What’s the easiest thing you can do to kickstart a sustainable lifestyle?
In a recent viral Twitter thread by Shruthi S (@sundermanbegins), she shoots out a few quick and easy steps that helped her replace all her household cleaning items. She found that a large amount of plastic generated from her home was from cleaning and personal care products.
A report released by The World Economic Forum found that we generate more than 78 million tonnes of plastic packaging annually. The chemicals commonly found in home cleaners like ammonia, ethylene glycol and trisodium phosphate have been proven poisonous for pets and humans, causing irritation, especially to the skin, nose and eyes. These chemicals, when washed off, contaminate the water and the soil they come in contact with.
To top it off, these cleaners add to the plastic in our homes. With so many health risks at bay, it is always better to opt for homemade natural cleaners which are safe and just as effective.
Instead of buying separate cleaners for floors and bathrooms, Shruthi made an all-purpose cleaner with natural products in 20 minutes! She has also found alternatives to toilet cleaners, mirror cleaners, liquid hand washes and even shaving foam!
Here are some of the awesome recipes that Shruthi has shared with her followers.
Things you’ll need:
- 6 cups of liquid soap base/Reetha water
- 4 cups of vinegar
- 2 tablespoons of rock salt/3 tablespoons of regular salt
- Lavender and Tea Tree essential oil
Mix all ingredients, adding 12-18 drops each of tea tree essential oil and lavender essential oil and divide into containers for separate use.
This natural cleaner will last for 1.5 months.
Shruthi has also shared easy recipes to make dish wash liquid and a toilet cleaner.
Dishwash Liquid/Toilet Cleaner
How to make the Base (for one bottle) :
- 3 cups of liquid soap base/Reetha water
- 1 cup of glycerine
- 1 teaspoon of Xanthan Gum
Mix all the ingredients and blend with a hand blender/pulse it in a mixer until you get a thick mixture.
This base can also be used to make a natural shaving foam and hand wash liquid.
Dishwash Liquid/Toilet cleaner
Mix 3 drops of tea tree essential oil, 3 drops of lemon/citronella/lemongrass/orange (any citrus, basically) essential oil and 2 teaspoons of baking soda.
Mix 2 drops of tea tree essential oil, 3 drops of peppermint or lavender oil, 2 tablespoons of aloe vera gel (can take them straight from the plant) and 5 drops of coconut oil to the base.
Hand Wash Liquid
Mix 3 drops of lavender oil, 1 teaspoon of coconut oil, 2 drops of any other essential oil. I like peppermint and 2 teaspoons of rose water to the base.
Each bottle will last a month.
Mirror cleaner/Surface cleaner
Things you’ll need:
- Lemon/Orange peels
- Cinnamon – 1 stick
- Warm Water – 1 Litre
- Baking Soda – 3 tablespoons
- White Vinegar
Soak lemon/orange peels with one large stick of cinnamon in 1 litre of warm water for a day.
After soaking them overnight, add 3 tablespoons of baking soda and 2 cups of white vinegar.
Mix this well and remove the peels.
Transfer the liquid into a reusable spray bottle. This will last a month.
All the recipes mentioned are “incredibly baby and pet safe. They do not produce toxic foam that poisons communal drainage systems,” Shruthi adds.
“A lot of my stuff involves baking soda and vinegar. So I buy baking soda in bulk. And I make vinegar at home. Overall, by spending 2 hours in a month on preparing these things, I have saved on nearly 17 plastic bottles/covers. My expenditure on cleaning has gone from approximately 2000 bucks per month to approximately 500 bucks per month,” Shruthi shares on Twitter.
If you’re looking for alternatives to toxic cleaners and dishwash liquids in your home, do give these recipes a try. You can also find some awesome ready-made natural cleaners here.
(Edited by Shruti Singhal)