Clean your Home
I discovered a lot of my favorite cleaning agents when I was pregnant, and couldn’t use chemicals. Many of the most popular cleaning products contain ingredients that are toxic and harmful when simply inhaled, not to mention their questionable effects on the environment from their packaging alone. Plus, the cost of these products can add up quick with a whole house to clean. Fortunately, you can find some of the best cleaning solutions in your pantry, or grab them in the baking aisle of your local grocery store for less than a dollar.
Making Your Home Lemon Fresh
Lemons can be used for so many cleaning tasks in your home, with their high acidity and antibacterial properties. Naturally, their most obvious perk is the fresh scent they leave behind. One popular lemon-scented “life hack” can leave your microwave with a squeaky-clean interior and a lovely aroma. Just cut a lemon in half, fill a microwave-safe bowl 1/2 cup of water, squeeze the lemon’s juices into the water, and drop the halves into the bowl as well. Pop them in the microwave on high for 3 minutes (until the water boils), and then let it stand for another 5-10 minutes to let the steam work its magic.
Then open it up, carefully remove the bowl, and set it aside. If your microwave has a turntable, take it out and wipe it down with a kitchen sponge or cloth. Starting from the ceiling and working your way down the walls and door, wipe away the gunk with your sponge. Finish with the bottom so you can wipe out any crumbs into your hand, and voila! A clean microwave! For any stubborn spots, dip your sponge into the lemon water and scrub the spots away.
You can also place diluted lemon juice into a spray bottle and use that to clean your countertops, rinsing with water after and wiping it dry. Dip a toothbrush in pure lemon juice to brighten up grout. There are so many other ways to clean with lemons- you can even polish chrome with a combination of lemon juice and salt, which brings us to our next batch of tips!
Get Salty With That Mess!
Salt is another fantastic cleaning agent. People have been using sodium chloride to clean for almost as long as they’ve been eating it, and you can use any kind of salt for cleaning, except for Epsom salt. Mix salt and hot water to clean and deodorize your kitchen sink drain, sprinkle salt on greasy pans and wipe away with paper towel, and even clean your coffee pot with salt and ice cubes (just pour them in and swirl it around!). My favorite use for salt involves mixing it with warm water to heal abrasions around the mouth.
Vinegar Cleans Better Than It Smells
Vinegar is, without a doubt, my favorite cleaning agent. White vinegar cuts grease and removes stains and (believe it or not) odors. I heavily dilute it to clean my kitchen floors. I disinfected my son’s bottle sanitizer with vinegar once a week. I clean my refrigerator as well as my mirrors with a 50-50 mix of vinegar and water. I pour half a cup in when I wash my bath towels (in hot water) for extra softness. I mix it with a bit of rubbing alcohol and a few drops of tea tree and lavender essential oils and spray it on my mattress to disinfect. I use vinegar for so many things, I can’t even list them all here! And its power is absolutely unstoppable when mixed with baking soda.
Baking Soda Isn’t Just For Your Fridge
Okay, I’m supposed to write about cleaning with baking soda here, but let me talk about the killer baking soda and vinegar combination. I have never seen a cleaner sink or bathtub than when I clean them with this combo. I spray a 50-50 water/vinegar mix on the surface, sprinkle baking soda all over, and then spray more vinegar all over that. I let it sit for 30 minutes and turn on the water as hot as possible and wipe it all down. Try it, you’ll be amazed! I also use baking soda as a paste, adding a few drops of water, for a great natural facial exfoliator.
I’ll even add a teaspoon of baking soda to my shampoo when my hair is super greasy. I add ¼ cup into my son’s bath when he’s got bad diaper rash, and I put a half cup in my own bath for detoxifying purposes. I shake a few tablespoons into my dishwasher’s soap reservoir and run it on empty when it gets icky. I can’t stop cleaning with baking soda!
Club Soda Doesn’t Taste Good Because It’s for Cleaning
Club soda’s carbonation makes it an amazing cleaning agent. My favorite use for it is to pour it into a pan I’ve used for cooking, and let it soak while I eat. By the time I’m done eating, I don’t have to worry about scrubbing the mess out of that pot! It’s also another fantastic agent for your chrome sink fixtures and leaves them streak-free. Leave it in your coffee mug overnight to get rid of the brown tint. Use a spray bottle to spritz it on the lovely spots birds leave on your car, wait one minute, and watch them wipe away like they were never there. You can even spray it on your wiper blades to up their game on a rainy day! You can even spray it on pet stains to neutralize the aroma and stop them from repeating the offense!
There are endless ways to clean with these 5 cheap and natural products, and still even more infinite ways when you combine them! So “use what the good Lord gave ya,” and clean your whole house for way less than $10, and see if you ever buy those chemicals again.
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