The thing is though, it still needs to be done at times. And the thing is, I wasn't doing it because I didn't want to use the cleaning bottles and sprays that were sitting in my cupboard. I knew they were bad for the environment and hazardous to my health, yet still, there they sat. The house got dirtier and dirtier, and it wasn't until recently when I had a family member come to visit and they took a shower and then refused subsequent showers, that I knew I had a little problem on my hands. I didn't want to use the chemical cocktails in my cupboard, so off I went in search of alternatives.
A few facts:
1. It wasn't until recently that I heard of people "green cleaning" their homes with products found in their kitchens.
2. I never thought I would get excited over housework.
3. I didn't realise how easy it was to switch from the old chemically laden ways, to a newer, earth and health friendlier alternative.
4. And lastly, the alternatives are a lot friendlier on your purse.
Center stage please, bi-carb (bicarbonate soda/baking soda) and vinegar. Two simple, commonly found items in our pantries. I realise that this is probably the ga-zillionth post to appear on "green cleaning" in the mighty blogosphere, but it's a first for me, hence the gathering of my thoughts.
Right, so to the products. These can be used in the same way that the old ones were, ie. the soda replaces the fumey powders in a tin like ajax while the vinegar can be used in place of all those chemicals in a spray bottle that line the supermarket shelves.
The test. The not seen a clean in quite some time bathroom. A bucket of hot water, a stiff brush, cloth and an old flannel nappy for drying. First off, a spray over the mirror with the vinegar solution (I used about 30:70 vinegar/water mix with a splash of eucalyptus oil). A wipe clean. Hmm, not too bad, similar to the windex so far, and using a spray bottle, there is no weaning off from old habits. The habit/action stays the same, it's just what's in the bottle that's different. I am happy with the spray, I hold it ready to aim and fire, it may be a womanly power thing. The eucalyptus is a nice touch, it masks the vinegary smell.
Next up is the baking soda. A liberal sprinkling on the shower floor. A thick paste onto the stiff brush. This mixture is really good for cleaning grout! A little elbow grease. Remember what that is? It does leave a powdery residue on the glass though, so the hot water bucket and cloth came into action here, as did the power-yielding vinegar spray bottle.
I'll have to get another container for the baking soda though as the box it comes in was getting soggy on the bottom by the end of my little cleaning session. I don't want to have the bottom fall out of my soda box, letting all that powdery cleaning goodness go to waste.
The verdict? I will definately will use these guys again. When? I can't really say, sporadic cleaner that I am, but it is nice NOT to inhale all of those nasty fumes while I'm crouched down in my oldest trackies, scrubbing the shower floor. Oh, and I forgot, the best thing, NO RUBBER GLOVES!
(And to my house visitor, if you do happen to read this, I'm SO sorry, it won't ever happen again!)