It wasn’t too long ago that finding environmentally friendly cleaning products presented a major challenge. There were very few commercial options available, and what was there often required going to yet another store to find them. Even now, with many greener cleaners to be found on grocery shelves, sometimes, the only way to find a wide variety of green cleaning products is to shop online.
If you’ve tried green cleaning products in the past and just didn’t like them, it might be time to try them again. Today’s eco-friendly options are much better than their ancestors in the industry. Gone are the soapy mixes and smeary substances that smelled like… well, “unscented” things used to have a distinct, and unpleasant, scent of their own. We used to jokingly say, “It smells unscented!”
We’ve come a long way baby!
As one of our staff says, “My first forays into using all-natural, hypoallergenic laundry soap came because a certain person in my household has hypersensitive skin. My first reaction to this stuff was ‘ewww!’ Sure, my clothes looked clean, but they lacked that fresh-from-the-laundry smell. No, I didn’t want them smelling ‘mountain fresh’ (whatever that means!), but I did want them smelling like something.”
Enter the new generation of green cleaning products.
Today’s earth-conscious cleaners are safe for people and the environment, effective at doing their job and they’re either truly unscented, or they feature fresh, natural scents from nature. What’s even better is that they’re usually packaged better than their regular commercial counterparts – in super-concentrated formulas and containers made from recycled (and recyclable) materials.
Commonly available green cleaning brands include Mrs. Meyer’s, Seventh Generation and Green Works.
Do It Yourself
The green movement goes hand in hand with the DIY movement. Making your own cleaning products can be a great option as well – especially if you are dealing with severe allergies, or maybe you just ran out of your green cleaner and need to clean right now.
Chances are you have everything you need to achieve a sparkling home right under your sink (or maybe lurking in your cabinets or refrigerator).
In a pinch (as in, you ran out of the commercial stuff), you can mix up a quick batch of a basic cleaner and be in the cleaning business in no time.
There are tons of “recipes” for homemade cleaners out there on the web. We’ve included just a few of our favorites that are perfect for that “Oh no! I’m out of ___!” moment. You can add a drop or two of essential oil to any of these to make your home smell heavenly (and it masks the vinegar scent!)
All-Purpose Cleaner 1
- 1/4 C vinegar
- 1/8 C baking soda OR 1 Tbs Borax
- 1 Quart water
- Mix well. Spray or sponge on, wipe off
All-Purpose Cleaner 2
- 2 tsp Borax
- 4 Tbs vinegar
- 3 C hot water
- ¼ tsp castile soap
- Mix together. Spray or sponge on, wipe off.
Mix equal parts water and white vinegar. Add a drop of castile soap for very dirty jobs.
Shake to combine, spray on and wipe off with lint-free cloth.
If you happen to have washing soda on hand, you can mix equal parts washing soda and Borax together. Use 2 Tbs of the mixture to do a load of dishes. Baking soda can be substituted for the washing soda in a real pinch. Just don’t put any aluminum pans in there!