The basic definition of a green product is that it is non-toxic and earth-friendly. Green cleaners do not contain the same harsh chemical compounds as regular products and are kinder to you, your family and your pets.
If you’re convinced about just how useful green products can be, take a look at these tips on how to shop for the right cleaner.
Citrus-based cleaners are common, but you need to choose the right type as some water-based citrus products can cause rust to form on tools
When shopping for a citrus cleaner, look for the ingredient D-Limonene. This compound will not harm metals or most types of plastics. It will take about 30 minutes for a citrus-based cleaner containing D-Limonene to dissolve grease and residue.
Another tip is to look for a citrus oil-based cleaner which are safer for metals. If you do use a water-based citrus cleaner, be sure to dry your tools after cleaning and apply oil to avoid rusting.
Like most cleaning products, some citrus-based products are flammable, so it is important to wait until an item has cooled before cleaning it with this cleaning product.
Another choice for an effective eco-cleaning product is soy, which works well as a stain-remover.
Soy-based cleaners can remove grease, asphalt, oil, and tar. They are also powerful enough to remove unwanted smells from tubs, basins, and tiles.
Some products combine citrus and soy to achieve a better clean. These brands are mostly biodegradable.
Enzymes are compounds that speed up chemical reactions and these cleaners are perfect for getting rid of stains. They are nature’s way of breaking down the particles that make up stains and grime.
Enzyme cleaners are safe and biodegradable. They may be used for laundry, getting rid of mildew and mold, and cleaning bathrooms and kitchens.
These biological molecules also help get rid of pet stains and offer a safe and effective way to clean. However, enzyme cleaners don’t work as fast as commercial cleaners and are not always compatible with other cleaning products, so be sure to read all instructions before use.
If you have issues with stains and dull clothes, oxygen bleach may be the solution. This compound comes from hydrogen peroxide and natural soda crystals.
Oxygen bleach is present in some commercial cleaners but unlike other compounds they is non-toxic, and it is effective in removing stains and odors.
How to Green Clean
1. Kitchen and bathroom
Cleaning sinks and tiles can be challenging even for a commercial cleaner. If you plan to go green, baking soda and vinegar are your best friends.
Simply mix the following for an all-purpose cleaner:
- One half cup water
- One half liquid soap
- Two tablespoons white vinegar
- One 2/3 cups baking soda
If you would rather choose an eco-cleaning product, consider these items to replace your regular cleaner:
- Methods All-purpose Natural Surface Cleaner
- Grab Green Power Degreaser
- Eco-Me Toilet Bowl Cleaner
- Babyganics Floor Cleaner Concentrate
Another tip in shopping for the best green products is to look for the Green Seal. Brands with this seal are proven and tested green products.
If you have issues with grease, vinegar is a great choice. Just soak a rag or sponge with vinegar to cut through the grime.
Take care when using vinegar and don’t use it on non-porous surfaces like glass, metal or sealed countertops.
If the smell is too strong dilute it with water.
3. Pet stains
Pet stains can cause headaches, especially when you have carpets at home. If you want to ditch those commercial cleaners, here’s a guide on how to remove pet stains with a green recipe.
You will need these items:
- Paper towels
- Vinegar and water combined in equal parts
- Baking Soda
- Soak up the stain with a paper towel.
- Soak the area with the cleaning solution.
- If the stain doesn’t budge with the diluted solution, repeat this step using 100 percent vinegar.
- Sprinkle baking soda over the area.
- Rub the baking soda on the area to maximize results.
- Once the area is dry, vacuum the baking soda from area.
Here are some tips on how to make laundry time safer for the environment:
- Look for phosphate-free and biodegradable detergents. This type of detergent is gentler on the skin and healthier for the environment.
- Rather than using a fabric softener, add a cup of white vinegar.
- Cut back on laundry by wearing your clothes more than once. In fact, Levi’s recommends washing their jeans only every two weeks!
- Hang out your clothes to dry instead of using a tumble dryer. This method is more energy efficient and better for the planet.
What To Look For In Green Cleaning Products?
Cleaning products and soaps keep homes clean, but they may also put your health at risk.
When looking for products, always look at the ingredients. Everything should be non-toxic. Chlorine, phosphates, and other harsh chemicals are bad for the environment and for you.
Look for products with the Green Seal And always read the label.
The Environmental Working Group lists products and scores them on their levels of environmental friendliness. Check to see if products are listed on their database.
How To Make Your Cleaning Routine Green
It is possible to minimize the environmental impact of your cleaning while still achieving great results. Follow these tips to achieve a cleaner home with green methods:
Don’t throw everything out after you’re done and learn to recycle. If items are still usable, check if they can be donated to a local charity.
Make Your Own Cleaner
Instead of buying a commercial cleaner, make one yourself. The process requires mixing non-toxic compounds.
Salt, borax, hydrogen peroxide, lemon juice, baking soda, and vinegar all work wonders on grime and filth.
Find a Green Alternative
Green cleaners are widely available in stores. Remember to always check the label and follow instructions.
If you are hiring a cleaner rather than tackling the job yourself, support eco-friendly cleaning services who use environmentally friendly products
How to Make Your Own Green Cleaning Products