Earth Day 2016 - DIY Cleaning Products

I get that it's not everyone's thing, but I really like making my own cleaning products.  It's cheap, super easy, smells better and I don't worry about my boys using them when they do their chores (and inevitably spray them at each other...brothers).  It's also a greener choice for our environment so in honor of Earth Day this coming Friday, I'm sharing some of my favorite finds.  

First, Castile Soap.  I LOVE this stuff and use it a lot of different ways.  I get it in bar soap form for the shower and I make a liquid hand soap for each sink by mixing it with water in a 1 to 4 ratio (1 part soap, 4 parts water).  

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I actually first tried this as a soap after years of dry, cracked, bleeding and itching skin on my hands.  Not to make it sound miraculous, but five days into using this soap, my hands felt amazing.  I have sensitive skin in general and using something more gentle and less harsh has really helped me.  

I also make a bathroom cleaner by mixing this in a 1 to 3 ratio with water (1 part soap and 3 parts water) into a spray bottle.  And for mopping floors, I put about 1/4 cup into a 1 quart size spray bottle filled with water.  

For more ideas, check out this article:  12 Great Ways to Use Castile Soap

I also make my own glass cleaner and dusting mixture.  These are just mixtures of vinegar and water, some essential oils and dawn for the glass cleaner and olive oil for dusting.  For recipes you can check out this link:

Homemade Recipes for Windex, Pledge, Febreze and Bathroom Cleaner

I will note that every once in a while I pull out the big guns for the toilet and shower but otherwise I feel like these get my house really clean.  

Finally, a few natural brands I love:  Tom's (deodorant and toothpaste), Shea Butter Body Lotion, and Burt's Bees Face Wash.

If making your own cleaners isn't your thing, there are a lot of other ways to take care of the earth:  reuse and repurpose instead of throwing away, use less plastic, eat more plant-based meals (less meat), avoid excess food waste (leftovers!!), and go paperless where possible.  

This is important for many reasons, including...

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:) Happy Earth Day!

Emily Fonnesbeck RD, CD