Creating an eco-friendly home is a bit of an adjustment but it is easily possible. A great way to remove harsh chemicals and allergy inducing toxins is by making all-natural products for beauty, health and home. It is completely feasible to clean the home with nothing more than vinegar, baking soda, lemons and essential oils.
Today I am going to share some of the recipes I’ve used and made for years. Simple, clean recipes that work just as well as store bought. They won’t irritate skin and are safe for children and our fur babies. It may seem time consuming but I find great pleasure in making these products. Rainy days in Autumn are perfect for working on these project. They will last a long time and save you money too.
A good idea is to have your base ingredients stocked in you pantry at all times so that you can make these recipes as soon as you start running low. It may seem like a bit of an investment at the beginning to purchase these things but if you think that with 1/2 a bar of soap, a 1/2 cup of borax and a few other ingredients (which won’t cost you more than $5-10) you can make 5 gallons of detergent, it’s totally worth it.
Bar soap. People seem to love giving me bar soap. Although I don’t use them in the shower, I love saving them to turn into gallons of cleaning products.
White Vinegar – I picked up a gallon for $6 this week
Cornstarch – If you’re a baker, you probably already have this in your cupboard
Shea Butter or Cocoa Butter
Essential Oils – if you don’t have Essential Oils, I recommend starting your collection with Tea Tree, Lavender, Eucalyptus and Orange Oils.
Organic Castile Soap – I keep 1 litre of Dr. Bonners (the Baby Unscented)
Jars , Gallon Jugs (or buckets with lids) and Sprayer Bottles (I re-use mine)
Glycerin – You can purchase Glycerin easily online (amazon) or at an Aromatherapy Wholesaler like New Directions
Castor Oil – natural pharmacies like Finlandia, Choices and Whole Foods with have castor oil.
Baking Soda – I didn’t share any recipes with baking soda, but sprinkle some into a dingy bathtub, let sit then wipe down for the shiniest tub, toilets and skinks.
This is an easy serum to keep long healthy lashes. To a small (30ml) glass bottle with dropper add:
Vit E oil 1/2 tsp
Castor Oil 1/2 tsp
Rosehip Oil 1 full dropper
Aloe vera 1 teaspoon
Give the mixture a good shake and apply to lashes every night before bed.
If you’re concerned with aluminum and strong fragrances that regular deodorants have, this gentle Deodorant works really well. I keep mine in the fridge as the oils and butters in it will liquify if kept in a room that is 24 degrees or more.
In a bowl add :
3 Tablespoons of Shea Butter
3 Tablespoons of baking soda
2 Tablespoons of coconut oil
2 Tablespoons of cornstarch (arrowroot powder works great too)
5-10 drops of essential oil (I like using Rosewood, TeaTree, Lavender or Lemon)
Mix your ingredients together and dispense into a clean glass (or plastic) jar with lid.
Clothing Detergent (Makes 5 Gallons)
- ½ cup of Borax
- ½ cup of Arm&Hammer Washing Soda
- ½ bar of your favourite scented or unscented soap
- Essential oils (Lavender, Rosemary, Lemon and Eucalyptus make great scents for clothing)
- 2 gallons of Water
Start by grating the bar of soap (I grate the whole thing and keep the other1/2 in a bag for another batch)
Place a large pot on the stove at medium heat. Add 1/2 of the water and the grated soap and stir until the soap is completely dissolved.
Now add the Washing Soda, Borax, your choice of Essential oils and the remaining water. Stir well to combine. Cover with a lid and let it “cure” overnight.
You’ll notice the mixture is very thick in the morning, this is what you want as this is your concentrated Detergent. You can now dispense it into your containers (5 gallons total). Give the mixture a good stir then fill your containers 1/2 way and top up with water. Give it a good shake each time you use it. Use 2 Tablespoons per laundry load.
Homemade Cleaner 1 Litre
I like to keep 2 sprayer bottles with different fragrances under the kitchen sink. This is a wonderful all purpose cleaner for kitchen and bathrooms.
Into a Sprayer Bottle add:
3 cups of hot water (if you’re re-using plastic bottles, careful with hot water as it can shrink/melt your bottle – Essential oils can also damage plastic bottles)
1 cup of White Vinegar
1 tsp of Castile Soap
10 drops of your favourite Essential Oil – Great choices for cleaning are TeaTree, Pine, Lemon, Eucalyptus
All Purpose Cleaner
If you eat oranges and use fresh lemons, keep the peels and fill a mason jar with them. Top with white vinegar and store in the pantry for 2 weeks. The peels contain Essential Oils and will infuse the vinegar with their natural scent. This cleaner is wonderful for disinfecting counter tops (you can even add a capful to a large bowl of water to soak veggies)
Dish Washing Liquid Soap
You can make a large batch of this soap and store it in a big jug then add it into a smaller soap dispenser you keep at the sink. This recipe will make about 1 litre
1/2 cup of Castile Soap
20 – 30 drops Essential oils of your choice (ie: lemon, orange, thyme, peppermint, lime)
Add ingredients to your bottle and top up with water. Easy right?
1 Gallon Liquid Hand Soap
I keep a bottle of liquid hand soap in each of our bathrooms and in the kitchen and this can add up so making my own brings the cost down and I can choose whichever scents I want to mix up. In the Winter I add scents like cinnamon and orange and in the spring Lavender, Clary Sage or Bergamot are fresh and uplifting.
Just like the clothing detergent recipe you want to grate your bar soap and add it to a large pot. Pour 1 gallon of water into pot and warm on medium heat. Add 2 Tblsp of Glycerine and heat until soap is fully dissolved. Take pot off stove, cover and let stand until next day. The soap will have thickened overnight into a liquid soap consistency. Dispense into your bottles and add your essential oils. If you’ve used a scented bar soap you may want to leave it as it will already be fragranced. You can now use it! This soap is best used with a regular pump. You will need to water it down if you’re re-using a foaming pump.
You will need: 1gallon jug to store soap
1 8oz bar of soap
Line your storage with your homemade cleaning products
I can’t make the bed without spritzing some of my homemade linen spray to the pillows and sheets. This spray is a great for freshening furniture as well if you have pets.
To a sprayer bottler add 10 – 20 drops of your favourite essential oil (I do pure Lavender) and top up with water.
Thanks for joining me today. I am a Certified Aromatherapist and am well versed in making a variety of products so if there is anything you’d like to learn to make, let me know!