The natural cleaning products I make myself and the ones I've started to buy

I love using natural cleaning products for my family. We started our transition to more natural living a few years ago, and it’s been such a good change for our home! Getting rid of artificial chemicals, especially those found in our cleaning supplies, is a no-brainer! The solutions we clean with touch every surface of our home and then our kids touch it afterwards. I’m not a germaphobe, but when we do our weekly cleaning (and especially when I have the kids help me by doing chores!) I like to make sure that what we’re using isn’t going to be harmful.

natural cleaning products to make and which ones to buy

There are some very simple recipes for cleaning products you can DIY. However, my time is worth something too and as a busy mom of four kids who works part time, I have just found that I don’t have the time to make every single cleaner for myself. I do think too that there is a formula that makes natural cleaning supplies effective and that a certain mix of “ingredients” is better for disinfecting the tub and toilet verses the mirrors.

If you’re a little short on time like I am but want to use natural methods for cleaning your home to keep your family safe and healthy, I’d like to share the natural cleaning products I make myself and the ones I feel are worth it to buy.

DIY Cleaner Recipes

Easy Homemade All-Purpose Cleaner

Using a glass bottle, I swirl together a 1:1 mixture of vinegar to water. You can use regular household vinegar that is at 5% acidity. There is vinegar at 20% acidity which is great for killing weeds but can be harmful to the respiratory tract if inhaled, so I don’t use that around my kids.

Obviously, this works well for many surfaces, including windows! I use a microfiber cloth on my windows and don’t have streaks. You can also steep some Thieves herbs (Find out how to make Thieves herbal cleaner in this post!) or add Thieves essential oils for a powerful disinfectant “punch” in the kitchen or bathroom!

If you  have a glass bottle, you can add a few drops of lemon or orange essential oil (we use Rocky Mountain Oils)! It smells delightful! 

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This is one of my adorable little helpers!

Laundry Detergent

I love making my no-grate powdered laundry soap! We often use Fels Naptha as well in the recipe (in place of the Ivory). It cleans great for us and costs next to nothing (currently about .03 a load). We have hard water in our new house so we have to use a bit more than where we used to live where we had a water softener.

I’ve heard a few different sources say that this laundry detergent doesn’t actually clean your clothes, but honestly we’ve never had an issue. It probably depends on what your water is like or how dirty your clothes get as well! If you want a store-bought alternative, I suggest one later in this post!

no grate powdered laundry detergent

DIY Foaming Hand Soap

Using Dr. Bronner’s Liquid Castile Soap and water, I make our own foaming hand soap. We have a bottle that shows you exactly how much soap and water to add, but you can do this with a used foaming hand soap container as well.

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Add the soap first (about an inch), and then add the water, drizzling it in against the side of the bottle so it doesn’t foam up like crazy when added to the soap! The more soap you add, the foamier it will be but if there’s too much it will gunk up the dispenser. Just experiment to see what works for you!

Honestly, though, this isn’t the most aesthetically pleasing hand soap. It tends to look kind-of cloudy and just weird. So if I’m wanting something to put in our guest bathroom or am out of castile, I keep a stash of this delicious smelling Mrs. Meyer’s Apple hand soap from either Amazon or Grove Collaborative! It’s made with olive oil and all natural safe ingredients.

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Natural Cleaning Products Worth Buying

Dish Soap

I’ve tried and failed numerous times at making dish soap. When I used the castile, it didn’t clean and just made the dishes filmy. The natural recipes I tried simply didn’t cut it. If you have one that works for you, please do share! But for now, I’ve decided to go the route of buying.

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Since it’s my dishes and we eat off them, I don’t care for the fake dyes in conventional dish soap. Does it make you a bad person if you use these? Of course not :) But this was an easy step for us in our journey to becoming natural.

We buy Method’s Clementine Naturally Scented dish soap, which you can get from Grove Collaborative for a discounted price. It really has nice sudsing action without harmful chemicals (for some reason, I feel like stuff doesn’t get clean without suds, haha) and smells very pleasant. It is concentrated, so it lasts a very long time. The bottle that is pictured we’ve had since the beginning of January (it’s April 29 at this writing). I wash dishes probably 3 times a day and there’s still a decent amount left.

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For dishwasher detergent, I’ve been impressed by Seventh Generation dishwasher powder, and I do buy brand name for our dishwasher because the cheap cleaner tends to cloud up my dishes (we have hard water).

Tub, Tile and Toilet Cleaner

This is sort-of a hybrid thing. Sometimes I just use my all-purpose spray to do a quick wipe-down of the tub, shower and toilet, but if I need a deep clean I’ll use an actual cleaning product. This Seventh Generation concentrate goes a long way and it doesn’t leave behind a film. A few times I’ve also used baking soda to really get a deep clean too. This toilet cleaner from Method smells minty fresh and has a super easy to use squeezeable top–and the four year old LOVES to clean the toilet. Win-win!

 

Laundry Detergent

Now, I’ve never tried this detergent before but I’ve heard good reviews on Method 4x Laundry Detergent. I just don’t want to spend that much on laundry soap. We normally just use All Free and Clear that I purchase with coupons if we are out of homemade because it’s great for our sensitive skin!

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Sources for Natural Cleaning Products

  • Online at Grove Collaborative (used to be called ePantry–my favorite resource!) – Right now you can get a $10 credit plus a free hand sanitizer (it smells delicious and is great for on the go) when you place your first order with Grove.
  • Amazon Prime Pantry
  • Amazon Marketplace
  • Vitacost – Get $10 off your first order of $30 or more! Vitacost sells lots of other natural products, like probiotics, personal care products and supplements, etc
  • Big box stores, like Target
  • Local health markets

What cleaning products do you like to make yourself? Are there some you buy, either for convenience or because they clean better? I’d love to hear!

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Jenn

Blogger/ Author at The Purposeful Mom
Hi, I'm Jenn! I'm an "unstuffy" pastor's wife and mom to four amazing and active children. My desire is to equip you with the resources, tools and encouragement you need to learn God’s Word and apply it to your life so you can teach the Word to your children in a way that has a lasting impact! I want to help you turn good ideas into good practices so that you feel confident, by the grace of God, in carrying out the many vocations you have been called to as a Christian woman. Read more on my about page!

6 Comments on The Natural Cleaning Products I Make Myself….and the Ones I Started to Buy

  1. I have had trouble finding a hand soap dispenser that doesn’t get stuck in the pump process. Does the one you have in your picture hold up? Thank you!

    • Thanks for commenting, Heidi–that is a great question! Yes, the one I have pictured has been great. I like that the bottle is labeled and tells me how much soap to put in too, LOL. I had previously tried mixing regular hand soap and water to create foaming soap and it got stuck (in a different dispenser) I think because regular hand soap is too thick. Castile soap is thinner so I think that’s why it works better to create foam! This is the one from my picture in this post: https://amzn.to/1X01c4r

  2. I’ve been using a non toxic cleaning line from Melaleuca.com. for the past eight years and can’t say enough how well they work. The products are highly concentrated which is great for the environment as well as the home. The products are very affordable as well. The also have an entire line of high quality essential oils and in fact tea tree oil has been in their cleaners and several other products for the past 30 years.

  3. I’ve ordered some of this products that you wrote about so I’m greatful about what they do with my hands and how they clean my dishes! I’m really glad that you published your advises so they can help everyone!

  4. Love this post! You are so right. So many cleaning products can be dangerous to use in your own habitat. Safe cleaning products are great alternatives to those that could potentially cause harm. This is an amazing resource! Thanks so much for sharing all of this!

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