The current pandemic circling the world has put a renewed emphasis on spring cleaning as we wipe and sanitize on a regular basis. For many, there just aren’t enough disinfecting sprays and wipes to go around.
This may be for the better.
“Most cleaning agents have chemicals that are unhealthy for us and the environment,” warns Cyndi Prince, owner of LooHoo Wool Dryer Balls, a healthy alternative to chemical dryer sheets. “Although access to everyday items has been limited, we can still keep our homes clean—and safe.”
Rather than cleaning with bleach and other toxic chemicals, consider healthier alternatives.
Health experts agree: chemical-based cleaners are no friend to respiratory function and compromise the immune system, the very cells needed to fight the coronavirus.
Research also reveals that breathing in scented products causes migraines, allergic skin reactions and irritation to eyes and airways. Artificial scents often contain VOCs—volatile organic compounds—that produce ozone, which can trigger asthma attacks, according to numerous published studies.
What about alcohol-based hand sanitizers? Think again. According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, these products may reduce microbes on hands in some situations, but “sanitizers do not eliminate all types of germs.” Rather, CDC recommends washing hands with soap and water. And scrub, scrub, scrub for 20 seconds.
Better yet, try Castile Soap, an environmentally sensitive vegetable-based soap that boasts a long list of uses—from body wash and all-purpose cleanser to makeup remover and shaving cream.
Other suggestions for non-toxic cleaning include:
Glass: Replace ammonia-based products with one part distilled white vinegar, one part warm water.
Tile & showers: Skip bleach-based products and create your own vinegar and baking soda paste you can scrub on with a brush.
Stainless steel: Add mild detergent to warm water, wipe surface with soft sponge and polish with dry, lint-free cloth.
Non-porous countertops: Mix half vinegar, half water and spritz away!
Porous countertops: Granite, stone and marble are more sensitive so replace the vinegar with rubbing alcohol.
Wood: Polish wood floors with a soft cloth and a bit of olive oil and vinegar.