Switching to natural cleaning options is an important part of creating a natural home. Natural cleaning options can save time, money, and reduce chemical exposure. I’ve compiled below my top 19 tips for easy natural cleaning. Please share your best tips in the comment section below!
Also, if you prefer not to make everything yourself, I recently found Branch Basics, an amazing natural cleaner that is safe for even chemically sensitive people! It gets stains out of clothes, dirt out of grout lines, cleans an oven like magic and is safe to use on skin. In fact, it is tear free and I’ve been using it for baby shampoo! I’m addicted. You can find out more here. I use it for everything now.
1. Baking Soda for Oven Cleaning
A paste of baking soda and water cleans ovens without the chemicals or the hassle of the self cleaning cycle. Just make a paste on the bottom of the oven, leave for a few hours and wipe off for a shiny, chemical free oven. This post explains the specifics.
2. Save Money on Magic Erasers
3. Switch to Microfiber
I have saved a lot of money since I switched to microfiber, and I was using inexpensive homemade cleaners before switching! I have a basic set of antibacterial microfiber cloths and a microfiber mop set that I absolutely love and use daily. I can literally clean my entire house (except toilets) with just water now! To keep things simple, I have one color coded microfiber cloth per room. No chemicals and it saves money!
4. Make Scouring Powder
For soap scum on tubs and showers, make your own scouring powder with 2 parts baking soda, 1 part salt, and 1 part borax. It will cut through even the toughest scum!
5. Citrus Infused Vinegar
Fill a jar with (organic) citrus peels and pour undiluted white vinegar over them. Leave for a few days (up to 2 weeks) and strain out the vinegar to use as a natural cleaner. It works as a window cleaner (dilute with water), for mopping floors, or for disinfecting surfaces.
6. Use a Checklist!
Use a checklist for each room so that you can clean efficiently, or assign the jobs to children and know that they will be thorough. Here is my checklist (feel free to print and use!).
7. Treat Stains Naturally
Laundry soaps and stain treaters can be some of the worst offenders for toxic chemicals. There are natural options that work really well, but it helps to know a little chemistry, as different natural options will work better on different types of stains.
Here is my reference sheet that I keep by my washer for quick reference: (Free Printable- Click Here)
8. Clean the Dishwasher
To clean your dishwasher effortlessly, fill a dishwasher safe bowl or jar with 2 cups of vinegar and set on the top rack of the dishwasher. I used a small glass Pyrex container.
Run through on a hot cycle with no other dishes in the dishwasher to clean and remove the musty odor.
9. Clean the Garbage Disposal
I use my garbage disposal a lot and sometimes it gets that not-so-lovely odor. To combat this, there are a couple of options:
- Cut a lemon in half, shove in garbage disposal and grind (with water running) for 10 seconds.
- Freeze lemon and orange peels in ice cube trays with vinegar or water and throw these in and grind for 10 seconds
- Pour 1/2 cup of baking soda in and then 1 cup of distilled white vinegar and let sit for 10 minutes before running the water and and the disposal
10. Natural Air Freshener
In a medium saucepan, simmer a quart of water with natural ingredients to freshen and clean the air. Just make sure not to let the water evaporate off completely! My favorite combinations are:
- 1 sliced lemon, 2 tablespoons rosemary and a dash of vanilla
- 1 sliced lime and 1 piece chopped ginger root
- 1 sliced orange, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, and a dash of nutmeg and cloves (smells like pumpkin pie!)
- 1 sliced lime and 2 tablespoons thyme
11. Homemade Laundry Soap
Save a lot of money by making your own laundry soap! Here is the recipe I use and it makes enough for our family of 7 for months and costs pennies!
12. Remove Urine Stains
If you have potty training kids like I do, urine stains in mattresses can sometimes be a problem. Here is a great solution for removing the stains and smells using hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, and dish soap.
13. Clean Shower Heads
Clean a shower head by filling a plastic bag with white vinegar and then tie the bag around the shower head so that the shower head is immersed in the vinegar. Leave on for up to 12 hours and remove carefully. Pour it down the drain and your shower head should be clean and free of hard water residue.
Clean stains are car upholstery with Dawn, baking soda, and club soda. Here’s the method.
15. Clean Toilet
Dump a cup of baking soda into the toilet and let it soak for at least an hour. Pour in a cup of white vinegar, leave for 5 mins and flush. Unless the toilet is really dirty, this will clean it without scrubbing! Here is my bathroom cleaning checklist and recipes.
16. Stove Vent Fan
Clean the stove vent fan with boiling water and baking soda. Here’s how.
17. DIY Glass Spray Bottle
I am not a fan of plastic spray bottles, especially when they contain substances that can break down the plastic. A friend gave me a glass spray bottle as a gift and I’ve since made several more using old Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar bottles with the tops from a plastic bottle. These also look a lot better in my opinion!
18. Microfiber for Windows
Since switching to microfiber for window cleaning, I will never go back! It cleans without chemicals and leaves no streaks or lint. This is my favorite brand.
19. Stock Up on Natural Ingredients
The natural cleaning ingredients I always keep on hand are:
- White Vinegar
- Liquid Castille Soap
- Natural Salt
- Baking Soda
- Washing Soda
- Hydrogen Peroxide
- Various Microfiber
What are your best tips for natural cleaning? Share below!