Make Your Own Animal Free Cleaning Products
One way to ensure the products you use to clean your home have not been tested on animals is to make them yourself. Many every day items like vinegar, bicarbonate of soda, lemons and even coca cola can be used to great effect.
Let us guide you through making your own natural domestic cleaners.
LemonLeave stained teacups to soak over night filled with water and half a squeezed lemon or lime. A rub round in the morning should see them white and shiny again.
Lemon juice will remove stains from clothing. Do a patch test first to ensure it doesn’t bleach the colour, then rub a little lemon over the stain and dab off with kitchen roll. Add lemon juice diluted with water to your wash to brighten colours and whiten whites.
Mix lemon with a little salt to make a polish for copper or brass. Lemon will take scale and other stains off your stainless steel saucepans and sink drainer and is a natural de-greaser.
Both lemon and bicarbonate of soda can be used to deodorise your fridge. Half a lemon or a small pot of bicarb will absorb smells. Make sure to change them regularly.
Bicarbonate of SodaBicarbonate of soda can be used to lift stains from rugs and carpets. And if you have mildewed shower curtains, it can also be used to great effect on them.
Olive OilOlive oil can be used – sparingly – to buff up wooden furniture. It will also take finger print marks from stainless steel. Just use a tiny drip on a duster.
Tea Tree OilTea tree oil is a natural disinfectant and deodoriser. For cloth nappies, a drip in the nappy bucket will help remove the smell and disinfect the contents. A drip diluted with water in a misting bottle will deodorise musty clothes or can be used as a natural air freshener.
Removing StainsIf your work surfaces are stained, sprinkle the area with salt and a little lemon juice and leave for a while (a few hours for bad stains). For stubborn stains, mix a paste of baking powder (or bicarb) and water or lemon juice to make a cream cleaner equivalent. Be careful not to use baking powder on aluminium surfaces, as it will damage them.
Oven CleanerA thick baking powder paste can also be used to clean ovens. Spread the paste on and leave it over night. Wipe off in the morning.
Toilet CleaningCoca cola can be used to remove limescale from toilets. Pour a can down and leave over night. Brush clean in the morning.
VinegarVinegar is a fantastic product to keep around the home for natural cleaning. It’s best to use white vinegar so your house doesn’t smell like a chip shop afterwards. It can also be used on your toilet. Spray a vinegar and water mix around the rim to kill germs and remove limescale. Pour a cup of vinegar followed by two tablespoons of baking powder into the bowl. Leave for 15 minutes, then brush and flush away.
The same combination makes a great drain cleaner. Pour half a cup of baking powder into the drain, followed by half a cup of vinegar. Leave for 15 minutes, then tip a kettle of boiling water down.
WindowsVinegar is good for cleaning windows. Some suggest using vinegar on scrunched up newspaper. Alternatively, mix half a cup of vinegar with two tablespoons of lemon and a litre of water in a spray bottle and use like regular window cleaning solution.
A mix of equal parts vinegar and water makes a good mould remover. You can also use vinegar to clean your microwave. Put two tablespoons of vinegar in a cup of water and microwave on high (with no lid) for 45 seconds to a minute, depending on the power of your microwave. A wipe over afterwards should leave it shiny. You can also boil a little vinegar with the water in your kettle to remove limescale. Don’t forget to rinse it thoroughly afterwards. Adding vinegar to your dishwasher is a great alternative to rinse aid to add sparkle to your crockery. A mix of equal parts water and vinegar also makes a good solution for cleaning out the fridge.
Hydrogen PeroxideYou can clean and bleach chopping boards by spraying with vinegar and then spraying with hydrogen peroxide (available from the chemist) and wiping over. Peroxide is a natural product because it is produced by the action of sunlight on water and also by the human body. It has a bleaching effect and can be used in solution on a number of things around the house. Always patch test first.
Cream of TartarCream of tartar is a natural by-product of fermenting grape juice into wine. It makes a good rust remover. Simply put some of the powder on a scourer and rub at the rust.
Cleaning products like this are quick and easy to make and use. In many cases you’ll wonder why you ever spent money on harsh bleaches and cleaning agents.