Cleaning day has arrived again, and without even thinking of it, you reach for whatever solution you have under the counter. For many of us, cleaning is just one more thing we have to check off our “to do” list on a weekly basis.
Don’t assume your commercial cleaning products are safe… ever
How much thought do you put into the composition of your cleaning products? Do you purchase your products because they smell nice, work well or are inexpensive? It is likely that some combination of the above drives you to your selection. However, there is bad news, plenty of it.
Commercial cleaning products are laced with danger; they are loaded with materials you probably can’t pronounce. Go ahead, turn over one of those bottles of fancy pink stuff that smells like raspberries. How many words on the back can you pronounce? If any, do you know what they are? While your cleaners may be pretty or cheap, they are, without a doubt, toxic.
What does the Environmental Working Group say?
The Environmental Working Group (EWG) is an “American environmental organization that specializes in research and advocacy in the areas of toxic chemicals, agricultural subsidies, public lands, and corporate accountability.” This group scores personal care products, food, cleaning products and more with regards to their toxicity. Out of hundreds of common bathroom cleaners tested, the majority receive a failing grade. In fact, well over 200 bathroom cleaners found in your local grocer have been rated a C or below when it comes to safety.
Among the worst culprits are toilet bowl cleaners. Yes, our toilet bowl harbors germs but in general, these germs pose a much lower risk of making us sick than does the cleaners we use to “kill” the bacteria. Most toilet bowl cleaners are highly toxic. Take those tablets that you put in your tank, the ones that turn the water blue or otherwise bubble away. Sure, they may do the job and leave your bowl sparkling, but the chemical residue is overwhelming.
Many of these tablets contain bleach (sodium hydroxide). Although it is not technically corrosive or toxic unless you drink it, however, exposure to bleach can irritate your eyes, mouth, lungs, and skin. If you have any respiratory issues, bleach can create serious issues.
Fragrances are another additive that can be highly dangerous. Yes, fragrances may make the product smell pretty, but it comes at a cost. Many fragrances can irritate the airways and skin. Also, they are very dangerous to the environment. Some studies indicate that fragrances may cause allergic contact dermatitis.
Read the labels
Another interesting thing is that if you happen to glance at the labels on some of these bathroom cleaning products you might notice that there is a warning. It usually says something like, “hazardous to humans or domestic animals,” It makes no sense that we would want to use a product with such a label.
What is the answer?
The good news is that there are a number of safe and totally non-toxic cleaners that fight germs and leave your bathroom smelling and looking fresh. Among these are such things as vinegar, baking soda, and essential oils. When it comes to such a small space as the bathroom and the toilet, in particular, it is important to consider non-toxic alternatives.
How To Make Your Own Fizzy Toilet Bombs
Yes, they sound a little aggressive, but the only thing that is aggressive about these cleaning gems is their power to leave your toilet bowl sparkling fresh while leaving zero toxic residues behind.
- 1/2 cup baking soda (buy it here)
- 1/2 cup citric acid (buy it here)
- 1/2 cup cornstarch (buy it here)
- 20 drops lemon essential oil (buy it here)
- 10 drops peppermint essential oil (buy it here)
- Mold of your choice or large spoon
- spray bottle
- 1-gallon zipper plastic bag
- Gather all of the ingredients.
- Measure out the dry ingredients.
- Place all dry ingredients into the gallon plastic bag. Knead the mix really well.
- Open the bag and spray with water 3-4 times. Close the bag and mix really well. The moisture will start to absorb. Repeat a few times making sure not to add too much water. The mix would stay clumped together when you squeeze it together in the bag. Look for the consistency of a pie dough. The bag may start to expand. When it does, just let some of the air out. This is a normal reaction of the combination of the ingredients.
- Add the essential oils and mix again.
- Once the consistency is right, pack into the mold of your choice. A spoon can also be used. This mix expands for quite some time as it is starting to dry. I used my spoon to poke at it after I placed it in the molds. This helped to take some of the air out. otherwise, it just tends to keep expanding.
- Leave the bombs to dry for a day or two. They will be fragile until they harden.
- They can be stored in a jar with a lid until you are ready to use them.
I love the way these bombs fizz when I place them in my toilet. I did leave them to set for a while. After they were completely melted, I used my scrubber. I then flushed the toilet and had an amazing clean bowl with a fresh scent.
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