30 by 30: Homemade Cleaning Supplies

When you have a kid, you think about things that you have never really considered before. When I found out that there were “baby laundry detergents”, I wondered why we use different stuff for babies than we’d use for ourselves. What was in the ‘adult’ detergents that wasn’t safe for babies?

The toxins in everyday cleaning supplies began to concern me. Especially when I was cleaning Ivalee’s toys or her high chair – or the floor, where she spent so much time crawling. I thought about how often her toys go in her mouth, how she eats straight from her high chair table (you know the food never stays on the plate), and just how grungy the floor is anyway. And it bothered me to think about what chemical residues and toxins were making their way into her body.

So making our laundry powder was my first step in the homemade cleaners direction.

I considered making the change to homemade, natural cleaners for some time, but had some concerns about my house ‘reeking’ of vinegar. How would I know if these things were really cleaning if it didn’t ‘smell clean’? And when I mentioned this to Kyle a couple of years ago, he said, “I don’t want the house to smell like a pickle.” Ha. So I put the idea out of my mind.

click photo for source

Enter Pinterest. I found some recipes that promised to be fragrant and naturally effective and I was sold.

So here was my shopping list:
White Vinegar
Baking Soda
Washing Soda
Dr. Bronner’s Liquid Castile Soap (I bought citrus and peppermint scents)
Lavender essential oil (I also picked up Tea Tree Oil)

Of the four products in the picture above, I’ve made three and use them regularly.

The Tub/Sink/Tile Cleaner is great! Seriously, great! We have a really tiny bathroom with poor ventilation. An issue I’ve had cleaning the tub and tile in the shower is that by the time I’d get the tub good and clean, the tiny room would be so full of ‘chemical stink’ that I couldn’t breathe to get the tile walls around the shower cleaned.

But with the Tub/Sink/Tile cleaner and a little green scratchy pad, I spent about 30 minutes in there washing the tiles and hardware and tub and they REALLY shine. AND I could breathe and got the whole job finished at one time!

Our second favorite of the “recipes” is the Antibacterial Spray. Lavender (or Tea Tree, but we used Lavender) essential oil and water. So easy. And I use it to wipe down counters at the end of the day; for cleaning Ivalee’s high chair; for de-gunking her toys. It smells so nice after you use it too. Kyle uses this for everything just because he loves the smell. 🙂 I use this product like I used Clorox Anywhere Hard-Surface before. It’s not a deep cleaner, but it takes care of the germs.

And, even though it’s last on the list, we really like the All Purpose Cleaner too. I give it a good shake (it separates a little), spray, and wipe.  I use it to clean all hard surfaces. It really gets the grime off! I used the citrus soap in this recipe and it leaves a nice fresh – but not overbearing – scent. I’ll probably try the peppermint next.

All the recipes I used and other information about these products are here. Lots of good ideas in the comments section too!

Do you have any natural cleaning ‘recipes’ or methods that you use?

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