Many of us are becoming more conscious about the products we use to clean our homes, we are more aware that chemical-based cleaning solutions could be having a negative impact on our health, and we are more determined to cut out wasteful and plastic-based products wherever we can. A solution to these issues can include adopting a more natural and eco-friendly approach to cleaning, selecting toxin-free and plastic-free products wherever possible and trying some homemade solutions as well.
These solutions are often much better for you, much cheaper in the long run, and also much more Earth-friendly than using supermarket alternatives.
We have written A Guide To Eco-Friendly Cleaning to introduce you to natural, plastic-free cleaning, and to give you a number of ideas and product tips for getting started.
Read on to discover essential ingredients for DIY cleaning solutions, an overview of essential oils, 5 ideas for natural cleaning including lime & grapefruit toilet fizz tablets, orange & tea tree disinfectant, powerful drain unblocker, oven & hob cleaner, and how to make your own fantastic wet wipes. We've also included some the most popular plastic-free and/or reusable cleaning products at The Eco Shop, including ready-made cleaning powders, reusable laundry eggs, biodegradable cloths & scrubs, dissolvable cleaning bottle refills, washable sponges, washing-up soap bars, and a plastic-free toilet brush and holder.
DIY Natural Home Cleaning
Many people mistakenly think that natural cleaners dont work as well as chemical cleaners, but you will be very pleased with the results when you give it a go. Shop-bought products are fuelled with chemicals which can aggravate skin, eyes, and cause or worsen breathing difficulties. In some situation, a powerful chemical cleaning may be necessary. But for every day cleaning, utilising the best nature has to offer can be such a better option.
Many natural cleaners use the same base of ingredients, so before you get started on making your own it's useful to ensure you have most of the following items ready at home:
- Distilled white vinegar
- Bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
- Washing soda or sodium carbonate
- Castille Soap - bar & liquid
- Lemons and lemon juice
- Salts - epsom salts & sea salts
- Oils - almond, olive, vitamin E & coconut
- Hydrogen peroxide
- Alcohol - rubbing alcohol and vodka
- Aloe vera gel
Essential oils are vital when making your own products, and they come in a plethora of fantastic smells. Not only are they high in antibacterial properties, but they are also anti fungal and antiviral, making them an excellent addition to your homemade recipes.
Essential oils are highly concentrated plant constituents possessing medicinal and cosmetic qualities. They are extracted through steam distillation or by cold-pressing herbs, plants or flowers. All of the benefits of these things are distilled into the tiniest droplets and bottled up - so they're super potent and its recommended you avoid them on bare skin and only use them when diluted.
When buying essential oils:
- Check which brands are the highest quality
- Only buy organic, 100% pure oils - to ensure there are no synthetics
- Always check the ingredients, make sure you're getting exactly what you think, and that you dont accidentally purchase synthetic perfumes.
Playing around with blends of different oils can have fantastic outcomes and uses.
5 Natural Home Cleaning Ideas
Natural Home Cleaning by Fern Green
To discover over 100 ideas and recipes for cleaning your home naturally, purchase this fantastic book and be dazzled by the wonders you can achieve with natural ingredients.
Natural Home Cleaning at The Eco Shop
Browse our range of plastic-free, zero-waste and super effective cleaning powders including floor cleaner, toilet scrub, washing up powder, and laundry powder. Planet Detox cleaning powders are also 100% vegan and toxin-free. They come in 500g recyclable paper packets so you can fill up your own airtight containers at home - a great addition to your plastic-free cleaning collection.
An eco-friendly, natural alternative to laundry liquid and washing powder, ecoegg laundry eggs use natural mineral pellets which activate in the water to gently remove dirt and odours, leaving your clothes thoroughly cleaned and fresh. Hypoallergenic and completely free from harsh chemicals, ecoegg laundry eggs are reusable and zero waste. Click here to read our in-depth review and guide of the ecoegg laundry egg.
In our Cleaning section, you can browse a great range of fantastic reusable or biodegrading cleaning utensils, including washable sponges, plastic-free brushes and scourers, and compostable cleaning cloths. They are all so much better for the environment, and are as good if not better than most supermarket plastic-based products.
OceanSaver offer an amazing waste-free cleaning solution, whereby their dissolvable cleaning pods make any old cleaning spray bottle into a reusable bottle! Simply dissolve a pod into your bottle, shake up, use and repeat. If every household used these, millions of new plastic bottles would be avoided.
Ditch liquids in plastic bottles for this zero-waste, 100% natural washing-up soap bar from EcoLiving. Each bar lasts 6 months and is fantastic value for money as it can be used for washing up and for cleaning surfaces around the home. Plastic-free, biodegradable, vegan and Palm Oil free, it's the perfect way to get your dishes squeaky clean!
This fantastic toilet brush & holder set from EcoLiving is 100% plastic-free. The toilet brush has plant-based bristles so will not shed micro-plastics into the ocean, and is biodegradable and compostable at the end of its life. The metal holder is reusable and recyclable after use.