What do baking soda, vinegar, Borax and pure castile soap have in common?

When they’re mixed together they can create a natural all-purpose cleaner just as effective as the chemical laden, store bought cleaning supplies!  In the picture above, you’ll see my natural cleaning kit.  Everything pictured there is what I clean my entire house with.

In the bottle on the left, is my all-purpose cleaner that I use for the kitchen and bathrooms.  The bottle in the middle with the purple cloth on top, simply holds water for my window and mirror cleaning. (The purple cloth is a Norwex cloth.)   The big jug on the right is my club size white vinegar.  The blue Norwex mitt is what I dust my entire house with.  Finally, the little jar is what holds my scrub for when I need to put a bit more elbow grease into cleaning something. (Bathtub, tiles and sinks)

I almost lied to you.  I’m not entirely chemical-free yet.  I do still use conventional laundry detergents.  I would possibly like to try my hand at making it from scratch one day though!

Here are the reasons I’m in love with my little cleaning kit:

  • I know I’m not putting anything dangerous down the drain
  • It costs pennies to make and has saved me so much money
  • Smells wonderful, without burning my nostrils like conventional cleaners do
  • I’m keeping me and my husband safe (and future children who are curious) by using natural ingredients

Are you interested in trying out your own natural cleaning kit?  I’ve got recipes!

All-Purpose Cleaner (makes a 16oz bottle)

  • 2 tsp Borax natural detergent – Find this at your local grocery store in the laundry aisle
  • 3 Tbsp Dr. Bronner’s Castile Soap – I’m using the lavender scented one I picked up from Well.ca.
  • 4 Tbsp White Vinegar – a natural disinfectant!  I always buy the club size because I like to have it on hand for its many uses.
  • Distilled Water (or boiled water)

Mix the borax, white vinegar and a little bit of hot water. (Must be hot water to incorporate the borax.) Add the castile soap, then swirl the bottle to incorporate.  Once it’s all mixed, add the rest of the water to fill up to 16oz.  It will be slightly white and opaque.

All-Purpose Cleaner II

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup white vinegar
  • 15 drops of essential oil (tea tree oil is also a natural disinfectant)

Add all the ingredients to a spray bottle.  Shake.  Get cleaning! 🙂

Drain Unclogger & Freshener

  • 1/2 cup baking soda
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • a kettle full of boiling water

Add the baking soda to your sink drain.  Pour the vinegar over top.  Watch the magic.  Once it’s settled down, pour your kettle of boiling water down the drain to rinse!

Homemade Soft Scrub

Make this in small batches as it can dry out when stored.  The recipes makes enough for 2-4 uses.

  • 3/4 cup baking soda (a bit heaped)
  • 1/4 cup castile soap
  • 1 Tbsp water
  • 1 Tbsp vinegar

Mix the baking soda, castile soap and water in a bowl or container.  Stir.  Add the vinegar last, once the other ingredients are mixed.  The mixture will fizz a little.  Stir to make a nice soft, paste-like, consistency.  (It’s important to add the vinegar last if you want a creamy paste and not sludge.)

Use for cleaning tile, toilets, and sinks.

Window & Mirror Cleaner

  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups vinegar

Add the ingredients to a spray bottle.  Use as you would any other window cleaner.

Floor Cleaner

  • a bucket of hot water
  • 1/2 cup vinegar
  • essential oil to your liking

Add all the ingredients to your floor cleaning bucket.  Start wiping up those floors!

Homemade Disinfecting Wipes

  • an old t-shirt cut into square pieces (or use the thickest paper towel you can find)
  • 1 cup of water
  • a squirt of castile soap
  • a few drops of tea tree oil (tea tree oil is toxic if ingested at full strength)
  • some vinegar
  • a resealable container of some sort (possibly an old baby wipe container?)

Add your t-shirt squares to the container you have chosen.  Mix the rest of the ingredients in a separate bowl or measuring cup.  Pour over the cloths.  Use just as you would a Clorox wipe, then throw in the wash and repeat the recipe!

Homemade Jet Dry and Fabric Softener

This one is really simple.  All I use is white vinegar!  Simply pour the vinegar into the rinsing agent section of your dishwasher or the fabric softener slot/downy ball for your washing machine.  Works like a charm!

Are you currently using homemade or store bought natural cleaning products?  What do you think of them?  Do you have any homemade cleaning recipes to add to the list?

My all-purpose cleaning spray

Source List:

  • Spray bottle and small jar:  Planet Forward
  • Dr. Bronner’s Castile Soap:  Well.ca
  • Purple window/mirror cloth:  Norwex
  • Essential oils:  local natural food store and Well.ca (I have lavender, peppermint, tea tree and the one that came in my Planet Forward cleaning kit)
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