Friday, May 17, 2013

222 May Mini-Challenge: Homemade Cleaners

We have slowly been transitioning our cleaners over from store bought to homemade, and many of you darling friends have been asking for an update!

So, given the monthly challenge of getting our home to sparkle for spring, I decided to try a couple more homemade cleaners and whip up some nifty labels too.  Some of these cleaners we have been using for awhile now, and others are newer to us but seem to be promising after a use or two.


I purchased the book the Naturally Clean Home awhile back, and also scoured Pinterest and the www for other green homemade cleaner recipes, so that I could use many of the items I had on hand and keep it as basic as possible.


I love the recipes in the book because they are easy to follow and most cleaning tasks have a variety homemade options to select from.  I am most excited to use it for tasks like cleaning the oven and treating carpet stains, as I find those are the green products I struggle finding in stores and also tend to be the most toxic.

However, the book really emphasizes on oils and a few products that I didn't have on hand, so a little Googling and Pinterest hunting and I found some other simple solutions for homemade cleaners as well.

What I love is that when I make my own cleaners, I know the ingredients, and many of them only took two to four total.  So, I started with a few basic items to make a boatload of cleaning products.


Here are the items I found to be the most useful:
  • Washing Soda
  • Borax 
  • Baking Soda
  • Vinegar
  • Dish Soap
  • Essential Oils
  • Lemon/Lemon Juice
  • Pure Castile Soap
  • Fels-Naptha Bar Soap
  • Measuring cups/spoons

Because I know it will get mentioned, I did select to use Borax.  Some believe it to be toxic, but it is also known as being a very effective all natural cleaner and is referenced in majority of green cleaning recipes.  I selected to use it within my laundry detergent, as we have hard water and it battles the hard water within the wash.  There are all sorts of sites that get into the debates of the safeness of Borax, I specifically enjoyed this read on the subject.

Also, vinegar.  Stinky stinky stinky.  The smell does go away fairly quickly, however, the initial shock of it can be strong.  The answer?  These lovely helpers!


I found that a few drops of essential oils within the cleaners and the vinegar smell was no more.  In fact, the cleaner smells quite nice, I am a fan.

Over the course of the years, I would hoard my cleaning bottles.  I knew they would come in useful someday in making my own cleaners.  Using the items above, I made all of these cleaners below...


Shown above:

Laundry Detergent - 1 cup soap flakes {I used Fels-Naptha}, 1 cup washing soda, 1 cup borax {I use two tablespoons per load and have found it to be better to place right within the washer vs. the dispenser}

Fabric Softener - 2 cups of vinegar, 10 drops of Lavender oil

Scouring Scrub - 1 cup baking soda, 2 tsp cream of tartar, 1/2 cup borax, 1/4 cup grated citrus peel

Just Water - I use this to activate some of the cleaners, and to clean our glass

All Purpose Cleaner - 1/2 tsp dish soap, 1 tsp baking soda, 2 tbsp white vinegar, 2 cups water, 3 drops essential oil

Goo Gone - 1/3 cup coconut oil {melted} and 1/3 cup baking soda {thanks Ashley!}

Toilet Cleaner - 1/2 cup baking soda, 1/4 cup white vinegar, 10 drops essential oil {I mixed the vinegar and oil ahead of time, just sprinkle baking soda into the toilet bowl, add the vinegar/oil and scrub with toilet brush}

Wood Cleaner - 1/2 lemon juice, 1 tsp castile soap, 4 drops essential oil

Just Vinegar - I keep this on hand for making the cleaners and other random cleaning tasks

Floor Cleaner - 1/4 cup dish soap, 1/4 cup white vinegar, 1/4 cup lemon juice, 10 drops essential oil {add to bucket of hot water}


Many of the items I made double or triple batches, based on my bottle size.  You can download a PDF of the recipes here.

{download homemade cleaner recipes FREE here}

I keep a copy in our household binder to help me out when it comes time to whip up another batch.


I also made the labels because I am a bit of a label snob.  I printed them on clear Avery 22825 round labels and stuck them right to the bottles and jars.


And I am sharing those with you too!

{download homemade cleaner labels FREE here - please note that the preview of the labels is jumbled, however, once you click download they are correctly aligned.  I apologize for the glitchy technical confusion}

I think it is the little things, and pretty labels make cleaning just that much better.


As far as using the products, I have a few extra tools that make things easier.


The grout brush is used on the grout lines in our lower level bathroom and makes scrubbing the grout so much easier.  Sometimes I use the pink microfiber hand mitten duster for quick dust jobs {the kids think it is fun too!}, and when I am really wanting the wood furniture to shine, I stick to microfiber and pair it with the wood cleaner.  You can't go wrong with microfiber cloths, they are soft and really grab dust.  The part I love most is that when paired with water, they are cleaning machines {I use microfiber paired with water to wipe down our cabinets, doors, trim, walls, etc...}.  No chemicals and super easy.

I recently found a Scotch Brite glass combo pack of cloths at Target {can't seem to find them online}, and the pack consisted of a microfiber rag and a polishing rag.  You may have noticed that I didn't make a glass cleaner, and that is because I don't need one with these rags.  Simply spray water on the glass, wipe down with the microfiber cloth first, and follow behind it with the polishing rag.  My glass and windows have never looked better or cleaner, I was addicted the first time I used them {and I swear I am not being paid or swayed, just found a product that works wonders!}.

Here is my cleaning caddy all filled up with the homemade cleaning goodies:


The caddy was initially a utensil caddy from Target {here is a similar one they have this year}, and I added a decal to the side to jazz it up a bit.  I sort of heart it.  The caddy works great for going from room to room and also tucks nicely below the sink.

So why make your own cleaners?  The cost of the items to make homemade cleaners is quite low and even after they are combined, you can make such large batches of cleaners that will last far longer than the less concentrated store bought options.  They smell great and now that I have the bottles, it's as simple as taking a couple of minutes to mix up a new batch when I run low.  I also love that I know what I am cleaning with, and that the microfiber has allowed me to use just water when no disinfecting is necessary.  The biggest win seems to be with the laundry detergent, as I was spending around $16 per bottle in the past.  And although I was skeptical, they work!  The wood cleaner smells amazing and leaves wood looking great and also repels dust!  The glass has never shined brighter and our clothes and nice and clean.  Overall, we have been very happy with the transition.

How about you?  Any homemade cleaner fanatics?  Care to share your favorite recipe?



Psssst!  Just like organizing, our cleaning process is always evolving as well.  Check out my spring cleaning series to find updated recipes and tips!
 

222 comments:

  1. I recently started transitioning to more natural & homemade cleaners. I don't have a favorite recipe because it is just plain water! My favorite is my e-cloth and a spray bottle of water. It cleans the windows and doesn't leave any streaks!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sounds super similar to the one I recently purchased. Love it and so surprised there are no streaks left behind.

      xo!
      Jen

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  2. So glad you posted this! I have been wanting to make some of these, and having all the recipes in one place makes it so easy. For those of you that don’t like the smell of vinegar, here is another way to make it smell better by infusing it with citrus peel. I tried this and it worked really well. http://myhealthygreenfamily.com/blog/wordpress/homemade-citrus-vinegar-cleaner/.

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    Replies
    1. Oooh, I bet that smells nice too! Thanks for sharing!

      xo,
      Jen

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    2. So many recipes for natural cleaners call for both vinegar AND lemon juice ~ but they're both acids that do the same thing, aren't they? Why not just double up on the amount of vinegar and save the lemon juice for making food more awesome? Am I missing something here? Thanks for clarifying!

      Delete
    3. I think it is just to achieve that super clean lemony smell that gets lost when just vinegar is being used.

      xo!

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  3. Hi Jen

    This is so fascinating to me. I have an ignorant question.. for the wood cleaner, how long can you store it? does it go bad? (it has lemon juice, so I am not sure how that works)
    Thank you!

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    Replies
    1. Hi Zama!

      Great question. I guess I didn't really think about that much and haven't experienced any issues yet. I wonder if the vinegar preserves it at all? Otherwise, I am guessing it could just be stored in the fridge?

      xo!
      Jen

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    2. I started making some of my own too. I read somewhere that the vinegar will break down a plastic bottle over time, so it was suggested to use a glass one or an industrial strength one. You can get that at Lowes or Home Depot. The glass one they suggested to just use an old apple cider vinegar and purchase a spray nozzle (although I haven't been able to find that).
      Aimee

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  4. We eat lots of citrus around here. To get some good, natural citrus scent in the air, I add a shake or 2 of cloves, and throw in my splintered cinnamon shards. I let it all simmer while I'm cleaning. When done, I let it cool and pour the citrus water in a bottle with half bottle of vinegar. No measurements, just using the citrus peels of the day.

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    Replies
    1. Love that! I love to simmer herbs and oils for a nice smell in the home, never thought to do the same with citrus. Thanks for the tip!

      xo,
      Jen

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  5. Awesome post once again. I have this on my agenda to do, but I have been a little skeptical. I wanted to hear from someone that has actually used homemade products and recommend it. So, thank you for this post. I know you said that they work, but do they work as well as the store products? Which homemade product is your favorite?

    Thank you in advance!

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  6. I've been making some of my own too. The one thing I really want to give a try is homemade dish washing detergent. Do you have any experience with making that? Thanks for the great labels and printable, always love your stuff!

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    Replies
    1. I haven't given that one a try yet. Here is one that sounds good though, since we have hard water: http://www.passionatehomemaking.com/2009/06/homemade-all-natural-dishwasher-detergent.html

      xo!
      Jen

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  7. I have that same recipe book!! I love using the recipes with different essential oils. Our house always smells so nice when I clean!!

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  8. This is great, thanks for the information! :)

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  9. Thank you for sharing! I've just started making my own cleaners also. I'll start a new recipe when my current _____ (fill in the blank) is running low, that way I have a little something on hand in case the homemade version doesn't work out so well. I'm excited to try your floor cleaner. I've tried several and have not been impressed at all. What type of mop do you use?

    I use water with a splash of vinegar for my multipurpose cleaner, a touch of vinegar with my laundry as fabric softenener and just recently started using this recipe for dish washing detergent:
    http://www.onegoodthingbyjillee.com/2012/02/homemade-dishwasher-detergent-revised.html

    It cakes in the container after made, but I just stab it a bit with a spoon until enough comes loose for the load, then throw the spoon in the dishwasher.

    Have a great weekend and thanks again!
    -Sandy
    sj_unk@yahoo.com

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for the link to the dishwasher detergent as a few people have already inquired about that as well. :)

      I use a Casabella twist mop with microfiber heads. I found it at Target and I am a fan!

      xo,
      Jen

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    2. I went to Target earlier and got this mop on sale for $12!!! So excited!! It works great too! I do have a question Jen, how often do you wash it?

      Delete
  10. This is a fabulous and very organized post. I'm impressed! Okay so question, did you do a post on the "household binder". I'm thinking this is going to be a summer task and although we use Melaleuca for all our cleaning supplies and they are pretty green. I'd like to try some others. Your blog always makes me swoon and gives me a boost of determination to get things in order! Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! I made a household binder a few years ago, you can find the details here: http://iheartorganizing.blogspot.com/2011/03/march-challenge-project-household_9757.html

      Although it's always changing and evolving, I still love it! You can also purchase the printables in my Etsy shop here: https://www.etsy.com/listing/79924327/personalized-household-binder-everything?ref=shop_home_feat

      xo!
      Jen

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  11. Uh, I thought I was doing good to use (mostly) Method products!!! :) These look amazing...and those labels are too cute!

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  12. We love mixing 1 part water and 1 part vinegar for an all purpose cleaner. It works great and is CHEAP! Also, never under estimate the power of plain water! Love your labels!

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  13. Oh, I forgot, I also use hydrogen peroxide with a little bit (maybe 2T for a whole bottle, too much clogs the sprayer) of washing soda to treat laundry stains. You need to keep it in an opaque bottle, though. Similar to Oxyclean Spray.
    -Sandy

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    Replies
    1. This solution will last for under an hour. It's a good combo, they use a similar one to bleach wood pulp, but it breaks down very quickly.

      http://www.columbia.edu/~ap2622/pdf/Stability%20of%20hydrogen%20peroxide%20in%20sodium%20carbonate.pdf

      Delete
  14. This is a great idea. Thanks for the handy recipes, labels and advice.

    With your quantities for Floor Cleaner, Toilet Cleaner and Laundry Cleaner, are they how much you'd use for a single clean? For example, would you use "Laundry Detergent - 1 cup soap flakes {I used Fels-Naptha}, 1 cup washing soda, 1 cup borax" for one load of laundry, or should this do more than one?

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    Replies
    1. Hi Katie!

      For the laundry detergent, I use 2 tablespoons for each load {which means that it will last me a loooong time}, and for the toilet bowl cleaner, I just sprinkle some baking soda into the bowl and squirt with the vinegar/oil combination until I get some fizzle. The floor cleaner is mixed with hot water, and again, I just add what seems sufficient.

      xo!
      Jen

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  15. Thank you for sharing the borax article. It is very interesting. After researching borax myself a few months ago, I also decided it was safe for use in my home. And your labels are adorable. Thanks for sharing them with the rest of us!

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  16. Ooooh! So pretty!
    I do hate the smell of vinegar! Baking soda is my newest bff. I will try some of your cleaners though :)
    Question, where did you get that blue tray? Its so pretty!

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  17. I'm looking for something to clean my oven with! I'd love any advice. I found one on Pinterest, but she ended her cleaning with swipes of a blade over the glass. This is not an option for us. Any ideas?

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  18. I started using Norwex products about one year ago and I love it! They have awesome products and I use water with their cloths and mops. Has anyone else tried this company? Melanie

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    Replies
    1. I use Norwex and love the window cloth and the Descaler for the shower doors. That makes the soap scum come off like nothing. Best product ever!

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    2. I haven't tried the cleaning paste on the shower tiles, but I hear it is amazing too. I like the idea of green cleaners, but I like the simplicity of Norwex. I don't know if I could tackle all of the homemade products, but Jen's caddy sure is pretty.
      Melanie

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  19. This is exactly where I'm at, so thanks for your excellent timing on this! And for saving me so much time! I have the same question about dish washing liquid; can it be made naturally, and if not, what is the best option in stores? And same question for dishwasher soap. Thanks so much! Great labels!!

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    Replies
    1. I haven't tried any homemade solutions for dish washing liquids or dishwasher detergents, but there are a few solutions floating around Pinterest. I use whatever I have a coupon for or is on sale of the natural stuff {Method, Mrs Meyers, JR Watkins} and have been happy with all.

      xo!
      Jen

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  20. Thanks so much! I have been looking for some easy, home-made cleaners to start switching us over to! I'm really excited to get all these whipped up (except the laundry detergent. I can't get hubby to make the switch)! Love the printable too. Thanks again!!!

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  21. Thank you for this, Jen! Those labels are adorable!

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  22. This is great! I have been using these recipes for a while now and I'm so glad I haven't tried to make any labels yet. Thank you so much for sharing!

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  23. PASSEI PARA TE DESEJAR UM FINAL DE SEMANA ÓTIMO.
    UM GRANDE ABRAÇO DA ELO......E DO BRASIL

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  24. hi, I use non toxic cleaners also for our teeth! here is the link to the recipe http://holytempleunderrenovation.blogspot.ca/2012/06/diy-tooth-paste.html

    I am also using soap nuts as well as making my own laundry detergent. I am convince our clothes come out clean! hugs to all

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for sharing! Great to know that even toothpaste can be DIY'd at home.

      xo!
      Jen

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  25. Great recipes & labels! Here are my absolute favourites that I have used for years.
    Kitchen counter cleaner: 500 ml water + 1/2 teaspoon lavender oil (antiseptic) in a spray bottle.
    Window cleaner: 4 parts water + 1 part vinegar in a spray bottle.
    Mould killer: 1 litre water + 1/4 teaspoon oil of cloves in a spray bottle. Spray on and leave overnight, wipe off with a damp cloth. A drop or two in baby oil can be rubbed on leather.

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    Replies
    1. I have made my own window cleaner as well. I did the same as above, but added a few drops of dish soap. I made them squeaky clean.

      Delete
  26. Thank you for your article, it'a great inspiration.

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  27. Thanks for the labels and recipes. Everything you do is absolutely gorgeous!!!!

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  28. This is great! Thank you for the adorable printables!!! Your home always looks super clean in all your photos. Would you consider doing a "Cleaning 101" post, maybe a video tutorial on your basic cleaning techniques? Thanks again for another super post!!!

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  29. Hi! Does your laundry detergent work for HE machines? I've been dying to try homemade laundry detergent but I'm too afraid I'll ruin my washer! Thanks! Lindsay

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    Replies
    1. Yes! I have only been using it for a short while now, but we have a front loader HE machine and from what I have read all over the blogosphere is that it is completely safe. By putting it directly into the washing machine vs. through the dispenser you also reduce the risk of build-up.

      xo!
      Jen

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    2. That's exactly what I was wondering! Thanks!

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    3. Make sure you do a very hot wash occasionally with soda crystals only to avoid build up of soap - I gave up using homemade solution in the end as the machine wasn't that happy :(

      Delete
  30. I use that same caddy (sold at Target as a utensil holder) for Sharpies and scissors in my craft space. It's a good one!

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    Replies
    1. Love that! We do the same for the kid's art supplies. They are so versatile!

      xo,
      Jen

      Delete
  31. Do you have something you can make to get rid of ants? We have ants in our kitchen always before rain and at the moment we are getting quite a lot of rain. It doesn't matter how clean the kitchen is they just make a trail around the benches. Also around the kitty's bowl on the floor. I do have water around the bowl. I have tried lavender which didnt work but I know there is a mixture to use but I can't find it thanks sue

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Here is a post I found for ants: http://its-a-green-life.com/2013/02/08/all-natural-green-ant-killer-for-pennies-and-it-works-just-as-well-as-expensive-poison-this-natural-ant-killer-can-be-used-in-a-garden-to-sustain-an-organic-environment-3/

      I have also heard Windex does the trick.

      xo!
      Jen

      Delete
  32. My favorite is just a 1:1 ratio of vinegar and water. The smell goes away quickly and it works everywhere! I also take a glass bowl of some vinegar in the microwave, heat it for 3-4 minutes and all the stains wipe away.

    I can't wait to try the other recipes!!

    -Megan

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    Replies
    1. Yes! I have done the same in the microwave! Works so great!

      xo,
      Jen

      Delete
  33. I was at Target today looking for a utensil caddy like yours! (I've looked for one like yours since I first saw it last year.) What does this year's look like and where would I find it?

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  34. I love microfiber cloths. I get mine in the Auto section at Target. So much cheaper than the ones in the "cleaning" isle. Any solutions for hard water spots on shower doors?

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    Replies
    1. I use water/vinegar combo and a mr. clean magic eraser- works great! :)

      Delete
    2. I'm in Paris, and the water is pretty hard with lots of calcium. A mess on the counter and in the sinks. I use straight vinegar or a mix. Let sit for a couple of minutes and wipe down. Works a charm.

      Delete
  35. Sorry if this has been mentioned already, but you can keep a jar of vinegar and add orange peels (or lemon. lime, etc) to it as you eat them. After about a month the vinegar has pulled out all of the essential oils and it hardly smells like vinegar anymore! I prefer strongly scented cleaners, so this has saved me quite a bit of EO since I tend to add way more than 3 drops of oil!

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  36. You actually don't need to use 2 tablespoons unless it is a really dirty load. Everything I read said you need at most 1 tablespoon.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Sarah! We have three boys so we have our share of dirty loads but I will try cutting it down and see how it goes.

      xo,
      Jen

      Delete
  37. I definitely had to PIN this! Don't want to forget it :)

    http://pinterest.com/pin/29484572533349844/

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  38. Oh my goodness. I have followed your blog for about a year now, but don't take the time to comment. I want to say thank you for your work here. I admire the quality of what you do so much! You make everything pretty and organized! I love that, and only wish I had more time to do that more in my home. I'm a 5th grade teacher and teach about "going green". This is certianly something I will be sharing with others! Thank you!

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  39. I love what you're doing here! I just did a series of posts on my blog back in April on going green and making your own household cleaners. Feel free to check them out!

    www.alifehomemade.com

    ReplyDelete
  40. You have the cutest cleaning products on the block! Oh, and the fact that they work amazingly is a bonus! ;) I would love to make my own cleaners...it's one of those things I just haven't gotten around to yet! Maybe those adorable labels will motivate me to get started! Have a wonderful weekend, Jen!

    ~Abby =)

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  41. Jen,

    This post is perfect timing! We just got a puppy and my husband has allergies so I've been needing to find safe non-toxic cleaners. I'm using Basic H from Shaklee which is unscented. Where did you find your essential oils?

    Thanks! -Jennifer H.

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    Replies
    1. I ordered essential oils from Amazon. They had everything I was looking for to make these cleaners plus free shipping!

      Delete
    2. I ordered all of the ingredients to make these cleaners, plus the essential oils, from Amazon. I got free shipping too and they just arrived yesterday, so now I can get started!

      Delete
  42. Thank you for the labels; they're cute. I bought that same book several years ago, but I mainly clean with plain vinegar and baking soda. The scent of the vinegar doesn't bother me and seems to dissipate within minutes. I buy a huge bag of baking soda from Costco ~ for pan scrubbing, I found a cute stainless steel Parmesan cheese shaker to fill with the baking soda to keep at the kitchen sink.

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  43. Hi Jen! I have a question about your labels. Would you please share which program you use to design them? I can make plain ones just fine, but I need to be a little more creative and I haven't a clue where to start! Please and thank you!

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    Replies
    1. Hi Ashley!

      I use a combination of Microsoft Excel, Word and Photoshop.

      xo!
      Jen

      Delete
  44. Anyone with CATS!!!!!---
    google which essential oils are safe for cats. Not all are. Felines can't metabolize a lot of essential oils. (Even exposure in the air could cause issues. remember they can also get it on their paws from a surface and lick it off).

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  45. I am so leary about using vinegar because I made the mistake of not diluating it enough and I was wiping down my childs car seat. Well needless to say it rusted the metal buckles on my childs 350 dollar car seat! Yikes! Ever since than I have been using the Honest Co products.
    I do like to make my own countertop spray though 2 drops of Seventh Generation Free and clear dish liquid/ or Honest Co dish liquid into a spray bottle of really warm water. Use this on counters and kids toys. Works great I mix a fresh batch daily.

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  46. Oh Jen, you had me at I <3. I just found your blog recently and YOU ARE AMAZING! I am 8 months pregnant with Baby #4 and we just closed on our dream house. Your blog has given me such inspiration and I have so many want to dos. I keep bookmarking different posts, just so I don't forget any ;) I love this post as I currently have no cleaning products (we are living with my folks while house hunting) and this is the perfect start from the ground up, get green cleaning info.
    Thank you, thank you, thank you!
    Trina

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  47. Thanks for this post, it's very inspirational.
    I'll start collecting those empty bottles. I'm not ready to commit full on, but I do already do little things.
    Another problem is the baking soda. As normal it is in the USA, as abnormal it is in the Netherlands. We just don't have it in our stores. I can buy it in Germany but it's in little packets and quite expensive as well. Difficult product.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Baking Soda is sodium bicarbonate...have you tried looking for it under that name?

      Delete
    2. or Bicarbonate of Soda as it is known in the UK - so might be that in the Netherlands?

      Delete
  48. Good for you in making the transition. We have been making our own cleaners for a while due to our son's allergies and I can't ever see going back to commercial cleansers. I recently found a recipe for dishwashing tablets that actually works well and is easy to make. No more spending money on things for cleaning. Rock on!

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  49. I LOVE your labels! You should start your own line!
    I always make my own cleaners. Love vinegar+water solution-my favorite! I also use a lot of baking soda. And the magic eraser.
    I am drooling over that turquoise tray...And I love the font on the labels. What font is the word Sprakle?
    Thanks!

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  50. Wow - thankyou! great timing we are moving in 2 weeks so will be great to clean this house but more so no more yucky products in our new abode!
    On a side note the labels in the .doc file are blank on my iMac...something to do with them being 'floating text' .... anyone else have this problem or am i doing something wrong?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Samone!

      Yes, the label file is for Microsoft Word so I believe it will need to be opened and printed with a Windows PC. Converting the file to a PDF always seems to change the margins and the labels no longer align.

      Sorry about that! I don't know a workaround to that problem.

      xo,
      Jen

      Delete
    2. My mac won't print it either, sadly. I just did a drag and drop of the picture of the labels in the blog post (onto my desktop) and while they're smaller, I guess it's better than nothing. I haven't tried to print them out or anything.

      Delete
    3. Hey guys! I was having the same issues so I just used this site to convert it to .pdf and it printed perfectly! :) http://www.freepdfconvert.com/# (just leave the email part blank!)

      I love your gorgeous labels Jen and, shameless plug, I've got some good freebie DIY stuff (spray paint caddy, kitchen storage, etc) at my blog gottalovediy.blogspot.com so please drop in if you can :D Love your ideas and positivity, keep up the fantastic work! Melissa

      Delete
    4. I have a MacBook Pro and was able to download it. I have Microsoft Word downloaded on my Mac (in addition to Pages) though so that may be the case. It definitely comes in handy for downloading things like this.

      Delete
  51. How do you use your fabric softener? Do you just pour it into the liquid dispenser in your washing machine?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Christine WilliamsJune 13, 2013 at 12:56 PM

      Ok, I don't have a liquid dispenser....so about how much??

      Delete
  52. Thanks for the tip about essential oils with vinegar Jen. That was a major stumbling block for me. Also, the sparkle label? Adorable!
    {lamourcheznous.wordpress.com}

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  53. Hey there! I love your blog! So informative and I love all your ideas! please be sure to check out my blog too! Thanks! have a great day :)

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  54. It's amazing that you can do all this by yourself with simple products.

    LUXESSED

    ReplyDelete
  55. SO GLAD I FOUND THIS SITE. Love your stuff. I'm moving soon & I will be using this site to rebuild my home! I love natural cleaners too! Thank you so much!!

    ReplyDelete
  56. I LOVE these labels and the printable!I find tea tree oil to be a great disinfecting addition. It doubles wonderfully as a first aid tool. I use it (with water or glycerin) on cuts, scrapes, pimples, as well as with cleaners for the kitchen or bathroom.

    As I saw others mention, I use hydrogen peroxide for things I want *really* disinfected, like raw meat messes. Most hydrogen peroxide bottles can have a regular spray bottle top screwed directly on them, so there's no need to find an opaque bottle!

    ReplyDelete
  57. I usually use vinegar and water for everything. I was just introduced to Norwex too and fell in love! I used their enviro cloth to clean the outside of my cupboards, and they have never been cleaner. A good quality microfiber makes a world of difference!
    I also love their dusting mitt because no spray is necessary, which is huge to me! If you would like to know more, click on my name.   (I hope this is OK, Jen?)
    I did my own laundry detergent and liked it a lot. I ran out and used some samples I had, and my clothes looked so much brifhter . They got dingy with the homemade....so I don't know if I would do that again.

    ReplyDelete
  58. Does your washing detergent do well for baby stains? Our son recently began food and the carrots and other orange foods stain badly- I have an issue getting items clean enough. Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Anna!

      Great question! I am not entirely sure as we don't have any babies any longer. Hopefully a reader can chime in on that one. :)

      xo,
      Jen

      Delete
  59. I was always skeptical in the past about using homemade cleaning products. But one day I decided touse vvinegar and water in a spray bottle to clean the walls as we were moving house and I didn't want to spend a fortune on bottles of cleaner. I was absolutely amazed. I just kept looking at the walls I'd cleaned because they looked so great! Since then I've cleaned the washing machine with bi carb and vinegar. Im yet to start using it to wash the clothes. Im slowly building up my cleaning 'products'. But I must say I'm in love.

    ReplyDelete
  60. Ah, oh my goodness, THANK YOU for this post! One of my favorite posts of yours, ever! I looooove your cleaning caddy, and I especially love that you have shared your beautiful labels with us. Thanks again!

    ReplyDelete
  61. This is plain genius! The labels and printables look great too. My mom has been using baking soda solutions to clean around the kitchen. It's nice to find something with a recipe here. Thanks!

    https://annescribblesanddoodles.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
  62. Does anyone have any ideas about naturally cleaning soap scum from a tile shower?

    ReplyDelete
  63. Thank you so much for this one! I have started making my own too. Wanted to know if anyone knows where to purchase washing soda? Looked at target and lowes, both don't carry it.
    Thanks!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I got mine at the grocery (Kroger)

      Delete
    2. I don't know about your neck of the woods, but where I live I have found it at Walmart and a grocery store. Both places had the three ingredients together - borax, washing soda and Fels Naptha.

      Delete
    3. Hello, I found my arm n hammer washing soda at a local DIY hardware store. Try the smaller guys, I could not find it at any big box store.

      Delete
    4. You can also check Amazon plus they will ship it to you...no extra searching/driving on your part!

      Delete
  64. Thanks for sharing! I would love to make our own laundry detergent but have sensitive skin. We use ALL clear. Have you had any problems with the homemade laundry detergent?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We haven't personally had any issues and my oldest has sensitive skin. In fact, I have read that those with sensitive skin have done really well with this formula. However, I am guessing everyone reacts differently.

      xo!
      Jen

      Delete
  65. I LOVE LOVE LOVE making my own products. I made my own laundry detergent towards the end of summer last year and have yet to run out. I also make my own all purpose cleaner using my home brewed orange essential oil and I make my own windex with water, amonia and rubbing alcohol. I guess for me..it seems more convenient to just go buy windex and 409 etc, but really making it yourself saves you so much money and takes hardly any time at all to make. Thanks for your blog! Love it!!

    ReplyDelete
  66. Thank you for sharing this! And the labels are gorgeous!!
    Where did you get the caddy?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Joyce!

      The caddy was a utensil caddy from Target and I added my own decal to it. I linked to a similar version they sell this year, within the post.

      Thanks!
      Jen

      Delete
  67. Great resources here. Making your own cleaning products brings on a sense of feeling in control. You no longer have to resort to what big brand names have designed for you. You can make your own unique fragrance! How amazing. Plus, it's less expensive!

    ReplyDelete
  68. These are awesome ideas & labels! Jen, where do you store the baking soda until it is time to clean the toilet? It doesn't need a label? And what do you use the bleach for...possibly just for laundry or for other areas in the house? Thanks again for sharing what you have learned about green cleaning!!

    Paula

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I do not label the baking soda as I just keep it in the fridge, under the kitchen sink and some under the bathroom sink. It stays in it's original box, but I may switch it over to a Parmesan shaker as other readers have recommended.

      We have purchased eco-bleach in the past {like non-chlorine ecover brand bleach}, and I typically transfer it to a smaller squirt bottle so it's easy to dispense without spilling and stores nicely in the wall basket near our washer.

      xo!
      Jen

      Delete
  69. I don't have any essential oils b/c I have no idea where to get them, and the ones I have seen are very expensive. can I just make the re recipes w/o the essential oils? will they still work?
    Also, what do u use to stick the labels to the bottles? Or are they self sticking? I have never heard of Avery.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They can be expensive, I found mine on Amazon. The good thing is they last a very very long time as just a few small drops go a long way. I believe many of the recipes will work just fine, and you may be able to find other ways to make your own oils as well.

      Avery is a brand of labels, and yes, they are self sticking.

      xo!
      Jen

      Delete
    2. I found essential oils at Walmart for 99 cents.

      Delete
    3. Those are scented oils, which are different; they aren't the natural ones.

      Delete
    4. Hi Everyone,
      I have found essential oils are pretty expensive. I have just started researching how to make my own. The simple way is to soak whatever sent (lemon, lavender etc...)you want in mineral oil. I have not tried it yet, but it is on my short list. If anyone has any suggestions I would love to hear them. :)

      Delete
  70. Aimee, try Ace Hardware for washing soda.

    For the commenter who suggested hydrogen peroxide, it will break down very quickly. Storing it in the fridge will help, as will not mixing it

    Jen, I'm puzzled by the all purpose cleaner recipe. It includes vinegar and baking soda, which will react to form the salts of the respective compounds, plus water. Since the cleaning power of the vinegar is because of it's acidity, and baking powder as either mildly caustic and/or abrasive, by mixing them in advance you negate both of them.

    ReplyDelete
  71. OK, for the peroxide lady, I found a way ti figure out hiw long your solution retains its potency. Take a sample and pop some freeze dried yeast in. The amount of fizzing will be proportional to how much H2O2 remains. I would guess you'll have to make fresh each week based on my previos experience with 3% H2O2.

    ReplyDelete
  72. I can't get my comment to nest, but for Zama above, lemon juice and vinegar are both acidic (lemon juice contains citric acid, vinegar contains acetic acid), and act as preservatives. We pickle stuff in vinegar to keep it edible, and we add a little citric acid to things as a preservative all the time because it's pretty safe.

    I've never had anything I mixed up using either of those things go "bad." If you mix them with something containing an oil, the oil and lemon juice and/or vinegar might separate out and look kind of nasty, but a good shake will blend them again. (Think salad dressing, which is oil + vinegar.)

    Making your own cleaners is fun AND it can be educational. (Fun: make a drain volcano with baking soda and vinegar!) Now you're cleaning with the power of SCIENCE! :D

    In general, I use vinegar, water, baking soda, lemon juice, and lavender oil in various combinations to clean things. They're all safe, and the surfaces that they won't clean are fairly rare. (And for those I use Barkeeper's Friend, which is oxalic acid, much stronger, scary-effective, and dirt-cheap. Just not something I LIKE having to use because it's so strong.) I hate the vinegar smell, though. That's not so much fun, and sadly, I can still smell it under the oils and such. My nose is picky. (Oh, I realize how that sounded. Wince. Bad pun.) I have to rinse two or three times, sometimes, to get rid of the odor. But HOLY COW, you clean your fridge shelves with it, and you have an absolutely odorless fridge.

    Haven't gotten into the soap-type recipes yet. Those are a little more intimidating. I might try it now, though!

    ReplyDelete
  73. So glad to see a post on this. I've been looking in to making my own homemade cleaners and especially laundry soap. It's great to hear your reviews on these after you've gotten a chance to try them out yourself. Thanks so much for your posts. You're so inspiring!

    ReplyDelete
  74. Thank you SO much for sharing these! I have really been wanting to make my own cleaners but haven't had the time to do all the research to find the good recipes! Now I have them all and pretty labels to boot! Thank you!!

    ReplyDelete
  75. This is great. I've been thinking of switching to natural cleaning products. Our new house is on well/septic and I think this natural products is a good way to go. Thanks for the inspiration to move forward.

    ReplyDelete
  76. This is SO helpful. Thank you so much!
    Kerri at HollyMuffin

    ReplyDelete
  77. This post is so helpful! Thanks so much for sharing all your wisdom with your readers. It is greatly appreciated.

    ReplyDelete
  78. What kind of dish soap do you use for your Cleaner with Purpose?

    ReplyDelete
  79. I have been wanted to make some homemade cleaners for such a long time! Thank you for putting them all together! You make cleaning look fun! :)

    ReplyDelete
  80. I wanted to download the labels and the first row of labels were over lapped. will they download that way or will they separate? I really love these homemade cleaning products. I already use the laundry soap.

    ReplyDelete
  81. Wow. I want to be like you. Even just a quarter of me turned like you it'd make a huge difference in my home. You are so tidy and now so dang eco clean!

    ReplyDelete
  82. Jen, Thank you so much for these awesome recipes! I've been looking for green and homemade ones like these. And thanks a bunch for sharing your so very pretty labels! I love them!!

    ReplyDelete
  83. Jen,

    I am happy to report that I found your cleaning caddy (not the new one you posted that was similar) at Target over the weekend in the Garden and Seasonal section! I know some followers were asking about it & they do in fact still sell it! :)

    ReplyDelete
  84. Jen, Where did you fins the cue bottles to put the cleaners in?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. When I purchased cleaners in the past, I would hold on to the bottles once they were gone, as I knew I could find a good use for most of them. You can also find spray bottles at Home Depot, Target and The Container Store. I am guessing even the dollar store carries them.

      xo!
      Jen

      Delete
  85. I <3 this Blog!
    I have been using homemade cleaners for years now.
    I <3 the labels Jen! So so cute!
    My DD just introduced me to a new homemade item:
    Fill a spray bottle 3/4 full of vinegar, then fill the rest of the bottle with water. Add 3-4 drops on Lemongrass EO
    And 3-4 drops of Lavender EO
    This can be used like Fabreeze. But the real kicker is you can also use it on yourself and your dog to keep TICKS and Mosquitos Away! Works like a charm! And I live in Northern Minnesota where we have Ticks! Went hiking and had sprayed it on myself and my Dog, either on of us had any Ticks!
    ~Blessings~
    Rhonda

    ReplyDelete
  86. Jen what is the best way that you have found to get sticky label glue residue off of old plastic cleaning bottles?

    Thanks :)

    Raewyn

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Raewyn!

      I have used Goo Gone in the past, but in this post you can see a recipe for a natural Goo Gone which is super easy to make and will make removing labels toxic free. I can't wait to give it a try!

      xo,
      Jen

      Delete
  87. I had to google washing soda because I wasn't sure what it was and I've never seen it in the store (maybe because I wasn't looking for it...?) and I came across this blogpost describing how to make washing soda from baking soda, if you can't find washing soda in the store: http://naturesnurtureblog.com/2012/05/08/ttt-turn-baking-soda-into-washing-soda/

    ReplyDelete
  88. PS Thanks for the labels!! So cute!!

    ReplyDelete
  89. I am nervous about the DIY laundry soap after hearing about people having their washing machine pipes get clogged (we don't even use bar soap in the showers because it leaves terrible residue from our hard water). I have always loved the idea though, but for now I stick with an eco-friendly detergent and use vinegar as a fabric softener. I use vinegar, dish soap and microfiber cloths for the majority of our cleaning and it works great!

    ReplyDelete
  90. Hi Jen,
    I just love your blog and everything about you. Though I have been following your blog from long time, this is my first ever comment/question.

    It may sound silly but can you tell me from where did you get castile soap and neptha bar soap? also which dish soap have you used?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You can get the castile soap at Target. I purchased the Neptha bar soap on Amazon since I was able to get it with free shipping.

      xo!
      Jen

      Delete
  91. How do you make soap flakes?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Sarah!

      I grated the bars of soap {with a $3 grater I purchased from Target and now store with my supplies in the laundry room}.

      xo!
      Jen

      Delete
  92. I worked for the company that sells the lavender oil. They are amazing and the owner and her family are such amazing people with a heart for adoption & give so much to amazing charities. When you buy from them you are supporting an amazing business! All that said I used to mix all my oils to make the perfect scent for cleaning (lime, lavender & grapefruit are amazing) but then they started selling one specifically for you to add to your cleaning products. It has specific oils that cut out bacteria and are awesome and smell amazing all in one bottle. You should check it out! Thanks for all the great tips.

    ReplyDelete
  93. Hi Jen!

    I am sorry if you have answered this already I just cannot for the life of me find the answer..I would love to know the font you used for the word "sparkle"on your caddy..I thought you had did a font post with that in it but it doesnt seem to be..And the fonts I thought may be it do not look the same lol..Thank you so much for this post i love it!!
    Chantelle

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Chantelle!

      I used the font Sacramento. :)

      xo!
      Jen

      Delete
  94. Hi just curious where are you getting the bottles? some of them don't look like your typical cleaning supply bottles. thanks

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Some were method bottles, some were J R Watkins bottles, some were mason jars and one was even a body wash bottle. I just saved nicer packaging as I had it. The water bottle was less than a dollar from Home Depot and the vinegar bottle was an oldie from IKEA.

      xo,
      Jen

      Delete
  95. Hi I really heart this post! I was wondering if the laundry soap dissolves ok in cold water? I have also seen a recipe for laundry soap where you "cook" the fels naptha, washing soda and borax together with water to create a liquid soap, but using it in dry form sounds easier lol.

    ReplyDelete
  96. Does your homemade laundry soap work pretty well at getting small stains out? We have super hard water and neither Tide nor the homemade stuff I'm currently using (different recipe) does a very good job with stain removal. I have a messy one-year-old and I fear I'm on the brink of ruining his entire wardrobe because I can't get stains out without pre-treating every single one for multiple washes. Love the blog...thanks!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Jayme!

      Overall I have been very happy with it. I often times use an all natural stain remover, which I purchase, and spray my stains prior to washing. However, I recently just washed our baseball quilt which we use on the bleachers and for picnics all the time and it was super dirty from all the rain we have been getting. Since it's just a ball blanket and so much of it was dirty, I just tossed it in the wash, used two tablespoons of the homemade detergent without pretreating, and it came out looking quite amazing. I was impressed.

      xo!
      Jen

      Delete
  97. Hi Jen! Thanks for this awesome post. Just wondering though do you have a natural solution for your carpets?? I would love to have an option for spills on my carpet. Thanks!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Melissa!

      There is one in this post that I am hoping to give a try next time we have a spill: http://iheartorganizing.blogspot.com/2013/05/may-mini-challenge-awesomepants.html, but so far, that is all I have seen. I am guessing there are a few more ideas out on Pinterest as well. :)

      xo,
      Jen

      Delete
    2. Melissa,

      We have two doggies who are rebelling against the new baby. We use a 1:1 solution of white vinegar & warm water. Seems to work pretty well and doesn't leave a dark ring like the commercial soaps.

      Delete
  98. Hi Jen! Have you ever made your own dishwasher detergent? If so, could you share your recipe? Thanks!

    Danielle

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have not tried dishwasher detergent yet, but I think there are some recipes on Pinterest. :)

      xo!
      Jen

      Delete
  99. I'm sorry if this is a duplicate, I'm not sure if I posted my previous comment correctly. Where do you find your essential oils? I'm not sure the best place to purchase them...LOVE your blog, especially your decorating colors! Some day my house might make me as happy as the pics of yours do! LOL thanks for all you do

    Lanell

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Lanell!

      I find mine on Amazon, since I have free Prime shipping and their prices always tend to be better or comparable to anywhere else I shop.

      Hope that helps! Thanks again,
      Jen

      Delete
  100. I just made a bottle of the "Cleaner with a Purpose". I don't know if I did it wrong, but it left a dusty sort of film on my cleaned surfaces. Help?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Chelsea!

      I notice that from time to time and it could be a couple of things {too much soap/oil} or the vinegar itself reacting. Here is what I found when I googled around for it:

      If you have used commercial cleaners prior to using a cleaner containing vinegar the vinegar may react to ingredients (waxes, oils etc.) from the commercial cleaner causing steaks. The good news is, after a few uses of the vinegar cleaner, the film usually disappears. It takes a few uses for the vinegar to cut through whatever has built up from the commercial cleaner. Using a microfibre cloth also seems to work better than a cotton cloth to further prevent streaking.

      I usually use a damp microfiber cloth or sponge when using the all purpose cleaner and use it on my counters, so I don't see a film. But I have seen it from time to time on my wood surfaces, so I switched to the natural wood cleaner outlined above and no more streaking.

      Hope that helps! There are 101 other all natural all purpose cleaners out on the www if this one doesn't end up panning out.

      xo,
      Jen

      Delete
  101. Hi Jen. LOVE love love the labels! Thanks so much. Is it possible to get an "editable" version of the labels so I can add some others... Thanks for all the time, effort & energy you put into this awesome site!

    ReplyDelete
  102. I also have been using the laundry detergent for quite some time. I have a very dirty roofer and 2 year old that I wash clothes for so I decided to add a bit of Purex 2 to mine (which it's only 3 dollars at Walmart for a whole huge box) and just to save me some time I added in my Purex Crystals as well. It's easier for me to have it all go in in one load. It smells fantastic and works like a charm. I'm a HUGE Purex junkie thanks to this detergent (as the fels naptha is also Purex brand) and thankfully all of their products that I use are under $5 and last me months at a time. :) Also love all the other products as well. A couple I didn't know about and am now in the process of making. Thanks for all the tips!

    ReplyDelete
  103. I am so excited that I found these recipes! I am on my way to a chemical free home with essential oils! #oils4everyone

    ReplyDelete
  104. Jen, Thanks for the great list of cleaning recipes. I really enjoy this all purpose kitchen cleaner recipe that I thought I'd share:
    Natural Kitchen Cleaner
    8oz of vinegar
    8oz of water
    Pour into 16 oz spray bottle
    Add 2-3 drops of tea tree oil
    Shake the bottle to mix up the ingredients.

    ReplyDelete
  105. I'm making the transition after having our first baby, and I have laugh at the irony of finding your so cute labels today... I spent like an hour trying to make my own this afternoon and it looks like someone threw up on an address label! :)

    Two Questions:
    1. I seemed to need a LOT more essential oil drops to cover the vinegar smell. (Like 4x the amount.) Thoughts on that? I'm using 100% pure essential lemon oil.

    2. How do you keep your oils from separating? My all purpose cleaner (slightly different... water, vinegar, and oils) has a ring of oil sitting on top.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you!

      I might let a few extra oil drops into my cleaners, however, the vinegar smell really doesn't bother me all that much, so I guess I have just learned to live with it as everything dries with no sent anyway. And my cleaners have a ring of oil as well, it naturally separates, I just give everything a good shake before I use it. :)

      xo,
      Jen

      Delete
  106. I would love to make that myself! Thanks for sharing this with us Jen :)

    Melanie ~ http://www.iheartsharingthings.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  107. Jen,

    I noticed that the bottle you used for the "Cleaner with a purpose" was an old Method bottle. How did you get the goo off of these bottles? I love the size and shape of these bottles for cleaning products and just wanted to let you know that they fit nicely in the Samla box insert from Ikea that is sectioned in two. Its kind of flimsy plastic so I don't use it as a carrying caddy. I have a very deep cabinet under my sink and got so sick of loosing products to the deep, dark abyss. This keeps them all front and center so I can just grab what I need and go. Carrying the products around is not a necessity since my half bath downstairs is right off of my kitchen. Thought i'd let you know since I share your epic love for Ikea.....sigh, I wish I could live in there!
    -Nicole in southern Wisconsin :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Nicole!

      The recipe for the natural Goo Gone above, is the same stuff I use to remove all of the sticky residue off of bottles and jars. It works really great!

      And thanks for the caddy tip! I have still been trying to keep myself away from IKEA, but it doesn't always work so well ;) I always feel like there is something I "need" from there.

      xo!

      Delete
  108. Wow! 1/4 cup of dish soap for your mop? Does your floor get really soapy? I used a recipe similar to this and it only called for 2 T. Dish soap and my floors were left really gross. Do you use this whole recipe per mop bucket load or only a portion? Thanks for your insite and hard work.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Joanna!

      Great question! I used that recipe to pre-mix a floor cleaner which I later add to my mop bucket when it is time to clean the floors. I don't actually use that batch/measurements with each mopping.

      Hope that helps!
      Jen

      Delete
  109. your link for the utensil caddy doesn't work anymore. Just a heads up.

    ReplyDelete
  110. Thank You Thank You for all of the wonderful printables and inspiration. I just love to come here before I start a new project. Love!!

    ReplyDelete
  111. It always bothered me to dump the vinegar/water solution I use to clean my coffeemaker with. I've started saving it and reusing it as a natural cleaner now. Great way to re-purpose perfectly functional cleaning solution and saves $$ too.

    ReplyDelete
  112. hi Jen, when you get a chance can you please share where you found the jar with the scoop you use your your laundry soap? I am working on getting all of these recipes made (i have made 1 so far) I am waiting for the rest of my supplies to arrive in the mail but I must say... printing your labels on the averey paper was the funnest part!! Thank you for all that you do. You are a huge blessing ♥

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. HI Marie!

      I found the jar at HomeGoods I believe. Or Amazon. I am sorry, I can't remember but I have had it for quite awhile. I think it is similar to this one: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0001BMYHA/ref=oh_details_o04_s00_i01?ie=UTF8&psc=1

      Have fun with the cleaners! So happy you are enjoying the labels!

      xo,
      Jen

      Delete
  113. Hi Jen,
    I have made several of these homemade solutions and they work fabulous!!! However, I have a question about your fonts. What font did you use to type the ingredients for the binder insert? I am a teacher and the font that you used would be perfect for some of my classroom printables. Thanks!!!

    ReplyDelete
  114. I believe the font is Walkway SemiBold.

    Thank you!!
    Jen

    ReplyDelete
  115. I have one more cleaner I'd like to add to the list..my degreaser. In a qt. sized Mason jar, put in citrus peels-lemon, lime, grapefruit, doesn't matter-stacked on top of each other, then fill the jar with white vinegar. Cap it, let it sit on your counter for a few days. Strain and pour into a spray bottle. When it gets cloudy, toss it. It smells nice and works well. It's my kitchen all-purpose cleaner.

    ReplyDelete
  116. Your labels are darling! Such a cute packaging for green cleaning products.

    ReplyDelete
  117. Does the laundry detergent work for high-efficiency machines?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Michelle!
      Yes it does. We have an HE front loader, I just put the laundry detergent right into the washer with the clothes, vs in the dispenser.

      xo!

      Delete
    2. I was wondering about the HE front loader machine also. Thank you for the information Jenn. I can't begin to tell you how much I LOVE your blog! You're my organizing hero :-)

      Delete
  118. You can make your own soap - it's fairly easy once you get the hang of it. I'm a soapmaker and I have my own blog with tutorials and such: http://maitribathbody.com/wp/?s=tutorial&submit=Search

    My tutorial for making laundry soap using your own homemade soap instead of Fels Naptha: http://maitribathbody.com/wp/?p=1028

    ReplyDelete
  119. I was also wondering about using the detergent in HE front loaders. Thank you for the info!

    ReplyDelete
  120. Greetings,

    This might be a dumb questions-- but I'm just learning about making my own cleaners! What do you use to disinfect and kill germs? I use Lysol to kill the germs, what do you use?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Erin!

      Majority of the items used within all of these cleaners are known for their disinfecting and sanitizing abilities! That is the best part. :)

      xo!

      Delete
  121. I also wonder if you can use the homemade detergent in a front loading HE washer. Pretty sure mine (LG brand) requires liquid detergent to maintain the warranty... any ideas on similar solution that would be in a liquid form? Have you heard of any?

    ReplyDelete
  122. Please tell me you still remember where you bought the bottle and pour spout in which you are storing your vinegar? Please!,,???? Thanks

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Whitney!

      I found it a few years ago at IKEA. :)

      xo!

      Delete
  123. Hi from England. Slowly moving to homemade from method. About how much vinegar do you pour in each wash load?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I fill it slightly below the fabric softener fill line in my washer. I don't believe you need too much when it comes to vinegar, a little goes a long way.

      xo!

      Delete
  124. Thanks so much for the great recipes! I am a newbie in making my own cleaners and I have a silly question. I see a lot of recipes that say "dish soap". Does that mean castile soap? Do I need to dilute the soap to make it a "dish soap"? I see some people that use Dawn, too. Any clarity would be greatly appreciated!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello!

      In the recipes shown above, dish soap is dish soap {like dawn}. It should specify if it is castile soap, which you would use much less of since it is of higher concentrate.

      xo!

      Delete

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