This year, avoid harmful chemicals and save some money with homemade and effective household cleaners. There is more research than ever about the chemicals in regular commercial cleaning products and their link to serious ailments and diseases. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has recently tested 21 common cleaning products and identified 457 air pollutants released through regular cleaning. Of these, 24 chemicals have well-established linked to asthma, cancer and other health disorders such as birth defects and reproductive problems. Is it worth it? What are we doing to ourselves in the name of a ‘clean’ home? Always advocates of non-toxic products at EcoSmart Products, we have put together our list of favorite, basic all-natural, cheap, and effective cleaning recipes, just in time for spring cleaning.
Worst ingredient: Butyl Cellosolve is a suspected carcinogen potentially damaging to bone marrow, the nervous system, the kidneys and the liver.
Natural All-Purpose Cleaner Recipe:
1 gallon hot water
1/2 cup liquid castile soap
10 drops essential oil (optional) like lavender or thyme
Worst ingredient: Formadehyde can trigger respitory problems and has links to cancer. Butane (in air some air fresheners) is a brain and nervous system toxin. Benzene, also in some air fresheners, has been linked to leukemia and nervous system damage.
Natural Room Deodorizer Recipe:
2 cups water
15 drops thyme essential oil
15 drops tea tree essential oil
10 drops oregano essential oil
Worst ingredients: Glycol Ethers have links to adverse effects on the liver and kidneys.
Natural Glass Cleaner Recipe:
1 cup white vinegar
1 cup water
Worst ingredient: Nonylphenol ethoxylate degrades into a powerful bioaccumulating endocrine-disruptor. This chemical is banned in Europe.
Natural Laundry Detergent Recipe:
7 quarts hot water
1 cup soap granules
1/2 cup borax
1/2 cup washing soda
20 drops essential oil (optional) such as lemon or lavender
For a printable infographic, here are some home recipes from CFHA, the Canadian Health Food Association: