Naturally Clean: Money Saving Cleaners

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<p>Making your own household cleaners is a small investment upfront but, in the long run, is a cheaper and healthier alternative.</p>
<p>Homemade cleaners are toxin free and easy to make. If you want to know exactly what your cleaning products are made of, making your own is the best option. <a href=””>Homemade cleaning products</a> will make your house smell fresh and keep it chemical free–without stretching your budget.</p>
<p align=”left”>The recipes for homemade cleaners call for a list of basic ingredients that you probably already have on hand. If not, they can easily be purchased for cheaper in bulk. For example, <a href=”” target=”_blank”>baking soda</a>, <a href=”” target=”_blank”>white vinegar</a>, <a href=”” target=”_blank”>borax</a> and <a href=”” target=”_blank”>liquid vegetable-based soap</a> are needed to make the majority of these recipes. These supplies will last a long time, so instead of continually restocking these supplies and making several trips to the grocery store, purchase your most used products in bulk.</p>
<p align=”left”>The most expensive of the ingredients you might need are <a href=”” target=”_blank”>essential oils</a>. Rosemary (<em>Rosmarinus officinalis</em>), ginger (<em>Zingiber officinale</em>) and lavender (<em>Lavandula angustifolia</em>) will add wonderful scents to your cleaners; <a href=”” target=”_blank”>tea tree</a> (<em>Melaleuca alternifolia</em>) will add antiseptic and antibacterial qualities to all of your homemade products. For other miscellaneous <a href=”” target=”_blank”>equipment</a>, you may need spray bottles, sponges and a few labels to identify your cleaner. Some of these products, such as the spray bottles, can be reused and recycled.</p>
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Photo by astro twilight/courtesy Flickr<br />
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<p align=”left”>Many homemade recipes for natural cleaning products require a small amount of the more expensive ingredients. With that in mind, a 0.33-ounce bottle of essential oil should last you a while. Remember that essential oils are not required for all homemade natural cleaning product recipes. I made a bleach brightener and the only ingredient I had to purchase was hydrogen peroxide. The other ingredients I used were water and lemon juice (look for the results of my homemade cleaner in an upcoming blog).</p>
<p>In the end, you will end up saving money if you make your own cleaners–most of the ingredients are already under your kitchen sink and if not, they’re cheap. Here is a brief cost comparison of the basic ingredients you will need to make homemade cleaners versus the cost of brand-name products.</p>
<strong>Ingredients for Homemade Cleaners<br />
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</strong>• Baking soda: Arm and Hammer baking soda is <strong>$3.77-$4.00</strong> for 4 pounds.<br />
• Vinegar: Heinz Distilled White Vinegar is <strong>$2.19</strong> for 32 ounces.<br />
• Borax: 20 Mule-Team Borax is <strong>$4.79</strong> for 76 ounces.<br />
• Vegetable-based soap: Tea Tree Therapy Vegetable Based Soap is <strong>$2.31</strong> for 3.5 ounce bars.<br />
• Essential oils: <strong>$4.00-$10.00</strong> for 0.33 ounces.</p>
<strong>Common Brand-Name Products<br />
<br />
</strong>• General purpose cleaner: Simple Green All Purpose Cleaner is <strong>$4.49</strong> for 16 ounces.<br />
• Glass cleaners: Windex Antibacterial Glass and Surface Cleaner is <strong>$5.99</strong> for 32 ounces.<br />
• Soap: Dial Antibacterial Liquid Soap is <strong>$17.58</strong> for 1 gallon.<br />
• Bleach: Clorox Laundry Detergent Bleach is <strong>$3.99</strong> for 96 ounces.  <br />
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Have you ever channeled your inner environmentalist and made a homemade cleaner? If so, please share your experiences by leaving me a comment.</p>
<p>For more information on cleaning your home naturally, visit our blog series <font face=”Arial” size=”2″>
<a href=””>Naturally Clean</a>.</font>

Mother Earth Living
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