The Essential Green Cleaning Toolkit

Whether you’ve been meaning to make the switch to green cleaners but just haven’t gotten around to it, or were waiting until you’ve used up your current household cleaners before buying new ones, there are so many reasons why now is the time to swap out conventional cleaning products for something that’s better for you, your family, and the environment.

It’s easy to find the best products to suit your budget, your cleaning needs, and your home scent preferences. So, clear out those old bleachy-smelling, ammonia-filled products and fill your home cleaning kit with these essentials.

*This post contains affiliate links.*

By the way, I’ve been using Grove Collaborative to order discounted, green home and beauty products that get shipped to my house each month. I highly recommend Grove (this is not an ad, I’m just a happy customer!) and if you want to give them a try, here is my referral link — you’ll get a free 5-piece Mrs. Meyer’s set with your first order, and I’ll get some store credit (win-win!).

Here’s the short list:

  • Microfiber cloths
  • Window and multipurpose sprays
  • Bathroom cleaners
  • Floor cleaners
  • DIY cleaners: White vinegar, baking soda
  • Eco-friendly tools (scrub brush, gloves, caddy)

Below, I’ll describe why this small set of essentials is all you need to begin treating your home to a greener clean, and I’ll write a follow-up post soon with more DIY ideas and more green cleaning goodies!

Microfiber cloths provide a deeper clean than paper towels or rags, are nonabrasive, and because each fiber is so small, the cloth traps dust and can effectively clean certain messes or polish woods without using sprays. E-cloth is a popular brand, but lower priced options can be found.

 

Window cleaners and household cleaning sprays sometimes contain strong chemicals that don’t seem immediately harmful, but can negatively impact your health over time. According to Lung.org: “Some products release dangerous chemicals, including volatile organic compounds (VOCs)… VOCs and other chemicals released when using cleaning supplies contribute to chronic respiratory problems, allergic reactions and headaches.”

One DIY option is to mix white vinegar and water to clean glass, and use baking soda (which can be abrasive) for cleaning kitchen sinks and countertops. But, if you don’t want your kitchen smelling like a salad from all that vinegar, Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day is one of my favorite brands for general-purpose cleaning — plus, their dish soap gets rid of grease like a boss. (Don’t forget to use my referral link for your free Mrs. Meyers 5-piece set!)

Bathroom cleaners are notoriously bleachy (for rooms that are notoriously germy), but you don’t need bleach to get a thorough clean. I use what I call the Method Trifecta. The Method brand has an eco-friendly toilet bowl cleaner, antibacterial spray, and daily shower spray that provide long-lasting results. Again for DIYers, vinegar and baking soda can be used as an abrasive cleaner in tubs and sinks — just sprinkle baking soda on, soak a microfiber cloth or scrub brush in white vinegar, and work those arm muscles!

Sparkling-clean floors — who doesn’t love ’em? In the past, tile cleaners were too harsh for wood floors, and wood floor cleaners weren’t tough enough for tile and grout. But, now there are several options that can get in the nooks of tiles without stripping hardwood finishes. Try Method’s squirt and mop for convenient cleaning, or Attitude’s natural floor cleaner  — it’s hypoallergenic, biodegradable, and vegan, too!

Last, don’t forget your eco-friendly scrub brushes — forgo plastic for sustainably harvested wood or antimicrobial bamboo, with natural bristles that can keep their shape longer than plastic, too.

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