How to make an awesome natural, homemade all-purpose cleaner (and why you should use one)
Running out constantly to replenish your supply of cleaning products can be expensive and time consuming. Additionally, not only are most cleaning products that you find in big-box stores wasteful, they are often filled with toxic ingredients. Here’s everything you need to know about how to make an amazing all-purpose cleaner that works better than store brands, and why you should.
Benefits of making a homemade all-purpose cleaner
You barely have time to go to the bathroom. So why should you take the time to make a homemade all-purpose cleaner that can help you clean one? There are lots of reasons to ditch your store-bought cleaner for this essential homemade all-purpose cleaner:
It’s free from toxic chemicals
Full of ingredients most people have never heard of and can’t pronounce, traditional all-purpose cleaners are packed with toxic chemicals. Some of the most harmful chemicals in leading all-purpose cleaning sprays include:
Formaldehyde and harmful preservatives: Many household cleaners contain substances that are known carcinogens.
Ammonium hydroxide: This chemical can burn skin, cause asthma and damage eyes. It’s also very harmful to aquatic animals.
If a cleaner contains ingredients you wouldn’t want your toddler or dog eating, why would you spray it all over your house?
You can customize it to your preferences
If you ever feel like your home smells like it is full of chemicals after you’ve cleaned it, it probably is. In fact, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the air within our homes may be more seriously polluted than the air outside of it, even in the largest cities.
Ditch chemical-laden cleaners for this homemade all-purpose cleaner and you can fill your home with any (all-natural!) aroma you’d like.
It will save you money
In the U.S. cleaning is a $168 billion industry. The average family spends close to $700 a year on cleaning supplies. For cents per bottle, you can pocket the money you’ll save or use it on other elements that improve your home environment, like an essential oil diffuser or natural cleaning supplies.
It will save you time
It may seem crazy to spend even a few minutes making a homemade cleaner. But consider this: how long does it take you to drive to the grocery or convenience store, purchase cleaner, and drive back? Making this simple homemade all-purpose cleaner takes less than 5 minutes – likely a fraction of the time.
It’s more sustainable
Even if you recycle the plastic bottles your cleaners come in when you are through with them, they still leave a big environmental footprint. Did you know that half of everything that gets put into recycling is not recycled, anyway? Making your own homemade cleaners is an easy way to reduce your carbon footprint while keeping your family healthy – and on a budget – all at the same time.
Supplies and ingredients
Here are all of the ingredients and supplies you’ll need:
- 1 16 ounce glass spray bottle
- 1 funnel
- 2 cups Distilled water
- 1 t Borax
- 2 T castile liquid soap
- ½ t baking soda
- 15 drops of essential oils
Homemade all-purpose cleaner recipe
- Use the funnel to combine the distilled water, borax, castile liquid soap, and baking soda into the glass spray bottle.
- Add in 15 drops of essential oils.
- Close and gently shake to combine.
How to choose your essential oils
As you choose your essential oils, consider what scents you and your family are used to having in your home. Lavender, lemon, orange and mint scents are all great choices for cleaning products.
You could also use this opportunity to experiment with some new scents, like eucalyptus or basil, and change what oils you choose based upon the seasons.
How to use your homemade all-purpose cleaner
- Since this cleaner does contain soap, it’s best to use a warm, damp towel along with it. Store a basket of reusable towels next to your cleaning supplies to make your new cleaning practice even more sustainable.
- This cleaner is marble- and granite-safe. It does not contain vinegar, which can strip surfaces of coatings.
- Since this cleaner does not contain any toxic chemicals, feel free to use it on your children’s toys, or areas where your pet rests and eats.
- Always use in a glass container, as essential oils can break down the properties in plastic bottles after time. Plastic bottles that are not BPA-free can also leak harmful chemicals into your cleaner.
Want daily health hacks?
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- Visit our Live Life Healthy blog daily for more health hacks you wish you knew yesterday and clean living tips.
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- Make us your essential healthy companion by bringing us with you wherever you go!
Other natural cleaning resources
If you’re concerned about the other products you are using to clean your home as well, check out The Environmental Working Group’s Guide to Healthy Cleaning. This guide rates many of the leading brands’ cleaning products by safety.
What is your favorite homemade all-purpose cleaner recipe?
Have another homemade all-purpose cleaner recipe that you love? Have other ideas for the best essential oils to use? Let us know in the comments below.