I have to admit, I am partial to a good house tour. We’re still working on our house (I know, it’s only been a year…). We’re currently working with an architect to add a small extension so that we can have the luxury of an upstairs bathroom. This means that all work on the upstairs of our house, and our hallway and stairs has to wait until this work has been done which is pretty frustrating as the bedrooms upstairs are in desperate need of renovating (think holes in walls, 20 year old orange carpet, etc).
In the mean time I am living vicariously through other people’s beautifully designed and furnished homes in the hope that one day (hopefully by the end of this year!) our home will look at least half as good as these!
One house I’ve been swooning over online is that of Caroline Rowland, editor of 91 Magazine. Her London home is, I’m sure you’ll agree, simply stunning.
Like all of the houses I’ve featured here in the past, her house has largely been furnished with secondhand finds, be it from eBay, car boot sales, Gumtree, charity shops and antique shops – with the odd new item thrown in. It really is proof that secondhand doesn’t mean that you have to compromise your style when it comes to furnishing your home.
Have a look for yourself!
You can see more photos of Caroline’s beautiful home on Apartment Therapy, where you can also read the full interview too.
Enjoyed this? I have more house tours just like this one right this way!
Today I’m talking about soda crystals uses around the home. Soda crystals are something that I always have to hand in my eco-friendly cleaning kit, and are my go-to green multi-tasker as they can clean practically anything!
As well as being an eco-friendly workhorse, soda crystals are really easy on the pocket too. A 1 kg cardboard box of soda crystals is around £1 and can be picked up in any supermarket, hardware store or bargain store.
Here are my favourite soda crystals uses to help you stop reaching for chemical filled synthetic cleaning products:
15 Soda Crystals Uses Around The House
1. Washing Machine Cleaner
About once a month it’s worthwhile giving your washing machine a clean. Simply place a cup of soda crystals in the drum and run an empty 90°C wash (or the hottest your machine will go). It really helps clears soap gunk and any hard water deposits from your machine, prolonging the life of your machine.
2. Dishwasher Cleaner
Again, in a similar manner to cleaning your washing machine, soda crystals can be used to clean your dishwasher. Simply add soda crystals to the detergent dispenser then run your dishwasher on the hottest wash your dishwasher allows for to give it a right good clean.
3. Sink and Drain Cleaner
Pour a cup of soda crystals down your sink or drain, then pour down a kettle full of boiled water. This will remove any fatty/grease deposits, making your drain smell sweeter and allow the water to drain away faster.
4. Water Softener
If you live in a hard water area try putting a spoonful of soda crystals in with every load – it helps soften the water, prolonging the life of your machine. It also has the added benefit of improving the cleaning effectiveness of your usual detergent.
5. Wood Burning Stove Cleaner
If the glass of your wood burning stove is quite sooty soda crystals will take care of that. Dissolve a quarter cup of soda crystals in a litre of hot water and use to the clean the soot off of the glass.
6. Kitchen Cleaner
Greasy cooker hood? Greasy tiles? Dissolve one part soda crystals in three parts water, and using a cloth the grease will wipe off with ease.
Did food splatter your hob? Simply sprinkle some soda crystals on the hob and clean with a damp cloth.
7. Extractor Fan Filter Cleaner
Dissolve two large spoons of soda crystals and three large spoons of laundry detergent in hot water, and use to clean your cooker extractor fan filters with ease. I used to dread this job but soda crystals really do make it easier without too much elbow grease!
8. Toilet Cleaner
Soda crystals make a good bleach alternative to cleaning stained toilets. Try two parts soda crystals to two parts water. Then pour down your solution down the toilet and leave for 15 – 30 minutes before giving it a good scrub with your toilet brush.
9. Clothes Stain Remover
Stained clothes? Remove stains the natural way by adding one cup of soda crystals to a pint of hot water, and pre-soak your clothes for an hour before washing as normal. Soda crystals are especially good at naturally removing stains such as tea, coffee, blood, oil, grease and ink from clothes. This is probably one of my favourite soda crystals uses!
10. Tea and Coffee Cup Stain Remover
You know those pesky stains you get in the bottom of mugs? To remove them add half a teaspoon of soda crystals per mug and fill with boiling water. Leave to soak until cool, and then rinse and wash as normal. The stains should wash out easily.
11. Cleaning Pots, Pans and Baking Trays
If your pots have burnt on food that just won’t budge add a quarter cup of soda crystals and fill the pan with boiling water. Leave to soak overnight and clean as normal. The food should shift quite easily.
12. Cleaning Ovens
Cleaning the oven is my least favourite job. Thankfully soda crystals can make life a little easier. Simply run a shallow amount of hot water into your bathtub, and add a cup of soda crystals. Place your racks and grill tray in the soda crystals solution, and leave for 30 minutes. Then give them a quick scrub and they should come up lovely and clean without too much hard work!
13. Washing Clothes
For a really thrifty take on laundry, you can use soda crystals to reduce the amount of detergent you use by half. Use 50% detergent and 50% soda crystals in the drawer for really clean fresh smelling clothes.
14. Floor Cleaner
For an eco-friendly floor cleaner, add 1 tablespoon of soda crystals to a mop bucket of hot water. You can add essential oils too – my favourite combination is 10 drops of tea tree oil for its disinfectant properties, and 20 drops of orange essential oil for a fresh and clean citrus aroma.
15. Removing Crayon Marks From Walls
Add an equal part of water to an equal part of soda crystals and mix to form a paste. You can then use this paste to scrub the crayon mark off of the wall. Don’t use on wallpapered walls, and it’s advisable to spot test on a hidden part of your wall (maybe behind some furniture) as soda crystals can remove some of the paint on brightly coloured walls.
A word of warning – don’t use soda crystals on aluminium as it’s corrosive, and wear rubber gloves when cleaning with strong concentrations of soda crystals as it can irritate skin when used in a concentrated manner.
What are your favourite soda crystals uses? Have I missed any?
I'm Wendy and welcome to Moral Fibres, a green lifestyle blog. I believe that sustainable living should be hip, not hippie. Here you'll find all sorts of easy hints and tips here for living a greener life that won't compromise your sense of style. As well as the blog I've also written a book on natural cleaning - Fresh Clean Home is out now! Want to know more? Check out the about page for more information or explore the archives using the category tabs above. Moral Fibres is always free to read. If you want to support the site's running costs you can buy me a coffee. Say hello at email@example.com
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