Download the COOLmob Green Cleaning Guide here.
The household cleaning isle in the supermarket is full of expensive, overly-packaged products – few of which we really need. They’ve developed products to suit every different possible surface or appliance, with every type of ‘fresh-smelling’ smell that could be smelled. Companies try to convince us that we need a different product to clean every different surface or appliance in the house. But cleaning is cleaning – it rarely requires hospital-grade, laboratory-tested, and toxic ingredients.
And there are plenty of toxic ingredients in cleaning products. For some products, labels even warn us to wear gloves, avoid contact with skin and eyes, and not breathe in the fumes or vapours.
Take bleach – it is classified as a hazardous material which is irritating to eyes and skin and when in contact with acid liberates a toxic gas. Benzene is damaging to the central nervous system, the liver, kidneys, and bone marrow and can cause leukaemia. Formaldehyde, commonly used to preserve dead organisms in a science lab or snakes in a roadhouse stop, is also found in a variety of cleaning products and cosmetics.
Cleaning products can decrease the air quality in our homes by affecting the levels of VOC’s – Volatile Organic Compounds. Studies have found that VOCs, are often 2-5 times greater inside than they are outside – meaning that the air you breathe inside your house may be more toxic than that outside.
Really, though, you can get by with 5 or so simple, cheap, and far more environmentally friendly ingredients: bi-carb soda, vinegar, eucalyptus oil, lemons, and borax will pretty much cover everything. There are many uses for each of these ingredients on their own, but you can also make a huge range of things by mixing them in various ways. Be sure to download our Green Cleaning Guide.