It took me awhile to switch to natural cleaning products. I had a hard time believing they were as strong as chemical based products so I figured I’d end up using double the amount of a natural product as a chemical product and it would all kind of shake out the same anyway. Turns out, I was wrong. The biggest reason why you should switch to natural products? Well, because they generally list every ingredient, which is not actually required by the FDA (yikes! When I heard that). It’s advantageous for natural companies to list their ingredients because it establishes trust with consumers. Here are a few of our favorite products as well as recipes for cleaners you can make at home!
The Honest Company
It’s hard to deny the powerhouse momtrepreneur that is Jessica Alba. The company was started for the exact reason mentioned above, after having her first child Alba realized she didn’t actually know all of the ingredients in the products she was buying for her baby and for her family. She researched the connection between childhood illnesses, specifically asthma, and started working on the first few products for The Honest Company with the ethos that you shouldn’t have to choose between what works for you and what’s good for you. The company has expanded in the last several years to include beauty products, vitamins, household cleaners and, of course, diapers and soaps for baby.
Starting as a catalogue based product delivery service, Seventh Generation has been around since 1988. Over the last 30 years they have expanded both their line of products, as well their market reach, now found in local grocery stores and nationwide retailers. They’ve been product innovators for decades, being the first company to bring 100% recycled paper to the national market, removed all unnatural volatile organic compounds from home care products. In additional to this, they’ve led the fight for transparency in product ingredients which has led to them receiving several awards for their commitment to sustainability and innovation.
One of the newer additions to the green movement is Better Life, owned by friends Tim Barklage and, formulation chemist Kevin Tibbs, the company’s mission was to create the most powerful cleaning products while using plant based ingredients exclusively. In fact, for tougher surfaces like granite, stone and steal Better Life is one of the only natural companies that offers cleaning products.
Make Your Own
If you want to get right to the source, there are a few easy recipes for DIY cleaning products. Depending on what you’re looking to do, here is a list of items that when combined will help make just about any surface in your house shine.
- Spray Bottles are always helpful to have around the house
- Vinegar is a great natural ingredient to use on grease and soap scum
- Mix equal parts vinegar and water for wiping down surface (avoid on stone or granite)
- Baking Soda is a natural deodorant (works great in a cat box) also brightens surfaces
- Great way to cut through grease when cleaning your oven. Mix three parts baking soda to one part salt and one part water. Let the paste sit for eight hours and then wipe down surfaces.
- Lemon Juice stock up on lemons in your pantry which are great for getting rid of mildew and smell fantastic
- Essential Oils speaking of smelling fantastic, add a few drops of essential oils to your spray bottles to help cut through stronger vinegar smells
- Olive Oil is great for cleaning wood surfaces
- Mix two parts olive oil with one part lemon juice, spray onto surfaces and wipe off with a clean cloth
- Tea Tree Oil not only does this oil smell great, and has a number of great beauty at home uses, it’s also a great cleaner for your shower
- Fill a spray bottle up with water and ten drops of tea tree oil, shake well and spray daily on your shower walls to help avoid mildew build up, and the oil with the steam creates a great in shower sauna!