3 natural cleaners for eco-friendly housekeeping
1. BASIC ALL-PURPOSE CLEANING SPRAY
This is an effective and versatile spray which can be used to disinfect surfaces around the home. If you like, steep leftover citrus peels in a jar of vinegar for a week or more before diluting, to get a lightly fragranced version. You could also experiment with herbs such as rosemary or eucalyptus leaves.
- 1 part distilled white
- 1 part water
Mix equal quantities by volume of white vinegar and water and store in a glass or metal spray bottle.
How to use
Spray and wipe to disinfect and clean kitchen counters, sinks, fridges, doorknobs, toys, tables, bathroom surfaces, windows, mirrors and glass. Don’t use on granite or marble.
2. WASHING SODA
For those who can’t find it from bulk or in a cardboard box, here’s how to make your own. I make several batches and store in glass jars, ready for making cleaning products.
- Bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
Simply sprinkle a thin layer (about 5mm/¼ inch deep) of bicarbonate of soda evenly onto a baking sheet and bake in the oven at 250 degrees C, for about an hour, stirring halfway through. When removing from the oven, notice how the texture is now more grainy and the colour duller and a little more grey than before. This is now washing soda, also known as soda crystals or soda ash. Store in an airtight container once cool.
How to use
This can be used to make various cleaning products, such as dishwasher powder and laundry powder. You can also add 2 tablespoons to your laundry to soften water in hard-water areas.
3. OVEN CLEANER
Goodbye, harsh oven cleaners! Most shop-bought versions need serious.
- 125ml (4fl oz) water
- 200g (7oz) bicarbonate of soda
- 1 tablespoon liquid castile soap or eco-friendly washing up liquid
Mix the ingredients together in a bowl to form a paste.
How to use
Apply to the inside of the oven using a sponge or dish brush and leave for 30 minutes. Rinse thoroughly with warm water and wipe with a damp reusable cloth until the oven is completely clean.
Six Weeks to Zero Waste by Kate Arnell is published by Gaia, £14.99, www.octopusbooks.co.uk