One of the most silent health and safety hazards in the modern times is the chemical buildup in our homes. Chemicals from cleaning agents not only weaken the health of people living in the house, but also add to environmental pollution, adding up to the highly toxic environment that we live in today.
As citizens of the world it is our duty and responsibility to reduce the toxins released in the environment in any small way possible. Using natural cleaning alternatives in households is a small, but effective way to start.
Let us look at some commonly found natural alternatives that are as effective as their chemical based counterparts for cleaning purposes. Along with doing a great job at cleaning, these alternatives also help in bringing about a much healthier atmosphere in your home.
- Vinegar – This is one of the most effective all-purpose cleaners that you can have in your household. Mix it with water or baking soda to tackle tough stains, clean tiles and other surfaces, get rid of unsightly stains in your bathroom and remove odors. It also works as a great fabric softener. You can keep the vinegar solution in a spray bottle for quick table, mirror and glass wipes.
- Lemon – This is an excellent source of food based acid, which is great for tackling bacteria. It is effective in loosening scum marks, and dissolving water stains and soap buildup. It works excellently on metals like copper and brass and gives them a shiny and clean appearance. Lemons have bleaching properties so it is best to test this alternative on a small hidden area before full fledged use on a surface.
- Baking soda – It is a great non-abrasive cleaner that has deodorizing characteristics as well. It can be mixed with vinegar, lemon juice and water to make an all-purpose solution that does not have a smell of its own.
- Cooking oils – Cooking oils like olive oil and sunflower oil, in addition to other plant based oils are great for cleaning kitchenware like stainless steel utensils and cast iron pans. They function as great polishing agents for wood, wicker and even leather shoes. Mix some oil with coarse salt for cleaning purposes while add a few drops on a clean piece of cloth for polishing purposes.
- Essential oils – There are some essential oils like tea tree, peppermint, and orange, which are fantastic bacteria killing cleaning agents. Mix a few drops with water or vinegar to add freshness and eliminate molds from your bathrooms. You can even consider cleaning your combs and brushes with the solution. Using them to clean window and door glasses will not only help remove sticky grime but also repel mosquitoes.
All these ingredients are usually easily available in most households. You can concoct your very own cleaning solutions at a moment’s notice without having to stock up on harmful chemical cleaning agents. Use steam to add strength to the powers of these substances when tackling tough stains and dirt build up.