Even as a child, I have always had this strong pull to save the earth. As I grew up and learned more and more about the lifestyle I wanted to live and teach my children; the green movement came out like a bang. Now it’s all about lessening your footprint, global warming is no joke. The Poles are melting faster than ever, as our ocean levels grow; our freshwater supply is shrinking.
I decided the only way to help was to go green; all natural, chemical free. Call it what you will, I wanted to do my part to keep my family healthy and help mother earth as much as possible.
We started by using store bought green cleaning supplies, the cheap ones are still full of junk and the actual chemical-free, all-natural kind are super costly. I needed to cut my budget and still stay true to cleaning as “green” as possible. I started to researched how to make my own cleaning supplies, first was all purpose cleaner, than laundry soap, body products and so on. I will not lie; I do not use only 100% homemade cleaning supplies, YET! I cannot seem to prefect dishwasher tablets/detergent, and with a family of 6 the dishwasher is a lifesaver. (Maybe I should start making the kids hand wash dishes, ha!) I figured I would share my first and most important recipe to me with you.
All purpose cleaner. We call it Green Cleaner because the first batch I added food color to make it green. But food coloring is also not good for you, so I decided to stop coloring it. I based my recipe off of this article Homemade Cleaning Products: All-Purpose Cleaner, this recipe was to make a small amount at a time, I don’t know about you but I don’t have time to make cleaner every few days. I wanted to make at least a month’s worth at a time, so I had to reconfigure the amounts, I played around with them a few times, using my knowledge of essential oils and the other ingredients. I finally started to notice we were getting sick less and less. My body felt better overall, I didn’t have to scrub as hard to clean stains off the counters, stove or tub or worry that my son sprayed his sisters in the face. I got it, I thought!
Not only did it do what I wanted it to, the gallon juice jug I reused to make it in, was lasting us 4-6 months to get through. Not only was it lasting longer than store bought cleaners, it also cost me less than $2.00 to make. I call that a win-win! Wouldn’t you?
All Purpose Cleaner Concentrate
¼ cup washing soda
¼ cup baking soda
½ cup borax
Appox. 64 oz hot water
1 cup liquid castile soap (I use Dr. Bronner’s magic soap)
24-36 oz white vinegar
50-60 drops of lavender Essential oil
30-40 drops of tea tree Essential oil
50- 60 drops of Eucalyptus essential oil
50-60 drops of lemon Essential oil
Make sure you add the vinegar to dry products before you add anything else. Shake well, once the reaction stops foaming add half the water, then add the castile soap. Shake well. Fill the bottle the rest of the way with hot water. Now add the oils. Shake well.
Makes a gallon.
SHAKE WELL BEFORE EACH USE.
To fill a spray bottle with all purpose cleaner add half water half cleaner. Shake well.
The all purpose cleaner can be use in mop bucket for floors, just add a few ounces of cleaner then fill the bucket up.
When using in a spray bottle add water before cleaner. The cleaner foams up less.
Essential oils are optional, but are not used only for their scent they have lots of properties to keep bacteria and other “germs” away. I wouldn’t use the cleaner without them.
Sometimes adding half the water before vinegar helps with foaming but can cause dry ingredients to clump.
Try to find reused or recycled bottles to help keep your cost down.