Archive for ‘home’

September 27, 2011

How To: Make Your Own All-Purpose Cleaner

As a kid, I always wondered why the women in commercials wore gloves while washing dishes [my grandma used to explain that people on the mainland liked their hands to be soft].  It completely confused me because I was definitely one of those kids who used to scrub the tub with bleach, comet, and basin-tub-and-tile cleaner barefoot and gloveless [this may explain a lot].  I remember having to run outside to stop the world from spinning afterwards, but I never imagined those experiences being harmful to me.

As an adult, I have made it my utmost priority to live a life that is both simple and significant, and a large part of that is being responsible for my health and body.  Together, Ben and I work hard to create a home that is both functional and conscious, which is why I’ve started really paying attention to the products we purchase and bring into our home.

I started researching the effects of chemicals on the human body a while back.  I was shocked to learn that many every day products contain unnecessary hazardous chemicals that have extremely harmful effects.  It was then that Ben and I decided to start using more naturally-derived products.


[Random fact: Ben + I have two different hand soaps because it is one of the only cleaning products we have opposing opinions about.  Ben needs his soap to be anti-bacterial while I would rather not become immune to super-viruses.]

While it is important to me to have products be both environmentally friendly and non-toxic, it is also important to me that these products actually work, especially when it comes to cleaners.  This all-purpose cleaner is all of the above, with the added benefit of being cheap and all-natural!  I use this on our counters, floors, and walls, as well as in the bathroom.  Of course, another option for an all-purpose cleaner is the simple 1:1 ratio of vinegar : baking soda, but the following recipe has a few added benefits.


All-Purpose Cleaner


  • 2 Tbsp white vinegar – cleanser, deodorizer + grease-cutter
  • 1 tsp liquid castile soap – basic gentle, non-toxic, cruelty-free soap that’s great for cleaning
  • 1 tsp borax – natural mineral disinfectant + cleanser
  • 2 c hot water
  • 1/4 tsp essential oil [Optional] – Eucalyptus, lavender + tea tree are all antibacterial, antimocrobial + antiviral

[*I found borax in my local drugstore’s laundry soap aisle, and both the castile soap and essential oils at my local health food store.]IMG_7374

Mix everything in a spray container [I reused an old container].

Spray onto surface [this is good for all surfaces except glass], scrub, and wipe off with a cloth or rag.

No more headaches!  I actually love using this to clean, as the oils smell so good!  Smile

Do you make your own cleaning products?  What works for you?

Have a great Tuesday, friends!  I’m off to get more studying done [save me, please!].

Aloha Pumehana. Whether you’re here to find balance, wholesome recipes or inspiration, I hope you enjoy the posts.  Please subscribe to Green Plate Dinners to receive automatic updates and be the first to read new posts for free!


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