When Green Cleaning Products Don't Work from When Green Cleaning Products Don't Work

When Green Cleaning Products Don't Work

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When Green Cleaning Products Don't Work

There is such thing as ineffective natural cleaners. Before you get too upset because you have recently gotten so excited about becoming environmentally-friendly and now suddenly someone is telling you that you may be wrong, know that it all depends on how you use certain products.

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Vinegar

This very cheap natural cleaner may end up costing you if you don’t use it how and where you should. Don’t just start spraying everything with vinegar. A study found that vinegar was the worst at dirt removal in kitchens and bathrooms out of all of the conventional and alternative cleaning products tested. It was more effective in reducing microbial contamination.

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Lemon juice

Lemons and lemon juice are best used on certain surfaces. If you only use lemon juice to clean your boots, it may dry them out. Lemon and juices are mixed with other, and sometimes other green products, to make a cleaning solution. For example, to clean the microwave, cut a lemon in half, put in a bowl of water, place in microwave for 2 minutes, let it sit for another 5, and wipe it clean.

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Borax

This is a controversial product. It’s often used in green cleaning products that actually work, but some stay away from it. It is still allowed in the U.S. but the European Union considers it toxic to human reproductive systems and has banned it. Chronic exposure to high doses of borax or boric acid causes testicular atrophy in male mice, rats and dogs, according to the Environment Working Group.

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Orange and citrus peels

Citrus fruits are often used in place of vinegar because of the smell. “When you allow your discarded citrus peels to sit in vinegar for a few weeks, it infuses the vinegar with the oils and scents of the peel. The oils in the citrus not only provide a great scent, but also provide a bit of extra cleaning power,” according to TheKitchnn.

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Olive oil

Olive oil has incredible benefits for the skin and hair, but it’s also used around the house to restore the lost shine of wooden furniture. But it’s often combined with vinegar or lemon juice. Mix them, shake it up, and spritz on, according to Reader’s Digest. Olive oil can also be used to clean cast-iron pans, shine stainless steel, and repair scratches on leather.

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Salt

You know you can remove bathtub and sink stains with salt, but don’t expect it to do the job on its own. Mix salt with a bit of turpentine. Apply it to the surfaces and let sit for 15 minutes and the unpleasant yellow color will go away. Then, wipe it with a wet sponge to remove anything extra. Make bronze, tin, silver, and copper pieces brighter by mixing equal parts vinegar, flour, and salt.

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Rubbing alcohol

If you’re going to use just rubbing alcohol and nothing else, use it to remove hairspray from the floor or mirrors, to remove frost from car windows, to clean and refresh sponges and cloths, or to clean microfiber sofa stains. Unlike water, which will itself stain the microfiber, rubbing alcohol won’t penetrate the fabric and evaporates quickly, making it a stain-fighting ally. Mix it with water to use it as a disinfectant.

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Baking soda

Did you know that you can use baking soda to clean fruits and vegetables you bought from the store? Just make sure you mix it with water. Dip a sponge in water and soda and clean old toys with it; they will look like new. To make air fresheners, add soda to lemon juice and put the mix in a covered dish. Soda can be a degreaser, too. Add it to a few drops of castile soap and two tablespoons of vinegar into boiling water.

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Onions

They are a cheap and effective green cleaner, mosquito repellent, and deodorizer. It does wonders with absorbing paint smells but you have to slice the onion, and put it in a bowl of water in the stinky room. To repel bugs with a non-toxic rose spray, mix a mashed onion with equal parts water, strain, and spray.

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Cornstarch

Cornstarch is sometimes used in place of baking soda. (They are both finely ground, which make them super absorbent.) To clean windows and glasses, for example, shake up a tablespoon with water and vinegar to tackle any bits of grime. Mix cornstarch with water to polish wooden furniture. You can even use cornstarch to clean your clothes. Add 1 tablespoon of cornstarch to 2 cups of cold water in a spray bottle. For an extra special twist, you can add 1-2 drops of your favorite essential oil. Spray your clothes lightly before ironing. Bonus: Your clothes will actually last longer, since dirt and perspiration will stick to the starch, not the fabric, according to CleanMySpace.

When Green Cleaning Products Don't Work