oxygen, harming the aquatic life.

So what can we do?

The good news is that transitioning to eco-friendly cleaning products doesn’t have to break the bank. In fact, there are plenty of affordable options available that are just as effective as their chemical-laden counterparts.

Here are some easy tips and solutions for making the switch to eco-friendly cleaning products without spending a fortune:

  1. White Vinegar and Bicarbonate of Soda: These two household staples are cheap and incredibly versatile. Mix vinegar with water in a spray bottle to create a natural all-purpose cleaner. You can also mix it with your favourite essential oils for a fresher smell. Bicarbonate of soda makes a great cream cleaner when mixed with a little water and is great for scrubbing away tough stains. It also absorbs odours well.
  2. Castile Soap: Castile soap is a gentle, plant-based soap that can be used for everything from washing dishes to cleaning floors. It’s biodegradable and free from synthetic ingredients, making it a safe choice for both your family and the environment.
  3. Dish Soap: Good old fashioned dish soap works a treat on a lot of things and is a great de-greaser. Just be sure to get one that doesn’t contain crude oil or similar. The Bower Collective have a lovely peach-flavoured washing up liquid made from all natural ingredients. It also comes in refillable pouches. You can get 15% off your first order with my link here.
  4. Essential Oils: Adding a few drops of essential oils like lavender, tea tree, or lemon to your homemade cleaning solutions can enhance their cleaning power and leave your home smelling fresh. Plus, many essential oils have natural antimicrobial properties, making them great for disinfecting surfaces.
  5. DIY Air Fresheners: Instead of using synthetic air fresheners that contain harmful chemicals, try making your own using natural ingredients like citrus peels, herbs, and spices. Simply simmer them in water on the stove or place them in a bowl to release their fragrance into the air.
  6. Reusable Cleaning Tools: Invest in reusable cleaning tools made from sustainable materials like bamboo. Not only are these options better for the environment, but they can also save you money in the long run by reducing the need for disposable cleaning wipes and paper towels. An even better option is to repurpose towels or old cotton pieces of clothing.
  7. Buy in Bulk: Many eco-friendly cleaning ingredients are available in bulk sizes, which can help you save money over time. Look for concentrated formulas that can be diluted with water.
  8. Do-It-Yourself: Get creative and make your own cleaning products using simple ingredients like vinegar, baking soda, and essential oils. Check out my free download Green Cleaning Recipes for some inspiration.
home cleaning line dry
Photo by Daniel Spase on Unsplash

By making small changes and incorporating these eco-friendly home cleaning products and practices into your routine, you can create a healthier home environment for you and your family without breaking the bank.

Check out the rest of my A-Z of Eco series.

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