After cleaning the bathroom last week with homemade cleaning products – I decided to make cleaning products for the rest of the house. Last night the castile soap finally arrived – so to my lab (kitchen) I went to mix and measure and create! Today I cleaned and used only cleaning products that I had made. I used lavender oil for all the products as the essential oil to add, wanted to keep the same scent throughout, but you could use another essential oil – tea tree, orange, lemon, rose, rosemary.
It has been raining here on and off for what seems like forever and no matter how well I dry the dog after our walks, the smell of wet dog is the scent of the house, yuck! So one of the first items I made was a carpet deodorizer and it really works – wish I could use it on the dog – I will have to research that one, later.
Fill the jar about 1/2 full with baking soda, add about 10 drops of lavender oil, mix with a fork. Add more baking soda to fill the jar and mix again. Sprinkle on the carpet, sweep in with a broom, let sit for 15 minutes to several hours, vacuum.
Pour the vinegar into the spray bottle, add the olive oil and lavender oil, shake. This amount was more than I needed for the whole house. I found that it worked better if I sprayed it directly onto a cotton cloth and wiped. I did spray on my dining table, which has a finish, and had to buff it with a dry cotton cloth to really make it shine. The vinegar draws the dirt out and the olive oil conditions, lavender oil just makes it smell good!
Castile General Cleaner
Using a 4 cup glass measuring cup, fill with 2 cups hot water, add the washing soda, mix well, add the borax and mix well, then add the other ingredients. If you just put it all in together, the washing soda/borax will clump. Pour into the spray bottle. This cleaner can be used for general cleaning and it works really well on greasy stains – good on the stove top. Keeps indefinite.
Scented Vinegar General Cleaner
Using a 4 cup glass measuring cup, fill with 4 cups hot water and add the borax, mixing well, add remaining ingredients. Pour into spray bottle. You can use this as a general cleaner, but due to the vinegar it will fight mildew – so good to use in the bathroom or anywhere that is mildew prone. Keeps indefinite.
Cut a paper towel roll in half – an electric knife would work well. I do not have an electric knife, so I used a serrated knife instead – keep the plastic on while cutting, you will still have pieces of paper – so do it somewhere that will catch them. Place the 1/2 roll into a plastic container. I do not use cleaning wipes, therefore I did not have one to re-use, but I will ask friends to save them, if they use. I took a plastic container with a lid and cut a hole in the top – you will have to sand the cut so that it does not catch the wipes when pulling out. Put in equals amounts of water and vinegar (about a cup each) add 10 drops or so of lavender oil. I mixed the water, vinegar and lavender oil in a measuring cup and then poured in all at once. You will need to leave it for at least 3 hours or over night. Once the paper towel has absorbed all the liquid, gently pull the cardboard center out and then thread the paper towel through the hole in the top. These are great – I keep them in the bathroom and can give a quick wipe in between cleanings. They will dry up, but the good thing is that you can just add more of the mixture when that happens.
I am not one to use any of the anti-bacterial products on the market – I feel that they cause more problems than anything else, but I do believe in disinfecting while I clean, especially the bathroom and the kitchen counter. So after doing some research I am now using vinegar and hydrogen peroxide for that purpose. This method was tested by Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University as a safe way to get rid of Salmonella, Shigella and E. coli bacteria. They suggested using: “a combination of 3 percent hydrogen peroxide (the same strength you find at the drugstore) and undiluted white or apple cider vinegar. Put the two in separate spray bottles and spray one immediately after the other. You can spray it directly on fruits and vegetables and also on surfaces, such as cutting boards and countertops.”
I really liked how the homemade cleaning products worked and want to use them only, but I do have some store bought that I need to use up, but I am finding it hard to choose those items over what I have made. Let me know if you have any green cleaning products you have made and how they work. Happy cleaning!