Monday, August 27, 2012

Cleaning Solutions When You Can't Read the Label

Help, I Can't Read the Labels!

One More Reason to Go GREEN!

How much time do you spend in the grocery store each week trying to make some sense out of the cleaning products on display? Sometimes you see friendly Mr. Clean (score!) only to realize that neither the product name, nor the instructions are written in a language you understand (psych!).  Well, I have come to learn that all you really need to clean  your house is baking soda and vinegar.  Really.  

Baking Soda:

Sodium bicarbonate, otherwise known as baking soda, is found around the world.  It's often easy to find because the word, "bicarbonate" is similar in many languages.  Check this out:

bicarbonate (English)                      
nātrija bikarbonāts (Latvian)
natrijev bikarbonat (Croatian)          
sosa karbonato (Filipino)
Natriumbicarbonat (German)           
de bicarbonato de sodio (Spanish)


The word "vinegar," on the other hand, isn't similar in other languages.  Luckily, the bottles resemble each other and always tend to picture salad on the label.
Okay, now you've bought the baking soda and vinegar, it's time to clean.
Here are a couple recipes I found and have used along the way.  Using them makes you feel like you're saving the planet while you clean!  

For stains:  
Use baking soda.  Sprinkle it on the stain until completely covered; spray with water.  When baking soda is absorbed, wipe clean with a cloth.

For Mold, Bactieria, and Grease:  
Use vinegar.  Fill a spray bottle with distilled white vinegar.  Saturate the affected area and then simply let the vinegar evaporate.

For soot, wax, and oil:  
Use sodium carbonate on stone or glass.  Make a thick paste with 1/4 cup of soda and water.  Cover stain and let it set for an hour; scrub. (Prevention Magazine, July 2008, "Speed Clean the Healthy Way")

Toilet Bowl Cleaner:
Baking soda and white vinegar.  Sprinkle the toilet bowl with baking soda.  Drizzle with vinegar (kinda sounds like a salad! ew!).  Scour with a toilet brush.  This not only cleans, it deodorizes.

Scouring Powder:
Lightly sprinkle on surface to clean; wipe with sponge.  Rinse well.

Tile Cleaner:
1/4 cup distilled white vinegar, 1 gallon water, 10 drops essential oil.  Mix well and use a sponge or rag to clean.  This removes most dirt without scrubbing and doesn't leave a film.  (I found that you can leave out the oil if you don't mind the house smelling like vinegar for a bit).  (Green Clean: The Environmentally Sound Guide to Cleaning Your Home, by Linda Mason Hunter and Mikki Halpin).

Ha!  Now don't you feel competent and holier than thou?

No comments:

Post a Comment

Postcard Poem: My Serbian Mayfield