Alternative Cleaning Products

Updated: Apr 19

Did you know that most children get the most pesticide exposure from the “safety” of their own homes? Cleaning products contain many hazardous substances. There is so much harm that is being done not just to the environment, but also to the people around these products. However, there are many alternatives for the ways that you clean your home. Some of which that will be shared with you today include nontoxic air freshening, natural detergents, and surface cleaning materials.

First, Everybody wants the place they live in to smell nice, yet clean air is also essential. Many of the air fresheners that people use contain chemicals that do not remove the odor, but desensitize our sense of smell. There are many natural ways to get rid of bad smells. For instance, when cooking strong-smelling foods you can warm a bit of vinegar to help eliminate the smell. If you want a nice aroma you can set out a cotton ball with vanilla on the counter. You could also heat cloves of lemons or cut up pieces with cinnamon sticks. If the smell is too much you can put apple cider in with it. (Do not let the cider boil.) You can drink it, afterward. According to the EPA “Indoor air is far more contaminated than outdoor air.” There are so many other ways to make air cleaner other than filling your home with chemicals.

Next, a basic part of hygiene is wearing clean clothes. How does one wash their clothes? Usually, people use a laundry detergent in order to clean their clothes and make them smell nice. Alkylphenol ethoxylate is a surfactant in detergents that can harm aquatic ecosystems. So much damage can be done just by washing clothes. When mixed with other chemicals, sodium hypochlorite (chlorine bleach) can create poisonous gases. These are just some of the ingredients in detergents that can cause problems. Some alternative detergents are plant-based detergents and phosphate-free products that contain no fragrances, dyes, or chlorine. These can often be found in natural food stores. Some recommended powder-based detergents are mineral baked and can be bought online and at natural food stores. There are many great types of detergent that do not damage the environment! All you need to do is look.

Lastly, clean counters are mandatory in making a living space look nice, but many of the products that are used to do so are filled with terrible substances. Using white vinegar is a great way to clean surfaces such as counters, faucets, and even toilets. Spray the vinegar in the places that are dirty. Then using a rag with warm water, wipe the surface down. It causes less pollution and is a normal household ingredient that can be used for many other situations.

There are so many other options to use while cleaning other than ones filled with destructive chemicals. Making small changes such as the products we use to clean is a great way to help reduce our impact on the environment, and protect ourselves.

-Kailey Ragle