I’ve had a lot of people recently ask what I use to clean my house with. It may be because spring is here, and spring cleaning is looming over everyone’s head. I must say I’m a clean freak by nature. Ask my family, they’ll tell you-I can be a little OCD! Oh well, my house is clean. The spring cleaning bug has definitely bit me. I’ve been de-cluttering our place like crazy! My motto: If it doesn’t serve a purpose, toss it. Let’s just say I’ve given away loads of “stuff” these past several weeks and it feels so good.
In the spirit of spring cleaning, I thought I would share with you my top household product picks. Everything from laundry soap, window cleaner, bleach alternative…well, you get the point. I’ve compiled this list after over 5 years of testing out natural DIY’s, products and everything in between. I finally feel my list meets my standards and is worth sharing. I mean do you know how many laundry soaps I’ve tried in 5 years?! I think I know every DIY recipe out there. I literally changed mine every couple of months.
Oh and you all must know how toxic cleaning products are…if you don’t, trust me when I say you don’t want them in your house! Some of the most toxic ingredients live inside those bottles, and they’re horrible for you to breathe, touch and have around if you have kiddos in the house. Half the products now are loaded with so much fragrance to mask their smell that it practically knocks you off your feet! Artificial fragrance, in my opinion, is one of the worst things-I can smell it a mile away.
So I’ve compiled my little household list for a non-toxic/clean home. Trust me, you won’t even miss your old stuff!
Household Product Faves:
I wanted to give a brief introduction about e-cloth before I continue sharing their products. The basis of e-cloth is that it offers a chemical free cleaning experience using only water. It does this through micro fiber technology, proprietary equipment, and manufacturing techniques. I love their mission:
“Our aim is to supply the most effective, healthiest and most environmentally friendly cleaning products available at a good value to the consumer.”
*Also, with many companies on the market offering similar microfiber cloths and products, learn why I chose e-cloth here.
Where has this been all my life?! No really, I’ve struggled to find something that not only cleaned my dishes, but wasn’t a scotch brite pad that smelled like chemicals. Not to mention, I wanted something I could re-use and not throw away all the time. Well, the e-cloth Washing Up Pad came into my life, and has rocked my world! The gray side of the pad is for scrubbing stuck on food, and the other side is smooth and cuts through grease and grime. It’s made from cloth, versus some weird chemical smelling sponge material. The best part?! You just throw it in the washer when you need to clean it. Hello, how cool is that? Not only does this sponge work like a charm on all my tough dirty dishes, but it saves me money and is environmentally friendly. A win/win in my book! Get two, so you have one for when your washing the other one. $5.99
e-cloth Stainless Steel Cloth and Glass Polishing Cloth- Kitchen/Windows/Mirrors
This cloth has been another winner from e-cloth. One side is more grainy and perfect for getting rid of residue, while the other side is smooth for polishing. Both sides remove 99% of bacteria just using water-I love it! I just spray some water onto the stainless steel, then use the grainy side to remove any residue(make sure you go in the direction of your grain so you don’t scratch anything). Then I would use the smooth side to polish. It did clean my stainless steel well, but it didn’t leave it sparkling like I wanted. I contacted e-cloth and asked what the solution might be to get the “sparkle” effect. They recommended the Glass and Polishing Cloth. So I got that, gave it a try, and bam-my stainless steel sparkled like new! The best part is it not only works for shining up stainless steel, but also for cleaning windows and mirrors. I would spray a little water onto my window or mirror and wipe away. No streaky residue. Are you hearing me people?! There was absolutely no chemical used to clean my stainless steel, windows or mirrors! Let’s just say I struck gold. I also used the Stainless Steel Cloth to clean my granite counters, and my countertops never shined brighter. I highly recommend these two products. They tackle so many cleaning jobs with no chemicals. Plus, no paper towel was wasted, just wash and re-use! Get them, you’ll love them. Both $7.99
These two have been my jam as far as laundry detergent goes. I toyed a lot with making my own laundry detergent recipe. However, over the years I just got tired of having to make it…does that sound so bad?! Some things I don’t mind making, and who knows I might find another recipe I want to try again but for now I’m stuck on these two.
I love this detergent! It really works and is completely natural-what more could you ask for? I love the whole concept of using soap nuts. For one they aren’t nuts, but are actually a berry from a tree, how much more natural can you get?! They’re a sustainable resource and grown organically easily, they’re great for sensitive skin, and hypoallergenic. Not to mention they’re 100% bio-degradeable, and completely safe for water systems. If you’re not sold yet, they actually use less water than conventional detergent, are safe for front loading washers, and they cost less per load too. They’re just a pretty amazing little berry!! How does it actually clean your clothes? It takes the saponin contained in the husk of the natural berry, and uses that to wash and get rid of dirt. Yes, even my husband’s stinky workout clothes smell good! My clothes smell fresh, not artificial and they are clean. I’m addicted to this stuff and almost out- it really is some good stuff. $9.95
I’ve been using these for a while and really love them. The whole concept of Eco Nuts is awesome. They actually aren’t nuts at all, but a berry that contains soap and is grown on a soap berry tree. This it how it works. You put 5-7 berries in a small cloth sack they provide you with and throw it in with your wash. The tension from the clothes and water releases the saponin(soap) found in the berry and cleans your clothes. My clothes are clean! They don’t really smell like anything to me. They last through many washes. You can tell you need new ones when they break or crack. They are as eco friendly as it gets too. Compostable, grown on a tree that needs no pesticides or fertilizers of any kind, and certified USDA Organic by Oregon Tilth. For all questions, check out their FAQ’s…they cover them all. $9.99
Hydrogen Peroxide, Baking Soda, and White Vinegar
When it comes to cleaning my house I like to keep it really simple. I’ve looked at a ton of the “natural” cleaning products, and there’s always ingredients I don’t recognize off hand. Plus, when the job can be done at a fraction of the cost, and with simple ingredients I’m all about it. You can always find these three at my house: hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, and white vinegar.
What can’t these three do? I have yet to find out. I keep it simple when cleaning my bathroom. From the sink, tub, shower and toilet, they get the job done. I don’t put hydrogen peroxide in a spray bottle because it is light sensitive, and starts to break down when exposed. That’s why you typically see it in a brown bottle. Oh and did I mention it’s around .99 a bottle? Yeah, pretty awesome. I just squirt it all around my tub, sink, toilet and counter and let it sit for 10 minutes. After I squirt it I always sprinkle on baking soda. This acts as a grit to help pick up more dirt. White vinegar I use similarly to hydrogen peroxide. It’s great for cleaning drains. I always put some essential oil drops around the sink when I’m done cleaning to help mask the vinegar smell. I clean my sink with hydrogen peroxide and baking soda too. Another trick I learned is to clean your cutting board with hydrogen peroxide. So many uses for it!
Favorite Hand Soap: Kosmatology Foaming Hand Soap
I LOVE this hand soap! Best organic, natural hand soap I’ve tried…hands down. I have struggled with finding a hand soap. It either wasn’t pure, squirted out weird or didn’t foam. This baby does it all, and has the best ingredients. Not to mention, it doesn’t dry out my hands! Everyone needs this in your kitchen and bathroom…trust me. They have them in several scents-they all smell good! $8.99
I use an electric steam mop from the brand Shark to clean my hardwood/non-carpet floors. I love this mop! It heats the water creating hot steam that kills 99.9% of germs. And your just using water…no chemicals! They say it’s safe to use on all sealed hard wood surfaces on their website. The mop comes with two reusable pads you can wash and just reuse. I’ve had mine for several years and have no complaints. $69.99
I’ve also picked up a few other cleaning tips and DIY’s along the way.
Bleach alternative- I found this recipe on the blog Live Simply. Check out Kristin’s blog-it’s awesome! She has so many great DIY recipes and they actually work. This one is gold! You just mix hydrogen peroxide, washing soda and hot water. I can’t take any credit for it though. I’ve just used it for everything and I’m here to say it works. I typically soak my stuff overnight, not that you need too, I just forget I’m soaking things sometimes…opps! I’ve found it works best for things when done right away. Don’t wait a month, and then decide you want to whiten something…know what I mean? I had these white tea towels that hadn’t ever been whitened, needless to say they were in bad shape. However, they did turn out pretty white with a good soaking…but just get on the soaking asap just for good measure.
Use the same towels for cleaning each time so there is no need for paper towels. I haven’t used paper towels for over a year until recently. I finally started buying them because with a 1 year old I was going through a crazy amount of laundry, not to mention I was ruining a lot of towels, and my husband was constantly on me about it. Sometimes convenience wins out. I buy Seventh Generation’s recycled paper towels and only allow 1 roll per week. We actually make it longer than a week most of the time.
Here’s a recipe for liquid dish soap I like from the blog Mommypotamus, she really knows her stuff and this one is tried and true, and not full of the nasties.
Here’s a recipe for dishwasher detergent from the blog Pins and Procrastinations. I’ve tried a ton of these recipes, and this one has seemed to work the best.
Ok, that’s my cleaning regimen for now. I want to hear from you guys! What do you use, like or what hasn’t worked. Leave me a comment!