The last several years have brought many changes and an equal number of blessings and challenges. Perhaps one of the biggest changes has been the drive to rid my family’s home environment of toxic solutions we have formerly used for cleaning.
The most commonly used ingredients around our house are:
This is perhaps one of the most useful ingredients for making homemade products, including cleaning, laundry and personal care. It’s great as a foaming hand soap, mixed with baking soda as a soft scrub, shower soap and more.
Just about every recipe for a homemade health and beauty or cleaning solution is going to include an essential oil. If you’re interested in a double-duty oil, you can’t beat lavender. Tea tree is nice for its anti-fungal properties. Both of these can be applied to the skin “neat”. Hubby has switched from his from his athlete’s foot cure to tea tree oil and is MUCH happier with the results. I’m happier that he’s not using some goop from an aerosol can! Find the oils you like and stock up. We like lime for our basic cleaning spray and the girls like a couple of drops of lavender oil on a washcloth, run through the dryer with the clean clothes.
White vinegar is one of the most multifunctional cleaning products you can use around your house. It’s a powerful, disinfecting multipurpose cleaner when mixed 50:50 with water in a spray bottle, and can also be used to make other homemade cleaning products. There are so many uses for vinegar; it would take an article all on its own to cover that. The favorites here are: cleaning solutions, fabric softener, weed killer and a hair rinse of ACV and honey. And, no, you don’t leave the honey/vinegar solution in your hair; you rinse it out. And, no, you don’t walk around smelling like a salad. ACV is also great if you have any kind of issue with fruit flies.
Baking soda is a basic non-toxic cleaner that has many uses all around the house. It’s great as a scouring scrub, mixed with a liquid castile soap or for making dishwashing powder or laundry soap. It is also one of the main ingredients when going “No ‘Poo” – a natural and fabulous hair care system.
Coconut oil is not just used for cooking. It’s practically an essential for many homemade beauty products and the best darned moisturizer ever! It is also a main ingredient for luxurious homemade products, like body butters and sugar scrubs.
Honey is another ingredient that has many uses around the house, like facial masks, hair conditioner, first aid balm and more.
Beeswax is one ingredient that can be included in salves, balms, lotion bars or deodorants. It may not be one of those things that you use every day, but definitely something to keep in your arsenal.
Hydrogen peroxide is a natural disinfectant to use for cleaning around your home, and is also great for getting out certain types of laundry stains, such as blood and berries.
If you have younger kids, cornstarch is the perfect ingredient to have on hand for making homemade art supplies, like finger paints or sidewalk chalks. Check out Pinterest for some super great ideas. It is also found in many homemade deodorant recipes.
Washing Soda is a natural laundry booster and is also an important ingredient to have on hand to make homemade dishwashing powder, laundry booster or stain remover.
With these basic, multipurpose ingredients on hand, you can make all kinds of homemade, non-toxic products to use all around your home. This is a super way to make your home safer, keep your family’s exposure to nasty chemicals to a minimum and, guys, these are inexpensive. Please note the lack of borax in my arsenal. Lots of recipes call for borax and there’s lots of “blady blah” out there about how “borax is natural”. It is. But so is asbestos and I doubt you’re going to be bringing in boxes of asbestos to use around your house, right?