Is your kitchen cabinet stuffed with an arsenal of expensive, heavy duty cleaning products? You know the kind – hi-tech synthetic concoctions, labeled with nasty warnings about the dangers of inhalation and direct contact.
Many of these ‘miracle products’ that line our supermarket aisles do indeed cut through stubborn stains with incredible ease. They are so potent that grease and dirt simply dissolve in their wake.
And while that’s great for domestic efficiency, you can’t help wondering about the toll that these high-octane chemicals ultimately take on the environment and on your family’s health.
If you want to cut back on the chemicals that you use in your home, it might be time to go au naturale. This list of 9 natural life hacks will help clean both your home and your conscience. It will give your budget a breather, too.
When life gives you LEMONS, don’t make lemonade - try cleaning the house.
Lemon is the ultimate natural cleaning agent - it contains acids that are great for removing dirt and rust stains.
Lemon is light on the environment, and light on the hip pocket. If you are serious about working towards a chemical-free home, you should probably consider planting a lemon tree in the yard.
Hack 1. Rub lemon juice onto your taps to avoid lime scale. Leave it overnight and wipe with a damp cloth in the morning. You can add a squeeze of lemon juice to your dishwashing detergent too – it will boost its grease-cutting power.
Hack 2. Clean your laminate countertops by dipping the cut surface of a lemon half in baking soda. Give the counter a once over, then wipe the surface with a wet sponge and dry.
Hack 3. When mixed with salt or cream of tartar, lemon juice naturally forms an abrasive paste that is perfect for scouring. Grab an old toothbrush and get rid of that tile grout, without inhaling any toxic fumes.
With its granular texture, SALT is ideal for gentle scrubbing. Any kind of salt will help you cut through dirt, but plain old table salt is the cheapest option. Salt is less abrasive than some of the harsh chemical agents on the market.
Hack 4. Remove melted-on gunk and residue from your iron with a simple sprinkle of salt. Just pop a clean sheet of paper on your ironing board and dust it with salt. Run the warm iron over the salt a few times. Once the iron is unplugged and cool, wipe it clean with a cloth.
Hack 5. Scrub delicate glassware with salt to remove stubborn stains.
Hack 6. If a bubbling casserole spills as you take it out of the oven, pour salt on the spill. Once the oven is cool, wipe clean with a damp sponge.
Is there a sad box of BAKING SODA hidden at the back of your fridge? Eliminating odours is a noble cause, but there is SO much more you can do with that old box of baking soda.
Hack 7. To get rid of tea and coffee stains, fill your cups with one part baking soda and two parts water. Soak overnight, and then rub with a sponge before rinsing.
Hack 8. Remove light scuffs from white painted walls with a paste of half baking soda and half water. Brush off the residue with a clean cloth when dry.
Hack 9. Don’t be defeated by grease or oil stains on your laundry. Sprinkle with dry baking soda to absorb the loose grease. Soak in undiluted white vinegar, and then scrub with dish soap before washing.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Katie is a blogger, digital marketing specialist and community manager for Airtasker, a community based marketplace. People post and receive offers for house cleaning services from Airtaskers in Melbourne, Sydney and other cities of Australia. Katie is a great cook and also enjoys interior design, especially DIY. Living next to the beach, she's always there (on weekends) swimming, catching up with friends or volunteering as a lifesaver.