DIY Home Cleaning Recipes
We offer up some recipes for natural alternatives to your everyday household cleaners.
Household cleaners can not only be expensive, but also harmful to your health and the environment. You can cut the cost (and the chemicals that your family’s exposed to) by creating your own natural solutions, using ingredients that you likely already have. From DIY hand sanitizers to all-purpose glass cleaners, here are some of our favourite home cleaning recipes you’ll want to try for yourself!
Get your essentials ready
Before you get started, gather a few ingredients often called for in DIY concoctions. Many of these items can be used alone, but some are really effective when combined. Your cleaning caddy should include:
Essential oils like tea tree, lemongrass and lavender
Not only are these items good at removing mould and dissolving grease, but they can also disinfect surfaces and minimize germs, too.
If soap and water aren’t available, the Public Health Agency of Canada says you can use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer instead. If you’re in a pinch, all you need are 3 simple ingredients to make your own:
Aloe vera gel
Essential oil of your choice (or lemon juice)
The key to making an effective hand sanitizer is to use a 2:1 proportion of alcohol to aloe vera. This will keep the alcohol content around 60%, the minimum amount needed to kill most germs. And health officials warn never to make hand sanitizer using alcohol that’s intended for consumption.
It’s always good to have a versatile cleaner available for bathrooms, kitchens and even your child’s nursery. This safe and effective solution will not only kill germs, but also leave rooms smelling fresh. Here’s what you’ll need:
2 cups water
1/2 cup distilled white vinegar
3/4 cup hydrogen peroxide
1 teaspoon unscented liquid Castile soap
20 drops lavender essential oil
10 drops tea tree oil
Add all the ingredients to a spray bottle, and shake it up. Use this DIY solution for all your general cleaning needs. For an extra boost, spray first, then sprinkle on some baking soda and wipe down with a sponge.
From high-traffic hallways to busy mudrooms, household floors can use a good cleaning – especially if you have pets or kids. Vinegar is the key ingredient in this all-natural floor cleaner that can safely remove dirt and bacteria from a variety of surfaces.
Mix together about 4 litres of water with ½ cup of vinegar. Pour the solution into a bucket and mop the floors. Because this cleaner contains alcohol, never use it on stone floors, as it can strip the finish. Instead, use a less abrasive DIY solution like this one, which calls for castile soap and baking soda.
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Did you know a bit of water and bleach is powerful enough to effectively kill off germs? All you need is ⅓ cup of regular chlorine bleach per 4 litres of water to make your own disinfectant.
Wearing gloves, dip a clean cloth into your homemade solution and wipe down the surface. Leave the mixture for about 5 minutes, allowing it to air dry. Afterwards, rinse all surfaces with warm water. While you’re working with the disinfectant, remember to:
Be careful not to get the bleach into your eyes
Use mixture sparingly on stainless steel sinks
Never use old solution; always discard and make a fresh batch
Other tips for cleaning your home
Although DIY solutions can be effective in reducing germs, nothing is more powerful than practicing good hygiene and cleaning your home regularly. These tips will help keep your space germ-free year-round:
Regular soap and water only goes so far
Although this combination will cut down on the overall amount of bacteria, the only way to actually kill germs is to sanitize or disinfect surfaces after cleaning them. Not sure what the difference is between cleaning and disinfecting? We delved into that in here.
Not all alcohol is made equal
Isopropyl alcohol is effective in killing viruses, but only at a concentration of 70%. This amount is always best for obliterating germs on contact. Pure alcohol (100% concentration) evaporates too quickly to be effective.
Test surfaces for safety
Because many homemade cleaners call for vinegar or hydrogen peroxide, always test your solution on a hidden spot beforehand. Acidic ingredients can strip marble and other stone surfaces of their finish.
Preventative cleaning is one of the best ways to keep germs under control before they take over your space. Small, consistent actions will ensure the health of your family, so you can continue enjoying each other’s company in a clean, germ-free environment!
While you’re scrubbing away, blast our Spring Clean playlist to help you get through the grime! s