Let’s do a plastic free July week one recap.
Now you’ve got your basics covered, your coffee cup and your reusable bags at the ready we can move on to some more advanced plastic free July tips. This week is all about DIY cleaning products. How you can make at home some alternatives to the products most of us have under our kitchen sink.
Let’s start with some essential ingredients and supplies for making your own natural cleaning products.
Baking Soda: Works well on grease. Is great for scouring surfaces (it’s only slightly abrasive so it won’t ruin your surfaces). It’s a natural deodoriser and it’s super cheap to buy.
Distilled White Vinegar: the hero of natural cleaning products. Helps to remove mould, soap scum and dissolves scale. Fantastic at removing rust, coffee and tea stains. Please note: you shouldn’t use vinegar on aluminium, cast iron or marble surfaces. The acid in the vinegar can strip these surfaces.
Hydrogen peroxide: A more eco friendly alternative to bleach. Hydrogen peroxide can be found down the medicine aisle at Coles.
Borax: A mineral substance that can be used as a multipurpose cleaner, stain remover and deodoriser. Perfect for use throughout your home.
Essential oils: Such as tea tree, lavender, eucalyptus, lemon, and lemongrass enhance a cleaner's scent. Tea tree oil is also naturally antibacterial.
Castile soap: Available in liquid or bar form and helps rinse dirt away. It's made with olive oil or a vegetable base and is available unscented or scented. Castile soap can be found at Priceline.
Containers: Clean repurposed containers or jars for storing your cleaning products.
All Purpose Cleaner
- 3/4 cup hydrogen peroxide
- 1/2 cup distilled white vinegar
- 1 teaspoon unscented liquid Castile soap
- 10 drops tea tree oil
- 20 drops a fragrant essential oil like eucalyptus or lemon myrtle
- 2 cups water
Add all ingredients to a spray bottle; shake before use. Use for general cleaning needs. For an extra boost when removing mildew and soap buildup, spray first, then sprinkle on baking soda and scrub with a sponge.
Homemade Laundry Detergent
- 2 cups of soap flakes from the laundry isle at your supermarket
- 1 cup borax
- 1 cup washing soda (Look for it in the laundry aisle.)
- 1 cup hydrogen peroxide
Mix all ingredients in a large container. Store in a lidded jar. Use 2 tablespoons for a light load and 4 tablespoons for a large or dirty load. Wash as normal. You can add some essential oils for fresher smelling linen.
Homemade Laundry Rinse Aid
- 1 litre of white vinegar
- 20 drops of essential oils
Simply mix ingredients together and store in a glass bottle. Use a 1/4 cup of your rinse aid on your normal cleaning cycle to leave your washing machine smelling fresh and clean.
Natural Grout Cleaner/Creme Cleanser Paste
- 1 part water
- 2 parts baking soda
Wipe down your grout surface with a damp cloth. Mix your water and baking soda into a paste. Use a cloth or sponge and some paste to clean your grout.
Homemade Glass Cleaner
- 2 cups water
- 1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon dish soap
Add all ingredients to a spray bottle. Shake to combine. Use on windows or glass fronts of appliances.
DIY Dishwashing Liquid
- 1 cup of Castile soap
- 20 drops of lemon or orange essential oil
Mix your ingredients together and put into a bottle or container.