Cheap ways to green clean your home
Green cleaning has become all the craze with the change in environment and people becoming more conscious about their impact on the environment. However, green products can be very expensive. Here are some cheap and easy ways to clean your home and keep it green.
Many people who clean homes for a living will say that green cleaning is just not as effective as cleaning with chemicals. Ammonia, which is found in numerous cleaning products, is easily one of the most dangerous ingredients. Not only is it dangerous in large quantities, but the runoff which can be found in waterways can cause serious environmental impact.
Sulfates are another common culprit, and are found in most commercial cleaning products. These leech into soils, and are not biodegradable. Most drinking water, now, is contaminated with sulfates.
It is easy to see that the best option for a clean and sustainable house is to only use environmentally friendly methods. However, many products that market themselves as environmentally friendly are not. Additionally, the ones that are often are shelved at a cost that is much more than the traditional chemical cleaner. There are options, however, that are easy to find and are easy on the wallet.
Baking soda is perhaps one of the easiest and cleanest products that can be used to clean the household. For years, users have boasted its use as a deodorant, but it has other uses, as well. Mixing baking soda with essential oil and sprinkling it on carpets to later be vacuumed up both cleans and deodorizes. Baking soda can also be used as a scouring agent, in place of traditional bleach-based chemical scourers. For laundry, adding a cup to a load along with your detergent will help to deodorize and soften (for extra softening, use a cup of vinegar during the rinse cycle). Its uses are numerous, and its benefits are many!
Many are not in favor of using vinegar as a cleaning agent due to its acrid smell. However, vinegar is one of the most useful natural products available. White vinegar is both easy to come by, and very cheap. Adding a cap full of it to a laundry rinse is a great way to get your clothes feeling soft without the harmful effects of sulfate-based softeners. Using it as a base for a kitchen cleaning spray will help to scrub up nasty oil-based messes and spots. Have a clogged drain? Simply add a cup of baking soda and a cup of vinegar, much like you probably did in a grade school volcano project.
Essential Oils can often make people cringe. At larger natural retailers, these oils can be marked up until they really don’t make sense to buy. However, the fragrances that are found in traditional cleaners are often toxic for people to breath in, despite how nice they smell. That is where essential oils can come in handy. With the right amount of shopping around, buying essential oils can be easy on the mind and wallet.
Not only do essential oils smell nice without the toxicity of chemical-based fragrance, certain oils can be helpful in place of traditional chemicals. Have an ant problem? Orange or Peppermint essential oil can help repel those naturally. Want to get rid of some mold or sanitize an area of your home? Tea Tree oil is a known antifungal, and has shown to be effective against certain types of staph.
Chances are, you have this in your home. Chances are also good that you bought this product for relatively cheap. Hydrogen peroxide works wonders for health and well-being, but it also works wonders for stains! Just put a little on a stain prior to washing and watch the stain come out.
Coarse Salt or Kosher Salt
Salt is a secret housecleaning weapon. Not only is it extremely cheap to buy, it is also readily available! You can buy it in drugstores, grocery stores, and even in some gas stations. Coarse salt is an excellent way to scrub messy pots and pans (especially cast iron pans, which you want to avoid use of detergents in). Simply add a few tablespoons of coarse salt to a wet, dirty pan and scrub away. Salt can also be used to aid in stain removal. Add things like dirty socks or stained underwear to a bucket full of hot water. Add one cup of salt, and let sit for a half an hour before putting into the laundry.
This soap is different from your run-of-the-mill detergent soap because it is made entirely of plant-based ingredients, making it entirely biodegradable. While this is a major selling point of this type of soap, many see this soap and back away due to how expensive it initially appears. However, when you learn more about this type of soap, you see that it can be diluted and used for many different things. So diluting castile soap can make it last a lot longer than conventional detergents, making it not only more earth-friendly but also easier on the wallet. Castile soap can be used from everything to cleaning the body to preventing bugs from eating your garden. If diluted properly, it also is an efficient laundry detergent and dish washing detergent.
The next time you are in the cleaning aisle of your local supermarket, think about the earth and your wallet and buy a few of these options instead.