My house is not messy right! Let’s just get that out there. Well, at least not all of it. And you know what, I love cleaning most of the time. In fact, my cleaning cupboard, with the many bottles of cleaning liquids and creams pay homage to the fact that I’m an avid cleaner.
I’ve also been getting quite environmentally aware and I’m beginning to think that having all those cleaners might not be such a good thing and might in fact be detrimental to the environment. So I’ve come up with a plan. I need to be doing my bit for the environment because if we all do our part, this world would be in a much better state not only for us but for the generations that will come after us.
I have started off by, as you do, checking with Google. So far I have found a number of things to help me along this journey and most of them are very good frugal tips so that’s a win-win in my book. I’m happy to share these tips with you so here goes:
Before and After of my Cleaning Cupboards
Historically, I have had cleaning products stored in a dedicated cupboard in my kitchen, a drawer in the upstairs bathroom a box in the downstairs cloakroom and also an overflow box in the conservatory of all places. What I have been working on is decluttering purposely with the aim of getting rid of what I do not need, and also educating myself on what I can use that would be more eco friendly.
Since I spent my hard-earned cash on those cleaning things I would prefer to use them until they are finished rather than throwing them down the drain. That is the right thing to do, right? I mean, if I threw them down the drain, that would be like throwing my money down the drain and I don’t want to do that, do I? NO.
So for the time being, I’m using all the cleaning products I have already purchased. Once they are finished, I have decided not to buy more of them unless they are eco friendly and to, instead, make my own cleaning products using all-natural ingredients which are not harmful to the environment and which are inexpensive to make.
I must give credit where it is due and so I credit Scandish Home for this recipe I found for an all-purpose cleaner that is working really well. The ‘concoction’ was made up of things that I already have at home:
1 1/2 cups of water
1/2 tsp dish soap
10 drops of essential oil of your choice (I chose orange)
Who knew! It is so good and smells wonderful too. I use it a lot now for cleaning and will not be buying any more of those harsh cleaners again. This will replace at least 6 of the bottles of cleaners that I have at this point.
Glass and Mirror Cleaner
50% rubbing alcohol
This recipe for glass and mirror cleaner I also got from Scandish Home. So far, I have used the water, vinegar combination and it works really well. I use it to clean windows, mirrors and my microwave which is like a black mirror effect at the front, and also the upstairs bathroom tiles which are mirror tiles.
Now you know that I would need containers to store these liquids in. And I do believe such things should not only be functional but also beautiful. So I bought these 2 beautiful blue glass spray bottles to dispense my cleaning fluids. Now, these were not very cheap, but I think they are cost-effective. For one, I want to reduce my use of plastics. Their shelf life is too short and they also discolour and look battered really soon after using for a while. My blue glass bottles on the other hand should last for years to come and I hope to keep them safely so they do not break.
Stainless steel Cleaner for Fridge and the Likes
Now I have a stainless steel fridge and I have bought so many different cleaners for the fridge over the years. Nothing I have tried so far gets it to a streak-free shine that stays that way for more than 2 days. That is until I came across this ‘magic’ recipe. To clean the outside of the fridge, I spray it with the all-purpose cleaner using a damp cloth. I allow that to dry. By this time it looks clean but has some streaks. Well, I have used some coconut oil smeared onto a piece of paper towel to add lustre to the doors of the fridge which I then buff with another piece of paper towel. Wow! Wow! Wow! That has really been like magic and I can honestly say that my fridge has not remained clean for this long when I have used this method.
Ceramic Tile Cleaner
On the lower floor of the house, we have ceramic tiles. They are no bother to clean really, and as they have a natural lustre, cleaning them only enhances this, which is good. However, the price of the floor cleaners is not very inexpensive, although I must confess that I love the smell of them. But to be fair, cleaning the floor with plain warm water gives the same look just without the temporary smell.
My cleaner which I will be using in my mop bucket is:
1 gallon of water
100 ml vinegar
10 drops of essential oil of choice.
It works well. It does look clean and the lustre is still there and I also have the temporary smell of the essential oil.
Bonus Money saving tips:
Buy vinegar in bulk as it is cheaper and you avoid the many small plastic bottles.
Purchase good looking glass spray bottles that will last for a very long time so that you again avoid many small plastic bottles. I love my blue glass ones and there are also some other really good looking ones of a different colour.
Try to source the essential oils where they may be had cheaper. It might mean that it takes longer to arrive to you so be sure to order whilst you still have some of the previous ones left.
So far, I am pleased with these and look forward to more and more ways to save money on cleaning products and also to help out the environment. And you can be sure that I will share them with you here once I discover more. Let’s be on this journey together.
Jo and Leisa