You can make your own cleaning products with items from your store cupboard that work very well, smell good and save you money!
Ingredients for your DIY cleaning products store cupboard:
- Bicarbonate of soda
Cleans, deodorises, softens water and scours.
- White vinegar
Excellent all-purpose household cleaner. Cuts grease, removes mildew, odours, some stains, and wax build-up. The acid in vinegar can kill 99 percent of bacteria, 82 percent of mould, and 80 percent of germs in one application.
Do not use undiluted vinegar on grouting.
- Hydrogen peroxide
Disinfectant. Safer to use than chlorine or bleach for disinfecting and cleaning.
Good antiseptic, antifungal, and antiviral properties but only mild antibacterial action.
- Essential oils
e.g. lavender, tea tree oil, eucalyptus etc
Essential oils are NOT the same as fragrance oils, which are artificially created and often contain synthetic chemicals. Make sure the essential oil you use is of the highest quality and 100% pure.
- Olive oil
Recent studies have reinforced the notion that olive oil is an amazing substance with numerous benefits.
- Apple cider vinegar
The anti-bacterial properties and the balanced pH of apple cider vinegar make it a perfect household cleaning product.
- Citric acid
Citric acid kills bacteria, mould, and mildew. Therefore, it’s great for general disinfecting and cleaning. It is also effective at removing soap scum, hard water stains, calcium deposits, lime, and rust. It also serves as a preservative in many cleaning solutions.
- Tartaric acid
Sprinkle a cup or more of bicarbonate of soda over the bottom of your oven. Spray with enough water to make a paste. For the sides of the oven, make a bicarbonate of soda and water paste and then apply. Let the mixture set overnight, spraying it a few times to keep it wet. Then just wipe it up.
Mix water and vinegar in a spray bottle (in a 1:1 ratio). Spray on countertops, windows, and walls. If you don’t like the smell of vinegar, add a few drops of essential oil (lavender and tea tree oil have anti-bacterial qualities) or lemon juice to the mix as well.
*Do not use vinegar on marble, granite, or other stone countertops as it may etch the stone surface.
Stainless Steel cleaner
To clean fingerprints and streaky stains on appliances, put some olive oil on a clean, soft cloth and wipe. To get rid of water spots on stainless steel utensils and cutlery, dip a cloth in vinegar and rub on the utensils. It’s a great way to polish and sanitize them.
Club soda works well for removing stains from stainless steel cookware.
Remember, never use abrasives or steel wool on stainless steel.
Put ½ cup to 1 cup bicarbonate of soda down the drain and then add apple cider vinegar. Let it bubble for 15 minutes and then rinse with hot water.
Combine three drops of essential oil, 1/4 cup bicarbonate of soda, and ½ cup white vinegar. Mix until well blended and then scrub over all sink surfaces. Rinse with hot water.
Unblock your drain by dropping three alka seltzer tablets down the drain followed by a cupful of vinegar, then followed after a few minutes by hot water!
Mix 1 cup borax, 1 cup bicarbonate of soda, and ¼ cup citric acid. Mix and then grind to fine powder. Place in an airtight container to store – you can use recycled glass jars. Use 1 tablespoon of mixture per load. Use vinegar as a rinse agent.
To clean silver
Line a bucket or your kitchen sink with tin foil and add tarnished silver. Pour in hot water, bicarbonate of soda, and a dash of salt. Soak for 15-20 minutes. The tarnish will transfer from the silver to the foil. Wipe any remaining tarnish with a clean cloth.
To clean brass and copper
Brass and copper can be cleaned by mixing 3 tablespoons of tartaric acid, 3 tablespoons of sunlight liquid with 3 cups of water, Wash brass first and rinse in clear water drying immediately, then do the copper.
Sprinkle a little salt on the rust, squeeze a lime over the salt until it is nicely soaked. Leave the mixture on for two or three hours. Use the leftover rind to scrub residue.
Keep your dishwasher extra clean with white vinegar. Pour ½ cup into the detergent dispenser and run the empty machine for a complete cycle.
Clean your washing machine by using 3 Tablespoons of bicarbonate of soda on a hot rinse
These cleaning solutions are offered as a way to minimize the use of toxic substances in your home, reduce environmental harm and save a few rand. Results vary and are not guaranteed. Always test a small area before applying the cleaning solution to the full area. Please use caution and keep products and homemade solutions very well-labelled and out of the reach of your grandchildren.