Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Giving Up Commercial Cleaners

Commercial cleaning products can be so beguiling with their fancy packaging, dazzling promises and nowadays, uplifting scents (sometimes).  But they come with a sting in their tail.  So here are my main concerns about commercial cleaning products:

  • They are usually not environmentally friendly due to their excessive packaging, transport costs, and some of the chemicals they contain.  We can now recycle much of the packaging, but not making it and recycling it saves even more energy and resources. 
  • They often contain chemicals, including scents which are hazardous to pets, children, humans, and asthma/allergy sufferers (I have all of these residents in my home).
  • There are cheaper alternatives.  And I like cheaper.
  • Even the so-called eco-friendly cleaners have some of the problems above.
  • I have a natural tendency to rebel against relying on manufacturers for the basics in life.  (I buy packaged foods and things but certainly have the ability to knock out a loaf of bread or biscuits if I want them instead of jumping in the car).
So I have been researching the alternatives.  Searching through the Internet reveals many different recipes and tricks.  I have found that you have to be careful when looking through these.  Some recipes turn out to be quite harsh chemicals, but really cheap to make.  This is fine if it is your only goal.  Some recipes are all natural and organic and very expensive.  This is fine if very natural and organic is your goal.  I am looking for something in between.  Simple, few inexpensive ingredients, and as safe as possible.  I also hate clutter and having  ten different bottles of things hanging around.

So I will be experimenting over the coming months.  I am using up the commercial products we have and replacing them with cheaper, more natural alternatives.


  1. To clean windows I've save lemons after we've squeezed almost everything out of them. I use the lemon itself like a sponge to wash the windows and mirrors, then a damp cloth to wipe down and finally newspaper to dry. Works really well and you get the added benefit of a lemon aroma in the house.


  2. Love this idea! And since I am now addicted to Hindu lemonade I always have plenty of lemons around! Maybe I can combine cleaning day with make lemonade day.