The best tools for natural cleaning.  Find a list of my favorite tools and ingredients for cleaning your home naturally!

We’re kicking off the 3 Weeks to a Spring Clean Home challenge today, so I wanted to give a rundown of the cleaning tools and products that I use for cleaning my home naturally!  While I admit I’m not 100% natural when it comes to cleaning, it’s still important to me to be as natural as possible.  You will find Windex, store-bought laundry detergent and leather furniture wipes in my cupboards, but that works for me right now and I’m okay with that!  However, I am working up the nerve to try homemade laundry detergent and I’d like to find a recipe for leather wipes.  Windex will always be around because my husband likes it for the cars.

I have quite a few products that have become my favourites over the years and I want to give you an up close and personal look!

best tools for cleaning

First up, the tools:

  • Bucket.  I use an empty ice cream bucket to fill with water and castile soap for cleaning the floors and walls.
  • Gloves.  Any pair of rubber gloves works for me.
  • Cleaning cloths.  I am in love with the Mabu cloths from Well.ca.  They have lasted me a long time and never stink!
  • Paper towel.  I don’t use it a lot, but I like to use paper towel for cleaning the patio door windows and our cars.
  • Scrub brush.  I bought mine from the dollar store and it works great for cleaning our stone fireplace.
  • Window wiper.  This works great for cleaning the windows and patio doors outside.  No streaks!
  • Dusting mitt.  This is a Norwex dusting mitt that my mom gifted me that I love, but I’ve also been known to use a damp cloth to dust.
  • Mirror cloth.  Also a Norwex cloth, but I simply use water and this cloth to clean all the mirrors.  I’m sure you could use any old cloth.

ingredients for DIY cleaning

Lastly, here are the ingredients I use, along with some recipes, for DIY cleaning:

  • Washing soda.  Available in the laundry aisle at grocery stores.
  • White vinegar.  I buy the club size because I use it for everything.
  • Baking soda.  Again, I buy a big box because I use it for a ton of stuff.
  • Borax.  Available in the laundry aisle at grocery stores.
  • Liquid castile soap.  The Dr. Bronner’s citrus scent is my favourite from Well.ca.  Lavender being my second favourite.
  • Essential oils. I’ve been enjoying the Aura Cacia products from Well.ca.
  • Jar.  I use a small jar to create my DIY soft scrub.
  • Spray bottles.  While any spray bottle from the store will work, my bottles are from PlanetForward.ca, which no longer has an online store.

Homemade Soft Scrub – This is the recipe I like to use to clean soap scum, sinks, and the stove top:

  • 3/4 cup baking soda (a bit heaped)
  • 1/4 cup liquid Castile soap (I buy it from Well.ca)
  • 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.) Make this in small batches as it can dry out when stored.  The recipes makes enough for 2-4 uses.

All-Purpose Cleaner – I use this to clean most surfaces.  Toilets, bathtub, counters.

  • 2 tsp Borax natural detergent – Find this at your local grocery store in the laundry aisle
  • 3 Tbsp Dr. Bronner’s Liquid Castile Soap – I’m using ones 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.

Homemade Oven Cleaner – Works really slick!

  • Baking Soda
  • White Vinegar

Sprinkle some baking soda all over the bottom of the oven.  Then pour a bit of vinegar over top. (Not too much.)  Let it sit for a couple of hours, or overnight.  Finally, after using a bit of elbow grease and a steel scrubby, you should have a pretty clean oven!

Homemade Fabric Refresher

  • a small spray bottle from the travel-size section of any store
  • 2 Tbsp baking soda
  • 1 Tbsp fabric softener
  • warm water
  • 10 drops of essential oil (I used lavender)

Add the baking soda and the fabric softener to the bottle using a funnel. Add enough  warm water to fill the bottle nearly to the top. Water must be warm to dissolve the baking soda. Add essential oil. Close the bottle, shake it up, then get your home smelling good!

Homemade Dryer Sheets – Scent your clothes naturally

  • a jar with a lid
  • 1 cup white vinegar
  • 20 drops of essential oil
  • several “rags” (ripped up t-shirts, baby cloths)

Place your rags into your jar. Pour 1 cup of white vinegar and 20 drops of essential oil over top the rags. Put the lid on the jar and shake it up! Each time you put a load of laundry into the dryer, take a rag out of the jar and put it in with the laundry. Dry as you would normally.

Homemade Super Citrus Cleaner – Works really well for cleaning the bath tub!

  • Citrus fruit peels
  • White vinegar

Place the peels of any citrus fruit into a jar.  Once your jar is full, pour white vinegar over top to cover the peels completely. Let it sit for about 5 days before you use it. You could pour it over to a spray bottle, but I just poured it straight from the jar.

Will you be giving any of these recipes a try?  Do you have any DIY natural cleaning recipes to share?