With the current awareness about our environment and how it is changing due to the ever growing impact of the human population, many people are looking to use more natural and less chemical based products in their lives. Many people choose to eat organic products, or purchase products that are produced locally, and among many other things it is becoming easier and easier to find less environmentally harmful cleaning products for your house. This is a fantastic direction to be heading, but the people who use these products will tell you that they are generally more expensive than the chemical filled alternative.
At Hamanasi Adventure and Dive Resort here in Belize, we are doing everything that we can to minimize the impact that we are having on the environment that we are blessed to be living in. Our housekeeping department uses all environmentally friendly cleaners to clean our rooms and environmentally friendly laundry soaps to wash our linens and towels. We wanted to share a few environmentally friendly cleaning products that won’t break the bank and that you make with just a few ingredients that we will bet you already have in your cupboards.
To clean windows to a shine
When you clean your windows, use 25% vinegar mixed with 75% warm water. Put on your rubber gloves and immerse an old cotton towel in the water. Heavily rub on the windows and then scrunch up a piece of newspaper and use to buff up the windows. If there are any streaks left use a dry cloth to finish off.
To remove limescale
You might already know this one, but it is possible to remove limescale from your showerhead or taps by simply using white vinegar. You can improve the effectiveness of this trick by heating your vinegar in a saucepan before using it. You can put it into a small container and tape it to any pieces that cannot be removed, or wrap a presoaked cloth around the base of taps. Allow your showerhead to soak, but for no longer than 1 hour. Afterwards just use and old toothbrush to brush the showerhead removing any remaining limescale, and run the water to remove any remaining vinegar. Be careful, this method will not work on plated showers and taps.
To clean your oven
This is everyone’s least favorite area to clean, but it really doesn’t need to be difficult. You simply spray the inside of the oven with water using a spritz bottle, then liberally cover the inside of the oven with baking soda. The baking soda and water should form a paste, and all you have to do is to leave the paste for a couple of hours, then wipe off when ready (you may need to repeat this for really baked on grime). Simple.
To remove red wine
This one is always a question for debate. Try using soda water on the spill and just keep dabbing with paper towels until there is no color showing on the paper towel.
To freshen up your furniture
This one is a good one. Mix 1/8 of a cup of 100 proof vodka (yes, vodka) into a 16ox spray bottle with water. You can add some essential oils if you would like a fragrance, but this mix makes an amazing fabric freshener. The alcohol will kill any bacteria in the fabric before evaporating away.