Do-It-Yourself Cleaning Products

With the arrival of Spring comes a natural instinct to clean and reorganize our nests. Our windows are opened after months of being shut and fresh air inspires the need to give our homes a good deep clean. Instead of reaching for chemicals that can do more harm than good, consider making some natural + simple cleaners with basic ingredients that really do the work.

We're happy to introduce our friend Erin at Reading My Tea Leaves -- her approach to living a simple and sustainable life is inspired. Her new book, Simple Matters was recently published and it serves as a delightful manual for all things simple, practical., and aesthetic. She guides her readers through organizing, decluttering, decorating, natural beauty, cooking, cleaning, and minimalist living. Her  GORGEOUS images illustrate how beautiful it is to keep it simple.

In celebration of her new book release, we are giving away a copy of her book PLUS a collection of green cleaning tools, essential oils for a lucky reader to start their own mighty green cleaning basket. Enter below via the widget.

 Having a little bit of natural cleaning know-how up our sleeves

"Getting a full list of ingredients used in household cleaners often involves making phone calls and conducting extensive research to find out exactly what kind of chemical soup a company might have used." Erin Boyle (Reading My tea Leaves)

When the Toxic Substances Control Act was passed in 1976, it allowed 62,000 chemicals to stay on the market without testing. Since then, another 20,000 chemicals have been introduced. How many have been tested? About 200. How many regulated? 5. 

What if you don't have time to make your own cleaning products? Luckily, there are companies who are listening to what consumers want in their homes. We've narrowed our search to a few small companies who all share one basic principle: transparency. Each cleaning product at MightyNest is clearly labeled listing toxin-free plant-derived ingredients. For those of you looking to make some of your cleaning supplies, your pantry is the best place to start for ingredients. Old standards like baking soda, vinegar, essential oils and elbow grease are ideal to incorporate into your cleaning routine. 

9 Essential Oils for Cleaning: No scary fumes needed! Essential oils naturally smell amazing and are the best option for making homemade cleaning recipes. Add oils to green your laundry routine, sanitize kitchen counters and deep clean the bathroom. 

  • Lemon: Antiviral and Antibacterial + refreshing, energizing and uplifting scent. A powerhouse in homemade cleaning solutions.
  • Sweet Orange:  Great against cutting through grease 
  • Tea Tree: Fights germs, bacteria and viruses. Use this in homemade wipes or a daily shower spray.
  • Lavender: Naturally antibacterial + a perfect addition to laundry routine.
  • Eucalyptus: Natural Germicide and great for cleaning cupboards (deters bugs).
  • Peppermint: Antibacterial and terrific to add to spray cleaners. Also, repels ants effectively!
  • Thyme: Powerful against germs - terrific to add to homemade dish soap and for cleaning cutting boards.
  • Rosemary: Antibacterial and Antiseptic - add this to dish soap or laundry detergent. Also great in combination with peppermint as a room spray.
  • Cinnamon: Naturally antibacterial and antiseptic so it's great to use against mold in a mold + mildew spray.
Cleaning Essentials:
  • Vinegar: 50-50 combination of water + vinegar makes a terrific all-purpose spray. Add this mixture to washing machine and protect from mildew-y towels.
  • Baking Soda: Scrub porcelain, deodorize and shine stainless steel.
  • Lemons: Clean wooden cutting boards with a half of lemon + some salt or soda.
  • Castile Soap: 1 soap for 18 different uses.
  • Coconut Oil:  great for seasoning cast iron pans and removing sticky goo.
  • Tidy Dish Cloths: textured for extra cleaning power and reusable for years.
  • Reusable Cleaning e-Cloths: just add water, no cleaners needed!
  • Scrub Brush: for extra elbow grease power, this is the brush.
  • Green Cleaning Starter Kit:  Get started with these plant derived cleaners.
DIY recipes for Green Cleaning
DIY Citrus Surface Spray
Soft Scrub Cleanser for Sinks + Tubs

 DIY stain remover spray (from Cassie Johnston at Back to Her Roots)

Directions: Mix together the water, castile soap, vegetable glycerin and essential oil. Pour into a glass spray bottle. The lemon essential oil tends to eat away at plastic, so try to store in glass if possible. To use, spray liberally on the stain, rub in a bit with your fingers and let sit or soak before washing. If it’s a really tough stain, try letting it soak overnight (and maybe applying the spray a few times).

What natural DIY cleaning recipes do you make? Please share with us in the comments below.

GIVEAWAY! Enter below for a chance to win a copy of Simple Matters + a selection of green cleaning supplies (value $100). Giveaway ends April 25th at 11:59pm CST.

UPDATE: Congratulations to Kara Garrod for winning this giveaway!