The goal of homesteading is to be as self-sufficient as possible. It’s not just about growing your own food. It’s also about becoming less dependent on the supply chain and big box retailers.
An easy way to do this (and save a ton of money) is making DIY cleaning products from scratch.
It allows you to control the ingredients. Instead of using a spray with unknown chemicals to get rid of stains, use DIY cleaning products safely – knowing what ingredients they contain.
And most of the ingredients are commonly found in your homestead pantry (baking soda, vinegar, hydrogen peroxide, natural soap, and essential oils).
Best of all – DIY cleaning products are effective!
To get you started making DIY cleaning products on your homestead, we’ve put together this introduction of four of the most necessary DIY cleaning products.
DIY All-Purpose Cleaning Spray
Every home needs an all-purpose cleaner.
But many of the all-purpose cleaners sold in stores contain harsh chemicals.
You can make a safe, all-purpose cleaning spray using natural ingredients that is just as effective.
One of the common ingredients for all-purpose cleaners is vinegar. Vinegar works well for scrubbing counters, glass, and showers.
Here is a recipe for All-Purpose Vinegar Cleaning Spray from Misfit Gardening.
- 3 oz hot water
- 1/2 cup of distilled white vinegar (5%)
- 10 drops of lavender essential oil
- 20 drops of lemon or another citrus essential oil
- Spray bottle
- Mix 13 oz hot water, 1/2 cup of distilled white vinegar (5%), 10 drops of lavender, and 20 drops of lemon or another citrus essential oil in a spray bottle.
- Spray on the surface then wipe away with a clean cloth.
DIY Kitchen Cleaners
There are times when you need more than an all-purpose cleaner, such as cleaning up kitchen disasters.
Here is a recipe for a Heavy-Duty Kitchen Cleaning Solution from Real Simple.
- 1/4 cup natural dish soap
- 1/4 cup baking soda
- 5 drops of clove essential oil
- About 3 drops of water
- Mixing bowl
- Mix all the ingredients in a bowl.
- To use, apply the solution to the surface using the gritty side of a double-sided kitchen sponge; scrub.
- Wipe up with a wet cloth.
DIY Bathroom Cleaners
Similar to kitchen cleaners, you can make your own DIY bathroom cleaners which are designed to clean specific areas, such as toilet bowls, sinks, and showers.
Here is a recipe for Toilet Bowl Cleaner from The Homestead Challenge.
- 2 cups distilled water
- 1 1/3 cup baking soda
- 1/3 cup liquid castile soap
- 1 tbsp hydrogen peroxide
- 15 drops of essential oil
- Combine all ingredients in a large bowl or jar.
- Add essential oils (if desired).
- Pour into the toilet and let sit for 5 minutes.
- Scrub away with a reusable toilet brush.
Here is a recipe for Mold and Mildew Cleaner for the Bathroom from Real Simple.
- 2 cups water
- 2 teaspoons tea-tree oil
- 1/4 cup baking soda
- 24-ounce spray bottle
- Pour the water and tea-tree oil into the spray bottle. Shake well.
- To use, heavily spray moldy areas with the solution. Let sit for 24 hours.
- Once 24 hours have passed, pour 1/4 cup baking soda into a small bowl and gradually spritz it with the solution until a glue-like paste forms.
- Apply the paste to the moldy surface using a clean toothbrush and scrub. Rinse.
DIY Laundry Detergent
You can save a significant amount of money by making your own DIY laundry detergent.
Here is a recipe for Homemade Laundry Detergent and Rinse Aid from Better Homes and Gardens.
- 1 bar laundry soap (Castile Soap)
- 1 cup borax
- 1 cup washing soda
- 1 cup oxygen bleach
- Grate bar of laundry soap; you should have about 2 cups of grated soap. (Or look for soap flakes online.)
- Mix all ingredients in a large container. Store in a lidded jar.
- Use 2 tablespoons for a light load and 4 tablespoons for a large or dirty load. Wash as normal.
Homemade Rinse Aid Ingredients
- 1 gallon distilled white vinegar
- 25-30 drops of essential oil (optional)
- Add the drops to the container of vinegar.
- Use ¼ cup in the rinse cycle.
[Related Read: How to Make Homemade Lye]
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