One day, after my ritualistic cleaning in which I worshiped bleach and drank in the aroma of pine cleaner, I realized that the smell of both infused my lungs and each time I inhaled, all I smelled was bleach. My lungs burned, I rushed outside into the open air, breathed deeply, but I still only smelled the cleaning products. It took at least an hour to feel like I could breathe pure air again. What may have been a "duh" moment for some, sent me into a deep research of the harmful side effects of chemical cleaners. I dumped everything and began my journey of all-natural cleaners.
What's on my cleaning shelf?
Thieves Essential Oil
Lemon Essential Oil
I use baking soda to scrub toilets, bathtubs, sinks, and counters.
I just sprinkle a little on my work surface, and scrub with a damp terry towel, or scrub brush. Baking soda is a bit gritty, so it helps with the deep scrubbing. I haven't had a problem with scratching, but if you have a very sensitive surface, you might consider diluting your baking soda, or using a vinegar rinse instead.
Vinegar is effective against most mold, bacteria, germs, and smells. On stubborn surfaces, I use white distilled vinegar full strength, however, when washing windows spot cleaning, or cleaning most surfaces, I dilute it with water 50/50 and pour into a spray bottle.
I use vinegar for cleaning sinks, toilets, door knobs, counters, light fixtures, windows, carpets, floors, basically anything I would have used a chemically induced glass cleaner for.
It also helps get rid of urine smells.
The effects of essential oils not only adds the benefit of antioxidants at work, but also leaves a cleaning area smelling a little better than the vinegariness of vinegar.
I have a spray bottle filled with a mixture of water and Thieves oil. This blend is used for quick cleanups, and used on surfaces that aren't "germy" just in need of a good cleaning. AND it smells so refreshing! I also use Thieves in my mop water. The mop bucket gets filled with pure water, and then I add about 6 or 7 drops of Thieves.
Lemon oil is perfect for a toilet freshener. You can drop a couple of drops in your toilet water or water reservoir, and it helps keep your toilet from gathering grime, mold, or stink, in between cleanings. I use lemon oil for dusting my wood furniture as well. Add two or three drops of oil to a terry or dust cloth, and wipe down your wood surface. Smells great and leaves a pretty shine!
Pretty simple, huh? Not too complicated or expensive!