Every year it seems that more and more chemicals get pushed into our homes and lives. But despite the TV constantly advertising newer, better ways to clean your home with fancy chemical solutions, we’ve been able to get our cleaning done without them and considering 49 mind-blowing cleaning tips for all of history. Instead of emptying your wallet by trying to keep up with all the newest products, we can instead turn to greener, healthier solutions for you and your family.
These recipes for cleanliness use natural ingredients that you can find in your kitchen or bathroom, and none of them have any harmful synthetic chemicals like the ones you find all down the laundry aisle. For folks with small children, this can literally be a life-saver! No more worrying about spilled chemicals or hospital visits.
Being green is the smart and economic choice in today’s world. Below, there are twelve of the best Natural Cleaning Recipes for a Clean, Green Home, and all of them only take a few minutes of prep time before they’re ready to go!
#1 Hydrogen Peroxide
This is one of the things that’s probably hanging around the house somewhere; almost everyone has a little hydrogen peroxide for cuts and disinfecting your mouth when you’ve got a cold sore! But hydrogen peroxide actually makes a great disinfectant in general, not just for your body. You can use it for stains, spills and for making sure anything extra-germy doesn’t contaminate the whole house.
This is a really simple deep cleaning solution that a lot of people overlook, all because it doesn’t come advertised as a cleaning product. Don’t underestimate hydrogen peroxide, especially because it’s going to be a key ingredient for many of our next solutions.
#2 Baking Soda
Baking soda is another of those household items that can be an essential part of your cleaning kit. Baking soda works well as a cleaner because it’s a mild alkali; this basically means it’s great at getting rid of dirt or grease, and unlike a lot of cleaning products like a vacuum cleaner, you find in the store it’s non-toxic since it’s food! You don’t have to worry so much about little kids being around this helpful ingredient. Like hydrogen peroxide, baking soda is a key part of several other natural home-cleaning recipes.
#3 Distilled White Vinegar
White vinegar, while also used for cooking, is very acidic; this is a great property for a natural cleaning product to have. It can break down a lot of the tougher stains and spills that come with a busy kitchen or living room. White vinegar is the last of the essential ingredients we’ll use in combination with one another for some of the more complicated recipes coming up.
#4 Homemade All-Purpose Cleaner
- 1/2 c white vinegar
- 2 Tbsp baking soda
- 10 drops tea tree, lavender, or lemon essential oil (for their disinfectant properties)
Here we’ve got a great, multi-use cleaner that you can put in a spray bottle or dab with a rag. All you’ve got to do is mix the above ingredients and add with water, about as much as you want the solution diluted. More water leads to a weaker solution for bigger containers, so keep that in mind if you’ve got a long or short cleaning session ahead. This cleaner is great for kitchen cleaning, carpet stains and for scrubbing away spots on fabric or bedsheets.
#5 Homemade Liquid Dish Soap
- ½ cup warm distilled water
- 2 tsp kosher salt
- ½ cup white vinegar
- ½ cup Dr. Bronner’s Sal Suds
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- Lemon essential oil (optional)
This dish soap is just as good as any store-bought kind, minus the unneeded chemicals. The vinegar and lemon juice add acidity and the oil is for scent, since a purely-soapy smell isn’t anyone’s favorite, even while doing the dishes. Bronner’s Sal Suds you can find in a lot of shops or online, and they assist the natural cleaning properties of the other ingredients. You don’t even need to use too much for a good dishwashing cycle; just dab a bit on your sponge or fill the sink with hot water and add a splash of the soap, and you’re good to go!
#6 Homemade Dishwasher Detergent
- 1 cup salt
- 2 cups baking soda
- 2 cups Borax
- 1 cup of Lemi-Shine (non-toxic, found in the detergent aisle)
This dishwasher detergent is both great for getting rid of stains or chunks or dirt and for disinfecting them. That’s thanks to the baking soda and the Borax, which is a mineral in salt deposits that have great alkali qualities which compliment the baking soda. Lemi-Shine is for scent and freshness to rival that of any store-bought detergent mix. Don’t forget that overpouring is easy, but you don’t need much detergent in any given load of laundry, perhaps just a thimbleful.
#7 Homemade Mirror Cleaner
- ¼ cup white vinegar
- ¼ cup isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol
- 1 Tbsp cornstarch
- 2 cups water
- 8 – 10 drops essential oil of choice, optional
Here we’ve got a simple solution that adds a bit of alcohol to disinfect the surface of whatever glass you’re cleaning; although it’s a mirror cleaner you can just as easily use it for glass tables or windows. The essential oil is your choice for color, scent, and finish if you like the cleaner to leave a lasting impression. You can find bottles like the kind that store-bought cleaners come in at any grocery store, and these, too, can be cleaned and reused; no need to throw them away just because they’re empty.
#8 Natural Air Freshener
- 1 sliced lemon, 2 tablespoons rosemary and a dash of vanilla
- 1 sliced lime and 1 piece chopped ginger root
- 1 sliced orange, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, and a dash of nutmeg and cloves (smells like pumpkin pie!)
- 2 tablespoons thyme and 1 sliced lime
This one is fun! You combine these ingredients in a medium saucepan and turn the heat to low, sizzling it so that the evaporating fumes freshen the air of your home. Be careful not to turn the heat up too high, though, because otherwise you’ll burn away the freshener and have to make a new batch before you’ve had any time to appreciate your current one! If you have some leftover from a particular session you can always save what remains and combine it with the next batch; this has got to be cheaper than constantly refilling some of the plug-in fresheners.
#9 Microfiber Cloths
This is more of a general item you should pick up when trying to maintain a clean, green household. Microfiber cloths are better for the environment since they’re reusable, and the thin, narrow threads that are used in their construction allow them to clean with fewer- or zero- cleaning chemicals. With these wonderful tools, you can clean most of the surfaces in your home with just water or the solutions we’ve been mixing above. Buying fewer cloths also ends up saving you money in the long run; this one is a no-brainer.
#10 Cotton Balls
This is a cleaning solution for gentler tasks, like cleaning the kids or your own skin or preparing a wound for some of that hydrogen peroxide we talked about. Cotton balls are gentle and can be soaked in solutions beforehand, making them ideal for scrubbing away nail polish, dirt in sensitive areas of the skin and for cleaning very fragile objects in the home. Cotton balls won’t leave any kind of lasting mark, even on soft surfaces.
#11 Fabric Softener
- 5 ½ cups water
- 15 oz bottle of your favorite hair conditioner
- 2.5 cups white vinegar
- 20 drops of essential oil for fragrance (optional, especially if your conditioner has a nice scent)
This is the solution we’ll use for our homemade softener sheets coming up next. All you’ve got to do is combine these elements into a jar that can be tightly closed and mixed well; the freshness of this particular mixture is one you’re going to want to save for the next step…
#12 Dryer Sheets From T-Shirts
Here’s another money saver and the companion to the recipe above: take some old T-shirts that no one wears anymore and grab the Shears. Cut the shirts into small squares and drop them into the fabric softener solution to soak. Once it’s time for them to go into the dryer with the laundry, simply squeeze the squares well to get rid of excess liquid, then toss them in! Easy, green and cheap, just the way it ought to be. As a nice bonus, you can keep using these squares for a long time before wear and tear sends them to the garbage.
So there you have it! Virtually everything mentioned above should be easy to find or already in your own home. Armed with all these wonderful recipes, you can keep your home clean and green, all without buying the chemical-filled products at the grocery store. Spread the word and if you’ve got green ideas of your own, and let’s all move forward into a brighter, healthier future together!