Low-Tox Cleaning Essentials

What do you have in your cleaning kit? I enjoy making my own customised cleaning products with just few ingredients. This way, I know what goes into them and can ensure there are no ingredients that compromise our indoor air quality or are harsh on our skin.

However, I am not completely ‘zero-waste’ or ‘toxic-free’. There are few places that I haven’t been satisfied with home-made products (I hope to change that). For instance, the toilet is one such area. I choose store-brought items for that (preferably low-tox).

The point is to take a second to rethink about our everyday choices. If there are areas where you can be minimalistic and green, then why not try it? If you can find a simple and efficient alternative at home to a toxic item packed in plastic, then go for it! And, if you want to rely on store bought items for few tasks, that’s okay. What we are trying to do is to be more conscious of the things we use on a daily basis and explore the alternatives. In the end, make the choice that is best for your health and your home.

I fill my cleaning kit with few essential ingredients that help me keep things squeaky clean at home. Sometimes they are good on their own, and sometimes I use them in combination. We use them to clean floors, countertop wiping, laundry, etc.

Let’s dive into the kit:

  • Baking soda: If you are in search for a gentle abrasive and a scouring agent that’s efficient and cheap, just reach for the baking soda in your kitchen. Not only does it remove grease and dirt, it’s also a natural deodoriser that tackles odours. Check out what I use as a scrubbing tool for baking soda here.
  • Soap Nuts: In an earlier post about my laundry routine, I wrote about these magic nuts. These biodegradable nuts can be reused 3-4 times before composting it. Apart from laundry, I also make an all-purpose cleaning liquid out of them. I love the fact that I can buy these nuts in bulk!
  • Castile Soap: This non-toxic olive-oil based soap is really good with greases. Although they do come in liquid forms, I prefer buying soap bars to avoid plastic packaging. I then grate these soaps bars ( it’s an arm workout!), mix it with hot water, and let it cool down before I store it in a jar.
  • Lemon: Being both anti-bacterial and anti-septic, lemons make terrific cleaning agents. I am also fond of the citrus smell. Lemon juice cuts through grease, so I let it sit on a countertop stain for few minutes, before I scrub it off with baking soda.
  • Orange peels: We love eating oranges, so we always have them at home. This is how we use the citrus fruit as a cleaner.
  • Vinegar: Apart from the orange peel cleaner, I often use vinegar to clean windows. Fill a spray with equal parts water and vinegar (and a few drops of your favourite essential oil), and spray it on a cloth to clean.

What are your go-to ingredients for a low-tox cleaning routine?

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