Monday, May 7, 2012

A Greener Clean: Homemade Kitchen Wipes

I'll be honest: I'm the queen of the gimmick.  If it comes in a cute can, has a nifty spray nozzle, and has a foam that turns into seventeen different colors to let you know your surface is ready to scrub, I've probably bought it.

But no more!

I've been slowly greening our cleaning supplies and I've been really pleased with the results.

Not only can most of the ingredients needed to clean your home be found in your pantry, they're also really, really cheap (Hello, baking soda? They practically give that stuff away!).

My first step was homemade disinfecting kitchen wipes.

Here's the "recipe":

In a container combine 1 cup water
1 oz liquid castille soap (I use Dr. Brommer's)
and 6-8 drops of an essential oil (I use tea tree oil, as I like the smell and it has the added bonus of being a natural disinfectant)

Add some squares of cotton cloth (I conscripted one of Ryan's old t-shirts)

Now wipe up those gunky counters!


I was really pleasantly surprised by these.  I made these immediately after using up the last of my Lysol kitchen wipes, and these actually did a better job of cleaning up!
The fact that my wipes were made out of cotton give them a better scrubbing power than whatever weird construction those commercial wipes are made out of.

Bonus?  My kitchen smells like peppermint and tea tree oil instead of a hospital!

Which brings me to beg the question: do you associate the smell of bleach with the idea of cleanliness?  I know I always did.  But I've been using tea tree oil for my skin for a long time, and now when my kitchen and bath smell like it, I know those spaces are clean.

It was an interesting and unplanned experiment, reprogramming my brain to associate a new smell with the idea of clean, but it was definitely worth it.

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