Replacing toxic chemicals in the house

Posted January 31st, 2010 in Alternative Household Cleaning Products by Rebecca Lane

I have a test in the Nutrition and the Environment class tomorrow, so today I’m focussing on studying (a noble goal don’t you think?). But one of the things I wanted to talk about was the changes that I’ve made in our household trying to decrease the amount of chemicals used and stored here.This decision was made as a result of starting an essay about the chemicals we actually have in our house. In order to read all the ingredient labels as I was typing, I placed all of them around me at the computer. Just from the fumes coming off the packages, I felt nauseous and had an upset stomach and had to stop working (that’s my excuse – and I’m sticking to it!). What I decided to do was find ways to replace the products that I use daily and get rid of the one timers (those products that I had brought into the house to fix a problem). I’m starting with removing Windex and replacing it with a vinegar and water mix (1:3). I put the mixture into a spray bottle and am also using it in the kitchen as clean up after cooking. It works well on coffee spills too. Yes, I know that the spray bottle is plastic – but until I find a stainless steel bottle, it will do.Next step was to find a replacement for furniture polish (I have used several different varieties) that will both nourish and clean my beautiful antique wood furniture. I made up a mixture of 2 parts olive oil to 1 part lemon juice (fresh) and put it into another spray bottle (used a Sharpie to write on the bottle – outgasing more phenols into the environment). It works really well – better than the other products combined. And smells wonderful – you have to put some elbow grease into it – but worth the work because the shine on the wood is beautiful to behold.Next steps, finding a replacement for Javex which I use to keep my white towels, dish clothes, and bed sheets clean. I’ve tried non-chlorine bleach but doesn’t work very well. Picked up some Borax yesterday and will try that today – also Hydrogen Peroxide 35% is supposed to work wonders. I’ll let you know the results of my experiments.I’m off to the library for a couple of hours to study!

One Response so far.

  1. Lee Scott says:

    Nice blog Rebeccca.BTW…I like off-white!

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