Mission: Spring Clean Your Home Green

clean home

We have compiled a list of the 8 staples that every home should have in order to begin cleaning your home the non-toxic way.

1.    Lemon Juice
2.    White Vinegar
3.    Borax (sodium borate)
4.    Washing soda (A.K.A. soda ash, sodium carbonate)
5.    Baking soda (sodium bicarbonate)
6.    Dry Salt
7.    Sodium percarbonate and hydrogen peroxide (alternatives to chlorine bleach)
8.    Mild liquid soap (castile, olive oil soap)

Here are some basic tips to get you started:

•    For removing mildew and stains, scrub the dirty surface with borax or baking soda.

•   Baking Soda Clean and Deodorizes– kitchen and bathroom surfaces. To make a general-purpose cleaner, dissolve 4 tablespoons of baking soda in 1 quart of warm water. To replace abrasive cleaners, sprinkle baking soda directly on a damp cloth or sponge and scrub. Add some dry salt for an extra burst of power.

•    Natural acidic substances such as Vinegar and Lemon Juice remove mineral deposit and wax or grease buildup. To clean glass or stainless steel, dilute them in water (use equal parts white vinegar and warm water).

•    To clear clogged drains, pour baking soda and vinegar down the drain, followed by 3 cups of boiling water. (Mixing baking soda and vinegar creates a bubbling, fizzing chemical reaction.) Don’t use this mixture in conjunction with a toxic cleaner!

•    Washing Soda is perfect for tough jobs such as cleaning greasy ovens and grills. Its alkalinity makes it caustic, so wear gloves when using it. Look for Arm & Hammer’s Super Washing Soda in stores’ cleaning aisles.

Know your Green Cleaners

These days, many manufacturers market cleaning products as “green” or “environmentally friendly. Unfortunately there are no standard definitions for those terms, and labels aren’t regulated, so they can mean almost anything— or nothing at all. Here are some attributes you can look for on your labels:

•    “Readily Biodegradable”~ defined as 60-70% biodegradable within 28 days.
•    Plant-Based or Bio-Based Ingredients~ rather than petrochemical ingredients.
•    Neutral or Mild pH- closer to 7 than 0 or 14
•    Recyclable Packaging ~ or reusable, returnable or refillable container
•    Unscented
•    Low VOC or Zero VOC~ Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are toxic chemicals emitted into the air.
•    Recycled-Content Packaging~ and/or minimal packaging.

We hope these simple ideas will get you started on your way to a non-toxic home.

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