Make Your Own Non-Toxic DIY Cleaners

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Do you use store-bought home cleaning products? Have you ever read the ingredients in them? I have, and I hate using them in my home! I prefer to use DIY cleaners instead, where I can control the ingredients.

10 Best Non-Toxic DIY Cleaners

Store-bought cleaners usually have toxic ingredients that are harmful to our health and the health of our family. Did you know that the EPA estimates that the air indoors is 2-5 times more polluted than outdoor air? 2-5 TIMES!

This is mostly due to chemicals found in most cleaning products. But there is a better way!

DIY cleaners don’t have to be boring, or ineffective. And they are so much better for you! Don’t poison your home, make your own non-toxic DIY cleaners!

Why make DIY cleaners?

There are lots of reasons to make your own DIY cleaners. Here are my personal reasons.

DIY cleaners are easy.

Most DIY cleaners have only a few ingredients. You can simply mix a couple ingredients together. Some you can do in quantity, and keep in a spray bottle and use as needed. Others you can just mix in a bowl whenever you need them. Either way, they usually take literally minutes. Even quicker than running to the store when you run out of a cleaner!

DIY cleaners will save you money.

Commercial home cleaners can be pretty expensive, especially when you try to get the “natural” or non-toxic ones. With DIY cleaners, you can just buy a few main ingredients and keep them on hand. It can save you a trip to the store, and isn’t that what this self-reliant thing is all about? Making your own can save you some money!

DIY cleaners are (usually) non-toxic.

Most store-bought cleaners have so many toxic ingredients. Read your labels. If you can’t pronounce most of the ingredients, you probably shouldn’t be putting it on your kitchen counters!

DIY cleaners are safer.

This goes along with being non-toxic, but it’s so important it warrants being said again. So many commercial cleaners aren’t safe to breathe. Lots of them say to only use with proper ventilation, and others say you have to wear gloves. Limit skin contact, keep away from children. Too many warnings for me!

DIY cleaners put YOU in control.

When you make your own, you are in control of what goes into them. Don’t like vinegar? Leave it out. Don’t like borax? Ditch it. You can research whatever ingredient you want to put in your cleaner to make sure it’s acceptable for you. You get to decide!

Don't poison your home - make your own non-toxic DIY cleaners!
DIY Cleaners

What do you need to make DIY cleaners?

There are some very common ingredients in DIY cleaners. Most are pretty cheap. Some are a little more, but have so many uses around the home. Here are some of the items I always keep at home to make my cleaners.

Baking soda.

Baking soda is one of the cheapest ingredients to use for DIY cleaners. At only about $.60/box, it’s so frugal and has a lot of uses (both in baking and in cleaning!) It has a mildly abrasive texture that makes it perfect for gentle scrubbing.

Vinegar.

I always keep both white vinegar and apple cider vinegar in the house. They are both antibacterial, and make excellent gentle cleaners. The smell is a bit overpowering sometimes, and lots of people don’t like it. I don’t mind usually. If it’s too off-putting for me, I add a couple drops of essential oils to it.

Hydrogen peroxide.

This is a staple in my medicine cabinet, but it cleans so much more than wounds. It’s a very gentle and effective cleaner. It kills bacteria on surfaces and gets blood out of clothes. Definitely a necessity around my house!

Dawn dish soap.

Ok, ok, this one isn’t totally chemical-free. But it is a very gentle soap that I consider ok to use in my home. It has that little duck on it, saying they use it to save wildlife, so it can’t be THAT bad, right? Right?? Not totally sure how I feel when companies “say” it’s safe but don’t really back that up. But I’m still ok with this soap.

Lemons/lemon juice.

Another very cheap ingredient to have on hand is lemons and/or lemon juice. You can usually get a couple lemons for a dollar, and lemon juice is very cheap to buy even a big bottle! Lemons have citric acid, which is a completely safe acid that helps remove grease and disinfects.

Borax.

This ingredient sparks a little debate. Some people don’t like it, and of course it says keep out of reach of children and pets. It is considered a pesticide. But really, you only use a little and it would only be harmful to ingest pretty large quantities. I consider it a fairly safe ingredient and I use it in my home. I read an article on www.smallfootprintfamily.com on borax that I agree with. It’s right here if you want to check it out. Borax isn’t something I would want to use in my personal care products, but I think it’s fine for laundry and scrubbing floors.

Washing soda.

This is just baking soda that has gone through a little more processing. As in, it’s baked. You can make your own by baking a sheet of baking soda. Thus, it costs more than regular baking soda. But it is an excellent additive to homemade (or even commercial, if you must) laundry soap.

Isopropyl alcohol.

Isopropyl alcohol is another good cleaner. It evaporates much faster than water, so it’s great to use on wood floors and windows. Using isopropyl alcohol on your windows leaves a streak-free shine.

Castile soap.

Castile soap is very gentle, and is made with no lard or animal fats. It is usually made with olive or coconut oil. Castile soap is a little more expensive in the liquid form, but it’s great! I use castile soap in a lot of my own body care products, and use strictly a bar of castile soap in the shower. It is also a great home cleaner that doesn’t leave a residue like some soaps do.

Essential oils.

Individually, Essential Oils“>essential oils, but if you stick to a few main ones, you can keep your DIY cleaning budget under control.

If you’re looking for a good essential oil company, I highly suggest Essential oils

Essential oils are great for cleaning

 

Our 10 favorite DIY cleaners

DIY Soft Scrub

3/4 Cup baking soda

2 Tablespoons white vinegar

1 teaspoon of Dawn dish soap (can substitute with Castile Soap)

5 drops lemon essential oil (optional)

Directions:

Put baking soda in a bowl, drizzle dish soap on top. Drop in the essential oil (optional), then add the vinegar. It will bubble and fizz. Mix with a spoon. Apply with a sponge, paying careful attention to the areas with more residue. Rinse with running water. Excellent for cleaning bathtubs, shower doors, and sinks.

All-Purpose Cleaner

1 teaspoon Borax

1/2 teaspoon washing soda

1 teaspoon Castile Soap

18 drops of your favorite essential oil

Mix the ingredients with 2 cups of hot water in a spray bottle. Spray generously, and wipe with a clean rag. Swirl or shake gently before each use.

Yellow and red spray bottle for DIY cleaners

DIY Glass Cleaner

1/2 Cup vinegar

1 Cup water

1/2 Cup isopropyl alcohol

1 tsp cornstarch

10 drops lemon essential oil

Directions:

Put water in a spray bottle. Add vinegar, alcohol, and cornstarch. If desired, add essential oils. Shake gently to mix. Spray liberally on windows, and wipe clean with a paper towel or newspaper.

DIY Toilet Bowl Cleaner

3/4 Cup Borax

1 Cup white vinegar

10 drops tea tree essential oil

Directions:

Put all ingredients together in a spray bottle, and shake gently to mix. Spray the insides of the toilet bowl, paying close attention to under the rim. After you feel you have sprayed the sides enough, pour the rest of the solution into the toilet. Allow to sit for several hours, or overnight. Scrub with a toilet brush and flush the toilet.

Cutting Board Disinfectant

Clean and disinfect your cutting boards by spraying hydrogen peroxide on them and letting them sit for at least 10 minutes before rinsing with clean running water.

Wood Cleaner/Dusting Spray

1/2 Cup water

1/4 Cup white vinegar

2 teaspoons olive oil

10 drops lemon or orange essential oil

Directions:

Mix all ingredients into a spray bottle, and shake to combine. Use this dusting spray on bookshelves and other wood furniture. Wipe with clean dry cloth. Shake frequently while using to keep the oil combined in the water.

Mold Killer

Put a spray bottle top on a bottle of hydrogen peroxide. Spray hydrogen peroxide (full strength) over moldy or mildewy spots in your shower. Allow to sit for 30 minutes, then rinse with clean running water.

Floor Cleaner

1/4 Cup white vinegar

1 Tablespoon Dawn dish soap

1/4 Cup washing soda

Directions:

Fill a mop bucket with water, then add the other ingredients. Mop tile floors with this mixture, using a sponge or rag mop. This works great on kitchen floors such as tile or linoleum, as it cuts grease very well. This is not recommended for wood floors.

Degreaser

2 teaspoons Castile Soap

2 Tablespoons baking soda

15-20 drops lemon essential oil

Directions:

Mix ingredients with 2 cups of warm water in a spray bottle. Spray on greasy countertops and stovetops. Wipe clean with a clean dry cloth.

Blood Stain Remover

This one isn’t a recipe, per se. If your clothes have blood stains on them, new or old, wet the material completely with cold water. Then just pour hydrogen peroxide on the blood stain. Allow to sit for a while, then scrub the material between the knuckles of your hand. Rinse with cold water, and repeat if necessary.

This may lighten dark colors, so check an inconspicuous area first if you’re concerned.

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