We all know that baking soda can be used to clean everything from your counter tops to your teeth. But did you know that there are plenty of other eco-friendly cleaners that you can whip up with a few common kitchen ingredients? Here are five of our favorites.
- Vodka laundry freshener
The smarties over at Webecoist say a spritz or two of vodka on your clothes will freshen them up between washes. They swear that the booze scent evaporates quickly, along with the noxious odors you’re trying to kill. This isn’t technically a “recipe” since you’re not combining any ingredients with the vodka, but it’s too clever an idea to pass up. And, no, we don’t recommend mixing orange juice into your vodka-filled spray bottle.
- Creamy soft scrubber
Sure, those goopy white creamy cleansers do a great job of removing gunk from sinks and showers, but we can do without the fumes and chemicals. Care2 has a terrific idea for making a similar cleanser that won’t leave you gasping for air every time you use it. Put about 1/2 a cup of baking soda in a bowl, then add a little liquid detergent until the mixture resembles cake frosting. Scrub to your heart’s content without unleashing a cadre of chemicals into your home.
- Glass cleaner
To make your widows and mirrors sparkle, try the approach recommended by Green Homes. Add two tablespoons of white vinegar to a gallon of water, put some in a spray bottle and go nuts. If the smell of vinegar bothers you or evokes memories of that bad egg-dyeing session you’re trying to forget, use club soda or lemon juice instead.
- Drain cleaner
Oh, this one is fun! Eco-Friendly Cleaning says forget the caustic drain cleaner from the hardware store, grab a box of baking soda, a cup of vinegar, lemon juice and a gallon of hot water instead. Call the kids in to watch while you create your own little homemade volcano. First pour 1/2 cup of baking soda down the drain and follow it up with the vinegar, then about 1/4 cup of lemon juice. Let it foam and fizz for a while, then rinse the drain with the bucket of hot water.
- Furniture polish
Lighter Footstep nails down a great homemade recipe for making your wood furniture glow. Fill a spray bottle with a cup of olive oil and 1/2 cup of lemon juice. Your furniture (and lungs) will thank you for not rubbing chemical-laden spray all over the place. As an added bonus, if all that house cleaning leaves you famished, spritz a plate of pasta with your new furniture polish, toss in a handful of basil, and there’s lunch!
Image by alancleaver_2000