Recently somebody posted the below question on our forum:
“I am trying to find a good resource for some of the best eco friendly cleaning products. Does anyone have any recommendations or good resources for me to read?”
The poster probably isn’t the only person out there who would like to know where they can go to find cleaning products that don’t harm the environment. Many eco-conscious homeowners want to know too!
In this post, we thought we’d put together a full response to the question, detailing both the eco-friendly commercial cleaning products you can buy as well as some sustainable home remedies.
Here are some of the ideas rehashed from the post, as well as some new ones.
Buy Eco-Friendly Dishwasher Tabs
Some commercially available dishwasher tabs contain a variety of chemicals that might damage the environment. Fortunately, however, a range of companies, including Ecover and Attitude, have begun making products that help to rectify the situation.
Ecover dish tabs have some strong environmental credentials in their favor, including the fact that they primarily comprise plant-based and natural mineral ingredients. What’s more, they use all-natural fragrances, avoiding some of the potentially harmful “proprietary” compounds found in most mainstream products.
Attitude dishwasher tabs are unique. The company is currently the only manufacturer on the market to offer a phosphate-free detergent. Its also vegan and doesn’t contain any of the usual nasties, like dyes and artificial fragrances.
Choose Wood Natural Wood Polish
Cleaning wooden surfaces in your home with regular products could be an environmental disaster, not just for the world at large, but for the people who live in your home too.
Wood cleaning products contain a variety of potentially harmful chemicals and volatile compounds. Many wood polishes, for instance, contain petroleum distillates, flammable chemicals associated with cancer. Others include nitrobenzene, which can cause reproductive disorders in both humans and animals.
Fortunately, some companies offer viable eco-friendly cleaning products for wood. Green Scents, for instance, makes a wood polish product that shirks petrochemicals, and uses natural oils, like jojoba and olive oil, instead.
Use Non-toxic Lavatory Cleaner
Cleaning the toilet is a necessity of modern life – something that has to be done to keep our homes smelling fresh and free from harmful bacteria.
Regular bleaches, however, might be damaging to the environment. While you’ll often read that bleach breaks down rapidly once it gets into the wastewater system, there are still ethical concerns around organochlorine manufacturing, which is why many people choose not to use mainstream toilet cleaning products.
There are, fortunately, safe, green, and ethical alternatives, although they require a slightly different approach. People shouldn’t stick with their regular schedule and thoroughly scrub out their thrones once per week, as they might with Domestos. When you use eco-friendly cleaning products, the principle of “little and often” comes to the fore. Thus, daily cleaning is vital for keeping your lavatory smelling clean and fresh. Failing to stick with protocol could lead to disappointment and the conclusion that there’s no alternative to traditional bleach.
So what options are out there? Daylesford Rosemary Loo Cleaner is currently one of the most popular on the market. It uses a combination of rosemary and citrus to fight smells and germs and comes packaged in a fully recyclable container.
Make Your Own Surface Cleaner
Surface cleaners are full of potential toxins, many of which regulatory agencies have not yet tested thoroughly. These ingredients include parabens, chlorine, phthalates, perchloroethylene, and quaternary ammonium compounds.
The good news, though, is that you don’t have to rely on these potentially dangerous commercially-available cleaners: just make your own.
- All-purpose cleaner. To make an all-purpose cleaner, grab some plain spirit vinegar and baking soda. Put about half a cup of vinegar into a spray bottle and then add a couple of tablespoons of baking soda. Then fill the bottle with lukewarm water. If you want to add a fragrance, try adding a couple of drops of your favorite essential oils.
- Soft scrub cleaner. This is another popular type of homemade cleaner. Start with one and a half cups of baking soda and add it to a mixing bowl. Then add half a cup of environmentally-friendly liquid soap. Add the soap to the mixing bowl and stir it until you get a paste. Then, when you need to use it, add some water and stir. Again, you can choose to add essential oils if you want to give it a fragrance.
Cleaning with natural ingredients can take a bit of getting used to at first. They don’t lather up like traditional products, and they smell when you apply them. The smell disappears, however, once they evaporate, removing dirt and germs in the process.
Use Green Washing Up Liquid
There’s no doubt that we need more eco-friendly cleaning products in the kitchen. Fortunately, a small British company called Tincture Iona has us all covered.
The company makes eco-friendly washing up liquid that is safer for both people and animals. The product shirks some of the potentially harmful substances found in mainstream brands, like C9-11 pareth 8, a potential carcinogen. It also comes in a range of beautiful-smelling flavors such as thyme, cinnamon, and eucalyptus. And, of course, the packaging is fully recyclable.
Try Eco-Friendly Mops
Traditional mops aren’t the most eco-friendly cleaning products in the world. The reason for this has to do with the disposable pads you fix to the end. In many cases, users discard these pads in the bin, where they inevitably find their way to a landfill.
E-cloth bathroom and tile mop, however, offers a solution. Its mops pair with washable, reusable, high-quality fabric pads that you don’t need to discard after use. What’s more, the mop pole is extendable, allowing you to reach all those tricky areas, like the tiles around the coving.
In summary, there are now a whole host of eco-friendly cleaning products on the market for people who seek them out. You can also make a variety of cleaning products yourself from harmless ingredients, like baking soda and vinegar. Why not give it a go yourself?
If you have any further products that you think would be worthwhile contributing to this post, then please do let us know, and lastly, please do head on over to our forum to further the discussion.