Sure, you might have the best cleaning product that does wonders for your toilet or sink, but have you ever thought about what’s inside it? Seriously, go check it out.
If you’re like most people, you probably have a few cleaning products that are made with a ton of chemicals. A big no-no if you care anything about your health. If you haven’t done your research, there might be a ton of harmful ingredients that you’re bringing into your home.
So what do you do about those pesky toxins? You could stop cleaning, but there’s another solution that doesn’t evolve sticking with a dirty house. Next time you go shopping, instead of grabbing your go-to product, think again. You might want to buy some cool ingredients to make the products yourself.
All the products that I’m going to recommend are going to be super easy and quick to make, because you’re busy and I get that. I’ve also organized them by category to save you some extra time. Enjoy!
Why make the switch?
Many of the toxic chemicals found in household cleaners fall into one of three categories. They’re either carcinogens which promote cancer, neurotoxins which negatively impact brain activity, or endocrine disruptors which mess with your hormones and lead to issues like infertility.
Professor Anne Steinemann from the University of Washington, conducted an experiment in which she tested six of the top-selling air fresheners and laundry products. She analyzed each product separately and the results were frightening. Out of the six products that she looked at, five of them released at least one carcinogenic “air pollutant”. Keep in mind, these were chemicals that the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) declared had NO safe exposure level.
Worst of all, the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission does not require manufacturers to disclose any of their ingredients. And it’s not really fair to the people who have been loyal to the products for years.
Products to avoid
Here are a few products that you may already have in your household. If so, you may want to reconsider buying these products and make your own instead.
- air fresheners (can cause lung irritation & trigger allergies and asthma)
- fabric softeners & dryer sheets (can cause lung irritation & trigger allergies and asthma)
- cleaning products with artificial fragrances (if companies label their fragrances as company trade secrets, they aren’t legally required to disclose of any harmful ingredients)
- bleach* (high toxicity to the eyes, nose, throat, and lungs)
- ammonia* (high toxicity to the eyes, nose, throat, and lungs)
- anything with suds (shampoo, soap, etc. have been found to contain numerous carcinogens)
*bleach and ammonia: when mixed together, these products create a toxic gas that can seriously damage your lungs
Some of the most damaging chemicals
There are just some of the harmful chemicals that are found in household products.
- synthetic fragrances (known to be carcinogenic if inhaled or through direct contact with skin)
- polyalkylene oxide (causes eye, skin, and lung irritation)
- ethylene oxide (causes eye, skin, and lung irritation)
- ethanol (causes central nervous system disorders)
- sodium lauryl sulfate (causes mutations and certain cancers)
- benzyl acetate (linked to pancreatic cancer)
- benzyl alcohol (causes irritation in upper respiratory tract)
- chloroform (neurotoxin, anesthetic and carcinogen)
- A-terpineol (causes respiratory problems and damages the central nervous system, including fatal edema)
Here’s what you’ll need
Depending on what recipes you decide to follow, here are some of the things that you’ll need. These are the most commonly used ingredients in DIY cleaning products.
- lemon juice
- baking soda
- hydrogen peroxide
- mason jar (for storage)
- glass spray bottles (for storage and easy application)
- essential oils (not truly necessary, but makes your house smell wonderful)
- microfiber clothes (for application)
- sponge (for application)
General DIY natural cleaning products
- Natural homemade all-purpose cleaner
- A simple DIY all-purpose cleaner that really works
- Natural all-purpose cleaning spray
- How to make homemade citrus cleaner
- DIY all-purpose cleaner with lemon & lavender
- Homemade peppermint all-purpose antibacterial cleaning spray
For cleaning your kitchen
- All-purpose kitchen cleaner using citrus peels
- How to sanitize your wooden cutting boards naturally
- Simple, grease-cutting dish soap
- Homemade dish soap with lemon and lavender oil
- How to naturally clean your dishwasher
- Natural oven cleaner
- How to unclog your drain without nasty harsh chemicals
- DIY natural sink cleaner: 3 ingredients
For cleaning your bathroom
- DIY toilet bowl cleaner (non-toxic & it WORKS!)
- DIY daily shower cleaner
- Anti mold spray & bathroom cleaner
- Toilet bomb fizzies
For washing your hands
- Homemade liquid hand soap: 2 easy, toxic-free, and frugal recipes
- Resort-quality liquid hand soap for under $1
- Homemade coconut oil foaming hand soap
- Lavender-infused homemade liquid hand soap
- DIY lavender goat milk hand soap
- Easiest DIY foaming hand soap recipe
For cleaning items around the house
- Homemade leather cleaner with essential oils
- Homemade frugal silver cleaner
- DIY all-in-one glass & stainless steel cleaner
- 2-ingredient stainless steel cleaner
For washing your laundry
- DIY borax free laundry detergent
- Easy and inexpensive homemade powder laundry detergent
- How to whiten clothes naturally with homemade bleach
- The easiest & best-smelling homemade fabric softener
For cleaning your floors & carpet
- Homemade floor cleaner for all types of floors
- Homemade multi-surface floor cleaner (no vinegar)
- 7 DIY homemade carpet shampoo recipes
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