Spruce up your home in an eco-friendly way
It’s that time of year again…everyone is busting out their cleaning supplies and partaking in the springtime spruce up. Rather than spending a bunch of time and money on materials and methods that harm the world around us, utilize these tips to be more environmentally-conscious and even improve your environment.
One simple suggestion is the tip that keeps on tipping — use vinegar. Vinegar is the primary green cleaning solution for multiple uses. Mix as few tablespoons of vinegar in a bowl of water, soak a dishrag, wring it out and go to town on any surface. The solution not only cleans off present dust, but also sticks around to help repel future dust.
Use the same ingredients in a steam cleaner (a borrowed one, if you want to save money) to deep clean your rugs. Fill the compartment with equal parts water and vinegar, then use the cleaner as directed and rinse with plain water. Don’t worry about the vinegar smell, it disappears as the carpet dries.
Save money by purchasing borax at the supermarket instead of the multitude of commercial cleaners out there. Mix it with water and lemon juice and then start cleaning. But you’ll have to be more patient — because although it is more healthful, it doesn’t cut through the grit as quickly as typical cleaners with chemicals, but eventually the job is done just as well.
Don’t forget about ridding your refrigerator of those stinky old leftovers. While you’re at it, do the freezer, too. To avoid the freezer’s contents thawing out and going bad while you are cleaning, simply remember to plan ahead. Take an inventory of what’s in your freezer and list out a weekly menu utilizing the frozen food. Then clean out the fridge/freezer with the same solution you used to dust. Once your spring cleaning is done, go shopping for fresh food to refill your appliance.
Tapestries and bedding
Remove your curtains and strip the beds, then wash them on delicate with an eco-friendly, high-efficiency (or “honest”) detergent. Afterward, take advantage of that springtime weather and hang them outdoors to dry.
Install a living air filter in the form of houseplants. Not only do they add decor to your home, they also efficiently clean the interior air. To properly clean your home’s air, the recommended number of plants is between 15-18 Spider plants, English ivy, rubber plants or peace lilies (in a 6-8-inch diameter container) for an 1,800-square-foot home. That might sound like a lot, but you can be creative with arrangements and also place more in rooms where you spend the most time.
If you have extra items that you no longer use, or clothes that don’t fit, for example, put them aside for a yard sale or box them up for Goodwill or the Salvation Army. You can also list things on Craigslist or other social media for sale or giveaway.
If you have clothing items that are a little more-than-gently used, turn them into rags for dusting. This is much more eco-friendly than wasting single-use paper towels for cleaning.
Remember that these tips apply any time of year, not just in the springtime. Use these suggestions and start living more closely to nature all year round.
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