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The Best Natural Cleaners You Can Make at Home

March 4, 2024

The Best Natural Cleaners You Can Make at Home


Cleaning your home with harsh chemicals can be expensive and unhealthy. Many store-bought cleaners contain toxic ingredients that can cause breathing issues or other health problems. Luckily, there are easy ways to make effective cleaners using ingredients you likely already have at home. These natural cleaners get the job done without exposing you or your family to harmful toxins. In this article, I will share my top recommendations for natural cleaners you can easily make yourself.

Vinegar-Based Cleaners

Vinegar is a versatile cleaner that can be used throughout the home. It cuts through grease, kills mold and bacteria, removes hard water deposits, and acts as a natural deodorizer.

Vinegar All-Purpose Cleaner

To make an all-purpose cleaner, simply mix 1 part white vinegar with 1 part water in a spray bottle. I like to add a few drops of essential oils like lemon or lavender to provide a light scent. This solution can be used to clean counters, appliances, floors, windows, mirrors, and most other surfaces.

Disinfecting Cleaner

For an effective disinfectant, mix 1/2 cup vinegar with 1 cup water and 20-30 drops tea tree oil. Tea tree oil has natural antibacterial properties. Spray this on surfaces and let sit for 5-10 minutes before wiping clean. It’s great for disinfecting kitchens, bathrooms, kids’ items, and more.

Other Uses for Vinegar

A 50/50 vinegar-water solution shines stainless steel and chrome. Pure vinegar removes hard water stains from glass. Vinegar also works wonders when added to laundry to reduce odors and brighten whites.

Baking Soda Solutions

Baking soda, also known as sodium bicarbonate, is a versatile natural cleaner and odor absorber. Here are some of my go-to uses:

All-Purpose Cleaning Paste

Make a paste with 3 parts baking soda to 1 part water. Apply to surfaces with a damp sponge or cloth and scrub before rinsing. This works great on countertops, stoves, stainless steel, and more.

Fridge and Freezer Odor Remover

Place an open box of baking soda inside the fridge or freezer. It will absorb odors naturally over time. Replace every 2-3 months.

Drain Cleaner

Pour 1/2 cup baking soda down the drain followed by 1 cup vinegar. The chemical reaction will break up grease and grime. Flush with hot water. Do this regularly to keep drains clear.

Scouring Powder

For a non-scratch scouring powder, mix 2 tablespoons baking soda with 1 tablespoon water to form a paste. Spread on surfaces and scrub with a damp sponge or cloth. Rinse thoroughly after.

Lemon Juice Solutions

The natural acidity in lemon juice gives it potent cleaning and bleaching abilities. Here are some of my favorite ways to use it:

Stain Remover

For clothes and carpet stains, apply straight lemon juice and let sit for 5-10 minutes before laundering as usual. This works well on rust, mildew, berry stains, and more.

Bleaching Cleaner

Mix 1 part lemon juice with 1 part water and use on white surfaces to naturally whiten and brighten. This solution is great for whitening bathtubs, sinks, tile and grout.

Cutting Board Disinfectant

Wipe down wooden cutting boards with straight lemon juice to kill bacteria. Let sit briefly before rinsing. The lemon juice will also help deodorize and brighten the wood over time.

Rust Remover

To safely dissolve rust stains on metal, apply lemon juice and let sit for a few minutes before scrubbing and rinsing. This can be used on silverware, sinks, garden tools, and more.

Castile Soap Cleaners

Castile soap is a versatile plant-based soap that can be diluted with water to make effective cleaners.

All-Purpose Cleaner

Add 1/4 cup liquid castile soap and 3 tablespoons vinegar to 4 cups water in a spray bottle. Use on most washable surfaces.

Window and Mirror Cleaner

Mix 2 tablespoons castile soap, 1/4 cup vinegar, and 2 cups water for a great glass cleaner. Wipe on and polish off.

Vegetable Wash

Add 3-4 drops castile soap to a bowl of cool water. Soak vegetables before rinsing clean.

Floor Cleaner

For wood, tile, or laminate floors, add 1/4 cup soap to 1 gallon hot water. Mop as usual and let air dry.

Essential Oil Cleaners

Essential oils not only provide pleasant natural scents, but many also have antiseptic and antibacterial properties. Here are some of my favorite combinations:

Disinfecting Cleaner

Add 20 drops lemon oil, 20 drops tea tree oil and 20 drops lavender oil to a 12 oz spray bottle filled with distilled white vinegar. Shake before each use.

Wood Polish

Mix 1/4 cup olive oil and 15-20 drops lemon oil. Apply a small amount to a soft cloth and polish wood furniture.

Air Freshener

Use 10-15 drops of refreshing essential oils like lemon, peppermint, or orange in an ultrasonic diffuser to freshen room air.

Mold Killer

Wipe down moldy surfaces with tea tree oil or a mix of 1 cup water, 1/2 cup vinegar, and 15 drops tea tree oil to kill mold naturally. Ventilate area well.


With a few simple ingredients like vinegar, baking soda, castile soap, and essential oils, you can make safe and effective cleaners for your entire home. Natural cleaners save money, reduce waste, and help keep your family healthy by avoiding toxic chemicals. Give these recipes a try the next time you need to tidy up!

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