Come Clean: Green Cleaning Tools

Choose green cleaning tools to tackle your dirty work.

| July/August 2011

  • The Cradle to Cradle-certified eclipse bucket is made of recycled soda bottles.

We do our best to avoid hazardous household cleaners, but what about the integrity of the tools we use to clean our homes? Unfortunately, most of them are cheap, disposable pieces of plastic manufactured with no regard for the health of our homes or our planet. Next time you find yourself in need of a cleaning tool, opt for one of these more health-conscious and eco-friendly choices.

No (Plastic) Scrubs 

If you haven’t done it already, make the switch to biodegradable sponges and scrubbers. Conventional neon-colored sponges are made of oil-based, landfill-clogging plastic. Cellulose sponges, on the other hand, are made of compostable plant-based materials, and are available unbleached and undyed. Twist Loofah Sponge and Twist Scour Pads, $1 to $5.

Tip: Toss sponges in the dishwasher or a pot of boiling water to disinfect.

Helping Hands 

All-natural homemade cleaners are great alternatives to common chemical-laden varieties, but even natural ingredients such as hydrogen peroxide and essential oils can be irritating. Open windows to ventilate rooms while you clean, and wear gloves. If You Care Household Gloves are made from Forest Stewardship Council-certified latex, and the rubber harvesters receive a fair wage. If You Care Household Gloves, $3;

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