Spring Cleaning, the Natural Way

Natural Spring Cleaning

Ah, springtime…time to open the doors and windows and let the fresh air in! With all the fresh air, you just might be energized enough to do some spring cleaning—whether it’s top to bottom deep cleaning like your great grandmother used to do, or a bit more than just your usual quick surface or spot cleaning. If you’re a family caregiver of an aging parent or loved one, spring is a good time volunteer to help them by cleaning their home, too. Their mood will be lifted by the clean, fresh feel of the home!

The next step is getting all your cleaning products ready to shine, disinfect, and deodorize. Why not go natural this spring? You can spend a fortune on natural products at the local market, or you can make your own concoctions for less. They’re also versatile and good for you, your family, your pets, and the environment.

Essential Oils

All you need are a few basic ingredients such as baking soda, white vinegar water, and borax, for example. Essential oils, found online or in whole food or organic food stores, are also good ingredients to add to your cleansing mixtures. Which oils are best for cleaning products?

  • Pine oil — smells clean and is inexpensive; disinfects and deodorizes
  • Tea tree oil — has a spicy scent; disinfects and deodorizes; kills mold and its odors
  • Citrus oils (lemon, orange, grapefruit) — These smell fresh and so clean; are antibacterial and have antiseptic properties, as well as mood uplifting
  • Lavender oil — pleasant scent, anti-bacterial, and also acts as a natural insect repellent

5 Make-Your-Own Natural Cleaning Products

Below are five “recipes” for natural cleaning products. This is just the tip of the natural cleanser iceberg, however. Search online or check out a book from the local library for a wide variety of natural cleaning product formulas.

1. Carpet Freshener
Add 15-20 drops of essential oil to 1 cup of baking soda; let stand overnight. Sprinkle on carpet before vacuuming.

2. Toilet Bowl Disinfectant
Combine 1 cup water, 1/4 cup liquid castile soap, and 10 drops of lemon essential oil into a spray bottle.

3. Mold Controller
In a spray bottle, mix 2 teaspoons tea tree oil in 2 cups of water. Use this to spray on mold to remove the smell and must (will not remove the discoloration caused by the mold).

4. Drain Unclogger
Pour 1/2 cup baking soda into a clogged drain, then pour 1 cup vinegar in the drain, causing a foaming action. After it stops foaming, flush with hot water. Wait 5 minutes and flush with cold water. For slow drains, pour 1/2 cup salt into the drain, and then pour 2 cups of boiling vinegar in the drain. Following that, flush the drain with both hot and cold water.

5. Leather Reviver
In a spray bottle, mix 1/2 cup vinegar and 1/2 cup boiled linseed oil (equal parts). Spray on leather, then spread with a cloth. Wait a few minutes, then rub off with a clean cloth.