As figures in a vegetarian eatery, we not only like to advocate for conscious eating but also conscious living! For many people “being green” seems like a trendy fad, one that can be expensive, time consuming, and takes a lot of thought. Some parts of adopting a lifestyle that is endemically better for you and the environment can take some time! On the other hand, making some replacements for inherently yucky everyday chemical products are not hard at all.
So why should we be concerned about our hand soap, dish soap, surface cleaner, air deodoriser, laundry detergents, hand sanitizer and so on? Well, for one thing, we just named quite a few common household items of which you are bound to come in contact with multiple times a day. Although each one individually has to pass some (very basic) tests to make it to the grocery store shelf on its’ own, these tests are basic standards and do not take into account the combination of other chemical products you might use in a day. The combination of these might be giving you an undesirable load of chemicals through surface contact and even inhalation.
The compounding use of such chemically based products over time can have highly detrimental affects on your body over time.
Today we will consider one part of the chemical-free house equation. We will arm you with the knowledge of how to make some essentially better cleaning products for you and your family that all use naturally derived simple ingredients.
How can we make cleaning products which maintain the effectiveness of our regular go-to chemically derived cleaning counterparts?
Essential Oils! Lemon Essential Oil to be exact.
Many problems from health, to safety of your products, and even your general well being can be answered by looking back to simple solutions. In this case essential oils have been around for many centuries in many cultures who have hailed their natural effectiveness as useful in natural remedies and common everyday use. Although essential oils can range from those that heal to those that are aromatically pleasing, we will concentrate on lemon essential oil which is an all around helper.
Lemon Essential Oil is a quadruple threat: it is antimicrobial, antiseptic, antifungal, and its aroma is also both energy giving and a mood lifter. Lemons contain a secret active ingredient in their peels know as d-limonene, which is not only an excellent solvent for dirt and grime, but will also act as a preventative to the microbial growth we commonly use chemicals to get rid of.
Here are some amazing ways to put Lemon Essential Oil into use in your normal household cleaning routines. Bin the chemicals and bring in the mood elevating scent of lemons into your home!
1. Fabric Freshener
Check out the label on your daily laundry detergents and fabric softener, they will likely tell you to avoid direct skin contact. This is due to “surfactants” which are the main agents that strip away oils, an action that can seriously irritate the skin and aggravate skin issues.
Instead, try refreshing your laundry if it has hung too long on the rack or dryer with a simple mix.
Add one tablespoon of baking soda to two cups of water and add in 10 drops of Lemon Essential Oil (you can also try orange for an equally aromatic kick). Shake and spray, reviving clothing or furniture with a fresh and chemical free smell.
2. An all around Natural Disinfectant Spray
Many of the options at the store list alcohol and bleach as main ingredients to disinfect your countertops or maybe even clean your moldy shower.
Make a switch that is better for you and the environment and try this simple mix.
Everyday Natural Disinfectant Spray:
Add 40 drops Lemon Essential Oil to a 16-oz spray bottle fill with pure water with a tablespoon of white vinegar. Use for greasy messes, and deterring mold growth.
3. A Magical Un-Doer of Child Mistakes
As moms to two boys three years old and under, we can tell you that Lemon Essential Oil is the real deal in undoing some creative kids work that you might not want around forever. Consider using Lemon Essential Oil neat (a few drops straight from the bottle on a cloth) to unstick tape and stickers from furniture, clean permanent marker scribbles and crayons off of walls, and take greasy handprints off of windows. We have also tried orange and lime which work well, but lemon certainly takes the cake!
The truth is that essential oils are an unending resource for assisting you not only in your house, but also with your health and well being. Consider replacing toxic substances in your house and learning more about them for their plethora of other uses.
Finally, although essential oils can be found in a variety of places and price points, look for ones that are sourced sustainably and are of therapeutic grade as they will offer the most flexibility in use!
Authors: Alyson Lundstrom and Marisa Randles from Blissful Carrot