Green living tips

Natural DIY Spring Cleaning Products

Spring is just around the corner! Make sure that you are ready to punch dirt in the throat…

Adverse to the utilization of elbow grease myself, I am partial to cleaning products that suggest their powerful chemical compositions will reduce the need for waxing on and waxing off. I’m quite happy to never be a ninja if it means I can simply spray something on the dirt and then get back under the duvet. And although it’s true that commercial cleaning products contain enough chemical clout to vaporize small bacterial colonies, their astringent chemical compounds are harmful to you and your family and reduce the quality of your indoor air.

It’s all about the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) you see. VOCs leach chemicals into the air that irritate lungs, skin and eyes. They can cause allergic reactions, skin irritations, heart conditions, bronchial complications and congestion. VOC reactions are most strongly evident in children and animals.

Not only are VOCs unsafe for you; they are also dangerous for the environment. Although good old soap kills 99% of known bacteria, our need for the security that an antibacterial soap provides means that these substances are creating dangerous strains of super bacteria in much the same way as antibiotics have created super viruses. Antibacterial products also end up in rivers, streams and oceans where they play havoc with the natural ecosystems by eradicating the good bacteria as well as the bad. So stop using all this chemical crap.

Here are some green living, natural chemical-free spring cleaning products that are just as effective:

Kitchen and bathroom: Dust surfaces with baking soda and wipe down with a sponge. For stubborn stains and dirt, add a couple of drops of lemon juice or white vinegar. White vinegar and baking soda are excellent disinfectants.

Clogged drains: Pour down a 1/4 cup of baking soda followed by hot water and voila! It’s clear. Pour 1/4 cup of baking soda down your drains periodically to ensure that they stay clean.

Oven: Make a paste with baking soda and water and smear it on. Leave overnight and wipe clean in the morning.

Windows: 2 Tbsp. of white vinegar in a gallon of water is all you need. Spray onto the surfaces with a spray bottle and wipe down with newsprint for a smudge-free clean.

Floors: Up the vinegar content (about 1/4 cup of white vinegar to a 1/4 gallon of water) in your spray bottle. Spray on tile, linoleum, wood and parquet floors and mop as usual.

Carpet spills: Sprinkle with salt to soak up and disinfect. If the stain is still visible, douse with club soda.

Odors: Sprinkle baking soda over the offending area and leave for a couple of hours. Sweep or vacuum up.

Is it just me or does there seem to be an inordinately large number of things you can do with baking soda? Actually, the list is pretty endless, so click here for more.

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About

Nikki is a Toronto green living blogger specializing in green living ideas and tips, upcycling, recycling and all things green. She's traveled the globe, swum with sharks and been bitten by a lion (fact). She lives with her husband and a very bad dog.

12 thoughts on “Natural DIY Spring Cleaning Products

  1. Ryan Hendra

    Great suggestions. Have been noticing lately how many very effective little home remedies my gran uses. Must note them down and share. Thanks for the tips!

    Reply
  2. Brandy Alexander

    I use baking soda all the time. My favorite use is as a shampoo. Dissolve one teaspoon in a cup of water and smoosh it in your head, rinse out. It cleans EVERYTHING – even products, but doesn’t strip your hair the way shampoo does. I love how my hair feels and I save a ton on expensive hair care.

    Reply
    1. Nikki Fotheringham Post author

      Thanks for the tip Brandy – like I always say – why settle for shampoo when only real poo will do!

      Reply
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  5. Wesley

    Hi Nikki,
    I have not tried lemon juice alongside of vinegar yet. It sounds like a even better value versus applying tea tree oil or grapefruit see extract (which also do a good job of disinfecting). I have found that combining ½ cup of vinegar with ¼ cup of borax and warm water can also work wonders in the bathroom or kitchen space as well.
    Lots of Good Stuff Here!

    Reply
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  7. Jessica

    Love these tips. Our drains always clog up so quickly and it’s awful. Do you know if mixing vinegar with the baking soda makes it more effective? Thanks!

    Reply
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