Improve your quality of life and make nice with Mother Nature by rethinking how you clean. Doing so has real consequences: a Canadian Medical Association Journal study looked at 26 types of cleaners home cleaners, from laundry detergents to hand sanitizers. The report states that “young infants living in homes where cleaning products were used frequently were more likely to develop childhood wheeze and asthma by age three.” Clean healthier by making small changes. Here are ideas to get you started.
Ditch the Disposable Mop
Are you so over the water-and-bucket routine? Then the Libman Freedom Spray Mop is your new best friend. The mop doesn’t require constant dipping into water, batteries or single-use disposable cleaning pads that are bad for the environment. Instead, just fill with the earthy-friendly product of your choosing. PS: The microfibre pad can be used 100 times! Available at Home Depot and Canadian Tire.
Choose a Green Cleaner With a High Rating
Seventh Generation gets the job done minus the toxins. Spray it on everything from kitchen countertops to baseboards and materials including ceramic, glass and marble. Made from 100% essential oils in a fully recyclable post-consumer bottle, your home will smell like a botanical garden – so fresh and so clean! See how your current home product fares over at EWG’s Guide to Healthy Cleaning. PS: Seventh Generation gets an “A” for “lowest concern.”
String Up a Clothesline
The electric clothes dryer is a major energy hog. String up a clothesline and let those T-shirts sway in the breeze. You’ll reduce electrical consumption, save on bills and your yard will be filled with the pleasant smell of fresh laundry. Ah…..
Select a Biodegradable Cleaner
Dr. Bronner’s Sal Suds Biodegradable Cleaner is a powerhouse that can be used to clean your clothes or your cups. It’s made with plant-based surfactants and natural fir needle and spruce essential oils (no cheap, harsh pine stump oil), without any synthetic dyes, fragrances or preservatives. Bonus: The packaging is cute enough to display in your new laundry room. Pick it up at your local health food store or online.
De-Smudge the Earthy-Friendly Way
Everyone loves stainless-steel appliances, but the fingerprints? Not so much. Give smelly, toxic chemical cleaners the boot by pulling a David Suzuki-approved method. Pour one tablespoon of olive oil on one side of a rag, and one tablespoon vinegar on the other. Remove smudges with the olive-oil side followed by the vinegar.
Get Rover in on the Green Scene
Pets are certainly on the cleaning to-do list and deserve to be sponged down with a gentle and natural solution. Bleu Lavande’s soothing eco pet shampoo is enriched with lavender essential oils and hydrating hemp seed extracts. Plus, it’s available in a no-rinse formula in case Rover is opposed to bathtubs.
Spare the Landfill
, a new brand on the market, is making a buzz for its forever bottles, shakers and tins. You buy the bottle (or shaker) once, fill it up with plain water and then drop in an earth-friendly tablet. Just shake and use. The laundry tablets are sold plain (not in icky blistered plastic wrap) that you store in a Blueland tin (or your own vessel). The company has been carbon neutral since 2020 and are climate neutral certified as of 2021 because they don’t ship products with water and packaging that goes into landfill.
Use a Pump (Loaded With Eco Soap)
Here’s another snazzy dispenser that treats dishwashing liquid as fine wine that you decant into a bottle. Sold through Amazon.ca or Well.ca, the minimalist pump from Cleancult is available in a variety of colours, including orange and purple, and makes a stylish statement in the kitchen. Keep reading for Cleancult’s array of refillable dish soaps…
Fill ‘er Up Out of a Box
Cleancult’s refillable liquid dish soap gets our vote on the fragrance front. Lemongrass, grapefruit basil, honeysuckle and blue sage are coconut-powered soaps shipped in recyclable milk cartons, down to the plant-based cap. The brand also offers dishwashing tablets, toxic-free hand sanitizers, cleaning sprays and more.
Opt for Energy Star-Rated Appliances
In the market for a new dryer? Look for the Energy Star tag. Miele makes a mean energy-efficient dishwasher (shown), as well as tumble dryers and refrigerators. If you can’t afford to replace your appliance just yet, run it on off-peak hours – usually evenings and weekends. Check with your provider.