When it comes to zero waste cleaning you only really need a few essentials which can make a variety of different cleaners. Vinegar is definitely your friend, it can be used to pretty much clean anything from bathrooms to windows.
Homemade Zero Waste Cleaners
For making our zero waste cleaners I only ever use five ingredients…
- White vinegar
- Bicarbonate of soda
- Castile soap
- Essential Oils
You can also use borax and hydrogen peroxide. Try to find the items in bulk if you can or alternatively in glass jars which can be recycled. All-purpose cleaners are the best as they can be used for a variety of different things and only require a few ingredients.
Here’s an example of which products can be used for different areas of your home…
To clean your oven spray it with full strength vinegar, then sprinkle it with baking soda. Leave it overnight and in the morning scrape it clean with a spatula. Wipe it clean afterwards.
To clean your toilet you can use an all-purpose cleaner made from vinegar and lemon peels or for tougher jobs spray it with vinegar and sprinkle with baking soda. Leave it for a while and then scrub.
To clean and unblock your drains use 1/4 cup of baking soda followed by 1/2 cup white vinegar. Leave until it bubbles then flush with boiling water.
For cleaning glass use an all-purpose mix of vinegar and lemon peels, then simply wipe clean with an old rag or cloth. You can also use old newspaper to buff it up afterwards.
With any of the above cleaners, you can always add some drops of essential oil if you want to.
Other uses for vinegar…
Animals don’t like the smell of vinegar so you can spray it on places where you don’t want your pet to urinate or chew.
Vinegar can also be used in your washing machine as an alternative to fabric softener. Add 1/2 cup to your rinse cycle.
Extend the Life of Flowers
If you have cut flowers in a vase add one tablespoon of sugar and a tablespoon of vinegar to the water. It helps to extend the life of the flowers.
Zero Waste Cleaning Tools
Having the right tools for cleaning can make your life so much easier. The good news is that you don’t need the latest gadgets to help you. With a basic cleaning tool stock, you can clean anything in your home.
I recommend the following…
- A stash of reusable cloths
- Wooden scrubbing brush
- Metal scourer
- Dustpan & brush (made from metal and wood)
- Wooden broom
- Feather duster
- Glass spray bottles
- An old toothbrush
We also have a steam mop which we use for our floors. It only uses the steam to clean the floor, no chemicals involved. It also has reusable mop heads which you can wash after use.
Reducing Chemicals in your Home
By making your own cleaners you are not only reducing the amount of waste you produce but also limiting the number of chemicals you use in your home. Store bought cleaning supplies contain a mix of chemicals which can be damaging to your health.
So what about you? Would you consider switching to zero waste cleaning products? Or do you have a great recipe you could share with us in the comments section below?