Make It Yourself: Household Cleaner

I must admit I don’t have very many travel-related posts coming up in the next few weeks.  Let’s blame it on Doc Sci, shall we?  His passport expired, and we’re stuck here waiting for a new one.

However, being that it is a new year and all, I do think it’s a fine time to get domestic.  Make resolutions, make nice, make clean.

I can’t help you with the first two, but today’s post should help with the last item on the agenda.

I stopped using commercial cleaners in my kitchen when I first moved to Germany (and haphazardly before that).  I couldn’t read the labels of the cleaners and had no idea what was in that bottle of colored liquid destined to clean my counter and table.  I couldn’t tell Windex from Tilex.

Plus, I just couldn’t get the image out of my head of my little ones smearing  Isopropanal, 2-Butoxethanol, Ethylene, and Ammonia in with their peas.

So, I did some googling to find what I could make myself.  I’m sure you’ve seen posts on making your own cleaners before.  Unfortunately, I can’t find half of the ingredients in Germany (borax, castile soap, even baking soda is not the same).

What I discovered, however, is that you really only need two ingredients for everyday use: vinegar and water.

For tougher stains, you may need to add something else.  But for wiping down the table after messy meals, or disinfecting the counter top after making fajitas, just plain ol’ white vinegar plus H20 works just fine.

Again, I don’t have an exact recipe.  I usually just eyeball 1 part vinegar to 3 parts water.  This website recommends 1 part water to 1 part vinegar.  In dire straights, undiluted vinegar can be used.

If you’re not a fan of the vinegar smell, recipes exist which use essential oils.  I personally don’t mind.  I think it makes my table smell like salt and vinegar chips – which I love – though only for a few minutes.

So, Happy New Year and Happy Cleaning!

One thought on “Make It Yourself: Household Cleaner

  1. Pingback: Make It Yourself: Coconut Vanilla Brown Sugar Body Scrub | Thrifty Travel Mama

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