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Are you Eco Friendly?

Posted by Lorac Monday, 9 November 2009

As a cottager I have a responsibility to the environment. We are located right on the lake and what we use for cleaners can have a huge impact so I decided to investigate "Green Cleaners" for home and body. There are now a fair amount of green cleaners on the market, just beware that you read the labels to see how "green". It doesn't matter where we live, we all have a responsibility to the environment! What we should be checking for are specific ingredients that do harm to the environment.I thought adding some home made cleaners would be a good start!


Lemon-scented all-purpose cleaner
1 tbsp borax
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 cup hot water
Mix ingredients in spray bottle (the lemon scent lingers). Use for cleaning bathroom and kitchen surfaces, as well as other water-safe surfaces. Discard any remaining cleaner and make afresh batch next time. 

Toilet bowl cleaner
1 cup vinegar
1/2 cup baking soda
Pour the vinegar directly into the toilet bowl and let stand for 30 mins. Sprinkle baking soda onto toilet brush and scour.
To keep bowl fresh, pour 1 cup of vinegar into the toilet bowl once a month and let stand overnight. Alternatively, pour 1 cup of borax into the toilet bowl before going to bed. In the morning, scrub and flush.


Furniture polish
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup vinegar
2 tsp lemon juice
Mix in spray bottle. Spray liberally on wood surfaces and wipe dry.
 
Drain Opener
1-1/2 cups vinegar
2 tbsp baking soda
Pour the ingredients into the clogged drain. Wait 5 min, and turn on the hot water. Repeat if necessary.
 
Polishing silver 
Line a glass pan or pot with tinfoil. Add a tablespoon or two of baking soda and salt. Pour in boiling water. Leave silverware to soak. Polish with toothpaste and rinse. 
 
Glass Cleaner
1 part vinegar
1 part alcohol
1 part water
Mix in a spray bottle and use to clean windows or any other glass, chrome and stainless steel surfaces, and tile.
 
I also found this web page on making your own soap and shampoos. I may have to think about that one! Hmm..... How much time have I got on my hands?

 
These are the "bad" ingredients we need to look for:

Triclosan/Triclocarbon - used as antibacterials in liquid soaps and toothpaste
 
Benzophenone - A UV blocker used to keep sunlight from damaging liquid soaps, shampoos and scents. It is a mild estrogen mimic.
 

Parabens(methyl. propyl, butyl, benzyl) Another week estrogen mimic and suspected endocrine disruptor   
Parfum/fragrance - persistent synthetic musk's, look for natural fragrances from natural essential oils
 
EDTA - a product that binds to metals to soften water and keeps products stable
 
Look for Canada's Environmental Choice certification on soaps and shampoos. They have been tested for biodegradability, don't contain the banned product phosphate and harmful products like EDTA, alkylphenol ethoxylates, surfactants that break down to produce nonyphenols.
 
We are paying for the fact that we are a time consumed people and tend to look for the fastest, cheapest way of doing things. I know I do. Unfortunately we are seeing the effects in nature, all around us!I think though, with a little bit more elbow grease and good ingredients we can accomplish the same, if not better results. I found this great list of how to make your own cleaning agents online. Simple ingredients and said to work wonders! 

5 comments

  1. Anonymous Says:
  2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.  
  3. These look like great recipes to me. I think eeryone needs to think "green."

     
  4. Thanks for sharing these recipes. I intend to give them a try. I already freshen the drains with the vinegar and baking soda, and my mother-in-law taught me about the polishing silver method. :D

     
  5. I have recipes on my blog for laundry detergent and fabric softener, if you are interested.

    Gill

     
  6. MargoPego Says:
  7. Thanks so much for these tips! :)

    I'm from BC, & I love looking around your blog. So much great Canadiana, & so well written. I introduced a friend from New Zealand & one from Australia to your blog tonight. :)

     

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Lorac
Georgetown, Ontario, Canada
I have lived in Georgetown for 31 years but have traveled around a great deal. I own my own business which takes a lot of my time but try to blog as much as possible! I love to take pictures, no training, just a love of photography. Enjoy the pics but please do not copy them.
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Copyright ~~All content and photos are original to Carol Merten, Ahhh...The Cottage Life! and are copyrighted. Please do not copy, or download any content without express written consent. All content and photos remain the sole property of Carol Merten.

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