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Cleaning

How to Clean your House Fast with Speed Cleaning

Speed cleaning can be an efficient way to clean your home with minimal time.

Six years ago I moved out of my parents home into a house of my very own. I was expecting to be on top of this new adulting domestic lifestyle, but to my surprise that wasn’t quite my experience. Now don’t get me wrong I was no stranger to domestic duties. When I was five I was in charge of sweeping the floors, raking the leaves, making my own bed as well as tidying my own room. I was so fiercely independent that at five years old I’d climb up on our kitchen counter tops to reach the plates or what I needed so I didn’t have to wait for someone to get it for me.

By fourteen I was doing my own washing and vacuuming. I did try and get out of the vacuuming for as long as possible but my brother saw through this and taught me how to use our Kirby so I couldn’t get out of that chore much longer after that. I thought I was pretty well adept at this house work stuff and moving into my own home would be a breeze. I knew – I’ve got this!

Going from having the responsibility of looking after a bedroom and bathroom to my own entire home with a backyard was not so smooth sailing as I had hoped. We had a humbled sized abode with a kitchen with limited bench space which made trying to cook a juggling act. Add a newly vegetarian husband to the mix with limited bench space and you’ve got an even bigger challenge trying to keep up with separate meals and excess washing up.

Although we loved out new home, we struggled with limited bench space and cupboards for storage and had a lot of difficulty making our space work. Things were piling up on the bench that we were also trying to prepare food on. By the time we added a microwave, kettle and toaster we had lost half our kitchen bench space and 1/3 of the rest was taken up by our very necessary stove. For a while we just lived day to day through chaos. Being in our mid 20s, we had a busy social life on top of band commitments and full time work and finding the time to clean a home, even our reasonably sized one, seemed like some kind of alien task we were just never going to figure out.

It was at this point I just cracked it and knew something has to change. Trying to cook dinner with dirty dishes piling up everywhere and laundry mountains in multiple rooms had to stop. There had to be a better way and I needed to find it.

HOW DISCOVERING SPEED CLEANING CHANGED MY LIFE

I was determined to end the chaos that was our life and get back some control. I started researching everything I could about cleaning efficiently. Becoming a bit obsessed, I was soon watching  YouTube videos on how to clean your home (seriously Minimisers I was watching people clean! This included the How Clean is Your House show – oh the shame!)). Pinterest also came to the rescue and not before long I had stumbled across the idea of speed cleaning.

I am a massive fan of efficiency and let’s face it, who wants to spend more time than they have to on cleaning their home. This idea of cleaning your home fast really resonated with me. I hated the fact that to have any visitors we had to clean for an entire day and wipe ourselves out. Not to mention that visitors don’t always give you a days notice.

With nothing to lose, I went home that day and gave this speed cleaning a go. I set my timer for ten minutes and started speedily cleaning my kitchen. Looking at the mountain of dishes waiting for me I thought to myself who on Earth can clean a disaster of a kitchen in under ten minutes. I was pleasantly surprised that I managed to clean the entire space within the time allocated. After months of just trying to keep up and putting off the inevitable dreaded cleaning, I realised that this was not something I needed to put off, procrastinate or devote a lot of time to for results.

I had seen the light and this new discovery was not forgotten and certainly didn’t end at the kitchen. I gradually tested for each task until I had found the quickest way to clean all areas of my house in only a small amount of time each day.

HOW TO SPEED CLEAN YOUR HOME

The time is totally up to you and may need to be increased if you have a larger home or a two story home (check out how your cleaning time can be reduced with a smaller home) but anywhere from 5-20 minutes should get you well on your way to a tidy, visitor ready home!

Set your timer for fifteen minutes. Now get started  – you don’t have time to spare if you want to get back to enjoying your day!

1. Walk around your home and grab any dishes, cups and cutlery lying around and run them to the sink.
2. Scrape off any food scraps off your plates and bin any rubbish or anything else no longer needed in the appropriate bins (even with efficiency we still have to recycle :)).
3. Open your dishwasher and empty it as quick as you can if you haven’t already. If you can do this task in the morning it can save you the hassle in the afternoon. (Skip this step if you don’t have one ;)).
4. Start re-loading your dishwasher. If it is full chuck in your dishwashing tablet or soap and let it run. If you don’t have a dishwasher start washing up. Leave clean dishes on the rack to dry. Ain’t nobody got time for dat (hand drying).
5. Spray your benches and sink with your Home-Made All Purpose Cleaner.
6. Run to your living areas and do a quick tidy. Fold the throw rug, straighten up your cushions, put your shoes and any bags or toys, where they belong. Grabbing a washing basket can help you collate any stuff that needs to go back to it’s home elsewhere in the house.
7. Return to the kitchen and wipe down the benches, dining table, stove and sink and if time any marks on the kitchen cabinets.
8. Bask in your newly cleaned living space that hopefully took only fifteen minutes and get back to Netflix and Chill or doing whatever the hell you wanted to! 🙂

Speed Cleaning can be applied all over your home. Whether it be your bedroom, bathroom, laundry, garage – where ever. Just set your timer, get cracking and see how much you can tidy up in a small amount of time!

SPEED CLEANING TIPS AND TRICKS

Here are some extra helpful hints to making speed cleaning work in your home!

1. Speed clean a little each day.
A little goes a long way. If you spend 10-15 minutes a day speed cleaning you are going to make amazing progress in your home with very little time and effort!

2. Ask for help.
Can you imagine what you can get done with two speed cleaners???? I get my husband to help me when I set the timer which means we can cover a lot more in a smaller amount of time. And let’s face it, I am just a weirdo that enjoys racing the clock and any helpers only help you win! Involve your kids and make it a race. I recently watched my friends 3 kids speed clean their toys before bed and they seemed to love it and it was certainly entertaining to watch them race the clock.

3. Grab as you go
Save yourself some hassle by thinking ahead. If you’re walking past a dirty dish in the lounge room and on your way to the kitchen, take it with you! This will save you running back and forth grabbing them during your speed clean. Get your family to adopt this one habit and you’ll be on a path to clean-houseville in no time!

4. Minimise your clutter.
Having less stuff in your home is guaranteed to make your cleaning tasks that much easier. The less you have the less there is to wipe, dust, move, vacuum around and so on. Keep it essential! Check out this list of 101 Things to Declutter to get you started.

5. Apply speed cleaning all over your home and mix it up.
One day clean your bathroom in 10-20 minutes. Even if it’s just a tidy up and wipe down of surfaces. Spend one day on the bedrooms. Another on the living area and so on. If you went out to eat for dinner and the kitchen is spotless from last night pick another are that needs some TLC. Don’t save everything up for one horrendous cleaning day unless you prefer that. I prefer to do things in small chunks and find it more rewarding to have near instant cleaning gratification.

6. Take note of how long it takes you to do each cleaning task.
Knowing that folding a load of laundry only takes 10 minutes might make you less inclined to put off doing it and letting your pile get out of hand. Most chores feel like they take a lot longer than they actually do. You might dread cleaning the shower (isn’t it the worst job guys?! My number 1 disliked chore right there!) but realise that it actually only takes 15 minutes. Maybe your partner and kids would help out around the house more if they knew that vaccuming the entire house only took 18 minutes instead of whatever horrendous figure they have dreamed up.

Do you speed clean your home? Has this helped you to become more efficient in your cleaning routine? Has this helped you get your family on board with cleaning? Share your experiences in the comments below!

If you liked this you may like – How an Organised Space Can Save You Money + 10 Benefits of Natural Home Made Cleaners.

 

Cleaning

6 Laundry Hacks to Save You Time

Are you wanting some tips on how to speed up the laundry process in your home and get some of your time back? Check out this 6 Laundry Hacks to Save You Time. Photo: Andy Fitzsimon

As a full-time worker and blogger, with a busy social life you can imagine how much time I have left for chores like laundry. Not much. And frankly there are a million other things I would rather be doing with my time than washing! I have made it a goal of mine to get my weekly laundry done as quickly and efficiently as possible over the years. The less I spend washing, folding and the like the more time I have for more important things.

Here are 6 Laundry Hacks to Save You Time that I have implemented in my household in order to simplify our weekly washing routine and claw back hours of our lives.

  1. Sort your laundry with separate hampers.

Purchasing a multiple compartment hamper on wheels has been the greatest $30 I have possible ever spent. I used to dread coming home on a Friday night to start my weekend off with a pile of laundry to sort and disliked lugging the heavy baskets across the house even more. I realised how silly it was to spend precious minutes sorting something when it would be so much easier to just sort our clothing from the get go. 

I purchased a three compartment laundry hamper (I got mine from Kmart but as they no longer stock them check out this hamper for an idea. Anything similar will do. We use ours for two separate dark loads (we wear a lot of black :P) and the one in the middle is for whites. This is kept in our bathroom, keep yours where your family gets dressed most frequently.

As we only have two in our household the three compartments are plenty for us. If you have 3 or more in your household, having a hamper or twin compartment hamper for lights and darks in each bedroom can work just as well. Simply coach your family on what to put in what compartment of the hamper, add signs to the baskets if necessary, and soon enough you’ll have your whole family sorting their own laundry! 

Wasting 15 or more minutes each weekend sorting through our clothes baskets is now a thing of the past. I simply grab one of the bags which is already sorted into darks, whites or towels, put its contents into the washing machine and return the empty bag to the hamper rack. If you don’t want to lug the hamper around you can just roll it to where ever you need. Seriously the best organisational tool in our home!

2. Downsize your wardrobe.

By having a large, overflowing wardrobe you can guarantee you will have a substantial amount of washing to do. This usually means you (or your family that doesn’t have to do the laundry) will end up wearing a significant number of clothes before you get around to your washing pile. Of course by then your laundry pile will most likely be a mountain high.

If you are not one to wash and fold regularly, that pile is going to get out of hand, fast! If you limit your wardrobe to a reasonable number of clothes, you can have a direct reduction in your laundry.  Since implementing my own capsule wardrobe I have found it much easier to stay on top of washing. Check out How to build a Capsule Wardrobe: A Beginners Guide for ideas on how you can reduce your wardrobe. When you have less to wear you have less to wash and can go back to having more free time and less time spend in the laundry!

3. Think ahead with your washing to reduce the need for ironing

Have I mentioned I hate ironing and avoid it at all costs? Seriously  – who has time for ironing? If I had to fit ironing into my schedule I would probably start binning a lot of clothes fast! Due to my lack of joy for this task I have found ways to work around it. My tricks are these:

  • Where possible avoid buying clothes that need ironing. I’ve been doing this for years and don’t miss my buttoned blouses that never seemed to get worn because I never seemed to have the time to iron them regularly. I am lucky that I work in an office with a smart casual clothing policy and we are free to wear more casual clothes like office polos. If your workplace is more strict, this won’t work for you but wherever possible, if you can get away with not wearing business shirts and the like this will cut your laundry time down.
  • Hang your clothes out on the line or a coat hanger as soon as the wash load or dryer is finished to help reduce any clothes from getting wrinkled whilst sitting there.
  • When you take your clothes off the line, ask yourself am I going to put these away right now or are they going to sit around for the next days or so until I can get to them? If you can’t do them straight away no biggie, this is my trick. I put all the socks and underwear in first along with PJs. Anything that can get wrinkled without it being a big deal. Then with the other clothing items like shirts and pants I loosely fold them so they lay in the basket neatly, rather than screwed up slowly getting to the point of needing ironing. The folding takes a second or two per item and saves you having to iron them. 
  • If you are really stuck or in a rush to get something ironed, chucking your clothes in the dryer for 10 or so minutes can help remove any wrinkles in your clothes. Leaving your clothes in a bathroom with stream can also help remove wrinkles. 

For those items that do need to be ironed at least you have managed to reduce the time you will need to spend ironing them and other items by carrying out the above. Hopefully this will help reduce the final pile!

>>You may also like 12 Simple Bedroom Organisation Tips for tips on how to Keep your bedroom tidy without much effort.

4. Identify your clean, dirty and re-wearable clothing.

Identify an area in your home for each family member to store worn but re-wearable clothing. Pants and jackets and other outerwear can be worn more than once if they are clean. Allocate a spare drawer to these items in each bedroom or a hook in the bathroom. Even laying them out on a chair can do the trick.

This will help reduce your laundry load as you will now know what you can wear again and reduce washing clothing that can be re-worn. This is particularly handy for kids that like to change their clothes multiple times a day and create excess washing for you. It’s an easy way to keep the clean, re-wearable clothing items from getting mixed in the hamper with the dirty items. Check out this amusing blog from Melanie Dale on Rules for Re-Wearing Clothes.

Don’t forget the towels! Whilst you are there request that they each hang up their towel after use to dry so they can reuse it. You don’t need to use a fresh towel every time you shower. This could help half the number of towels you are washing each week.

5. Ask for help and Delegate.

Get your family to help with washing with age appropriate chores. Kids from age 3 can do small tasks to help with laundry. Make sure everyone at least is putting their dirty clothes in the correct washing hamper compartment. On wash day they can carry their basket to the laundry as well as folding and putting away clothes. If your kids are tall enough or you’ve got an adjustable clothes line they can also help hang out clothes and take them off the line. Get your partner and kids to help out on a regular basis. If they don’t know how to do the laundry, or how they can help, take the time to explain the process to them. Give them a few weeks and soon enough you’ll have a lot more help and a lot less time trying to keep up with a households laundry needs on your own.  So many parents wait until kids move out of home to teach them basic skills that should be esta

6. Do washing loads by person.

Consider washing a load for each person rather than mixing the washing all together only to have to work out when folding what socks and the like belong to whom. The less time spent sorting and matching the quicker you can get back to more important tasks. Washing one full load of one kids clothing means that they, if they are old enough, can then be responsible for folding or putting away their own items. To make this easier, use a laundry bag to keep socks together and help avoid the mysterious lost sock dilemma. If there is not enough for a full load for one family members washing, add two together and use the laundry bags to separate the socks and undies to avoid sorting confusion when it comes to folding them. 

What laundry tips to you have to save time in your home? Please comment below with your hacks 🙂

 

Cleaning

4 Daily Habits For a Tidy Home Now!

A few years back I was in a bit of a cleaning and organisation rut. It seemed as though I could never get on top of anything. The dishes would pile up on all of our extremely limited bench space. We would fish out our clean, now wrinkled clothes each morning from the bottom of the basket as there never seemed to be time to put them away. Just hoping that what we were looking for had been washed that weekend. If we had guests coming over it was a huge ordeal getting the house into guest-ready status. We were convinced we needed a bigger home. One with more bench space and bigger area to wash up, a larger laundry room and more cupboard space. It would surely solve everything.

I quickly realised that more space was not the answer (in fact more space = more cleaning and work!) and seeing as we were hoping to own our home sooner than later up-sizing was not going to be an option either. I had to find a way to make what we had work. Coming home to mess, attempting to cook and make dinner with dishes everywhere and trying to use what scrap of bench space I could find could not go on. Life wasn’t meant to be this hard, surely!

Let me tell you it is not! There is a way to get on top of things before they get out of control. The key is to not let is get out of control in the first place and to do a little bit each day. A small amount goes a long way. And it doesn’t take hours and hours! Read on for 4 Habits For a Tidy Home Now! 

  1. Do a general tidy daily

Let’s not build cleaning up to be more difficult than it is. Sure vacuuming and mopping and the rest take a lot of time but we don’t need to have show homes 24/7. A daily habit of doing a general tidy up is good enough. Spend five minutes a day doing a general tidy of the main areas of your home. You’re not going to be able to clean every space, surface, crevice but you will make your home look much more tidy with a small amount of effort.

Set your timer. I use the one on our oven so I know when to stop. During your general tidy go to each area of your home and pick up what doesn’t belong. A clothes basket can work great so you can chuck everything in there and move a lot of things quickly.

THINGS I DO IN MY GENERAL TIDY

  • Hang up the towels in the bathroom and clear the vanity counter.
  • Make the bed.
  • Straighten up the couch cushions and fold the throw.
  • Pick up any clothes on the floor and either throw them in the hamper or hang them up again.
  • Put anything away that’s lying around.
  • Bin any water bottles
  • Move any cups or plates to the kitchen
  • Pick up mess from the floor

If you just do five minutes a day or even just as often as you can, you will be amazed at how much tidier your home will look. If your spouse or kids can help out you will make even more progress. Everyone living in your home adds to the mess- get them involved, delegate!

If after your five minute general tidy is up and you are on a roll then keep going. You’re better off tidying when you feel like it or have the time than to leave it for a day where you just rather not move from the couch.

2. Clean as you go

This is such an important tool for keeping your home tidy. Get in the daily habit of cleaning up as you go. When you are finished with something in the bathroom of a morning, put it back in the drawer or vanity. When you are walking from one room to the next take a second to look around and see what doesn’t belong and grab it to take with you on your way. Are you going out to the car? Grab that bag of donations you’ve had sitting at the door for the past week.

If you want to save time on cleaning and getting back to more enjoyable tasks think ahead and find ways to be more efficient with your time. Are you waiting for the microwave for five minutes? Go and clean up the mess from your meal prep or empty your dishwasher. Utilise what little time you have! Once you get used to this daily habit it will become part of your routine.

>>  If you are interested in getting organised you might find value in

4 Tips to a More Organised Life!

3. Clean your kitchen daily

For me, cleaning the kitchen was the one daily habit that drastically changed my cleaning habits and stress levels. I used to feel completely overwhelmed with dirty dishes and marks on our bench tops that had hardened and become difficult to clean. I would struggle to cook and prep dinner with our limited bench space covered with last nights dishes that I just had not got around to yet. And try cooking anything when your sink is over flowing. It’s just going to make your daily life much harder than it needs to be.

A chaotic kitchen can add so much unnecessary stress and being the hub of the home, it’s rare that you can ever walk past without seeing the mess piling up. Set yourself a new daily habit of tidying the kitchen. I used to put this off as it would get so out of hand that I would need a good half hour to get it back in order but now i set the time for 7-10 minutes and knock it out as fast as I can. I find it a challenge to work against the clock and love how efficiently I can clean my kitchen with a bit of forethought.

ALLOCATE YOUR TIME

Work out a time each day where you can spend 10 minutes on your kitchen.  Whether it be in the morning, when you get home from work, or before you go to bed. Whenever is most convenient for you. The key is doing it every day so there is no mass of dishes you have to sift through. Set the timer and get started.

MY KITCHEN CLEANING METHOD:

  1. Grab all your dirty dishes from wherever they may be (save yourself some time and effort insist on a rule after meals all dishes and cups are returned to the kitchen!). Soak any in hot soapy water that you need to wash.
  2. Spray all surfaces with an All Purpose Cleaner so that can break down your stains whilst you get onto the dishes.
  3. If you have a dishwasher quickly unload it (if you unload it in the mornings and load in the afternoon this will make like easier :)) and put all your dirty dishes in. If you don’t have one, quickly arrange your dishes into plates, cups, cutlery and bigger items like pots and start washing.

I let my dishes dry on a drying rack and put them away when they are dry (hey ,we’re trying to save time and make life easier here, let’s not do things that we don’t have to ;)).

4. Then wipe all surface areas. The stains should easily come off after being broken down by your All Purpose Cleaner.

Hopefully you’ll be done before your timer goes off. If not I promise you it won’t be more than a few extra minutes and the next morning when you see your beautifully clean kitchen and when you go to cook the next night you will not regret the effort 🙂

4. Don’t let your laundry pile up

I’ve never really understood why people have wash days and tackle their entire laundry pile in one horrible sounding day. I like to plan ahead for my washing. I certainly don’t wash everyday (thank you Minimalism!) but I prefer to do it in manageable chunks.

Make it a daily habit to do your washing. Now I personally don’t have enough washing to wash daily, but it’s certainly a daily habit to check if I do or don’t. I normally throw on a load of washing on Friday before I go to work and hang it out in the afternoon (Love that timer function!). By Friday I have a full load of darks so hold off until I have a full load.

Saturday morning I’ll then wash and hang out another and set another load to go before I head out for the day. Sunday is then just a catch up day for towels, sheets and anything else that needs to go in. Again get someone to help out if that is possible. My husband and I both do washing. I work full-time and have more important things to do than spend hours each week washing.

BONUS TIP

Consider decluttering your wardrobe! If you have 50 shirts to wear and 10 pairs of jeans you are going to be washing 50 shirts and 10 pairs of jeans in a never ending pile of washing. Set yourself a more realistic laundry limit and wash regularly.

Don’t let that pile get a mile high whether that be washed or unwashed, as it will just be so much harder to tackle and get motivated.

If you chip away at your washing, load by load, and make it a daily habit to at least check your clothes baskets to see if you have enough for a load, you will save yourself the stress of endless baskets in your laundry and waiting to be folded.

These are the four daily habits I have implemented in my routine and I have never felt more on top of things in my home.

Try them and comment below to let me know if you feel things are getting less overwhelming!

Feel free to share any daily tips that you use to keep your home tidy! My goal is to help you minimise the excess in your life so you have more time for the essential!

Cleaning

10 Benefits of Home-Made Cleaning Products

We are constantly bombarded with ads telling us what new cleaning products are available and why we need them to keep our homes safe and germ free. With massive advertising budgets and fancy packaging the chemical based cleaning products often get their products into homes without consumers knowing the downsides of using these products.

There are many significant benefits of home-made cleaning products that people who don’t actively seek out the information might not be aware of.  They can help with making your home so much safer with very little effort.  Here are 10 benefits of home-made cleaning products and why I have converted to using these in my home and how they might be useful to you. Click here for nine of My favourite Home-Made Cleaning Recipes.

1. Great for skin allergy sufferers.

As a sufferer of dermatitis, I was forever dreading cleaning my home, knowing that soon enough I would have to deal with the reoccurring skin allergies. Even when wearing gloves whilst cleaning, I’d somehow manage to get the cleaning products on my skin and be paying the price for days. Most store bought cleaners are extremely harsh and should not come into contact with your skin, but this is easier said than done. After researching home made home-made cleaning products I was able to clean safely, without exposing my skin to harsh chemicals and limiting the effects on my health. To be extra cautious I use a sensitive skin dish washing liquid as other ones can severely affect your skin and dry it out. This benefit is the biggest reason I have made the switch to DIY Natural cleaners.

2. Save money.

Making your own cleaning products is a great way to save money on your cleaning bills. A handful of ingredients; bi-carb, vinegar, dish washing liquid and rubbing alcohol can be used to make a whole range of cleaning products for the whole home, with a little bit goes a long way. Even better they are things you probably already have at home on hand and are always affordable. No more having to wait for them to go on sale! Over the past couple of years since making the change to mostly home-made cleaners I couldn’t count the amount of savings we’ve had but can promise you it will go a long way to reducing your cleaning expense budget.

3. Safe to have around kids and pets.

Using natural products like vinegar and bi-carb soda are items that can be found in your pantry and are not going to harm your kids or animals if they are accidentally consumed. It may not be a pleasant experience but won’t be harmful as using a more toxic product like bleach. This will open up the possibility to having your kids help out around the home with age appropriate tasks knowing they are using safe products (not sure how helpful the animals will be ;)).

4. Minimise the number of products you have cluttering up your cupboards.

When you walk into the cleaning aisle it can be overwhelming trying to decide on what to buy from the endless cleaning product options. There seems to be a different product for each cleaning task. Home-made cleaners require a much smaller number of products and can be used to clean multiple things. Most of the ingredients can be mixed and matched to make cleaners for all of your home needs. Soon you won’t have to spend ages looking for a cleaner in your cleaning cabinet that is getting out  of hand.

5. Health benefits of reducing chemicals in your home.

Most cleaning products have warning labels on them such as use in well ventilated areas. The use of some more toxic products can lead to severe health issues such as Asthma. Reducing your exposure to these types of chemicals in your home is going to pay off for your health in the long run. The less we are exposed to these products the better.

6. Better cleaning success.

I have found in my experience that home made natural cleaning products work better than most other brand made products. I’ve been using them for about two years now and have not missed the store bought versions. When you can clean a grimy stove top with a couple of drops of dish washing liquid and water with ease, why would you pay for the pricey, toxic version?!

7. They won’t discolour your clothing or manchester. 

No matter how hard I try and clean without getting chemical products on my clothes, manchester or carpet there is always that one drop that manages to undo everything. This will be a thing of the past with home-made cleaning products. I’ve used store bought Mould Remover in the past and had to worry about it dripping off the roof and getting on my new quilt cover. After substituting this product for a home made version of water and tea-tree oil in a spray bottle, I realised it was just as effective and took away the concerns of having it ruin anything. Seeing as vinegar, bicarb and dishwashing liquid are used for washing your dishes or sink it’s not going to hurt to spill it anywhere. 😉

8. Avoid chemical air pollution.

If you are someone who is sensitive to harsh smells, store bought cleaners could be a little too strong for your scent tolerance. Products like bleach linger in the air for hours and can make you feel ill and light-headed. This can’t be healthy to breathe in long term and certainly isn’t pleasant. Making your own cleaning products means you can add your own essential oils and create a scent that you love, removing those lingering unpleasant, chemical ones from your home.

9. Better for the environment.

Non-toxic home-made cleaning products are much better for the environment. No more pouring toxic chemicals down your sink into the waterways or having your home environment exposed to harsh chemicals. Using home made cleaners can also help eliminate environmental waste. Your products will go a lot further meaning less replacing them and less waste. You will also require less trips to the stores which is another plus for the environment. Products such as anti-bacterial wipes can be replaced with a DIY all-purpose cleaner and microfibre cloth. These are just as effective at cleaning and washable, eliminating the waste disposable wipes create.

10. Peace of mind.

Making your own cleaning products means you know exactly what is in them. No more trying to read and research all those chemical ingredients you’ve possibly never heard of and wondering about what effects it can have on your families health. Most of all, you have control over what you do and don’t use and what chemicals you are bringing or not bringing into your home.

Do you prefer natural cleaning recipes or swear by the store bought versions? Please comment below with your favourite cleaning products and whether you prefer home-made cleaners or store-bought ones.

Cleaning

My Favourite Home-Made Cleaning Recipes

Jessica Skene

About a year ago I watched a documentary on Netflix called The Human Experiment which opened my eyes up to the dangers of having so many chemicals in our homes. I’d been dealing with the frustration of sensitive skin for years meaning I had to be careful of what my skin came in contact with, even dish soap and hand wash would make me break out in an extremely uncomfortable Dermatitis rash. I soon became very passionate about finding ways to keep my home clean, whilst looking after my health and skin and was on a mission to learn about natural home cleaners and testing them out.

After much research and trial and error I came a cross a few staple home-made cleaning recipes that I use regularly.

Here is a list of My Favourite Home-Made Cleaning Recipes. They work just as good in my experience as brand name chemical cleaners and are not only more affordable, but safer to use in your home. Please see my blog on 10 Benefits of Home-Made Cleaning Products for ten reasons why I recommend making the switch.

INGREDIENTS LISTS

These are the basic must have items for your home-made cleaner recipes:

  • White vinegar
  • Dishwashing Liquid (I use Palmolive Dishwashing Liquid Ultra Dry Skin Aloe for sensitive skin)
  • Bi-Carbonate Soda
  • Essential Oils (Tea-tree and Lavender oil preferably)
  • Rubbing Alcohol
  • Water
  • Spray bottles
  • Labels (use a label maker or stick on labels)

Don’t forget to label all your spray bottles as when you come back in a week you will probably have no idea what is in what bottle. It’s really worth it to save you  figuring out what is in what bottle and having to waste your cleaning products.

These are 9 of my favourite home-made cleaning recipes!

Home-made All Purpose Spray (Two versions)

I have two recipes that both work wonderfully. Sometimes if I am in a rush I will make the simpler version and if I have more time I will go with the second version.

All Purpose Spray (Simple Version)

Fill a spray bottle with warm water and add one teaspoon of dishwashing liquid. That’s it! This should be gentle enough to use on most surfaces and is a cleaner I use for all around the home. I would use the Version 2 cleaner for more stubborn stains unless you have stone bench tops. Please check the care guide for your bench tops before using any cleaning products as vinegar can damage stone and other surfaces.

All Purpose Spray (Version 2)

In a spray bottle preferably over a sink (the bottle can overflow with the bi-carb soda and vinegar reacting) put the following

  • 4 Tbsp of white vinegar
  • 1/2 Tsp of dish washing liquid
  • 2 Tsp of bi-carb soda
  • Fill the rest of the spray bottle with warm water.

Spray the solution on your stained surfaces and let sit for about 20 seconds to help break up any hard to move stains. If you are using the bottle when the cleaner is back to room temperature, throw the bottle in the microwave for about 10 seconds and this will help remove harder to move stains. This solution is what I use for everyday All-Purpose Cleaner, just refill when you are out.

As mentioned above please check whether vinegar can be used on your bench tops as some stone benches can be damaged by vinegar.

Linen Spray

This is a spray to help keep your sheet smelling amazing between washes.

Fill a small plastic spray bottle (I use the ones in those travel container packs) with:

  • I cup of distilled water
  • 5-10 drops of essential oils
  • 2 Tbsp of rubbing alcohol

Use this to spray before sleep to spray your bed linens. Lavender essential oils can provide a calming scent but feel free to choose whatever scent you prefer.

Glass Cleaner

Fill a spray bottle with

  • ½ Water
  • ½ White Vinegar
  • Spray Bottle

Since starting to use this glass cleaner I have never looked back or thought to buy a regular store bought version. Just make up as described above in a matter of seconds and spray contents of glass cleaner on mirrors or windows and wipe over with a microfiber cloth. You’ll have beautiful, streak-free mirrors and windows in no time. Leave a bottle of this in your bathroom and a microfiber cloth to clean as you go.

Shower/Tile Cleaner

Fill a spray bottle with

  • ⅓ vinegar
  • ⅓ dishwashing liquid
  • ⅓ water

This is great for cleaning showers and tiles with a brush or sponge. Another option is to fill a refillable dish washing brush with a mixture of ½ vinegar and ½ dish washing soap to scrub all over the shower with. The vinegar smell will dissipate soon after and dish washing liquid will give you a nice scent over the harsh scents most chemical cleaners provide.

Daily Shower Spray (same ingredients as glass cleaner)

  • Spray bottle
  • ½ water
  • ½ vinegar

I leave a bottle of this in our shower to spray down the shower after each use (well, as often as I can remember to ;)). Spray down the tiles and shower glass and floor if it is the last shower of the morning or night (or last for a while). The vinegar helps to break down soap scum and fights the growth of mould so will make your weekly shower scrub a breeze! Remind your partner or room mates or whoever uses the shower to give it a quick spray over when they step out, it only takes 20 seconds and will save whoever is stuck cleaning it a lot of elbow grease!

As mould loves moisture, another tip from Clean My Space’s Melissa Maker to avoid your bathroom being taken over by it is to squeegee or wipe down the shower screens or tiles with a cloth after each shower. This is a bit more time consuming than the after shower spray but is a massive help if you can manage it.  

Toilet Bowl Cleaner

  • Spray bottle
  • Fill with vinegar
  • Add 10-15 drops of essential oils
  • Shake before each use

Combine vinegar and essential oils in a spray bottle. Spray vinegar mixture inside bowl and around toilet. Allow to sit for a few minutes. Sprinkle baking soda inside toilet bowl and scrub inside of bowl with a toilet brush. The Bi-carb soda gives a bit of abrasion to remove any hard to remove stains.

You can use the all over purpose cleaner (Version 1) or the above recipe spray to clean the outside and seat of the toilet. 

Disinfectant Spray (Non-scented)

  • Spray bottle (you can use one of the small travel spray bottles mentioned above)
  • ½ water
  • ½ rubbing alcohol

A great spray for disinfecting surface around the home such as bench tops, door handles or cupboard handles and for cleaning your toilet brush.

Disinfectant Spray (Scented)

  • 3 cups of water
  • ½ cup white vinegar
  • Tea-tree or Lavender essential oils (10-15 drops or a blend of each)
  • Spray bottle

For those who love a nice smelling home this second disinfectant spray not only leaves your home free of germs, but with a lovely calming scent. Tea-tree and lavender essential oils can be used for their antibacterial properties or blended with other favourite scents you have.  

Do you have a favourite home-made cleaning recipe? Please comment below with anything that you love to use in your home.