We closely follow the recommendations of the Environmental Working Group’s Guide to Healthy Cleaning, since health always has to come first. Here are some of our favorite products from their website: dish soap, hand soap, and organic multi-surface bathroom cleaner. Ecover is a great brand because their plastic containers are made from plants and most score A’s on the EWG’s guide. As with any purchase, look for the largest size/amount available in the best packaging possible (aluminum>glass>plastic).
These washable mop heads fit on regular Swiffer mops, and we just dip the head in a designated glass roasting pan (garage sale find!) containing 50:50 white vinegar and water. You can also use the white vinegar and water mix for all-purpose cleaning with old rags– a great reason to hold onto old t-shirts, pillowcases, or cloth napkins. You can also add a few drops of essential oils in your mixture – they are antimicrobial and smell great! When you’re done using your mop heads and cleaning rags, toss them in the wash using our zero-waste laundry tips.
Instead of using commercial air fresheners like Febreeze, try using essential oil diffusers. With just a few drops of organic essential oils like lavender or lemon and some purified water, diffusers make the house smell fresh and mask the smell of the white vinegar used for cleaning. However, if you’re using Febreeze, please take advantage of these free Febreeze aerosol and air purifier recycling programs.
If you want some new cleaning supplies, check out full circle – many of their great products can be found on Amazon as well. Their products are made from sustainable materials, such as bamboo, plant-derived plastic, recycled material, and glass. When your old cleaning brushes wear out, you can replace them with plastic free options like this kitchen brush set and toilet brush. Other cleaning items with wood handles include this wool duster and hand broom. If you’re allergic to wool (Emma is!), this duster from full circle (link to full website above) is great and easily washable.
For washing dishes, we like these washable, compostable cotton “sponges” with a bamboo filler. Trader Joe’s also sells sponges that are amazing – long lasting, very absorbent, and made from cellulose (so the are compostable! Just cut them up into very little pieces to aid the break-down process). They do come wrapped in plastic so this purchase does come with some trash waste, but each plastic case has several sponges that come compressed, giving you several weeks or months worth of use – still a great alternative to plastic sponges!
When getting rid of old cleaning supplies, you can donate them to Matthew:25 Ministries who will sort and distribute them to disaster areas in the US and around the world.
Check out our Cleaning board on Pinterest to get more more eco-friendly inspiration!
Disclaimer: We receive no financial compensation for any of the products recommended or shared anywhere in this blog.