Monday, May 11, 2015

Tried & Tested Non-Toxic Cleaning Guide

The birds are chirping, the snow has melted, the flowers are growing:  it's been Spring for a while now.  Have you tackled Spring Cleaning? If not, its a great time to make a transition into non-toxic cleaning this Spring!


Ask yourself: are your cleaning products cleaning your house or contaminating it? Your family will touch, breathe & absorb the ingredients used in your cleaning products - for days after you cleaned, and continual exposure to hundreds of cleaners, even some of those labelled as "green" or "natural," can have serious health effects, especially on children.

  • LINKS TO ASTHMA: There is a  large and growing body of evidence that links frequent use of many ordinary cleaning supplies at home with development of asthma and other respiratory problems in otherwise healthy individuals
  • Common cleaning ingredients in name brand cleaning products have been found to have 1,4-dioxane (a carcinogen) , others (many lemon and pine scented products)  release low levels of cancer-causing formaldehyde.
  • Children born to women who held cleaning jobs while pregnant have an elevated risk of birth defects,
  • Only 7% of cleaning products fully list their ingredients - what are they hiding?

After reading how dangerous the chemicals used in conventional cleaners could be - one of our readers asked if I could provide her with a detailed list of what products we buy at home or make for cleaning each room in the house....  So here it is - a non-toxic guide to cleaning (Spring Cleaning and year long cleaning!)..... only products and DIY recipes that I have personally tried and liked at home made it to the list!

Bathroom Cleaners 
(all items mentioned are available on my Amazon shop)

Make Your Own

  • 1/2 c baking soda with 1/4 c white vinegar: mix into a paste and scrub  in bathtub, showers and counter tops
  • organic apple cider vinegar: pour in toilet and leave in for 30-60 minutes, then scrub a bit and flush 
  • Castille Soap or 365 Whole Foods Liquid Dish soap (or other safe liquid dish soap) - for soap scum on tubs

Drain Opener/ Clog Removal

Make your own
Baking soda, vinegar , boiling water: Pour a pot of boiling hot water down your drain. Follow with 1/2 c. baking soda. Let that sit for a few minutes.Then, pour a mixture of 1 c. vinegar and 1. c very hot water on top of the baking soda. let it sit for 5-10 minutes. Flush one more time with a pot of boiling water. 


**stay away from fabric softener - instead use dryer balls or pour some white distilled vinegar into dryer.


  • White, distilled vinegar and water (counter top, disinfectant etc) 
  •  Bon Ami Powder Cleanser 14oz (sink) 
  • Earth Friendly Products Stone Counter top Cleaner Natural Parsley (granite stone cleaners) 
  • Seventh Generation Auto Dish Powder - 45 oz
  • CAST IRON PANS: Such a good alternative to avoid Teflon non-stick pans- but they are challenging to wash. Combine olive oil and a teaspoon of coarse salt in the pan. Scrub with a stiff brush, rinse with hot water. Do not clean with soap or in dishwasher 
Floor Cleaners 
Make Your Own
  •  Vinegar (not for marble or stone floors) - if the smell bothers you add a 1-2 drops of essential oils. 1/4 cup of white vinegar with a 1 quart of water in your bucket - wring out well before mopping. 
  • Castille Soap (all floors- including marble) ¼ cup liquid Castile soap and 2 gallons warm water. 
Windows and Glass 
mix vinegar and water in a spray bottle and spray! 

Silver Polish 

Make a paste of baking soda and water. Scoop the paste onto the sponge, and rub the paste into the silver. Rinse with hot water and polish dry with a soft, clean cloth. Leave paste on for longer if badly tarnished

Do you have a product you love at home?  Are you wondering if it is exposing your family to chemicals?   Go to the Environmental Working Group's Guide to Healthy Cleaning and input the products name and find out exactly what chemicals are inside and how bad they are for your health. Such a great tool.

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