homemade cleaning products

Make Your Own Homemade Cleaning Products

homemade cleaning products

I want my home to be clean, but at the same time I don’t really want a cocktail of chemicals in the air that I breathe, or the surfaces that I touch or prepare food on, so I’ve turned to some homemade cleaning products.

There are all sorts of health and environmental dangers associated with using cleaning products, so over the past few years we’ve been trying to cut down on the amount of chemicals in our home.  We first switched to Ecover about six years ago, then Method a couple of years ago, and now we’re using a mix of Ecover (for dishwasher tablets and for toilet cleaner) and BioD products (for laundry, and for hand-washing dishes).

Where we can we’ve also started making our own homemade cleaning products, and I thought it would be useful if I shared my instructions for making these chemical free cleaning products.  You can make your own homemade cleaning products quite easily and cheaply, that are as effective as any shop bought chemical cleaner, so I’ve got a host of recipes here for your kitchen and bathroom, and for doing laundry and the dishes.  They’ll soon have your house sparkling!

First up, select your arsenal of essential oils:

essential oils for cleaning your home

Ecomarket kindly sent me these organic Soil Association accredited ones to make my homemade cleaning products with.  I’ve got lavender, lemon, sweet orange, peppermint and tea tree.  As well as smelling great, I like them because as they’re organic I know there are no hidden chemicals in them from the growing process.

Next, you’ll need a bottle or two of white vinegar.  Vinegar is quite a key component in making homemade cleaning products.  You can buy white vinegar in the supermarket that you can transfer into a spray bottle, but you can most likely find big bottles of spray vinegar in pound shops.  I found mine in Poundland for, you’ve guessed it, £1.  You get 750 ml of vinegar which is much better value than the little bottles you find at the supermarket, and you have the convenience of not having to find an empty spray bottle.

Homemade Cleaning Products

Kitchen Cleaner

For my homemade kitchen cleaner I add twenty drops of lemon oil and twenty drops of lavender oil to one bottle of spray vinegar.  Lemon is a great degreaser and lavender has brilliant antibacterial properties:

household kitchen cleaning products made with vinegar and essential oils

My home-made spray made light work of my dirty worktops.  Here you can see the before and after shots:

before and after cleaning with vinegar

Sparkling clean, and germ free without any trace of chemicals!  When you use the spray (or any other vinegar based homemade cleaning products) then you do get a smell of vinegar, but that completely disappears once dry, and you’re left with a very light and pleasant scent of the essential oils.

If you have any tough spots of grime, or dried in food then I find a light sprinkling of bicarbonate of soda, followed by a spray of your vinegar solution and a good rub helps remove the dirt.  If it’s particularly dried on or hard to shift try spraying it with a liberal amount of vinegar and leaving it to soak for 10 minutes before wiping.

Bathroom Cleaner

I also made  bathroom cleaning spray, again using another vinegar spray bottle.  This time, to the vinegar I added 20 drops of lavender oil and 20 drops of tea tree oil.  Tea tree oil has brilliant antiseptic and anti-fungal properties, making it brilliant for cleaning bathrooms:

bathroom cleaner spray made with vinegar and essential oils lavender tea tree

I’ve been spraying it on my tiles after showering to inhibit the growth of mould and remove soap scum, and also using it to wipe down the sink and toilet and everything else.  Again, it initially smells of vinegar but when it dries you can’t smell it – only a very subtle aroma of tea tree and lavender.

Fabric Softener

I’ve used vinegar for years as a fabric softener, but I’ve only just started adding essential oils to the vinegar.  Simply fill an old jar with vinegar, and add 30 drops of orange oil to your vinegar for softened clothes and a delicate and clean aroma to your laundry, without a hint of vinegar, I promise!  With regards to dosage I just fill up to the line on the fabric conditioner drawer of my machine and that seems to work a treat.

Dishwasher Rinse Aid

Vinegar also makes a fantastic rinse aid in your dishwasher – leaving your glasses, cutlery and plates sparkling!  I just use the same solution as I do for my fabric softener – making it fantastically multipurpose!

Do you make any of your own homemade cleaning products?  Do share in the comments below!  I’m always on the lookout for great tips!

Ps: if you enjoyed this then you might also enjoy this post on 13 uses for vinegar!

Ecomarket kindly sent me some essential oils to try out – all words and opinions are my own. 

Main image from here, all others are my own.

11 comments

  1. Thanks for the inspiration. At the moment I use the Bio-D brand of eco-cleaning products but I think I might have a go at making my own now!

    Reply
  2. I’ve been “green” cleaning my place for about 4 months now and I’m loving it. Not only does using natural ingredients make my place smell nice and fresh but I’m saving money not having to buy toxic cleaning products. A great plus.I read some of the comments concerning the use of essential oils around pets. Can tea tree be used to clean around dogs? I plan on doing some cleaning at my daughter’s and she has a dog. Also, can you inform me what other essential oils I can use in my cleaning solutions that will be safe to use around dogs.

    Best regards!
    Stepney Carpet Cleaners Ltd.

    Reply
  3. I started to try green cleaning recipes last month when I found out that I have allergy to some of the ingredients of my floor cleaner. Then I realized that I have to find some other way of cleaning the floor. Thanks a lot for sharing this green recipe here! You should be sure that I will try it! Dalston Carpet Cleaners Ltd.

    Reply
  4. Baking Soda Use Ideas:

    Deodorize Trash Cans
    – Refresh carpets by shaking a bit of baking soda over your carpet before you vacuum!
    – Clean walls by adding a bit of baking soda to a sponge! This even removes crayon stains!
    – Freshen up those gym bags by dusting baking soda on it directly
    – Freshen up those shoes by adding baking soda directly in the soles and let it set overnight, shake out in the morning

    Reply
  5. Decades ago homes around the country were clean, and there were no harsh chemical cleaners available on the high street. There is certainly something to be said about getting back to basics and saving the environment by using products found in the home for cleaning

    Reply
  6. I love when I can make my own stuff. Especially when it comes to cleaning. I hate cleaning but I know we have to do it often and the result equals pure happiness :) My daughter is old enough to help me with it too, so it works out for me :) Thanks for sharing. Fantastic post! I will show it to some of my friends as well <3

    Reply
  7. Thank you for your article. It was very helpful. I love using eco friendly cleaning solutions. I tried the bathroom cleaner and it really worked out. Thanks again!

    Reply
  8. It’s so great to use essential oils for homemade natural cleaners! I prefer cleaning my home with solutions I’ve made, so I’m sure what is it inside the bottle and if my baby-girl is somewhere around in the room playing, I know that the place I’ve just cleaned is safe for her. Thanks for the useful recipes, I’m definitely trying them. Greets!

    Reply
  9. Olive oil isn’t just good for cooking with or drizzling over salads. It can also be used as a natural furniture polish giving everything from cupboards and draws to tables and chairs a wonderful shine. A little goes a long way meaning one bottle will last a long time and as olive oil has a very long shelf life you won’t have to worry about it going out of date any time soon. You can also use jojoba oil and liquid wax to keep your household items in good condition.

    Reply

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