Blog Update!
For those of you not following me on Facebook, as of the Summer of 2019 I've moved to Central WA, to a tiny mountain town of less than 1,000 people.

I will be covering my exploits here in the Cascades, as I try to further reduce my impact on the environment. With the same attitude, just at a higher altitude!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Green Clean

Clean n' GreenToday this post requires your input. I've been looking for green products (low or no toxic chemicals) to replace my regular cleaners.

So my question(s) for you, my friends, are as follows...

What is your favorite homemade or green product to clean:

1. bathrooms (replacing Comet)
2. countertops (replacing 409)
3. mildew (replacing X-14)
4. soap scum (replacing Comet)
5. windows (replacing Windex)
6. laundry (replacing Tide)
7. dishes (hand - replacing something like Joy)
8. dishes (machine - replacing Electrasol)
9. linoleum
10. wood floors
11. skin
12. hair
13. teeth (replacing Colgate)

Looking at the list of replacements above, it's amazing how toxic mainstream cleaners are. But, they work. How do your green replacements stack up? I've already switched out some cleaners but I'm not all impressed with some of them.

So, that's it! Now get crackin'. I want answers, people!


Lamzeydievey said...

I would highly recommend Ecover's cleaning line. Especially their laundry detergent and dish soaps which do an incredible job and smell great! They disclose all ingredients on the back of their label, have been recognized by the United Nations for their practical achievements towards a green environment and have an ecological factory complete with grass roof. Oh, and can I mention again that their products are amazing???

ST said...

Hello Crunchy! Living as a green student means I have to be cheap, so I'll give you whatever advice I can.

Comet - I'm a fairly firm believer in NOT killing all the bacteria in my house. You heard me. If you kill them, just the nasty ones survive. Besides, we need the not-so-lethal bugs to keep our immune systems healthy. I've found one of the best ways to clean my bathroom is to use regular dish soap. I usually get a biodegradeable/non-toxic one. I really like method's products. (

409-never heard of it, never used it. Although, on hard surfaces (tiles, hard plastics), I have had to remove wax (like beauty wax). It's oil soluble, so I just scrape off what I can, and then use cooking oil to disolve the rest. Follow with some hot soapy water, and that gets it looking pretty clean.

Windex - I just discovered this a little while ago when I had no glass cleaner. Wipe glass with a wet, warm cloth. Then dry (downward strokes) with a dry tery (sp?) cloth. Or, many people SWEAR by diluted vinegar. (the smell goes away after it dries).

Tide - AHH!!! Let me introduce one of my favorite products! Laundry detergent by method. Biodegradeable, although I question how friendly it is since it does has some warning labels on it. But it's super concentrated (saves water), washes EXTREMELY well, smells good. I'm quite happy with it.

Joy - once again, I use dish soap by method. Not as powerful as the mainstream stuff, but it's earth friendly.

Skin - I don't use soap. I stopped using it, and started just rinsing with water every day, and my skin has been much better since then. I think it has balanced itself out or something.

hair - baking soap to 'exfoliate,' conditioner by Abba (cruelty free, sulfate free... blahblah. see

teeth - someone on envirowoman's blog suggested using teeth soap.

Good luck! (and sorry this is so long!)

Kim said...

Hi. I wrote a post about this on my blog a while back. I have found that these work as well as traditional products. We spend about $30 a year on cleaning supplies.

Comet: baking soda and elbow grease
409: vinegar and water (equal parts)
Windex: rubbing alcohol and water (equal parts)
Tide: borax, washing soda, and homemade soap or Dr. Bronner's
Joy: Dr Bronner's, vinegar in the rinse water (no bubbles, but yu get used to it)
Skin: homemade castille soap
Hair: afraid to admit it, but we still use traditional products. This is our last hold out.
Teeth: baking soda, salt, glycerine, and cinnamon oil

Whew, that got long. Sorry.

Kim said...

Oops, sorry I forgot that we use Murphy Oil Soap on our wood floors. It does a fantastic job and doesn't build up.


Coach Paulette said...

Funny, I was going to talk about this on my blog later in the week!

My general purpose household cleaner for counters, floors, walls, mirrors, bathrooms, furniture, virtually everything is vinegar and water with a little orange concentrate cleaner for a nice smell.

In a 32 oz bottle I mix 15 oz white vinegar, 15 oz water and 2 Tablespoons of Earth Friendly Products Concentrated Orange Plus All Purpose Cleaner. This bottle lasts a while and cleans virtually everything.

I clean mirrors using this and newspaper - no streaks. You can spray the floor and damp mop or dry mop - gets it clean. Spray the shower and if it is already clean it will keep it clean.

For mildew / mold - straight vinegar.

Baking soda will replace comet for cleaning sinks and tubs.

I love the Shaklee products for laundry and dishes. Their powdered laundry detergent uses only 1 to 2 ounces for a full load of clothes.

Test - put a small load of wash in and start it without adding any detergent. If you still get suds, you've been using way too much detergent and have residue in your clothes and in your washer. Most people use way too much detergent.

The powdered dishwashing detergent uses only 1 to 2 teaspoons per load. One package for about $12 lasts me 6 months.

I make my own fabric softener using the Shaklee fabric softener concentrate mixed with water (1/3 softener, 2/3 water) and I spray it directly into the dryer before putting in a load.

I make my own stain remover using Shaklee Nature Bright and Basic H and put it in a spray bottle. Most stain removing is making sure you soak the stain in the right temperature water for the stain involved.

Teeth - we love Tom's of Maine toothpaste with no fluoride.

Hair - I love the Burts Bees products or Avalon Organics.

Makeup / face cleaner - this is something I'm working on. I use DHC makeup and skin care which comes in minimal packaging, but still isn't as natural as I'd like. It is really nice to my skin though.

Malva said...

For washing dishes by hand, I recommend Ecover dish soap. It works really good and I like that the spout allows you to get a single drop of soap if you want to (i.e. hand washing).

Nature Clean makes a nice cream cleaner for bathroom use.

Laundry: 1 cup Borax, 1 cup washing soda, 1 bar of soap, grated. I use Sunlight soap since that's what my store has in the laundry aisle. Use 1 to 2 tbps per load.

Fabric softener: 1 bottle cap of white vinegar and a few drop of lavender essential oil.

Hair: Baking soda and apple cider vinegar.

Toothpaste: I need to look into this, we use Tom's of Maine and I love its fennel flavor but it's owned by Colgate so I'd like to find an alternative.

Anonymous said...

Method prducts or Charlie's All-Purpose cleaner for household cleaning.

Charlie's Soap for Laundry &'s AWESOME! charliesoap dot com

Goat's milk soap for face and body

Natural Lavendar shampoo bar with diluted apple cider vinegar rinse for a conditioner...cleared up my scalp problems and made my hair grow longer faster! My hair has never looked more youthful and been more softer! Absolutely wonderful!!

Both the soap and shampoo bar I use can be found at crystalscountrystore dot com

just ducky said...

For dishes I use the lemon scented Ecover and love it! For laundry, I make my own laundry soap using a combination of Fels Naptha, Borax and washing soda---if anyone wants the exact ratio for the mix, let me know. I've had really good luck with it and it is SO much less expensive that regular laundry detergent. For various cleaning jobs---washing walls, floors, whatever--I use Dr. Bronner's. It is super concentrated though, so don't be heavy-handed with it. For handsoap, I love the Kiss My Face grapefruit and bergamont soap! It smells wonderful and I really like the "foam soap".

Oldnovice said...

The Many Uses of Vinegar

Anonymous said...

I love the Seventh Generation dish soap instead of Dawn. It really cuts grease. I use Simple Green as my all purpose cleaner. It also can be used for laundry as well as floors. I also used Method laundry soap and liked it. I'm still trying to find skin care that I like..I may try Avalon Organics, it's suppose to help sensitive skin....sue

Anonymous said...

Method, method, method! They make everything from mops, to household cleaners, to handsoaps, to bodywash and shaving lotion. All of the products have eco-friendly packaging, work very well, are plant based, are not tested on animals, and are bio-degradable. Everything that I have gotten from them I love! As for hair, I love Trader Joe's shampoo, plant based, no animal testing, biodegradable, nice smelling, and best of all, not outrageously expensive. Toms of Maine makes good toothepaste, but it takes some time to get used to the taste.

Anonymous said...

I use Bon Ami or baking soda for cleaning the kitchen sink and bathroom with good results. I am currently experimenting with the combination of borax, washing soda and Fels Naptha for the laundry plus white vinegar in place of fabric softener. So far, so good. I'm a bit worried about using it on delicate items, however. Also trying Seventh Generation dishwasher detergent, as well as dish soap. Might try Ecover next time to compare. As for the rest, Rome wasn't built in a day! Baby steps ... baby steps ...

Anonymous said...

To clean windows use white vinegar and old newspaper. I got this tip from Martha Stewart and it works great.

Simple Green is one of my favorite cleaners, you can use it on practically every surface.

I also use OxyClean Free instead of bleach in my laundry while washing whites. I tried to do some research and I think it is pretty eco-safe. Does anyone know more about the product?

I only wish the Magic Eraser wasn't toxic. My friend gave me one and it got marks off the walls in my stairwell like nothing else. Anyone got any natural cleaning ideas for that?

Dana said...

Baking soda and half a lemon does a great job on white things like tubs and sinks when they get really stained. My kitchen sink is white, too (I don't know what the material is called, but it's like a hard bathtub); it was old and stained and nothing else would get it clean. It takes a little elbow grease, but the lemon bleaches it and smells great. I know lemons aren't local but I'm making an exception for them. :-)

Anonymous said...

I use mostly Ecover, Seventh Generation, and Mrs. Meyer's for cleaning. Ecover makes great laundry detergent and stain remover. I also like their dish soap and dishwasher tabs. I found that Seventh Generation dishwasher soap left my dishes really streaky.

Anonymous said...

Oh! And I use Giovanni Organics for hair care (the Smooth as Silk line, but they have a variety of products). My hair has never looked better! I use Pangea Organics for skin care. The products work great, and even the packaging is eco-friendly! The boxes the products come in are embedded with seeds, and can be planted. The bottles are also made from recycled prescription bottles. For toothpaste, I use Kiss My Face Whitening toothpaste. It's not the best, but I figure it's better than it's conventional counterparts, and it doesn't taste like chalk!

Anonymous said...

Vinegar, baking soda, citra-solve, the bulk liquid laundry soap sold at the local health food store - and best of all - the sun (pretty stong down here in the southwest!)

QT said...

I use as many products by method as possible, including dryer sheets and wipes for countertops. They make a tub & tile spray that works great, and they have eucalyptus bathroom wipes.

I use their laundry soap and dish soap. I have used Ecover before too. I like it, but I can only get it at certain stores that are way out of my normal commute.

I also second the white vinegar/old newspaper for windows. Just use crumpled up newspaper to clean - it leaves no streaks.

We have wood floors that we clean with Murphy's Oil Soap.

Anonymous said...

I use Simple Green (lemon scent) as an all-purpose cleaner for counters, tubs, sinks and linoleum. I'm still using up some All free and clear detergent and then I plan on making my own. I also use Method dish soap and window wash and Seventh Generation powder dishwasher detergent. I have laminate floors but will be moving into a house with wood floors in a couple weeks so it's nice to know Murphy's oil soap can be used. :) Here is the recipe I use for my laminate floors: 1 cup of water, 1 cup of vinegar, 1 cup of rubbing alcohol and a squirt of dish soap. Put all ingredients in a spray bottle, give it a good shake and you're good to go. For skin I use Burt's Bees and for teeth, we are on our last tube of Aquafresh. I plan on trying Aubrey products for hair once we run out of shampoo.

I didn't know Mr. Clean magic erasers were toxic.

Anonymous said...

1) comet= baking soda
2) 409= spray bottle filled with 1/3 white vinegar, 2/3 water
3) X-14= undiluted vinegar, scrub with an old toothbrush. if it's really tough, try some borax
4) windex= vinegar spray and old newspapers
5) Tide= trader joes powdered laundry soap- borax for bleaching needs
6) Joy= trader joes dishsoap
7) Electrasol= trader joes dishwasher soap
9) linoleum= bucket of hot water with a cap of castille soap. i don't have wood floors, so i don't know about that
10) skin= castille soap- add baking soda to it for a scrub, or just use a washcloth to scrub with
11) hair= mix baking soda and castille soap. i still use aveda conditioner, which is probably very wrong of me.
12) teeth= trader joes toothpaste. tastes better than straight baking soda.
13) deoderant= baking soda. it really works ridiculously well.

not only do all of the above work as well as conventional cleaners, they are also nicer to your hands AND way way cheaper.

Skulleigh said...

I've been using BioKleen laundry soap since the middle of April, and it seems to be working quite nicely. My clothes are a LOT softer. I'm only on the second small bottle. I might try something else next time, just to see what's out there, but I might not, since once I find something good, why change :)

I try to use vinegar for most everything else. Murphy's oil soap for cleaning wood.

Phelan said...

Borax cleans everything

Anonymous said...

I've been using baking soda or salt to clean our sinks and counters, and recently started using Superior Herbals "Northwoods Shampoo & Body" Head to Toe. You can wash up with it and use it in your hair. Works great on the hair-my daughter has really course hair and it softens it up some. It's suppose to repel bugs too-I like it cause it cuts down on all the junk in the shower. It's pricey but feel its worth the cost.

Anonymous said...

method is avaliable at target...i love it. also Wegmans carries eco-friendly products.

Anonymous said...

I also like Ecover for dishes and laundry.

For windows and mirrors, I use diluted white vinegar with newspapers instead of rags. In the tub we use Borax

Natures Gate tends to have good personal products, though I have yet to find an effective green deodorant :( Baking soda does indeed work well with hair.

Anonymous said...

Alice's Wonder Spray is a home-made concoction that cleans just about anything. Here's a recipe.
(there's other cleaning recipes there as well) I've never done a side-by-side to the Magic Eraser but I'd say it's just as good.

Disinfectant:homemade (2 c water, 3 T dish soap, 30 drops of tea tree oil) Spray and let sit for 10 min, then wipe clean.

Cascade: Trader Joe's. I tried Ecover and 7th Generation and they just didn't get things clean. We don't live near one so we just stock up whenever we can.

I love Method, I use their floor cleaner mostly. I also have their bathroom cleaner and all purpose cleaner. And I use 7th Generation toilet cleaner.

I use baking soda whenever I need an abrasive. Vinegar as a fabric softener. I'm in the process of using stuff up before I venture into home-made laundry detergent.

With most natural cleansers, I've found that the extra magical ingredient is elbow grease.

Anonymous said...

I really like Advanage cleaner for most things around the house. Its a great cleaner and really safe with kids and pets. But I also use just plain vinegar and baking soda. There's a good article on it here, 5 Chemicals You Can Remove from Your Home Right Now

Anonymous said...

For an all-purpose cleaner, I love 1/4 cup of vinegar with 2 cups of distilled water. I add a couple squirts of dr. bronner's unscented, and then I add TTO and lavender essential oil.

FOr windows and mirrors, I am going to try to use a vinegar spray. I am trying to wean myself off of Windex. :)

I use baking soda to scrub sinks, and baking soda/vingegar for toilets and showers.

I haven't tried any natural laundry detergent (use Purex Free & Clear), but I have used the Trader Joe's dish soap. It's pretty good!

Rechelle said...

I often use the fog from my breath. And then wipe with my index finger after licking it with my tongue. This serves two functions. First, it cleans off the surface of anything from dirty child's face to guest's dinner plate. Second it scares the hell out of bacteria who quickly evacuate for less hostile environments. It is always handy, very cheap, and does nothing to pollute the world. I also find that scraping gunk off with my fingernails and then brushing it to the floor works pretty well.

Anonymous said...

Alright, you officially have too many readers! Two Nicholes with an H?! Goodness!

I love me a clean shiny tub! I mix up some baking soda, castille soap, a bit of water and then add vinegar. It's lovely!

Anonymous said...

It's scary but I think baking soda does a better job of cleaning sinks and tubs than anything. I use it, vinegar, and borax for all my cleaning. I usually mix in some essential oils (lavender and tea tree are antibacterial). I make my own laundry detergent with borax, soda, grated soap and essential oil. Vinegar and baking soda have been working great as a shampoo substitute. For dish washing I get whatever is being sold bulk at the coop so I can refill a bottle.

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Unknown said...

1. bathrooms (replacing Comet) - baking soda & vinegar mixture / method bathroom & all purpose surface cleaners
2. countertops (replacing 409) - same as #1
3. mildew (replacing X-14) - same as #1
4. soap scum (replacing Comet)- again same as # 1
5. windows (replacing Windex)- dishsoap & warm water mixture then squigee - also like method window cleaner (LOVE the smell)
6. laundry (replacing Tide)- Planet laundry powder & method dryer sheets
7. dishes (hand - replacing something like Joy) - ECOVER (LOVE the smell and easy on skin)
8. dishes (machine - replacing Electrasol) - ECOVER tabs - these do an AWESOME job!!!
9. linoleum - ECOVER
10. wood floors - my mom loves the OMOP and Method floor cleaner
11. skin - Desert Essence Tea Tree Oil Deodorant / California Baby Lotions
12. hair - Circle of Friends Ana Banana Shampoo
13. teeth (replacing Colgate)straight up baking soda & water

For all major scrubbing Bon Ami

Unknown said...

PS also LOVE simple green... good multipurpose cleaner (and good for cleaning ink off of stamps dilute w/ water)

Debbie said...

For surfaces (all of them, windows, mirrors, counter tops -- no matter where) I've begun using microfiber cloths and plain water. It's amazing how well these things clean, and with no streaking on glass. When they're dirty you just toss them in the laundry. Here are some tips.

I've recently seen what look like reasonably good quality cloths at KMart, and my independent (ACE) hardware store has been carrying them for years. And, of course, they're available online.

HeatherK said...

I just starting trying to use baking soda more as a cleaning product, but I am concerned about the amount of animal testing that arm & hammer does. Have any of you found a more ethical alternative?

Simply Authentic said...

okay sounds like baking soda, borax, vinegar, and elbow grease are the big winners

my other votes are for seventh generation (for some reason method hasn't appealed because when i look at the colors and the ingredient lists they scare me)

hair: Nature's Gate shampoos and conditioners

teeth: Tom's

face: Burt's Bees soaps

i've tried dr.bronner's and wasn't a fan

Isle Dance said...

I highly recommend checking out as the book is fabulous and super affordable.

Anonymous said...

I highly recomend Shaklee Get Clean products. I've been using Shaklee for 21 years, and I'm only 28. Now that I have my own place, and can't afford much, Shaklee is a huge money saver. You use so little of each item at a time and don't have to replace the products very often. Sometimes over a year or two.

Unknown said...

OK, I don't have a lot to add, but I do things slightly differently.

1. bathrooms: white vinegar (from a gallon jug), baking soda, elbow grease, retired cloth diapers

2. countertops: white vinegar

3. mildew: white vinegar, baking soda, tolerance

4. soap scum: baking soda

5. windows: vinegar, retired cloth diapers

6. laundry: Whole Foods Brands powdered detergent in a cardboard box. No luck with BioKleen -- gave my baby rashes.

7. dishes: Sal Suds diluted! I love this stuff. It's Dr. Bronner's but with lots of suds. Manufactured down the street for the local perk. Buy in the gallon size.

8. dishes: N/A

9. linoleum: vinegar, retired cloth diapers

10. wood floors: N/A

11. skin: Kiss My Face olive oil soap. Otherwise, I'm a scrounger. I can get by a long time on half-bottles of lotion that others discard. For deodorant I use Oyin's Funk Butter. It works most of the time, it comes in plastic free packaging, and I love that company. For makeup, I'm the ultimate scrounger. I buy makeup every few years at most and can live off friends' discards for a long time.

12. hair: Again, I'm a scrounger of discarded shampoo. I use Oyin's Whipped Pudding shea butter as a conditioner (although the packaging is bad, bad, bad so I'll stop this). I'm moving toward a Fair Trade Shea Butter in a glass jar for conditioner and styling.

13. teeth: baking soda with peppermint oil.

Anonymous said...

Just a tip...I cut my dryer sheets into thirds. They work as well as a full sheet and 80 of them will work for 240 loads of clothes...sue

Anonymous said...

Check out "Better Basics for the Home" by Annie Berthold-Bond. The book is full of non-toxic recipes for cleaning, body, hair and skin care. Very easy, very fun!


knitterwifemom said...

1. bathrooms: Haven't switched yet.

2. countertops: SAL Suds diluted.

3. mildew: Diluted vinegar sprayed directly on it will kill it. Method bathroom cleaner does a great job, too.

4. soap scum: baking soda made into a paste

5. windows: Diluted vinegar, microfiber towels.

6. laundry: I like Method. For cloth diapers, I just use Dr. Bronner's with tea tree oil, baking soda, and vinegar rinse. Vinegar is also great with towels in place of fabric softener. I use drier balls in the drier and don't use fabric softener sheets at all.

7. dishes: Haven't switched yet, but will probably use SAL Suds.

8. dishes: Dishwashing liquid from Trader Joe's right now. Still looking for something I love.

9. linoleum: I had used diluted vinegar and microfiber cloths, but just recently used SAL Suds by Dr. Bronner's, diluted. Worked wonders in my bathroom!

10. wood floors: don't have them.

11. skin: Just started using Dr. Bronner's bar soap for general showering. I want to get some liquid and dilute in a foaming pump for handwashing.

12. hair: Baking soda and apple cider vinegar, using the "no-poo" method. I have been doing this for almost 2 years and love it!

13. teeth: Tom's Of Maine toothpaste

Correne said...

I have to re-iterate what someone else said: MICROFIBRE CLOTHS. You do NOT need any soap or chemical product, only water.

I recently attended a home-party to demonstrate "Norwex" microfibre products and they are awesome. Apparently, they have colloidal silver in them, which is one of the few materials on which bacteria cannot survive. It makes the cloths "antibacterial."

Don't just buy any old microfibre cloth. You can find them at hardware stores and such places, but those fibres may only be split 6 times. The ones I saw have every fibre split 100 times.

I didn't buy any yet, my friend just gave me a little square to try at home, and I LOVE IT. It does a super job on almost everything.

Walking Green said...

I replaced all of my cleaners over a few months time and have been "green" with my cleaning for quite a few's my list.

1. bathrooms-Bon Ami (scrubbing the tub) and Vinegar (toiliet, counters, mopping)
2. countertops (Sun and Earth--it's a wonderful product--found in some groceries and on their website).
3. mildew (Straight Vinegar)
4. soap scum (Bon Ami or baking soda)
5. windows (Seventh Gen)
6. laundry (Sun and Earth--I love it. I won't use Method for laundry because it contains optical brightner which is deterimental to acquatic life)
7. dishes (Seventh Gen)
8. dishes (Trader rocks and lasts forever)
9. Floors (Ecover or white vinegar)
10. wood floors (a dust mop or very slightly damp mop with a little ecover)
11. Skin (Kiss My Face Vitamin C or something another)
12. hair (more expensive, but Aveda only)
13. teeth (Toms or Jason)

Hope this helps. We can all tell you what we use, but it really is just a process of experimentation--trying to find out what works best for you and your family.

P~ said...

Hi there everyone, I haven't been checking in that often as I am running around CA on vacation, but this is a topic I am interested in quite a bit right now. I enjoyed reading all of your responses so far. As for us, in our home we have been moving to the home made organic cleaners. I figure that if I want a safe cleaner it might as well be something I can put together myself in the kitchen. I am planning on writing about my experiences in trying to solve this issue myself when I get back next week, but mainly it's the vinegar and water for most household stuff. We add a few drops of tea tree oil for a natural antibiotic, and a couple drops of orange essence to cut the vinegar smell. In the laundry my wife has begun using A&H super washing powder rather than bleach, and we will be making our own soaps for that purpose soon.
Good post CC.

Tracy said...

Products I use:

baking soda (for surfaces that need scrubbing, like sinks and bathtubs)

Vinegar and hydrogen peroxide (sprayed one after the other, kills more germs than bleach - only use for things I cut meat on and in cat box, some places in bathroom)

Diluted vinegar

Castille soap (Dr. Bronners)

Nature Clean dishwashing liquid and toilet cleaner (I'll lose the toilet cleaner once it's finished and use the castille soap instead)

Locally made laundry soap powder with Borax

Baking soda and ACV for unshampoo, coconut oil or Burt's Bees Treatment (just a little) for frizzies/curls, and assorted essential oils

Everyday Minerals makeup (affordable!) with some Burt's Bees thrown in for good measure

JASON toothpaste (sea clean?)

Coconut oil and locally made olive oil/beeswax skin cream (good for rough feet)

Great post! I love seeing what other people can pick up so many ideas.

Crunchy Chicken said...

Holy cow, everyone! Ask and ye shall receive. Or, something like that.

Anyway, I'm trying out Citrasolve and baking soda and lemon for pretty much everything and I must say, so far I'm impressed. It does take a little extra man-power but who knew that I'd spend extra time scrubbing the tub because I was soooo enjoying the smell of lemon and baking soda. That and the whole bubbling action had me highly entertained.

I need a life.

Anonymous said...

I use Seventh Generation Free and Clear Dish Soap for everything, and I mean everything -- dishes, bathroom, windows [with vinegar], floors, laundry [use much less, save $$$, works great], even shampoo. I was amazed at how nice my hair came out, with a little vinegar spritz for detangling. Shiny, clean, no gunk, no fragrance [which gives me migraines].

Anonymous said...

I know this sounds gross, but we try to use baking soda as a last resort on our counters 'cause of how abrasive it can be... but if you've got some food thing stuck on your counter, SPIT on it, let it sit for a bit, then rub it out with a cloth - the enzymes in your spit help disolve the nasty gunk away! I always wipe down my counters with either hot soapy water/then clean rag or vinegar after using the spit method. :-)

Anonymous said...

I am now using Burt's Bees products for my face and OH MY are they wonderful! I got wild lettuce soap and toner and the royal jelly mosturizer and after 2 weeks my shin hasn't looked this good in years. Thanks to all your readers for the tips!..sue

Joy said...

I use this to clean countertops, sink, stove,refridgerator (inside and out), and just about every surface in my kitchen. It also works as a great window cleaner, because the small drop of soap stops streaking.

All-Purpose Anti-Bacterial Cleaner:
1/2 water 1/2 white vinegar
4 drops grapefruit seed extract (anti-bacterial)
10 drops essential oils (I like lemon and lemongrass!)
1 drop liquid dishwashing soap (stops streaking)

Shake well, and enjoy the armoatherapy after the vinegar smell has gone away!

Hint: Lavendar also has antibacterial and antiviral properties, so a good way to clean your kids toys (the ones they put in their mouths especially) is to mix a few drops of lavendar essential oil and water, spray, wipe, and once again...essential oils turn cleaning into aromatherapy!

Anonymous said...

Wow this is like heaven to me seeing your post and reading all these wonderful comments. I have been researching chemical cleaners and health and at the same time looking for natural alternatives and am in the process of switching over everything in our house to more healthy and enviro friendly options.
So everything that the other commenters put pretty much sums it up with vinegar and baking soda as always being the winning duo - cheapest and safest.
I was glad to discover something new here as surprisingly i have never heard of Ecover before (they do not sell it in Canada - I am already in the process of inquiring into this)
Anyway i wanted to give you one more idea you might want to try as i did notice it in any of the other posts (maybe i did not look hard enough at all of them) But have you heard of Shaklee products?
They were advertised on Oprah a few weeks back and are supposed to be made with all natural ingredients too and very effective.

Anonymous said...

About that Murphy Oil Soap we all love...I don't love it so much anymore since I found out about the potassium hydroxide in it. That't the stuff they use for electroplating, de-horning calves, and other nastiness. For your wood floors, stick with a vinegar solutions.

Anonymous said...

The best things about green cleaning I learned from here:
It's a video from a company that specializes in professional green cleaning.
Their best trick is using a white scotchbright like pad pretty much everywhere. My bathroom has never been so clean, so fast and easy.

Unknown said...

I use Arm and Hammer Essentials multi-purpose cleaner! Love it for cleaning everything, including glass!
Arm and Hammer also has an Essentials, dye and fragrance free, laundry detergent!

Cheryl C McNeil said...

1. bathrooms: Shaklee all purpose cleaner/

2. countertops: Shaklee liquid dishwashing which I dilute.

3. mildew: Once again Shaklees Basic H2 which will remove mildew and mold.

4. soap scum: Shaklee's scour off paste.

5. windows: Shaklee's Basic H2 which takes 2 drops to 16 oz of water.

6. laundry: Still Shaklee, they have it in powder or liquid concentrate which I use and dilute it with 1/3 concentrate and 2/3 water and it lasts me for months.

7. dishes: Shaklee's dishwashing liquid which I also dilute. Everything is concentrated and one bottle will last me close to a year and I wash dishes 3-4 times daily.

8. Fabric Softener: Shaklee dryer sheets which I cut in half or the liquid concentrate which I dilute half and half.

9. linoleum: diluted Shaklee Basic H2.

10. Same as above.

11. skin: Shaklee has a great skin care line and if you want something cheaper use olive oil, unless you have very oily skin. It is great on your feet, face, arms, hands and just all over. I put a few drops in my bath water when I take the occasional bath instead of showering.

12. hair: Shaklee vitalizing shampoo which I also dilute 1/2 and 1/2.

13. teeth: Shaklee dentifrice. It is organic, has no warning label and is Kosher certified.

Flo said...

Regarding Mr. Clean Magic Eraser, it is not toxic. See the Snopes article

I love the Magic Eraser for the very fact that I don't have to use any substances at all, just water and some very light "elbow grease".

Anonymous said...

Shaklee is high on the list for comparible products. The H2 will cover you from counter tops to windows and diluted you can even wash your fruit & veggies. Their germacide will cleanse and disenfect twice as well as bleach based products but without the hazard. However if ordering or finding a rep is not for you. I am fond of Seventh Generation spray, Ecover dishwasher, and Sun & Earth dish soap. Really folks find Shaklee it is so worth your while. It is extremely concentrated so you are saving on waste, shipping, and plastic bottles.

Anonymous said...

A great find if you are limited on where you can shop is Arm & Hammer phosphate free, vegetable based laundry detergent. It is found at Target. Green bottle!