A Mini-Guide to Green Cleaning

A woman using a mop for green cleaning in the kitchen.

If you are like other natural living enthusiasts, you’ve probably gotten surprised by the number of chemicals in everyday products. It can be overwhelming to replace every product in your house in a day. It is best to pick one or two cleaning supplies to replace with green cleaning products a month.

Here is a list of tips to help you tackle each area of your home one at a time.

1. Green Cleaning Solutions

Green cleaning not only saves money, but it is also healthier for your immune system. As The Guardian reports, toxic chemicals found in most cleaning products pollute the air and make it difficult for some people to breathe. Using these products for long periods of time may cause other health issues.

Everything you will ever need for natural living is most likely right inside your pantry. The ingredients you buy at the store each week can easily be used for cleaning as well as cooking. The three most common of these ingredients are distilled vinegar, baking soda, and lemons.

However, you shouldn’t be careful. Applying wrong substances to some of the materials can make them lose their shine. Moreover, my friend Kristina Morales, who is an experienced realtor from Orange County, California, even claims that this can harm the market value of your house! Here is a tip from her: NEVER use vinegar-based cleaners if you have a natural stone floor, as it will lose its shine. The same is for using lemon juice on metal surfaces like faucets.

For those who doesn’t want to ruin their expensive marble floor, here is a helpful article that will educate you on how you should clean it.

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Keywords: towels, lemons

2. All Purpose Green Cleaning Recipes

The best way to start using these products is by making your solution ahead of time. Take a glass spray bottle and pour in 8 ounces of distilled vinegar, 8 ounces of water, at least 20 drops of lemon essential oil. This solution will last for a while. Just be sure and shake it up every time before you use it.

A little lifehack from a Houston doctor Olga Bachilo: “Your medicine cabinet is also a resource for natural cleaning solutions. Keep a spray bottle mixed with water and rubbing alcohol. Use this solution for disinfecting and keeping your fixtures shiny”.

3. Best Green Cleaning Products For The Bathroom

Other than the kitchen, the bathroom is probably the area that needs the most attention in the house. If you have gotten used to the strong odor removers in chemical cleaners, the new scent of natural cleaning will refresh you. These ingredients will not only disinfect your bathroom but also remove odors even better than your old cleaners.

Cleaning sinks, showers, toilets, mold stains, and more can all be done with vinegar and water. Just spray your solution and let it sit for a few minutes. Then, scrub the area and rinse with your usual hot water. Rubbing alcohol is another great ingredient that will clean your fixtures and make them shine.

A set of yellow and black sponges for green cleaning.

4. Kitchen Green Cleaning Supplies

Vinegar, baking soda, and lemons are all very versatile green cleaning supplies you should always have stocked in your kitchen. We’ve all experienced the mess that happens after we cook and bake in the kitchen. The next time you clean your kitchen try using these ingredients to:

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Counters

Spray your counters, stove, or microwave with a solution of vinegar and warm water. After you wait for a few minutes, scrub the grease and food away with a reusable cloth.

Sinks

Use sliced lemons to scrub your cutting boards or even the inside of your sink. If you have tough sink stains or odors, mix a tablespoon of baking soda and make a paste. Use lemons instead of a scrub brush and scrub the sink clean.

Garbage Disposal

Baking soda eliminates odors in your garbage disposal. Drop a tablespoon or two into the garbage disposal along with ¼ cup of distilled vinegar. Let it sit for about 10 minutes and then run the disposal with hot water.

Also, you can use a lemon to deodorize your garbage disposal. Cut a lemon into pieces and drop it down the disposal. Run hot water and cut on the disposal.

Trashcan

Use baking soda in your trashcan as a deodorizer. This helps keep odors away and disinfects your trashcan. You can also put a few drops of lemon essential oil in the can.

Pots and Pans

Use a mixture of salt and lemons so your pots and pans won’t rust. If you have a cast iron skillet, rub it down with olive oil after every cleaning. This will keep down the rust on cast iron.

While some people like using fresh lemons, other people prefer to use lemon essential oil. The essential oils are highly concentrated so you won’t need as much in your cleaning solutions. Both types will work just as effectively.

5. Natural Carpet Cleaners

If you have children or pets, you probably have a few random stains on your carpets. Some commercial carpet cleaners can damage your carpets and they are expensive. The good thing is that clean, green carpet cleaning removes odors, stains, and is inexpensive.

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When you’re cleaning your carpets use ingredients like:

  • Distilled white vinegar
  • Salt
  • Essential oil of your choice (lavender or lemon is best)
  • Water

Mix these ingredients together in a glass spray bottle and shake it up. Generously spray the solution on the areas you want cleaned. After it’s dry, vacuum the area. If you have tough stains, you may need a scrub brush to work the dirt out of the carpet fibers.

6. Natural Laundry Treatment

Baking soda and vinegar work well on lifting stains and odors from clothing. Instead of using bleach, try adding ¼ cup of vinegar or baking soda to the washing machine. You can add these along with your normal laundry detergent. Vinegar also works as an excellent fabric softener.

If you have clothing with tough stains like grass or dirt, mix up a homemade baking soda and water paste. Scoop some on the stains and rub it in with your fingers. Then, toss the clothing into the washing machine and run the cycle like normal.

7. Green Home Cleaning For Clogged Drains

A helpful post on DoItYourself.com suggests you can try things like pouring baking soda and vinegar, which will create a bubbling reaction. Wait a few minutes and then pour very hot water down the drain. You can also pour very hot water and liquid soap down the drain to break up whatever is clogging it.

These are just some of the best green cleaning products and solutions for natural living. It is better for your health and the environment if you invest in natural cleaning solutions.

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8. If You Own a Business

Residential houses are not the only places where green cleaning is important. Commercial facilities also benefit from using green cleaning services. Companies who invest in green cleaning services can decrease health risks to their employees and possibly reduce sick leave requests.

Here is what Norma Wellington, a manager of a professional cleaning team of Quick Response janitorial service company from Houston TX, shares about the benefits of green cleaning in commercial facilities: “Сompanies should pay particular attention to carpet and upholstery to improve air quality in the building. Employees are stuck inside of these environments for 40 hours a week. Carpet tends to harbor dust and other allergens that cause respiratory issues in people. This is why it is important to use a company that works with green cleaning solutions rather than harsh chemicals. This further reduces toxins in the air”.

Here is another piece of advice from Rick Thomasthe manager of a luxury hotel in Vancouver Carmana Plaza: “For any business owner it is important that the work environment is healthy for people who work in it. It’s even more important if your business is a store or a hotel, which means a constant flow of a large amount of customers. It is a common myth that larger facilities need more chemical cleaning power. It is true that more people create more germs. However, natural products, that are often even cheaper, will scrub those germs away”.

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