I have always preferred green cleaning products whenever possible, but they can be expensive! Green cleaners are made without the harsh or dangerous chemicals used in many household products – here are some tried-and-true ones I have enjoyed.
Common “green cleaning” ingredients:
- Baking Soda
- Hydrogen Peroxide
- Witch Hazel
- Essential Oils*
Falling under the category of “Greener” Cleaning (still frowned on by the most hardcore of green cleaning aficionados out there), I have to share my secret ingredients. These following ingredients put in some work:
- Dawn Dish Soap
- Isopropyl (Rubbing) Alcohol
*A note on essential oils: In some cleaning recipes, quality oils are preferred to limit streakiness. When ingesting essential oils, it is important to consider how the oils are extracted (steam vs. cold pressed vs. chemically). Click the photo below to learn more from the Essential Oils Guide website.
Window Cleaning Spray
I have found this recipe all over the internet, and mixed up a batch before our first child came along. It’s been suggested to use newspapers for a streak-free finish, especially if you are trying to be conscious of your waste output – I find paper towels work okay, as do microfiber cloths (use a second microfiber to help speed drying time and prevent streaks).
I found the following recipe from wholenewmom.com – her site gives a bit of a cost breakdown and science lesson to boot (why the heck do we add cornstarch to our window cleaner?). She also recommends adding a drop of food coloring or bit of beet juice to the spray bottle to help remind kids that it’s not water!
I will admit I have been hooked on the foaming glass cleaner from Costco in the past; it’s one cleaning smell I’ve grown to love even though that negates the point of my DIY posts! I now reserve the foaming cleaner for certain details like my vehicle, or in guest rooms, to give an extra oomph that most people can appreciate. I take it as my personal challenge to make the can last forever, like some of us do with a fine perfume. It feels luxurious to “treat” yourself, and the frothy appearance is a bit addicting.
Alas, my DIY spray remains my go-to, since I love feeling like I am saving money and getting the job done equally as well.
But once you know about the Costco cleaner, you can’t exactly un-know!
Cloth-Diaper-Safe Wipe Solution
- Boil water and let cool completely for most cost savings (alternatively, you may use bottled/distilled water)
- Fill a clean, recycled plastic squeeze bottle half to 3/4 full with the distilled water – the bidet bottles that some hospitals give out work perfectly for this purpose. The one pictured above is a Meyer’s Clean Day dish soap bottle
- Add a few drops of baby-friendly soap – Dr. Bronner’s castille soap is our favorite, though we have also used Johnson and Johnson tear-free, or a couple pumps of Babyganics foaming
- Tea tree oil is a great, natural anti-fungal and adds a great smell to your solution – be cautious when using essential oils, as some are not baby friendly
- Add a few drops to a teaspoon of food grade oil or baby oil to help the washcloth or rag glide over the skin – we prefer liquid coconut oil over olive oil, which is high in oleic acid (when on the skin can cause damage to the skin barrier). Grapeseed oil is a good (but spendy) alternative; it is best to avoid peanut and sunflower oils in infants due to possible allergy concerns
- After all ingredients are added, fill the remainder of your bottle or container with witch hazel, a natural astringent