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Green Cleaning

As part of my effort to lead a more green and healthy lifestyle, with fewer toxic products in my home, I have started learning about green cleaning. With just a few ingredients you can make most of your cleaners, and they generally work as well as the store-bought ones. In addition, your home-made cleaners will almost always be cheaper than the ones you buy ready-made in the store!

The basic ingredients that you will need are vinegar, baking soda, and water. For some cleaning jobs you might also want hydrogen peroxide, grapefruit seed extract, essential oils such as lemon or thyme, or borax. Two great articles/posts on this topic can be found at: Little Acorns to Mighty Oaks and Green America.

I used baking soda to clean my stove top yesterday and it worked great, and I am planning on testing out different variations of mixtures of grapefruit seed extract, vinegar, and essential oils, on the mildew around the window in my shower. Please share any suggestions or tips!


  1. I made homemade cleaning supplies as Christmas gifts 2 Christmases ago, and posted the recipes (as well as links for more recipes) on my blog here:

    I mostly just use vinegar though. I keep spray bottles around the house. It kills germs, get's rid of odors, mold, mildew, hard water build up, it's super cheap, and you don't have to rinse it. What's not to love? I use it to clean toys, bathroom surfaces, counter tops, floors... just about everything. It even makes a great air sanitizer because it kills the germs in the air that cause odors. When it dries, the vinegar smell is gone along with the original smell (GREAT for after potty smells!). I could go on & on... sorry for the rambling!

    Kris :)

  2. For my stove and all grease on pans and glass ware I use a mixture of 4 parts baking soda to one part washing soda. It is like magic!! I also use vinger and some borax. My laundry soap is just bar soap, baking soda and water. My dish washer soap is borax, washing soda, salt and some lemon koolaid. Love green cleaning! Cheap and harmfree!

  3. I use borax a lot: shower, sinks, kitchen, pots and pans, and best of all, you can make gak with it!

  4. Thank you all for the great ideas and uses for the various green cleaning products. Now, should I give away all my old "traditional" products on freecycle?

  5. I gave green all purpose cleaners as part of Christmas gifts this year, too (along with reusable cloths). They weren't a hit with everyone, though. Oh well!

  6. This is great info! We just watched a movie called No Impact Man and they washed all of their clothes with a combination of the ingredients you mention. They just threw the clothes in the tub and walked all over them like they were squishing grapes. Such a great idea!

  7. Vinegar is an amazing cleaning agent and almost always available in the house.It can soak up a lot of oils and dirt and also cleans with a shine left behind.


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