Living a clean, healthy, and balanced lifestyle has always been important to us, as well as trying our best to do our share to keep the planet clean. It wasn’t a surprise when a couple months ago I challenged us to cut back on our waste and attempt to live a zero waste lifestyle. It’s definitely not as easy as my friends make it seem – it requires research, a lot of preparation, and a good board to keep it all organized. In order to help me make sense of it all I want to share with you what I’ve learned from others as well as the progress we’ve made. But where to begin? I decided to start by swapping out harsh chemicals for natural cleaning products.
A friend of mine recently introduced me to the wonders of white vinegar. That stuff is liquid gold! It’s versatile and can be used on just about everything. The smell is not my favorite, but anytime you’re trying to get rid of smells essential oils are a life-saver. So, let’s start by breaking down each ingredient that you’ll need to make your very own natural cleaning products.
Water (1 cup)
- Environmentally friendly
- biodegradeable (wink wink)
White Vinegar (1 cup)
- Environmentally friendly
- Safe to use on (most) surfaces
- Organic and distilled work best
Tea Tree Oil (3 drops)
- Antiseptic/ antiviral
- cleansing and purifying properties
Lemon Oil (4 drops)
- Cleanses and purifies
- Supports healthy respiratory function
- smells amazing!
I grew up in a household where bleach was the main ingredient in all of our cleaners. I grew so accustomed to the smell that in my mind it means things are clean. Yes, it burns a little but it’s clean…. Or so I thought. Doing research quickly made that notion disappear. In reality it’s destroying your health and the planet. Chlorine-based gases are known to be associated with the destruction of the ozone layer. The fumes cause respiratory problems and are brain-damaging. Not to mention that if you accidentaly ingest it or mix it with other household cleaners you could kill yourself.
What are the benefits?
For me the biggest benefit is knowing exactly what is in my multi-purpose cleaner. Compared to buying cleaning products that claim to be “natural”, making my own is still much more cost effective. Plus, store bought “natural” cleaning products, for the most part, still come in plastic bottles that you end up tossing out (don’t even get me started on plastic).
Making it is so simple! To be honest, the part that took the longest was making sure I did all of my research. I wanted to make sure it was going to be a good change and that I wasn’t just falling into the latest health fad. So, likewise, I encourage you to do your own research. And if you’ve already gone through this process and have any tips let me know!