Other Homemade Cleaners

Guest Post from Julia Young

Additional Cleaners

 

Not everything for cleaning is narrowed down to either laundry, kitchen, bathroom, or floors. There are some items that needed to dust, clean windows, and all those other little things that aren’t in the kitchen or bathroom.

 

Wood Dusting Spray

1/3 cup water

2 Tbsp Murphy’s Oil
10-15 drops of essential oil of your choice

Combine all ingredients in a spray bottle. Shake well. Spray and immediately clean with a microfiber cloth.

 

Window Cleaner

1 cup water

1 cup white vinegar

10 drops of lemon essential oil

 

Combine all ingredients in a spray bottle. Shake well. Spray and wipe clean with microfiber cloth.

 

Wall Cleaner

1 cups water

3/4 cup white vinegar

10 drops of essential oil of your choice (I use orange because it helps with removing sticky residue.

 

Combine all ingredients in a small bucket and stir to combine. Using a clean sponge, ring out excess soultion and wipe the area to be treated. Remember to avoid water drip lines work from the bottom up.

 

Fabric-Freshener Spray

1 cup water

2 tsp unflavored vodka or witch hazel

1 tsp cornstarch or arrowroot powder

5 drops of essential oil of choice

 

Combine ingredients in a spray bottle. Shake well until cornstarch or arrowroot powder has dissolved. Spray 6-8 inches of fabric or carpet. Shake between uses.

 

Additional Air Freshener Tricks

  • Combine baking soda and a little lemon juice (or a few drops of essential oil)  in decorative dish or bowl to absorb household odors and freshener the air.
  • Add spices like cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, or rosemary with a couple apple, orange, or lemon slices and water to a pan on the stove. Simmer on the stove, adding water periodically so that the mixture doesn’t burn.

 

 

 

Guest Post by Julia Young: Homemade Laundry Cleaners

Doing the Laundry

Laundry is that dreaded task that one does every day in order to keep clean clothes in the house, which isn’t always possible with little ones. When I was using store bought cleaners, I felt like I ran out of laundry detergent every time I turned around. Every grocery trip seemed to result in me picking up a new bottle. Now I make a batch of detergent twice a year, and this is with me having an all-boy three-year-old.

 Liquid Laundry Detergent

I use the Duggar’s family recipe (with one change) which is easy to find online.

4 Cups hot tap water
1 bar of Kirk’s Castile Soap, grated (the Duggar recipe use Fels-Naptha, but if you look up the ingredients on that you will find it is not very natural)
1 Cup of Arm & Hammer Washing Soda
½ Cup Borax

Combine grated bar of soap and water in a saucepan. Stir continually over medium-low heat until soap dissolves and is melted. Fill a 5 gallon bucket half full of hot tap water. Add melted soap, washing soda and Borax. Stir well until all powder is dissolved. Fill bucket to top with more hot water. Stir, cover, and let sit overnight to thicken. Once again do some stirring and fill a used, clean, milk jug half full with soap and then fill rest of way with water. Shake before each use (contents will gel). Add 10-15 drops of essential per 2 gallons. Recipe yields 10 gallons of detergent. To put in perspective, one gallon of homemade laundry detergent is roughly three store bought detergents.

Top Load Machine- 5/8 Cup per load (Approx. 180 loads)

Front Load Machines- ¼ Cup per load (Approx. 640 loads)

As with all other homemade cleaning soaps, you will not see the suds commercial cleaners have. Remember it’s the ingredients – not the suds – that clean.

 

Powdered Laundry Detergent

1 bar of Kirk’s Castile Soap, grated

1 cup washing soda

1 cup Borax

1 cup powered bleach (optional)

Combine all ingredients in a container. Make sure you stir thoroughly, for best results use a food processor. Use about 1tablespoon for lite loads and 2 tablespoons for heavy loads. You can add essential oil to this by adding 10 drops to the washing soda and mixing before combining all ingredients.

 

Fabric Softener

8 cups water

6 cups white vinegar

1 cup baking soda

20 drops essential oil of choice

Combine all ingredients and mix well. Remember to slowly add the vinegar and baking soda together, unless you want to make a volcano mess. Shake before each use and add ½ cup to rinse cycle. To store this, you can use an old vinegar or fabric softener bottle.

 

Stain Pre-treater

½  cup baking soda

1 cup water

½ cup hydrogen peroxide

Combine ingredients in a spray bottle. (Do not use a clear bottle as light causes hydrogen peroxide to break down.) Put pre-treater on the spot, fold the clothing on top of itself, and wait 20 minutes. Wash as usual.

 

Stain Remover Tricks

  • If you are in a pinch, you can use pure 3% hydrogen peroxide on the stain. Hydrogen peroxide works as a bleach, so test a small unseen part of your clothing to make sure it doesn’t damage the color. I have never had any problems using it on all colors, but wanted to make you aware that it can cause damage.
  • If you have a stain that won’t go away try hanging your garment out in sun. The sun acts as a natural bleacher. This is a great way to get your whites looking white.

 

Cloth Diaper Cleaner (for those of us with little people)

1 cup Arm & Hammer Washing Soda

1 cup Borax

1/2 cup of OxiClean Free

Combine all ingredients in a container. Use 1-2 tablespoons per load. If your diapers still smell unclean, try adding more detergent or use an extra rinse cycle. This recipe will not remove all stains, but put your diapers out in the sun for some super awesome sun bleaching to get them white again.

 

 

 

Homemade Floor Cleaners, Guest Post by Julia

Guest Post from Julia Young

 

Making Your Floors Shine

 

I really only have four simple recipes to cleaning your floors. There usually isn’t an overabundance of different floor cleaning methods, so the natural solutions are pretty simple.

 

Carpets generally need a deodorizer like something Arm and Hammer makes with added smell good, or they need something to remove a stain.

 

Carpet Deodorizer

½ cup of baking soda

8-10 drops of essential oil of your choice

 

Combine ingredients and sprinkle on floor. Wait 15 minutes and vacuum.

 

Carpet Stain Remover

½ cup of white vinegar

½ cup of water

 

Combine in spray bottle. Always blot your stain first until no more can be lifted. Spray on the solution and let sit for 10 minutes. Clean the stain gently with a sponge, brush, washcloth, etc. and warm water. This works for furniture too! If you have light colored carpet try Hydrogen Peroxide.

 

With tile, laminate, hardwood, and all other kinds of non-carpet floors something to use with a mop with is needed. I typically don’t use a traditional mop and bucket, but all of these recipes can be adjusted to be used as such. I prefer the Rubbermaid Reveal mop which has a removable cloth pad and a chamber where I can place a bottle with the pre-mixed solution, thus creating a squirt and mop job.

 

Hardwood Floor Cleaner

2 cups of water

2 cups of vinegar

20 drops of the essential oil of your choice

Combine ingredients in a squirt bottle, shake, and mop with your squirt and go mop.

 

Tile Floor Cleaner (I use this on more than just tile, but not on wood)

3½  cups of water

½ of white vinegar

3-4 drops of castile soap

5 drops of essential oil of your choice

 

Combine in a squirt bottle, shake, and mop with your squirt and go mop.

Guest Post by Julia Young: Natural Bathroom Cleaners

Keeping a Bathroom Clean Naturally

The bathroom is the place that we like to clean ourselves, but it is also one of the most germ-y places in our house. Keeping it clean is of the utmost importance, especially when you have young, barely potty-trained boys in your home. There are a ton of bathroom cleaning recipes online that will promise you scrubbing power, disinfectant power, or whatever cleaning power you are after. I have bought many spray bottles to try all these different formulas but have found only a handful that I like and use regularly. Many of the online recipes for cleaners with scrubbing power call for ingredients that settle in the spray bottle and do not remix well. The best items to use for scrubbing are baking soda and vinegar.  From experience I have found that if you are using baking soda and vinegar regularly, it is easier to keep shaker of baking soda and spray bottle of vinegar handy. If you are making a batch to use as a one time deal then mix before use.

Daily Shower Spray

  • 4 oz of liquid castile soap (you can buy Dr. Bohnner’s brand at Kroger in the organic section or make your own by grating some castile soap, adding some water (10 cups for a full bar), and melting it in a large pot. Let the mixture sit for a day before using)
  • 16 oz of rubbing alcohol or 80-100 proof clean grain alcohol (I use vodka when making mine since the smell isn’t that strong.)
  • Enough water to make a gallon

Combine all these ingredients in a spray bottle. After each shower, I squeegee down the walls and spray this on my shower. This is what I also use to clean my bathroom sink, counter, and toilet surface.

Mold Killer

  • ½ cup of hydrogen proxide
  • 1 cup of water
  • 6 drops of essential oil of your choice

Combine all ingredients in a spray bottle. Spray area was mold has formed, allow to sit for a few hours, rinse with water.

Toilet Bomb

  • ¼ cup of baking soda
  • 1 cup of white vinegar
  • 10 drops essential oil of choice (I prefer Tea Tree as it smells like a bathroom cleaner to me)

Carefully combine baking soda and vinegar, then add essential oil. Kids love making this one so if have little ones this a great way to get them involved. Make sure you give a stir before pouring into the toilet as the baking soda will sometimes settle at the bottom. Pour contents into toilet, let sit a minute, and scrub.

Keep your toilet fresh and proactively clean by adding ½ cup of white vinegar to your tank once a week. Let the vinegar sit for 30 minutes and flush.

 Drain Cleaner

  • 1 cup baking soda
  • 1 cup salt
  • 1 ½ cups of white vinegar
  • pot of boiling water

Pour baking soda slowly down the drain (you can use a little vinegar if it’s not moving). Pour salt, then slowly pour vinegar (you may need to use the handle of a wooden spoon to push the mixture along). Wait 15-20 minutes before flushing with the boiling water.

A couple of quick cleaning tricks. If your shower head has stopped up, fill up a baggie of with white vinegar, place on shower head using a rubber band, and let sit for an hour. Clean shower head with a wet cloth. To scrub the shower or sink, use some baking soda and vinegar for that scrubbing action. If you need to quick toilet clean keep a shaker of baking soda and a spray bottle of vinegar in your bathroom. Sprinkle some baking soda in the toilet, spray with vinegar, let sit a minute, and scrub. With any of these quick cleaning techniques you can add essential oil to make it smell better. Add the oil to the baking soda for constant freshness or add it as you scrub.

Homemade Cleaners – a guest post by Julia Young

Cleaning The Kitchen Naturally

Recently Lynne posted a homemade and natural way to clean your sink. So, based on the fact that I seem to be the person she knows that uses the most homemade cleaners, I was asked to write a post or two (or three) about natural cleaning products.

I have not always used natural cleaners and, like many of you my think, I thought that without Clorox something could not be cleaned. Of course, I was wrong. Three years ago when my son was born, my loving parents made me throw out all my nasty, harsh, chemical cleaners in favor of the Seventh Generation “natural” brand. Seventh Generation is a wonderful brand and far more natural than Mr. Clean; however, because of the USDA organic guidelines not being as strict as they should be, it is still not as natural as making your own cleaners. Plus it costs an arm and leg with hardly any coupons available.

When I started thinking about what I would do if my son got a hold of one of those cleaning bottles, I completely freaked out and immediately started researching how to make my own stuff. I did not want to have to think about what chemicals accidentally got on – – or worse IN – my child. I now use my own homemade natural products for everything cleaning wise. By “natural” I mean that I use nothing that can be found on the cleaning aisle except Murphy’s Oil, washing soda and Borax as each of these are naturally derived products.

To aid you in your natural cleaning experience, I thought I would start with a room that most of the ingredients can be found, the kitchen. I have two cleaners that get used in my kitchen the most:  my all-purpose cleaner and a disinfectant. I have tried a myriad of other things but these two are tried and true in my house. Here are the “recipes.”

All-Purpose Cleaner:    Soak some orange peels in white vinegar for 2 weeks (I usually use two-three oranges and a 1.5 cups of vinegar). After soaking,  add 1 cup of water, 1 cup of white vinegar, 1 tablespoon of baking soda. Add essential oil of choice.     Place all ingredients in a spray bottle.

Disinfectant:  Mix 2 cups of hot water, 2 tablespoons of white vinegar, and 1 teaspoon of Borax (I know this isn’t usually found in your kitchen cabinets but go ahead and get some you will need it to make your own laundry detergent). Add essential oil of your choice .    Place all ingredients in a spray bottle.

If you are a fan of Clorox disinfectant wipes, you can make those too! Just get some old shirts, take some scissors to them, put them in a air tight container (I use an old baby wipes box) and add 1 cup of water, ½ teaspoon of liquid castile soap, and essential oil of choice.

I also make my own dish liquid. I don’t have a dish washer, so I haven’t researched a good homemade recipe for that.

Homemade Dish Liquid: 1 bar of castile soap  (Kirk’s Original is the best  and you can find it usually on the bottom shelf of the soap aisle ( it is coconut oil soap thus meeting my natural requirement.), 1 tablespoon of washing soda (once again this is an item you need to make your own laundry detergent), 1 cup of white vinegar, roughly 1 gallon of water, and 20 drops of the essential oil of your choice. Grate your bar of soap. Add grated soap and ½ gallon of water to large pot and heat until the soap is melted. Do not boil the liquid. Add washing soda and stir until it dissolves. Add vinegar, essential oil, rest of water which is about 1 cup less than a ½ gallon. Allow the mixture to cool and transfer it to a container.  I usually use an old milk jug for storing it. Allow it to cure one day before using. Take an old dish liquid container and add your homemade stuff to it. Remember to shake before each use. Don’t be alarmed if it doesn’t bubble up as it shouldn’t. If you find too much of a soapy residue on your dishes, add more vinegar to your soap.

A quick word about essential oils since I mentioned them in all my recipes. Essential oils have anti-fungal, antibacterial, and antiviral properties. You can make all of these kitchen cleaners without them but they won’t have that extra cleaning whammy or the nice smell of the oils. For my oils, I personally use DoTerra products as their oils are “therapeutic grade,” meaning they can be used aromatically, topically, or internally. Most essential oil brands state on their label that they are for aromatic use only which doesn’t solve the problem of what happens if the cleaners get on or in my child.  (If you are interested in finding DoTerra oils you can contact me and I will gladly hook you up with some of your own.)

Next week I will go over the scary bathroom.