06 May 2013

Home Cleaners Using Essential Oils

A number of good home cleaning products can easily be made using essential oils and old-fashioned natural ingredients. The benefit of making and using your own home cleaning products is that you know exactly what is in them and they are less damaging to your skin and your respiratory passages than the majority of synthetic commercial cleaning things. In fact, when you breathe these cleaners in, you’ll probably do yourself a lot of good, thanks to the health-promoting properties of the essential oils.

You can take a bit of a mix and match approach to the essential oils used in these recipes. Many essential oils have germ killing properties, so you can combine and substitute depending on your preferences and what you have in your cupboards. The good germ killing essential oils that are best to use in home cleaning products are lavender oil, tea tree oil, lemon oil, eucalyptus oil, pine oil, thyme oil and clove oil.

General cleaner for hard surfaces

·         1 cup soap flakes or grated soap
·         2 cups powdered chalk or diatomaceous earth (find this at a swimming pool supplies store)
·         1 cup baking soda
·         6 T glycerine
·         5 drops tea tree oil

Combine the dry ingredients in a blender, then put in a screw-top jar. Stir in the glycerine and the tea tree oil, stir thoroughly and close the lid.

Glass cleaner

·         2 Tablespoons cornflour
·         2 cups vinegar
·         1 cup methylated spirits or vodka
·         15 drops thyme oil

Put everything into a spray bottle and shake very well. To use, spray onto the window or glass surface. This will need to be shaken before each use to disperse the cornflour.

Floor cleaner

·         1 cup soap flakes or grated soap
·         ½ cup washing soda (sodium carbonate – do not substitute sodium bicarbonate or baking soda)
·         2 cups salt
·         1 litre hot water
·         20 drops lemon oil

Stir the soap, washing soda, water and salt together in a non-reactive saucepan until the solid ingredients dissolve. Once the mixture has cooled, stir in the essential oil. Store in a screw-top jar or bottle. To use, add about half cup of the mixture to a bucket of hot water. If desired, follow this mixture with a rinse made from hot water, half a cup of vinegar and a few drops more of lemon oil.

General round-the-house disinfectant

·         250 mL methylated spirits or vodka
·         1 litre vinegar
·         30 drops tea tree oil

Shake together and store in an air-tight bottle (a spray-top bottle if you like). Use on carpets, in the laundry, in the bathroom and toilet, etc.

Loo cleaner

·         1 cup baking soda
·         1 cup vinegar
·         10 drops lavender oil

Pour the baking soda into the toilet bowl and leave overnight. In the morning (before anyone uses the loo), combine the vinegar and the lavender oil. Pour most of this mixture into the bowl and let it react before flushing. Scrub if necessary. Use the remaining vinegar and lavender mixture to wipe down the seat and the lid.