When we deep clean our house, we typically put out all the sanitizers, bleach, and disinfectants to do tough cleaning jobs. But did you know that these store-bought products mostly contain chemicals harmful to the human body and the environment? Do eco-friendly cleaning products work as an alternative to store-bought products?
Yes, for this reason, many consumers opt for more eco-friendly products for their cleaning needs. They are free of harsh chemicals and thus suitable for the planet and your family’s health. However, while these natural products are popular these days, not all of us are ready to switch from bleach to baking soda.
Well, if you have already made a switch to gentler and environment-friendly cleaners, congratulations! But if you’re one of those who still doubt that eco-cleaning products work, stay put as we resolve your dilemma in a little while.
What Are the Risks of Using Chemical-Based Cleaning Products?
Before diving into how eco-cleaning products work, let’s first see the chemical products’ health and environmental risks. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), some of the dangers of using traditional cleaning products include the following:
- Pollution due to the disposal of chemical products in waterways
- Compromised quality of outdoor and indoor air caused by Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) in most ingredients of chemical products.
- Overexposure of house cleaners, janitors, and employees to dangerous ingredients
- Certain ingredients from regular cleaners can irritate the eyes, skin, and throat.
Moreover, according to EWG, exposure to chemicals may trigger potential complications and health risks which include:
- Congenital disabilities in children
- Chemical burns
What Are Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products?
Eco-friendly cleaning products are those made with biodegradable formula, made without single-use plastics, and often packed in compostable packaging. They are safer than non-eco products because they are typically made from organic materials or ingredients.
However, newbies to the eco-cleaning lifestyle may find “Eco-Friendly” vague or confusing. Fortunately, the EPA has taught consumers to look for more eco-friendly cleaning supplies.
Other than natural eco-friendly products like baking soda, lemon, and vinegar that you can find at home, you can also purchase eco-cleaning products in the market. To ensure that the product is free from chemicals, the EPA certifies a product before they are sold to the market. Check each product’s label and look for the “Safer Choice” tag on the packaging.
Do Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products Work?
Absolutely! Eco-cleaning products are formulated to kill germs and thoroughly clean the areas they are made to target. Even natural products like baking soda are effective deodorizers, while vinegar is a popular all-purpose cleaner.
As such, don’t worry about the results. Eco-Friendly cleaning products are just as effective as regular commercial products with toxic chemicals. While it is true that the chemicals make the cleaning product effective, they are plenty of eco-friendly alternatives that work just the same. They can clean tough stains, remove grease, and even kill bacteria.
What Are the Benefits of Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products?
Undecided if you should switch to plant-based cleaning products? From health to environmental issues, here are some benefits of eco-based cleaning.
Did you know there’s little evidence that traditional cleaners are more efficient at cleaning than eco-friendly-based cleaners? In fact, more studies suggest that biodegradable cleaning products are more reliable in tough cleaning jobs.
Eco-cleaning products are better to use on hard surfaces. They are less corrosive and gently clean certain areas without being harsh and damaging. These products are also safe for human health. After all, non-eco cleaners can be caustic and toxic and release irritating fumes. Overexposure to these chemicals is highly dangerous.
Good for the Environment
Eco-cleaning products are way safer for the environment. They don’t contain chemicals that can cause water and air pollution. Most of all, they are often recyclable, or at least their packaging. However, non-eco products contain harmful ingredients and may be deadly to our aquatic and wildlife.
Reduces Plastic Waste
Plastics are one of the perpetrators causing harm to the planet. They are highly detrimental to the environment. On the other hand, green cleaners are typically packaged in recyclable materials, refillable bottles, and biodegradable materials.
Tips to Making Sure You are Getting Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products
Since eco-friendly cleaning products are becoming trendy, many manufacturers may sell the ones that are not “entirely” natural or organic. Here are some tips to navigate yourself in the growing eco-brands in the cleaning aisle.
Learn (Some of) the Language
To know the lingo, you don’t need to be a chemistry graduate or a pro in the eco-lifestyle. Some ingredients that an eco-friendly cleaning product may include: are thymol, vinegar, and lemon.
Some may also have unfamiliar ingredients.
For instance, Sodium Percarbonate is a combination of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide. While sodium bicarbonate means baking soda. It’s also helpful to search for the ingredients online before buying a particular product.
Avoid the Red Flags
Some products may claim that they are eco-friendly but contain harmful chemicals. Avoid products that contain ammonia, bleach, and chlorine. Don’t also buy the ones with danger, poison, flammable, and corrosive words.
Buy EPA Certified Products
To ensure you’re getting an eco-friendly cleaning product, it’s safe to buy EPA-certified ones. Before an eco-cleaning product is sold in the market, manufacturers have to apply for EPA certification. On the other hand, EPA scientists test the products to ensure that they are effective as cleaning tools and safe for the environment.
What Are the Best Eco-Cleaning Products?
All eco-cleaning products are beneficial to the planet and yourself. However, not all of them are made of the same material. The best eco-cleaning products are the ones made of compostable, zero-waste, and fully recyclable materials. They should be natural and contain biodegradable ingredients while remaining effective in cleaning the home and killing bacteria.
What are Natural Alternatives to Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products?
Eco-cleaning products cannot only be bought in the market or online. They are also natural cleaners that can be found at home. Like eco-based cleaners, natural products are also efficient for the environment and human health. Some of these products include:
- Vinegar or Apple Cider Vinegar
- Baking Soda
- Castille Soap
- Tea Tree Oil
Green Natural Cleaning Products Recipes
If you want to utilize your extra household ingredients or materials at home, you can make them your go-to cleaning products. Here are a few green cleaning recipes located at Herbal Musings.
Combine equal parts of water and vinegar in a spray bottle. Use this mixture to clean hard surfaces at home.
To effectively remove germs at home, combine 2 cups of water, ½ tsp. Tea tree oil and 1 tbsp. Liquid castile soap. This mixture is a multipurpose disinfectant that can kill viruses.
Put ½ cup baking soda into the clogged drain, then pour 1 cup vinegar. Leave the mixture for about 15 minutes to do the magic. Then pour water into the drain.
Mix 2 cups of hot water, ¼ cup of vinegar, ¼ cup rubbing alcohol, and 1 tsp. Cornstarch. This mixture is efficient as a glass cleaner and can clean stove tops and windows.
To deodorize your refrigerator or carpet, sprinkle the baking soda or leave a bowl of baking soda on the affected area. You can also refresh the house by boiling water with cinnamon, slices of lemon, vanilla, or dried flowers.
Mix water and baking soda to form a paste. Use the paste with a scrubber, brush, or sponge to clean the surface of the stoves, sinks, bathtubs, floor tiles, and other hard surfaces.
Do Eco-Friendly cleaning products work, you ask? For sure! They work just the same as your regular commercial-bought cleaners. Some are even more effective and, most of all, do not damage the environment and human health.
Anyone interested in using eco-cleaning products should look out for the label that says the product is EPA certified. Buy the ones with biodegradable, non-toxic, and free from chemicals tag.
You can also try using popular cleaning ingredients hiding in your pantry. Use left-over baking soda, lemon, vinegar, and the like, or make green cleaning products at home. Just follow the recipes above, and you’re good to go.
If you’re interested in learning more about eco-friendly cleaning products, check our post – Are Green Cleaning Products Really Safe for the Environment?