Let me share with you my favourite environmentally cleaning products, that actually work.
Hold on a minute, this post is from a few years ago. See this post on eco-friendly cleaning products, for a more up-to-date picture.
I’ve blogged about some natural cleaning products that I use around my house before, but they’re all a bit vinegar-based. What if vinegar isn’t your thing? I do get that. Sometimes cleaning your kitchen with vinegar does sound a bit far out. For anyone that isn’t a fan of vinegar I thought I’d round up some of my favourite environmentally friendly cleaning products. None of them are vinegar-based, and in my opinion, match the cleaning performance of their harsher counterparts:
For the dishwasher, I like Ecover Dishwasher tablets in conjunction with dishwasher salt. They have a fresh lemon scent and cut through most dirt and grease. We ran out once and could only get a big brand name one in our local shop. I would say the Ecover matched it in terms of cleaning power. A box of 25 is around £5.50 and is widely available, and it’s also available in a big box of 70 for just £11.95 at Ethical Superstore*.
For handwashing, I’ve been using Bio-D washing up liquid for quite some time now. I was initially skeptical the first time I used it. Bio-D doesn’t have much of a smell, and it seemed quite watery. My fears were unfounded as it’s got great cleaning power. So much so that it is now the only liquid we use. It’s around £2 for a big 750ml bottle, and often available in Oxfam shops, as well as natural food stores. If you’re into bulk buying, it’s only £9.30 for 5 litres at Ethical Superstore*.
For a few years now we’ve used Method Laundry Liquid and I’m really happy with its cleaning powers at 30°C. I even used it on my daughter’s washable nappies for over two years, which was a real test of its cleansing and freshening powers! It’s concentrated so comes in a little bottle, but don’t let the size fool you – it lasts around 25 washes or so. It costs around £6 but I stock up whenever I see it on offer, and you can even buy an 85 wash refill bag for £14.
Lately, I’ve been having problems with my washing machine smelling. After a web search, I found that washing manufacturers don’t recommend that you use laundry liquid all of the time as it can clog your machine. Especially if you always wash at low temperatures (scroll down to the section on causes of washing machine smells in that article). Did you know this? I knew that fabric softener isn’t good for your machine but I was completely in the dark about laundry liquid and low temperatures.
Thankfully Mangle & Wringer recently sent me some of their Pure Laundry Powder and Natural Bleach Powder to try out. As well as getting my laundry clean, it has really been helping with the washing machine stink (that and a couple of empty hot washes with a couple of dishwasher tablets! Honestly!).
What I really like about the Mangle & Wringer products is that they are made from all-natural food-grade ingredients and are completely unscented. While the products are a bit more expensive at £9.50 for a 1.5kg bag of washing powder, and £3.50 for the natural bleach, it’s well worth it if you are sensitive to chemicals, or looking for an effective all-natural washing powder.
I’ve been washing my towels and flannels on a hotter wash (60°C) with the Mangle & Wringer duo and have been enjoying squeaky clean and soft towels with no synthetic scent or chemical residue (and a sparkly clean washing machine!). Don’t be frightened by the term ‘bleach’ – it’s great for stains or smells, even on colourfast items.
We’re hand-down Method fans when it comes to cleaning surfaces. I love their lavender multi-surface spray (£3). It smells lovely and cleans easily. You get a lot for your money in comparison to some other sprays, and I use it all around the house. I even dilute it in water to mop my floors. Basically, if I’m not using vinegar then I’m using this. Lavender is naturally anti-bacterial and anti-fungal so it meets all of my needs.
I mostly use bicarbonate of soda on tough stains in the kitchen and bathroom. If that’s not your bag then Mangle & Wringer again make an all-natural cream cleanser for both the kitchen and the bathroom (£5.80 each), which they sent me to try out.
I’ve found that the kitchen cleanser makes light work of food splashes on my hob, and leaves my sink and draining board gleaming. Meanwhile, the bathroom cleanser tackles soap scum in my sink and shower with ease. Like the laundry powder, the cleaners are completely unscented and made with 100% natural ingredients, making them great alternatives to the big brand name chemical-filled cream cleansers.
So there you go, a round-up of some of my favourite environmentally friendly cleaning products. Any favourites you want to add?