Lemon Soft Scrubber
1⁄4 cup borax
1 cup baking soda
1 tablespoon biodegradable liquid soap
10 drops lemon or peppermint essential oil (or a mix of both)
In a jar, mix borax, soda and soap. Add water; stir to a thick but pourable consistency. Stir in essential oil. Use on tubs, sinks and counters.
1 cup white vinegar
3 cups water
10 drops grapefruit seed extract or tea tree oil
1 teaspoon biodegradable liquid soap
10 to 20 drops lavender or lemon essential oil
Combine ingredients in a 1-quart spray bottle. Spray on sinks, countertops or any smooth surface and wipe clean.
Natural cleaning essentials
White vinegar, a powerful antifungal and germ-killing liquid, also gets rid of hard-water stains and buildup. Spray white vinegar directly onto mildew stains and mold, let it sit for 15 to 20 minutes, then scrub and rinse (use your lemon soft scrubber for extra cleaning power).
Clean the toilet with vinegar and baking soda. Pour about a cup of baking soda into the toilet, followed by 2 cups of white vinegar. After the fizzing subsides, scrub the toilet with a toilet brush.
Tea tree oil
Add about 5 drops of this potent antifungal oil per 1 cup of white vinegar and spray onto mildew stains. To prevent hard-water buildup and mildew from returning, combine 1 part white vinegar, 2 parts water and 10 to 20 drops tea tree oil, shake well and spray shower and bathtub.
Reprinted with permission from Green EcoPath
Buy it instead
If homemade cleaners aren’t your style, you’ll find a variety of natural, nontoxic cleaners in retail stores. Look for cleaners that are free of chlorine bleach, dimethicones (and any substance ending in “-cone”), parabens and other tongue-twisting ingredients. The following companies carry nontoxic, biodegradable, herbal and natural cleaning products for the bathroom and home.
Clorox Green Works
Earth Friendly Products
Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day
Pristine Planet Seventh Generation