Best green cleaning products

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There is a wide range of cleaning products that the manufacturers advertise as being eco-friendly and healthier. It is important to know that some products may claim to be more natural and environmentally friendly than they actually are.

According to Clean Water Action, some aspects to consider in safe green cleaning products include:

  • biodegradable or not
  • nontoxic
  • bulk packaging
  • recyclable packaging
  • packaging from recycled materials
  • phosphate-free
  • label with full disclosure of all active and inactive ingredients
  • natural fragrances
  • free of dyes, hypochlorite, and chlorine
Natural alternatives

Instead of buying green cleaning products, a person can easily make natural cleaners at home.

There are many recipes for green cleaners that are cheap and versatile. The ingredients are natural and do not cause environmental harm, including not causing indoor air pollution. They are also less likely than not green ones to affect a person’s health.

Some natural products that can make good cleaning agents include:

  • vinegar
  • baking soda
  • tea tree oil
  • Castile soap

The Green Building Alliance have identified a few different recipes to make green cleaning products at home. Some ideas include:

  • Disinfectant: Mix 2 cups of water, 1 tbsp of liquid castle soap, and 1 tsp of tea tree oil to create a multipurpose disinfectant that helps remove germs.
  • All-purpose cleaner: Combine equal parts vinegar and water in a spray bottle to create an all-purpose cleaner for many hard surfaces.
  • Glass cleaner: Shake 1/4 cup of white vinegar, 1/4 cup of rubbing alcohol, 2 cups of warm water, and 1 tbsp of cornstarch in a spray bottle. The mixture can clean glass surfaces, such as windows or stove tops.
  • Drain cleaner: Pour 1/2 cup of baking soda into a clogged drain and follow this with 1 cup of vinegar. Let the mixture work for about 15 minutes and then pour boiling water down the drain.
  • Multipurpose scrub: Combine enough water and baking soda to make a paste. Use the paste with a brush, sponge, or scrubber to clean the surface of sinks, stoves, and other hard surfaces
  • Air freshener: Use either dried or fresh flowers, or boil water with vanilla, cinnamon, slices of lemon or oranges, or other spices. To deodorize a refrigerator or carpet, leave baking soda in an open bowl or sprinkle on the carpet. Let it sit on the carpet for a few minutes before vacuuming it up.
  • Laundry detergent: Combine 1/2 cup of washing soda, 1 cup of soap flakes, and a 1/2 cup of baking soda. A person can add 1 to 2 tbsp of oxygen bleach if they wish.

Clean Water Action suggest some other green cleaning ideas, as well. For example, they recommend using white vinegar to get pet urine out of carpets. They add that it should help prevent the pet from returning to pee in the same spot.