Tips for Natural DIY Cleaning Products

SurvivalWomanSurvivalWoman | Updated Jul 2, 2019 (Orig - Mar 11, 2019)

 

 

Gear Testers Wanted - Test New Survival Gear, and Let Us Know What You Think! We Cover the Products, You Cover Shipping.

Yes, I Want Free Gear! →

Editor’s Note: This resource has been revised and updated for 2019.

We can have budget-friendly, naturally safe household products by preparing them ourselves with items we already have around the house.

At first glance, the subject of DIY cleaning products may not seem to have much to do with preparedness or survival. Part of the purpose of this article is to show how to limit your toxic exposures which can cause chronic and severe health problems that consequently limit the ability to respond to many survival scenarios.

The National Health Council in Washington DC has said, “Generally incurable and ongoing, chronic diseases affect approximately 133 million Americans, representing more than 40% of the total population of this country. By 2020, that number is projected to grow to an estimated 157 million.”

man-cleaning-windows

We want to do all we can to be able to take care of ourselves, our families and our communities when emergencies and calamities come. If we are sick, our options become more limited.

I hate to sound like doom and gloom here, posting warnings and danger signs – total buzzkill. But my hope is that this article will help us in our quest to “be able and healthy” in our preparedness plans and as ready as we can be to face any threat or challenge that comes our way.

There are easy and cost-effective solutions to reducing our disease causing toxic load.

Why We Should Know What is in Our Cleaning Products

Most household cleaners contain toxic chemicals. Ammonia, Formaldehyde, Phthalates, Benzalkonium Chloride, Benzene. 2-Butoxyethanol, and Triclosan are just a few of the thousands of noxious chemicals that are in everyday products. They create both short and long-term health problems. Most vulnerable are our little children, babies and our older population, but are all vulnerable.

Healthy people using these harsh cleaners and synthetic fragrances are adversely affected but it may take just a little longer for those effects to become noticeable. The list of diseases caused by chemical products is long but it’s easy to ignore the minimal label warnings because we have been led to believe, through advertising, that these products must be safe.

Simple products like fabric softener sheets and scented beads that go into the laundry wash cycle have been linked to asthma, and histamine reactions. Analysis of these laundry enhancers has found over 25 “volatile” air pollutants including the carcinogens Benzene and Acetaldehyde.

girl-cleaning-mask

The two most common results of this chemical soup we swim in are lung damage and tumors. But no one’s body is made to tolerate this onslaught of poisons for very long. A few products even post warnings: “Hazardous to humans and domestic animals”.

If you are surprised by that warning, here is a statement that will blow you away. Rebecca Sutton, PhD, a senior scientist at the Environmental Working Group (EWG), explains, “In terms of household cleaners, neither ingredients nor products must meet any sort of safety standard, nor is any testing data or notification required before bringing a product to market.”

To find more detailed scholarly information and toxic chemical lists go to: https://www.ewg.org/news/news-releases/2012/09/10/ewg%E2%80%99s-online-guide-healthy-cleaning#.WpiD92rwb0M

It doesn’t take much thought to grab a well-advertised product off the shelf. The cheery colored packaging masks the unsafe chemicals inside.

Some products try to appear safe like Scrubbing Bubbles Nature’s Source or even Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner. Unfortunately, they both contain hormone-disrupting chemicals which can greatly compromise our health.

Most of us would rather have safe natural products. As more and more alarms are sounded about the toxic effects of cleaners, fresheners, and disinfectants, more natural products have become available to help meet consumer demands. Sales of “nearly” toxic-free products have been rising as harmful chemicals are linked to serious health concerns.

Thankfully, more people are becoming aware of the far-reaching VOC, (volatile organic compounds) consequences and these new and safer products have become available as a result of that awareness. But they are not all 100% safe from VOC’s

Here is a two-minute video on cleaning with toxic VOC’s:

So what’s a person to do? How can we tell what is safe and what is not unless we spend hours and hours researching products? The easy answer is to DIY!

Enough of the doom and gloom now! Let’s move on to the safe, easy recipes and products we can use to make our homes sparkle.

These products above are non-toxic –well, mostly chemical free. The Seventh Generation Foaming Natural Dish Soap is USDA certified biobased product 95%. I think the other 5% is due to the potassium hydroxide which is caustic if swallowed so don’t swallow the soap and you’ll be fine!

Fortunately, I found a discount outlet that carries it, so I stocked up. Same with the Green Works products. Although they are made by Clorox the Green Works products are Clorox- free. Clorox may get things whiter but it’s not worth the potential lung damage from the fumes.

Let me mention here that Clorox and ammonia must NEVER be mixed together. Mixing of bleach with some household cleansers (e.g. toilet bowl cleansers that contain acid) can generate chlorine gas, and mixing bleach with ammonia generates toxic chloramine vapor which is extremely dangerous.

I can speak with experience about the serious effects of this mix. Years ago when my husband and I were first married I was cleaning a small bathroom with these two mixed chemicals. After only a minute, I became light-headed and felt I would pass out.

I quickly called my husband at work, (he is a hazardous materials expert). When I told him of my symptoms, right away he asked what I had been doing. I told him. By then I was sitting just outside of the bathroom, but still somewhat in the fumes, drifting further into a faint. He told me to immediately get outside, right NOW, no questions! I did just that and once outside in the fresh air felt increasingly better.

He immediately left work and came home. I know first-hand that chemicals can be dangerous. So way back when I began making many of our cleaning products, even shampoo, and soap.

While many have switched over to these new “non-toxic” products (and some are great) the downside is that they are generally more expensive. But we can have budget-friendly natural cleaning products by formulating them ourselves from safe items we already have in our kitchens.

By mixing natural cleaning products ourselves we know what is in the bottle and we can be sure they are safe for our family and pets. And they do the job!

toxicity

 BAD                               BETTER                             BEST

As I mentioned before not all “natural” products are fully chem-free and completely non-toxic but they are much better than full bore toxic cleaners. You can see the cost savings in the third product pictured above which is homemade.

Not only is that one non-toxic but it’s actually good and protective of your body. I didn’t want to show the name of the most popular disinfectant on the left but it begins with Ly- and it’s crazy bad for the lungs even if slightly inhaled. The ingredients can also be absorbed through the skin.

So let’s start with a basic list of supplies and ingredients needed to begin blending and creating natural, safe household products at minimal cost for your own use. The money saved can add to your food storage funds or to a particular survival tool you’ve been wanting! Over a year’s time, I save about 70% of what I’d spend on home cleaning supplies.

vinegar-baking-soda

Vinegar, Baking Soda, Salt, Corn Starch, Alcohol (70%or 90%) + Small Funnel

  • Baking Soda: cuts grease, deodorizes, lifts dirt and whitens.
  • Alcohol: allows vinegar and water used in window cleaner to dry quickly.
  • White Vinegar: cuts grease, deodorizes, and disinfects.
  • Lemon juice: disinfects, and whitens

lemon-orange

Lemons, limes and most citrus fruits are stain removers and are wonderful for polishing most metals. What power bombs they are, and while you’re cleaning, the aromatics in the citrus lifts the spirits. Citrus fruits have natural disinfectant properties that are antiseptic, antiviral and antibacterial.

  • They are especially good at cleaning laminate countertops, stovetops, bathroom surfaces including mirrors and floors.
  • When winter is over it’s a good time to clean outdoor furniture and get them sparkling for summertime use.
  • Wooden cutting boards and butcher blocks can be disinfected and cleaned of stains in the following way: 

Directions for Cleaning & Disinfecting a Wooden Cutting Board

  • Sprinkle the cutting board with salt (coarse or table salt)
  • Baking soda can be added with or used in place of salt (optional)
  • Using a lemon half with the cut side down, scrub the surface, squeezing a bit to release the lemon juice as you scrub.
  • Allow to sit for about 5 minutes, and then scrape the dirty liquid off into disposal using a bench scraper.
  • Rinse the surface very well with a clean wet sponge
  • Wipe or air dry and store
  • This should be done monthly if the board is used frequently.

Citrus can clean and refresh your garbage disposal. With a little water running, simply drop a couple of lemon or lime halves (after you have used the juice) into the disposal and turn it on for 15 seconds and Voile! it’s done.

Easy 4 Ingredient All-Purpose Cleaner

This is safe and effective and can be used around children and pets. It smells good since the essential oils cover the vinegar scent and it works like a charm but don’t use this one on granite or marble because the vinegar can cause etching of these natural surfaces. This is my daily go-to cleaner for the kitchen and spot cleaning my kitchen floor.

cleaning-washing-cleanup-the-ilo

RECIPE:

  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 2 cups distilled or reverse osmosis water (just don’t use fluorinated, chlorinated city water)
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice. You can use bottled Real Lemon. (optional)
  • 15-20 drops of essential oils
  • Small funnel

It’s best to use a glass spray container, clear and cobalt blue. Just mix these four ingredients together in your chosen container, label, and use. Quick, easy and safe!

I use citrus oils like grapefruit, lemon, lime, and bergamot because they have antiseptic, antibacterial, antiviral and antimicrobial properties, but of course, there are many more essential oils to choose from so use your favorites. If you find you are using a lot of this blend you can double the recipe and store the extra in a Mason jar under the sink.

Easy 5 Ingredient Bathroom Cleaner

  • 1 1/2 C warm water
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda Baking
  • 1/2 C white distilled vinegar –
  • 2 tablespoons castile soap (I use Dr. Bronner’s and is concentrated)
  • 20 drops of essential oil (I recommend tea tree {melaluca} oil or a blend of tea tree and citrus)
  • Spray bottle
  • Label

Castile soap cuts grease and lifts dirt.

Instructions:

  1. Add the baking soda and warm water to a measuring cup (about 3cup size or larger) fitted with a spout. Stir to dissolve in the baking soda.
  2. Add the vinegar, castile soap, and essential oils and pour all ingredients into a bottle with a spray top. Gently shake the bottle to mix the ingredients together. There you have it, a non-toxic bathroom cleaner that I’m sure you’ll love to use…..and you won’t have to leave the room coughing from the fumes.
  3. Label and enjoy knowing that you have made your home safer.

Glass & Mirror Cleaner

  • 1 cup vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup rubbing alcohol   (alcohol causes the surface to dry more quickly)

Spray and wipe with a soft cloth or paper towels.

Furniture Polish (a little goes a long way)

  • 1 cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup lemon juice (may use bottled lemon)

Combine 1 cup of olive oil and ¼ cup lemon juice in a suitable jar. This can be a glass spray jar or even a squeeze bottle with a tip. Shake well prior to each use. Apply a little to a soft cloth and rub on wood furniture and then buff to a shine.

Toilet Bowls

Toilets don’t need harsh chemicals to get clean. In fact, the mild cleaners are not only effective they help the surface of the bowl to stay smooth and shiny. They may take a little more elbow grease but it’s worth it. Harsh chemicals eventually remove the top surface to get really clean.

First, flush the toilet, then sprinkle a handful or two (about a cup) of baking soda all around the bowl and leave it overnight. Next morning dip your toilet brush in the water then scrub the toilet. Flush after scrubbing until baking soda residue is gone. I find that swishing daily with the bowl brush makes weekly cleaning easier, no chemical scrubbing bubbles or blue gel needed.

toilet-bathroom

If you have hard stains add about 2 cups white vinegar white to the 1 cup baking soda, allow to sit overnight, and then scrub, flush to rinse.

Baking soda can also be used in removing soap scums on bathroom tiles and other areas in the house with tough stains.

Here is a recipe that’s fun for children to make if they are old enough. As a former homeschool teacher, I can see some science experiment applications that harken back to the old volcano eruption all children enjoy.

Bubbling Bathroom Bowl Bombs

  • 1 cup baking soda
  • 1/2 tbsp. vinegar
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp. hydrogen peroxide
  • 5-10 drops essential oil

Instructions:

  • Put measured baking soda into a mixing bowl.
  • Slowly (a few drops at a time) add hydrogen peroxide to baking soda. Mixing as you continue to add hydrogen peroxide. You may notice some fizzing – just keep stirring. Don’t dump the hydrogen peroxide all at once as it will activate the baking soda. It’s important to stir it in very slowly.
  • Do the same with the lemon juice…adding a few drops at a time.
  • I find it easy to use the back of a serving spoon to blend the wet ingredients to the dry ones.
  • Slowly add essential oils to the mixture and keep mixing well as you add them.
  • The mixture should hold it together. It shouldn’t be too wet or too dry. If it’s too dry, add a couple of drops of hydrogen peroxide.
  • To make it easy you can use a one tablespoon measuring spoon to scoop mixture and lightly pack it together.
  • Place on a sheet pan or counter area that has been lined with parchment or waxed paper.
  • Allow to air dry overnight. When fully dry transfer to a pretty glass jar and keep handy in your bathroom. These are so easy to use and are effective as a cleaner, sanitizer, and deodorizer for your toilet bowl. They will not be super fizzy but as they melt they help keep your bowl clean and are so easy to use.
baking-soda
Baking Soda in Mixing Bowl Ready to Add Other Ingredients
bubble-bomb-cleaner
Mixing the Bubble Bomb Cleaner

Add liquid, a few drops at a time, and mix with the back of a spoon until well blended. When you put it into a mold or a tablespoon measure as shown in the photo below, pack it in tightly and make sure the bottom of the bomb is flat. This can be done with the palm of the hand. Gently tap the spoon on the parchment paper once or twice and the bomb should drop right out onto the paper.

bubble-bomb

Allow the bombs to dry overnight then store in a pretty glass jar, tightly covered. Do not try to move then at this point. They may crumble.

Plain Water

For the highly polished wood finish of the piano, I use a very soft cloth that has been slightly dampened with distilled water. Then I lightly wipe dry with another very soft cloth as needed being careful to not to leave any moisture drops.

Stainless Steel or Chrome Cleaner

  • Olive Oil or other oil of your choice
  • White Vinegar
  • Soft Cloth or Micro Cloth

With a soft cloth lightly saturated with oil, wipe down the metal, using a small circular motion. Wipe off any excess

Next do the same thing with the white vinegar, applying good pressure. Wipe off vigorously with a soft cloth, removing any streaks.

I find it easier to work in sections instead of doing the whole large appliance at once. This works much better than the more costly chemical specialty stainless steel sprays.

Here are a few more effective ways to clean your home and protect or even improve your health.

Essential Oils and Diffuser

Essential oils can help purify the air and create an uplifting or calming effect depending on the oil chosen. Some can combat pathogens and toxins in the air. Chose one or a combination of these essential oils. Make sure you purchase a top quality brand.

essential-oils2

For me, that is either “doTerra” (my favorite) or “Young Living” or Spark Naturals. There are other pretty good brands available. Just don’t go to a box store to purchase oils. The quality and purity are questionable. Good essential oils help freshen the air of germs, diffuse away unwanted odors, and release uplifting and calming properties.

Some calming oils to diffuse:

  • Lavender
  • Vetiver
  • Ylang Ylang
  • Frankincense
  • Clary Sage
  • Cedarwood
  • Chamomile
  • Sandalwood
  • Sweet Marjoram
  • Purify

Uplifting or Invigorating oils (short list) to diffuse:

  • Lemon
  • Wild Orange
  • Tangerine
  • Citrus Bliss
  • Nutmeg
  • Vanilla
  • Ginger
  • Cinnamon

Some of these oils can calm and uplift at the same time.

If you are using diffusers to cleanse room air of pathogens, say during and after someone in the household has had the flu, here is another short list for that purpose. Adding one or several of these to the spray cleaners can have the effect of killing surface pathogens and inhibiting their growth for several days!

  • Melaleuca ( Tea Tree )
  • Eucalyptus
  • Douglas Fir
  • WhiteFir
  • Marjoram
  • Lime
  • Lemon
  • Petitgrain
  • Geranium (good for airborne bacteria)

Anti-Microbial Hand and Surface Spray

spray

Hand Protector

Every cold and flu season I make up a few bottles of my version of hand and surface sanitizer. Here’s the simple recipe.

  • Get a 15 ml glass spray bottle (available online in pretty colors)
  • Place 15-20 drops of an antimicrobial essential oil into the bottle. I use OnGuard oil from doTerra but if you use Young Living use their Thieves oil, Spark Naturals makes an antimicrobial called Shield. There are several other reliable companies out there so use the one you are comfortable using. Just stay away from box store oils as many are not actually true essential oils and are not effective against microbes.
  • Fill the bottle with good water, leaving a small space at the top so that when you insert the spray top there is no overflow spillage.
  • Place spray top snuggly on the bottle and you’re all set.

During the flu season carry a bottle in your pocket, car, backpack or purse. It can be used on doorknobs, hands, cart handles, in the gym, on counters, anything you touch if you are in a place where handwashing isn’t possible. I use it most frequently as a hand spray.

Usually once and you’re good for many hours. This may sound like overkill but if I bring the flu home to my husband it can become quite serious. If there is anyone in your home with compromised resistance this is a must little DIY to use.

Toothpaste: can be used for more than just teeth cleaning!

toothpaste

Toothpaste is a multifunctional cleaner. You might be surprised at the household uses for such a humble “player”. Don’t use dye colored toothpaste as it might discolor whatever you are cleaning. You may want to store a dedicated tube and soft brush or micro cloth with your cleaning supplies.

  • Is an excellent piano key cleaner. We’ve been using it for years. Keys will accumulate skin oils from the fingertips and become darkened over time. There is just the right amount of abrasive ingredient in toothpaste to do a good cleaning job when applied via a cloth or soft toothbrush. Just put a dab on your cloth using one finger rub one key at a time then gently rub off the paste. If done this way the paste won’t get in between the keys. The keys sparkling again.
  • Removes crayon artwork from walls without harming the paint and it doesn’t take a lot of hard scrubbing.
  • Cleaning chrome sink hardware. The toothbrush will get to the difficult to reach areas. Rub off with a soft cloth. Your faucets will sparkle.
  • Cleaning your nails. Add a dab of toothpaste on your nail brush and scrub away.
  • Bee sting ointment. When a screaming child comes running to you with a sting you may not have a bee sting stick (they work well). Quickly remove the stinger and apply a dab of toothpaste. Snuggle a while and distract with a favorite toy or game. If this is a first time sting, watch closely for signs of anaphylactic shock and follow up with emergency medical care if needed.
  • Iron: Rub a little toothpaste on the bottom surface of your iron, leave for a few minutes, then briskly rub it off with a soft cloth. You’ll have sparkling iron again. Don’t use the gel type of toothpaste though.
  • Jewelry Cleaner: This makes jewelry shine! Using a soft toothbrush apply paste and gently rub it off with a soft cloth. If you are cleaning the back of a ring where there are crevasses, with a small soft brush it’s easy to remove the gunky build up. Do NOT use toothpaste on your grandma’s pearls. It could damage that beautiful finish. 

How to Make Citrus Infused Vinegar

(To boost the cleaning power of any of the cleaners that use vinegar)

citrus-vinegar

Infused vinegar is simply an herb, fruit, flower, bud – virtually anything aromatic plant – that is soaked in vinegar for a period of time to allow the essence of the infusion to deepen. The one pictured below is what I call a “super infusion” meaning that it is highly concentrated.

I like super infusions because, being concentrated, I can store one quart that is equal to three or four quarts of a regular infusion. The difference is that a regular infusions contains much less plant matter. When you add this to a cleaning recipe make sure to dilute it by adding about 25% water to 75% super concentrated infusion.

I’m not going into great detail here (possibly in another post) but I just wanted to show the advantage of a citrus vinegar infusion.

Citrus Infused Vinegar

For household cleaning purposes, when a recipe calls for vinegar and you want to add more whitening and disinfecting power, just substitute the citrus infused vinegar for the plain vinegar that is called for in your recipe.

It smells wonderfully fresh. 

All-Purpose 2 Ingredient Cleaner with Citrus Peels

Ingredients:

  • Citrus peels (enough to fill 3/4 of your mason jar)
  • White vinegar (enough to fill up your jar, and cover the peelings)

What you Need:

  • 1 large Mason jar with a plastic lid (Since I use this non-toxic cleaner rather quickly I often use a half gallon jar or a couple of quart jars).
  • Large bowl with a spout.
  • Mesh strainer
  • Spray bottle (glass is best if you have it)

Instructions:

  1. Save up your citrus peels: As you use different types of citrus add them to a large mason jar. (collect citrus peelings like lemon, lime, tangerine, clementines, grapefruit, or a combination of any of these).
  2. Cover peels with white vinegar: As you collect citrus peels, add them to a large mason until it’s at least ¾ full. (This could take a few weeks.) Once the jar has enough peels, pour vinegar over the peels until it fills the jar to the top. Cover with a plastic screw on lid, and allow it to sit in a dark place for two weeks, shake once daily. The longer you let it sit, the more the citrus will infuse into the vinegar. You’ll begin to see a lovely golden color that will get deeper the longer the jar sits.
  3. Strain it: After two weeks, strain your citrus cleaner using a fine sieve placed over a large spouted bowl. Discard the peels.
  4. Pour the cleaner into a bottle: Add your citrus cleaner to a spray bottle and use it as you would any other all-purpose cleaner. Don’t use on marble. Keep a bottle in the kitchen and one in the bathroom.

Non-Toxic Oven Cleaner:

  • 1 cup or more baking soda
  • Good water
  • A few drops of castile soap like Dr. Bronner’s

Lightly use a plastic scraper on food that has spilled over and has hardened and remove crumbs and over-spill.

oven

Spray white vinegar (or infused vinegar) over the bottom of the oven. Then cover liberally with baking soda. Spray a little more vinegar over the top of baking soda. Let it sit overnight with oven door closed, to allow the grime to loosen. Wipe up.

Add a little Castile soap on your cloth to wash the remaining residue from the oven. Rinse well. Remember, vinegar cuts grease, deodorizes, and disinfects. Don’t use this on self-cleaning ovens as it may void the warranty.

Final Thoughts

So there you have it: versatile, affordable, non-toxic homemade cleaning recipes! Many people are making their own safe cleaning supplies and body products. There are natural recipes available for every need, hundreds of them.

Get books from the library, use google for targeted needs. This is by no means an exhaustive list! Experiment and develop ones that work for you. Using these will remove a large part of the toxic load we get within the walls of our own home.

As we consider the declining health, aging and increasing chronic diseases in the American population we want to do all we can to ensure that we get and stay as fit as we can, no matter our current age or health status.

girl-looking-into-mirror

Removing health-robbing chemicals from our homes and learning to make and use DIY supplies adds to our long-term preparedness ability. We often talk about being fit, wilderness camping and fire building, bugging out, being able to sustain ourselves by hunting, growing food, foraging, building wilderness survival shelters, and being able to provide self-defense.

But the truth is that if we fail to take care of our health we will probably find that we can’t cope with these hard realities of survival. There are ways those with chronic illness or disability can prepare on a modified track, all is not hopeless.

Using these DIY recipes and others you may find might tip the survival scale for anyone by increasing individual long-term health and safety.

Blessings, Donna

Author’s Bio

Donna takes joy in being a wife / mother / grammy / forager / self-reliance seeker / food preserver / chicken chaser / herb and essential oil user / ham radio operator / spelunker / outdoor enjoyer / raw milk drinker / social media avoider / genealogy searcher / scripture studier / cub master / docent / reader / writer / learner / teacher / helper and faithful friend.


If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to email updates.  When you do, you will receive a free, downloadable copy of the e-Book, The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.   Also check out our Facebook page regularly for links to free or almost free eBooks that I personally reviewed just for you.

You can also vote for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!

~~~~~~

 

 

Gear Testers Wanted

Test New Survival Gear, and Let Us Know What You Think! We Cover the Products, You Cover Shipping.

Yes, I Want Free Gear! →

Updated Jul 2, 2019
Published Mar 11, 2019

Offer | Gear Testers
Gear Testers WantedYes, I Want Free Gear! →

10 Responses to “Tips for Natural DIY Cleaning Products”

  1. Any ideas on how to clean a glass top stove that is stained. I’ve tried vinegar and it helps, but not enough.

    Thanks

    Reply
    • I hope this answer works for you Linda. Glass stove tops can be nasty tough to clean.
      Before doing anything though I’d check your user manual to see what they have to say about your specific appliance. If that is not helpful there are several things you can try. Of course you have already removed any surface spills. First, I would spray vinegar all over the surface again (you don’t have to drown the surface, just a light spray). Allow it to sit for 15 minutes then apply a moderate sprinkling of baking soda. It might fizz for a few seconds. Then with a soft cloth scrub very vigorously at any heavily stained area. You may have to stop and rest between scrubs… melded, heat-bonded stains are stubborn! If that doesn’t take it all off you can try using a sharp razor (with a safety handle) at a 45° angle on the resistant areas. I wish you the best results!

  2. What about the issues of vinegar and baking soda creating CO2 gas? Does that factor into the use of recipes containing both?

    Reply
    • Good question Jay. Mixing baking soda(sodium bicarbonate) and vinegar (acetic acid) does create carbon dioxide (CO2) but unless you are mixing many many gallons of each within a tightly enclosed space you are perfectly safe. Carbon dioxide is what makes a soft drink fizz…(carbonated drinks). Don’t get this confused with Carbon MONoxide which can be deadly if inhaled.

  3. Fantastic article! It’s great to have so many wonderful DIY cleanser recipes all in this one thorough article 🙂 I was particularly interested to learn the instructions for making the stainless steel/chrome cleaner and how to effectively sanitize wooden cutting boards without damaging them. Would it be a good idea to apply a thin coating of food grade mineral oil after the cutting board dries? Also, do you have any suggestions for the best way to clean and polish copper-bottomed stainless steel pots and pans without resorting to toxic commercial cleansers? Thank you for all this very helpful information!

    Reply
    • Thanks for the kind words Zabeth. Yes mineral oil will work on wooden cutting boards. It has the added advantage of filling in little scratches where nasties might hide. There is a wonderful product called Natural Wood Wax.It contains bees wax and is food safe. You can order it online at CuttingBoard.com
      As far as copper cleaner, it’s a little tricky because it depends on what kind of copper you have: plated, solid or if it has a lacquered coat on top. For solid copper you can use regular table salt (not coarse salt) and a lemon. Just dip half a lemon in the salt and scrub away. If it’s plated or lacquered you should only use mild soap and water. Copper is beautiful but I got rid of my copper pieces long ago….too much work! To tell if your copper is plated or solid just try to attach a magnet. Plated copper…the magnet will stick. Thanks for reading BDS!

  4. Donna, EXCELLENT post!

    Reply
    • Thanks Grammyprepper! And thanks for taking the time to comment.

  5. excellent ideas. i can say from experience that the vinegar/lemon juice cleaner works great on countertops and porcelain. but about bee stings: no one ever has an anaphlactic reaction to their first sting, but after being stung once, an allergy can develop at any time. so the person who must be watched carefully is the one who HAS been stung at least once before.

    Reply
    • Thanks for commenting Teabag. There is a misconception that anaphylactic shock cannot occur with the first sting. About 3% of the population can and do experience it with the first sting. However most sensitive folks develop a cumulative effect to the stings (or bites) and the negative response increases with each sting. Thank heaven for epi-pens! They have saved many lives!
      Glad that you have had success with the lemon/vinegar cleaner!

Leave a Reply