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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Saving $ on cleaning product - the extreme minimalist thing to do

We all need to clean stuff...
Whether it's dishes, clothes, bath, toilet, floors.... 

It's a must...

But do we absolutely need all those chemically produce cleaners... that smell forever and ever... and do a better and better job with each generation...  all those product in colorful containers... that attract kids and have actually become a real health hazard for our kids? Did you know that the American center for poison control report that more than 120 000 kids under the age of 5 are poisoned, fatally or not, but still, EACH year by household product alone! 

Now let's say you keep everything under lock... impossible to reach for your kids...  did you ever thought about where those vapours, nice smell and residue end up???  In 2005, the American Red Cross has tested the blood of several Americans and send the sample to 2 different laboratories.  Every single sample was contaminated with, on average, 200 chemicals... be it pesticides, stain repellant, flame retardant, pollutants, chemicals that can be found in household cleaners and beauty product... Now that number was quite high...  and scary... but as this was not enough, they decided to test, for the first time, newborns by taking blood samples in the umbilical cords a few minutes after birth.  What do you think they found???  The exact same toxic product... not less... THIS IS SCARY!!!

Even if you do lock everything up, kids are born intoxicated... and keep touching and smelling all those products we use...  and I find this really sad... especially that we do not know what will happen over time...  years from now... most of those toxic product did not even exist 50 years ago so we have no toxicity data over time.

It scares me...

Plus an average family spends around 200$, sometimes much more if you're a clean freak, per year on toxic household cleaning product.... when you could easily make them yourself for a fraction of the price... and no heath costs...  It is believed that you could easily save 100$ per year, if not more on that alone!

I will give it a try... I have been looking for recipes to make my own cleaning agents...  Here are the ones I decided to use for now...  I'll try them and if I am not convinced, I have other recipe I wish to try.

First off, in the picture at the beginning of this post, I am showing you the making of orange vinegar... this will ensure a nice non toxic smell to my household cleaner.  And it is done using orange peel and vinegar.  Only those 2 ingredients.  You leave it there for a couple of days to up to 2 weeks... 

For my dishwashing liquid, I will be using Dr Bonner's Castile soap... hemp unscented...  I ordered it on Amazon! Just a squirt will do!  Now I do not have a dishwasher... if you do, there are recipe for that too....

For my laundry, I will go with a liquid detergent for now...  You use 1 cup of liquid castile soap, 1 cup baking soda, 2 cups warm water and 1/3 cup of salt...  you dissolve the salt and baking soda in warm water, add the castile... pour into a gallon container and dilute to top with water. You use about 1/4 cup per wash.

My all purpose cleaner will be done in a spray bottle - fill it to 1/4 with my orange vinegar, add a squirt of castile soap and fill to top with water.  You can add 2-3 drops of tea tree oil as it is an antifungals and antimold agent.   For though jobs, you can sprinkle some baking soda on the surface to be cleaned, spray the household cleaner and then scrub!!!

Now I will start using that as soon as I get the Castile soap... I just ordered it!

Can't wait.... by then my orange vinegar will be ready to go!

I will keep you posted on how it goes... and if I try another recipe I will also let you know...



  1. I love using Castile soap and have my own batch of orange vinegar BUT....the two don't mix. If you add castile soap to a vinegar product or vice versa, you get a weird reaction that turns your cleaner into a funky mess! They are both awesome, just keep them separate!

  2. This may be a stupid question but is it just regular vinegar? Some smell stronger than others.

    1. hello! of course there is no such thing as a stupid question.... ;-)
      vinegar DOES NOT smell good...
      I am using orange vinegar that I made from regular cheap vinegar and orange peels. The orange smell kind of hide the vinegar one... the longest you let them in, the better off you are!

  3. I love Your Idea !. A mix of vinegar and water is a great way to clean germy toys without harsh chemicals. I’m going to be subscribing to your feed and I really hope you are writing again soon.

    Brisbane carpet cleaners & Leather cleaning Gold Coast

    1. H Mark! nice to meet you.... of course this is a fantastic idea for cleaning kid's toy and not worrying the kids will get intoxicated with residues!