Pure and Simple: Clean Naturally with Plant Essential Oils

Plant essential oils bring cleaning power and a fresh scent to your home—without chemicals.

| May/June 2011

  • You can make a nontoxic floor cleaner with white vinegar, lemon oil and oregano oil.

We put a lot of work into creating clean, healthy homes for ourselves and our families. And for most of us, our idea of a healthy home doesn’t include toxic chemicals. Yet many of us spray on and breathe in potentially toxic ingredients every time we use common household cleaning products.

Fortunately, nature has provided us with a bevy of alternatives to synthetic chemicals: Plant essential oils clean, disinfect and smell great. Studies have found many to have antimicrobial properties. Use the blends below for a house that’s clean and nontoxic. (As with any new product you introduce into your home, be sure to read the instructions for each ingredient to ensure safe and effective use.)

Surface cleaner: Add 7 drops lavender, eucalyptus, tea tree, cinnamon, clove, thyme, pine, grapefruit or oregano oil to 2 cups of water. Spray on surfaces.

Kitchen cleaner: Mix the following essential oils: 8 drops lavender, 10 drops lemon, 5 drops eucalyptus, 8 drops rosewood and 3 drops palma rosa. Combine 2 cups of water with 8 drops of the mixture and spray on surfaces.

Dishwashing boost: To add fragrance or to improve the antiseptic action of your liquid soap, add 10 drops of essential oils such as lavender, orange, bergamot or lime to 3 ounces of natural liquid dishwashing soap and shake well.

Floor cleaner: Combine 1/4 cup of white vinegar with 10 drops lemon oil and 4 drops oregano oil. Add to a bucket of water. For extra cleaning power, add several drops of dish soap, but follow with a clean-water mop so floors aren’t slippery.

5/25/2015 9:41:36 AM

Thank you for sharing! I really like the idea of using essential oils in my cleaning routine, because they smell great! My favorite is lavender and I'm really happy that it's healthy! Greets! Kentish town Carpet Cleaners Ltd. http://kentishtowncarpetcleaners.org.uk/

6/10/2014 6:48:51 AM

I always use plant essential oils when cleaning out my http://www.suttonspas.co.uk. The spray does a fantastic job of cleaning and disinfecting the jacuzzi on rentals in my cottage. We then use a bromide tablet in the water once filled to keep that clean too.

Carey LeRoy
12/18/2012 3:22:24 AM

I just started using essential oils and vinegar in lieu of commercial cleaners and absolutely love them! I wil never, ever buy store-bought cleaning products again. Thanks for the article and the ideas!

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