Household Cleaners are Expensive
I have a lovely silver tea set that was a gift from my daughter Jenny. Even though my silver tea set is beautiful, cleaning it is a hassle. In my house, sliver usually gets cleaned twice a year: once before Thanksgiving and again in the spring. I cleaned it yesterday. I don’t like using chemicals and silver cleaners are messy and expensive.
First, I attempted a method using a paste made from baking soda and water. I wasn’t impressed. Then I tried another natural method with toothpaste and a soft toothbrush. It worked better than the baking soda, but I’m not thrilled with this method either. If you have a natural method of cleaning sliver that you love, leave a comment below, I’d like to know about it.
Cleaning my silver tea set got me thinking about other household cleaners. Did you know that the cleaner your home is, the unhealthier it may be? I’ve often talked about the germs we bring into our homes. But, did you know many cleaning products are made from toxic petroleum-based chemicals.
In fact, commercial cleaning products don’t have to list all the chemicals on the label. A manufacturer can omit any ingredient that’s considered a secret formula from its label, and many of these ingredients are toxic and carcinogenic.
Some manufacturers are making untrue claims to jump on the Green bandwagon, because it’s now profitable to be “Green” or “Eco Friendly.” A new term has been coined, “Green-wash,” meaning that a label misleads consumers about the environmental practices or the environmental benefits of a product. So don’t believe everything you read.
Jada loves to help her mom in the kitchen!
Make Your Own & Save
With the price of everything going up, why not make your own natural cleaning products? Think of all the money you’ll save by not purchasing a different cleaner for windows, floors, counters, scouring powders, and even fabric softeners and dryer sheets. Using homemade natural cleaning products makes “cents,” because it is cheaper, healthier, and non-toxic.
There are two natural inexpensive cleaners everyone has in their kitchen: baking soda and vinegar. You can use baking soda to scrub your bath and kitchen. Just sprinkle the baking soda on the surfaces and scrub.
I found a recipe for a wonderful spa-like bath for soaking away aches and pains. It uses ½ cup baking soda and apple cider vinegar. The potassium found in apple cider vinegar helps aching, tight muscles. When we remolded our master bathroom, we installed a whirlpool bath. Since water is recycled through the plumbing to make the air bubbles, I’ve been trying to think of a way to effectively keep the plumbing clear of bacteria. Then, I realized, the baking soda and apple cider vinegar will clean me, the tub, the plumbing, and the drain at the same time. Now, soaking in a tub is really clean fun.
I got tired of paying for commercial window cleaners, which are mostly water. And they contain butyl cellosolve – a toxic ingredient that isn’t listed on the labels. I now make my own window cleaner by combining 4 cups of water, ½ cup of white vinegar, and 1 teaspoon liquid soap in a spray bottle. It works as good as any window cleaner you’ll purchase.
Vinegar is an all-purpose cleaner as well as a disinfectant and deodorizer. But, don’t clean any natural stone such as granite or marble with vinegar or citrus. These products will erode the polish from the stone.
To clean granite counters use a mixture of water, 1/4 cup rubbing alcohol, and a drop or two of liquid dish soap in a spray bottle . Rubbing alcohol or Isopropyl Alcohol is commonly used as a disinfectant and solvent and it’s an ingredient in all stone cleaners.
Use vinegar in the toilet bowl to get rid of rings. Flush the toilet to allow the water level to go down. Squirt undiluted vinegar around the inside of the rim. Scrub down the bowl. A vinegar and water solution will also eat away the soap scum and hard water stains on your fixtures and glass shower. A couple of times a year, I clean out my washing machine with vinegar. Pour 1 quart of vinegar in empty machine and run it through a wash cycle.
Fabric softeners or dryer sheets include not-so-snuggly chemicals. These chemicals many times are petroleum-based and have the potential to cause central nervous system disorders, headaches, and loss of muscle coordination; nausea, skin disorders, and allergic reactions. Use vinegar as a natural fabric softener. This can be especially helpful for family members who have sensitive skin. Add ½ cup of vinegar to the rinse cycle in place of a store bought fabric softener.
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