Monthly Archives: February 2010

Making All-Purpose Cleaner: Totally Do-Able

The All-Purpose Cleaner Components

Stellar Orange Lemongrass All-Purpose Cleaner I Made!

You know when people say they went “hiking” and it sounds like a an arduous undertaking?  And then when you hear more about it, you realize it just meant that they were walking (possibly even strolling) in the woods, and it was no big thing?  Well, that’s how making home cleaners and body products often turns out.  It sounds like a LOT to do, but really in the end, you throw some ingredients together and *BOOM* you have made something great.

This time around I made all-purpose cleaner, primarily for my countertops, but to be used everywhere else in the house as needed (it is called all-purpose after all).  I decided to do this for 3 reasons:

1. It is cost-effective and easy.

2. I ran out of all-purpose cleaner.

3.  I had bought a book with recipes and how-to guidance last week and had not even opened it yet.

How I made it:

1. Get the necessary ingredients and tools to make 8 ounces, which are:

  • A spray bottle
  • 1 teaspoon Borax
  • 1 teaspoon Sal’s suds (a mild biodegradable soap)
  • 5-10 drops Lemongrass Essential Oils
  • 5-10 drops Sweet Orange Essential Oils
  • Warm water to fill the bottle

2. Open the spray bottle.  Put in the borax, the Sal’s Suds, and then the water.  Add the essential oils last.  Put in essential drops to the smell strength you like.

3. Clean things.

It is seriously that easy.  The thing that took me the longest to do was find a spray bottle because one that I planned on re-using had some fancy you-cannot-ever- open-this-spraybottle-top.  I gave up on that one after a glare and some swear words, and moved on to the smaller one I had.

A couple of notes, I really like Sal’s Suds. It’s a Dr. Bronner’s product that is really useful for cleaning just about everything.  It cleans carpet/fabric stains like a champ (like a chocolate stain from your tan couch, let’s say, for example), and it lasts forever because it is really concentrated.  I got the Borax at the local herb shop here, but I am not sure where all it is sold.  The essential oils can be changed to your preference in both type and strength.  Other popular options for a clean scent are eucalyptus, tea tree, lavender, birch, rosemary, mint, and thyme.  This, to me, is the best part of making these things yourself, you have complete say as to what your cleaner smells like.

Lastly, I keep cleaning things and then leaning over and then smelling it in with a deep breath and a happy sigh.  I highly recommend it.

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