Spring is here, and it makes me want to sort and clean and get rid of lots of stuff. Something about the sunshine coming in the windows makes me realize all the filth that has built up over the winter. Oops. I'm not sure if I'm embarrassed or proud, but these are basically all of the cleaning products I use in my home. Of course I vacuum, but other than that, about the only other tools I use are a scrub brush and some rags. If I were ever to be a minimalist, cleaning products is one place I've got it down! Fortunately, these simple products seem to get the job done!
When it comes to talking about toxins in our bodies, there is a term called "toxic load," that describes the overall amount of toxins our bodies are exposed to. These toxins come from literally everything we do, and everywhere we go. Our liver is equipped to sort through these toxins and get them out of our bodies. The problem today is the sheer amount of toxins we're exposed to from our food, air, water, and homes. We're exposed to more now than ever before, and our livers have a hard time keeping up. When it comes to reducing toxins in the home, we're not going for perfection here. But, reducing our overall toxic load however we can (eliminating processed food, eating organic, using non-toxic skincare and cleaning products, etc) helps support our livers to detox everything that remains. We're never going to be completely free of toxins unless we live in a sterile bubble, but that bubble is probably made of plastic....which is largely toxic soooo...? You see my point. Perfection is futile, but progress is great.
So, what are these products, and how do I use them? Let's start with my favorite- Thieves Cleaner by Young Living. I've talked about my love for Thieves cleaner in my previous Natural Living post, but one of the reasons I love it, is that you can use it for literally everything. It kills germs like a champ, so I use it in the kitchen for cutting boards and counters and wiping down my stove top. It's safe to consume, because it's main ingredients are essential oils and water, so I don't have to worry about contamination in the kitchen. But it also has killer cleaning power, and I use it for everything from scrubbing grout (spray on and let it sit, then scrub with a scrub brush) to cleaning windows. If there is 1 cleaning product you should have in your home, this is it! You can even mix the concentrate with some baking soda to make a paste and get after really dirty jobs, like the inside of your oven.
That brings us to my next item- baking soda. Baking soda is perfect for when you need a bit more scrubbing powder. I first fell in love with it when I realized how sparkly clean it gets my bathtub. Bathtubs, in my opinion, are the actual WORST things to clean. I had trouble finding natural products that would actually get all the foot slime out of my tub. Then I started using a combination of baking soda and vinegar (both of which I buy in giant containers at Costco for pennies). It was amazing! The baking soda creates and paste and really scrubs down in there to lift out all the grossness. I sprinkle the tub with baking soda, carefully pour over some vinegar, then scrub with my handy scrub brush. It does the trick every time.
Next up is vinegar, like I mentioned, I use it to clean my tub, but it is also good for getting the stank out of nasty laundry. Sometimes I just let especially stinky stuff sit in a bath of vinegar and water, and it takes the smell out every time! Of course you can just throw in a few tablespoons into every load of laundry, but I don't find that necessary. You can always add some essential oils or organic citrus peels to your vinegar and use it to clean pretty much anything, but I just keep it simple with plain, white vinegar.
Last but not least, is toilet cleaner. This is one area that I honestly don't care too much about using toxic cleaners. Let's be honest, nobody gets into the toilet (if you have children or pets, this may not apply), and what goes in there is the worst of the worst. So chemicals- do your magic! However, I love myself some Thrive Market. I order stuff at least monthly. It used to just be for food, but then I found their natural home products and fell in love all over again. This toilet bowl cleaner works just as well as the chemically stuff, no lie! I squirt it in there, let it sit a minute, then use the toilet brush to scrub everything out. It is simple and works like a charm. While I prefer cleaning products that do more than one job (like Thieves, vinegar, and baking soda) toilets are a whole different ball game and they have earned their own special cleaner. Gross.
So here is how I clean my house:
Toilet (the outside), bathroom counters, shower tiles- Thieves cleaner and rags or a scrub brush
Toilet bowls- Thrive Toilet Bowl Cleaner and a toilet brush
Bath tubs- vinegar and baking soda and a scrub brush
Shower Curtains and Bath Mats- spray with Thieves and throw in the laundry
Kitchen Counters, Cutting Boards, Stove Top- Thieves and a rag or paper towel
Inside of Oven- Thieves and Baking Soda, let it sit, then scrub it
Mattress- Spray with Thieves if you'd like, then let it sit in the sun.
Floors- vacuum or sweep, if it's a serious situation, spray it with Thieves and scrub it.
Soft Furniture- lightly spray with Thieves (similar to febreeze, except it'll kill the germs in there). If you can take off cushions, do that and vacuum under/between them
Wood/Hard Furniture and Baseboards- dust with Thieves and a rag
Windows- Thieves or Vinegar with paper towels or newspaper
That's pretty much it! What does Spring Cleaning look like at your house? What products do you use? Let me know below in the comments. If you want to keep this info for later, Pin the image below.