While LPN is a natural beauty blog, from time to time you will see healthy home and wellness posts. I am hugely passionate about natural health and wellness from all angles, so fear not, I haven't confused toilet cleaner with face cleanser. It's that time of year again when the scrub brushes come out and we "pretty up" our interiors. It is for this reason that today, I'll be sitting on my "soap" box (ha ha) to talk a little about some of the best natural cleaning products around, and also let you in on a few of the cleaning industries' dirty little secrets.
Household cleaners have some of the most [legal] toxic ingredients. A quick google will yield a mountain of information, ingredients and dangers, so I figure I'll give you the Cole's Notes version here.
First off, there is no requirement set out by the government that companies must warn customers of the long term side effects of using certain chemical ingredients in household products; however, if it has any "short-term" hazard symbols on it, you can be darn sure its toxic. Think about it for a few minutes... you bathe in a tub that was washed out with corrosives, you eat off a counter you wiped down with hormone-disrupting triclosan, you breathe in asthma-causing toxins. The ingredient lists are chock-a-block full of carcinogens, endocrine disruptors, respiratory irritants and a plethora of other toxins. If you haven't already, for both your and your families' health, make the switch to natural cleaning products.
As per usual, I've done my round up of the best I've come across - here they are categorized:
All Purpose Cleaner & Laundry Detergent: Le Savonnier Marseillais Savon Noir
This product is a wonder. It does everything. It is for this reason I have it under two categories - best in all purpose cleaning and best laundry detergent. Simple and effective is how I like my cleaning products, and this one is both. My clothes smelt of fresh lavender fields post wash (essential oil scented, so its safe for even the smallest family members) and my wood floors never looked so squeaky clean (safe for Rover, or in my case, Riley to sleep). It's 100% natural olive oil soap, made with saponified olive oil, salt, natural glycerin and essential oils.
A 1 L bottle can be picked up on their website here for $20. A fantastic value when this one takes over the work of your other 12 products in the cupboard. If there is one product you purchase, this one is it.
All Purpose Surface Cleaner: Method
You'll be surprised to know this is mostly natural when you start cleaning with it - as it cuts through everything and anything. You can find it almost anywhere in North America (Method products are hard to miss, as their packaging is the prettiest thing in the cleaner aisle) and they retail for a lovely $4.00. While it smells lovely, I could do without the synthetic portion of the fragrance ingredients (it is partially essential oils) and colour (it's ok if the liquid isn't purple). For a full list of their ingredients (for all their products), find them here. Method's all purpose cleaner scores a "B" on Environmental Working Group's rankings.
Dishwasher "Soap": Ecover
Ecover has got you covered when it comes to kitchen clean up - and their dishwasher tabs are the best out there. Some of the natural tabs I've tried clump up and end up dried in the soap dispenser or leave streaks on my dishes. Not these babies! They're as effective as any chemical you throw at your dishwasher. Ecover Zero is fragrance free and uses baking soda as one of their main ingredients. For $6 you can grab a 25 tab box and make doing dishes a breeze. These score a "B" on Environmental Working Group's ranking page.
Dish Soap: Ecover
Ok, so not everything fits in the dishwasher (no matter how hard I try). But that being said Ecover also makes a great dishwashing liquid soap that lasts eons and works wonders. It's ingredient list is short and sweet, and scores a healthy "B" grade on the Environmental Working Group's page. Shop Ecover for 950 ml for around $6.
Toilet Cleaner: Seventh Generation
Seventh Generation handles one of the dirtiest jobs in the house with some of the purest ingredients. Scoring an "A" grade on the Environmental Working Group's rankings, its toilet cleaner has no harsh fragrances or scary ingredients. It works effectively and you won't be feeling sick or dizzy after bending over the bowl for a few minutes. One litre retails for about $4.
Tried & True: Baking Soda & Vinegar
When it comes to cleaning, White Vinegar and Baking Soda can do almost anything. I use both of them for de-clogging drains, stain removal and soap scum, baking soda alone for deodorizing and teeth whitening and vinegar alone for disinfecting. These "multitaskers" can be used in place of a lot of products, and will prove to be safe, effective soldiers time and time again.
Clean healthily, beauties.