There is no doubt that that case for non toxic cleaning products is a strong one. Environmental agencies across the Western world consistently rank indoor air pollution as one of the most significant long-term threats to human health, and it has been revealed that the source of these pollutants in non-smoking households is largely the many toxic cleaning products we use.
Many people are reticent to make the switch over to non toxic cleaning products on the assumption that, like organic food and many other “green” products, there will be a spike of cost to deal with, but this is simply not the case. In fact, many non toxic cleaning products can be found or made at home, for far less than what one would pay at the store. For some ideas, check out the list below:
- Baking Soda. Baking soda is already well-known for its manifold uses in the kitchen, being employed in everything from odour control to baking. The reason baking soda effectively deals with odour is because it has antibacterial qualities (along with proven virus-killing abilities), making it a perfect cleaner – it even cuts through grease and grime. Baking soda is particularly wonderful for use with deep carpet, when let sit overnight and vacuumed up the next day.
- Castile Soap. Castile soap is a 100% plant-based soap, meaning that it avoids both cruelty to animals and the environmental burden associated with keeping livestock and/or using chemical detergents. Castile soap is made entirely from pure plant oils, and is part of the Dr. Bronner’s line of products.
- Vinegar. Vinegar is one of the most amazing and diverse non toxic cleaning products out there. One can apply it indoors and outdoors, in tasks ranging from wiping down counters to removing stains from concrete patios and driveways. Vinegar’s natural acidity makes it perfect for eliminating grease, soap scum, and grime, substance people usually break out chemicals to deal with. Even better, vinegar is far cheaper than any of the usual chemical cleaning products, and you only need one bottle handle many jobs.
- Lemon juice. Like vinegar, lemon juice has a mild natural acidity which combats grease and bacteria, as well as mildew and mould. It also helps to polish hard surfaces, and many people find its smell much more pleasant then the scent of vinegar.
- Olive oil. Most of us know that olive oil is great for our skin and hearts, but few realize it also functions as an anti-bacterial cleaner and polisher. Other natural oils, like coconut oil, often have similar properties, but olive oil is among the most common and affordable of options.
- Borax. Borax is a combination of a boron mineral and salt, which many “green” cleaners believe is better at handling tough cleaning jobs more safely than the chemical alternatives. Be aware, however, that some people do report experiencing skin and eye irritation when using borax, so use it with caution, and leave it for when the above cleaners aren’t quite cutting it.