A healthy home is a happy home, and healthy homes aren’t full of chemicals. That’s why I have collected a set of recipes for DIY house cleaning products that actually work and are 100% non-toxic to humans and pets alike.
My roommate and I used to use a number of cleaning products that weren’t necessarily safe for us and our cat. Our apartment had bug issues with ants and water beetles, and since we lived community style the fridge and other surfaces and drains started to stink after a while. Because of all this we used products like Raid, Clorox, and Lysol. But, over time, we learned and did what we could to adjust our purchasing habits. We switched to using products from brands like Method, Honest, and Ever Spring that are non-toxic and available at reasonable prices just about anywhere cleaning products are sold.
That was a great first step in our healthy home practice, but since then I’ve learned that there’s even more effective things I could do to keep my living space clean and keep the earth happy. While these products were healthier and safe for us and our cat, they weren’t necessarily totally eco-friendly. They still were housed in plastic bottles that were mass-produced and contained chemicals many people aren’t familiar with.
By either reusing the bottles from these past purchases, or grabbing some empty glass spray bottles at the store, you can start making your own cleaning products at home full of ingredients you can identify and feel safe using just about anywhere.
- Drain Cleaner
- Ingredients: Vinegar, Baking Soda
- Pour 1/2 cup baking soda down the drain. Let sit for 15 minutes before pouring 1/3 cup vinegar down the drain. The baking soda and vinegar will mix and create bubbles and popping sounds. Let that sit for 15 more minutes before running water to rinse this mix out.
- For an extra touch of freshness and delight, I suggest putting a few drops of your favorite essential oil down the drain after doing this clean out. (My favorites for this are grapefruit oil and lemon oil)
- Bug Repellent
- Ingredients: Water, Witch Hazel, Essential Oils (Tea Tree, Lavender, Cedar, Eucalyptus, Peppermint)
- Mix 1 cup water with 1/2 cup witch hazel in a spray bottle. Add 20-30 drops of essential oil and shake. You do not have to add all of these essential oils, but the more of these you have the more bugs you have the potential to repel. For some common pests, I suggest using peppermint oil for ants and cedar oil for silverfish.
- Spray this mixture directly on area where you find bugs are entering your home and where they prefer to congregate. This works best if you spray these areas once daily until the infestation is resolved.
- Bonus: This mixture can also be used as a bug repellent for your body! How fun! All you have to change is that you should only use 15-20 drops of essential oil rather than the 20-30 to protect skin from potential irritants. (Mosquitos especially hate tea tree and eucalyptus. You can thank me later.)
- Multi-Surface Cleaner
- Ingredients: Water, Castile Soap, Isopropyl Alcohol, Essential Oils of your choosing
- Mix 1 cup water, 1/2 cup isopropyl alcohol, and 3 tablespoons castile soap in a spray bottle. Add 20-30 drops of the essential oils of your choosing and shake.
- Use this just as you would any other multi-surface cleaner.
- Toilet Wash
- Ingredients: Vinegar, Castile Soap, Tea Tree Oil, other Essential Oils of your choosing
- Mix 1/2 cup vinegar with a 1/2 cup castile soap in a spray bottle or squeezable bottle. Add 20-30 drops of tea tree oil and other essential oils of your choosing and mix again.
- Spray this mixture directly into the toilet bowl and let sit for 15-20 minutes before flushing.
- Shower Head Cleaner
- Ingredients: Vinegar, Baking Soda
- Mix 1 cup of vinegar with 1/3 cup baking soda in a bag. Take the bag and tie it around your shower head. Make sure the shower head is fully submerged in the mixture. Leave this on for 3 or more hours (overnight is best). Once it’s ready, remove the bag and wipe the shower head with a damp cloth.
- Fridge Refresh
- Ingredients: Water, Vinegar, Baking Soda, Essential Oils of your choosing
- Mix 2 cups of warm water, 1/2 cup vinegar, and 1/4 cup baking soda in a spray bottle (if this creates a foam let it sit before adding anything else or closing the bottle). Add 10-15 drops of your favorite essential oil- this is primarily for smell, but you can also get the benefits of a disinfectant from certain oils (i.e. tea tree oil, etc.). I suggest using food friendly scents like lemon oil, grapefruit oil, rosemary oil, etc.
- Spray this mixture onto the surfaces in your fridge, let sit, and then wipe clean.
- Air Deodorizer and Refresher
- Ingredients: Baking Soda, Essential Oils of your choosing
- Put 1 cup of baking soda in a cup or jar. Add 20-30 drops of your favorite essential oil and mix. Put a lid with holes in it on the jar to both allow the mixture to pull in and trap odors while also releasing the refreshing scent of your choice of oils.
- You can put these just about anywhere you need help with odor. I prefer to keep this in a closet or other small space so that it can work more proficiently. However, that isn’t necessary. It will help deodorize wherever you put it. Simply replace it when you notice unwanted odors returning.
These are my staple recipes for easy and safe home cleaning products, and hopefully they will become yours too! My favorite thing about these recipes (aside from the fact that they are so much more eco-friendly than their commercial counterparts) is that they are incredibly cost effective. You can buy the ingredients in bulk since so many of the products require similar ingredients. They’ll save your money, your time, and your health!
Let me know: Which of these will you be trying? Are there any other home cleaning products you make yourself?