DIY Non-Toxic Household Cleaners

I have shared before about how I decided to no longer keep toxic, commercial cleaners in our home, and how I have learned how to save money by making my own household cleaners.

The best part about this decision, besides the fact that this helps cut down on the amount of chemicals my family is regularly exposed to, is that the list of ingredients to have on hand to make your own household cleaners, including laundry detergent, is a short one.

The following is the list of items I keep on my own cabinet shelf (click each item to find out just how versatile these items are!):

Borax

Washing soda

Baking soda

White distilled vinegar

Hydrogen peroxide– check out my post about using this as a stain remover here.

Bar soap (used for making homemade liquid laundry detergent or homemade dry detergent)

Tea tree oil

Other items: bucket, rags, and several spray bottles. You probably also will notice a bottle of Ajax- it doesn’t seem like there is any cheap way to make your own dish soap, but once the Ajax is gone I may take a look for a cheap, non-toxic and earth friendly commercial product to use.

So far I have had wonderful results using this list for my household cleaning needs, and I love that I have been able to get rid of a bunch of those chemicals that used to crowd the cabinet beneath my sink! Just the other day I was able to get a bunch of greasy grime off the windowsills above our stove using baking soda and vinegar. I’m pretty sure NO ONE had ever cleaned those sills before, you can’t imagine how dirty they were. But the bubbly action of the soda and vinegar definitely did the trick!

Have you tried any homemade household cleaners, or have you found any awesome commercial products? Any additional thoughts on keeping toxins excess chemicals out of the home? Leave a comment!

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9 thoughts on “DIY Non-Toxic Household Cleaners

  1. I just recently started doing this! I bought some borax to clean the soap scum out of our bathtub (which by the way is the only product I’ve found that actually works) and I found out I could also use it to make laundry detergent. It’s so much cheaper; I can’t believe I haven’t been doing this for the past five years. I also found that using lemon juice and salt to clean my wood cutting board works great and takes away the onion and garlic smell. This is a great website: http://www.savvyhomemade.com/index.html
    Thanks Kate, great blog!

    • I’ll have to try the salt and lemon! We actually have a wood topped island in our kitchen which has always been a trick to clean…
      Isn’t borax great? I don’t think I’ll ever be able to go back to buying products that only have one use. Happy Valentine’s Day!

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  6. Hey, kind of random, but I heard recently that you have to be careful what you use tea tree oil for. I’m not sure if this is entirely accurate (so it’s worth looking into), but I heard that contact with the oil can trigger a release of estrogen. I don’t know if this would matter with cleaning products (maybe laundry?), but I don’t think it would be good to use in deodorant as some recipes call for it. The estrogen under the arms can influence breast tumors and even cause men to develop extra breast tissue. Similar case with lavender oil.

    • Interesting. We actually have never made homemade deodorant- we use natural deodorant like Tom’s since the ingredients in just about every commercial version cause cancer. Sheesh, no way to win! Anyway- I just use a drop of tea tree oil in my cleaners for antibacterial purposes.

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