It’s no secret that store bought cleaners are filled with all kinds of chemicals that are now proven to cause health issues. Good news! A natural homemade all purpose cleaner is really easy an inexpensive to make!
Caution: DIYing household stuff is also really fun an addictive and can lead to more DIY.
Natural Homemade All Purpose Cleaner
Making your own homemade all purpose cleaner might sound a little intimidating but I promise you it’s the easiest thing ever. Oh, and by the way, it’s also cheaper, and not just in the roundabout “it’s-non-toxic-so-less-medical-bills-later-on” kind of way.
There are a variety of different agents you can use in making homemade cleaners but I’ve found the easiest and most versatile to be regular ol’ white vinegar. It truly is the best multi purpose cleaner I’ve found. Most grocery stores sell it in the GIANT bottles on the bottom shelf right there with the rest of the vinegars.
Homemade All Purpose Cleaner Recipe
The recipe is simple. All you need is:
- A spray bottle – any size will do
- White Vinegar
- Essential oils
Fill your spray bottle 1/3 full with vinegar and then top it off with water, leaving a little room for your essential oils. You can use as much or as little essential oil as you like. I tend to use about 15- 20 drops per 8 ounces (2 dl) of liquid volume.
I will say, it does have a bit of a vinegar smell BUT it goes away very quickly, within a minute or two and then you’re left with whichever scents you have chosen. If it’s still a bit strong for you, you can add a bit more water and essential oil.
Shake well before every use (essential oils and water don’t mix) and store in a store in a cool dark cabinet. Sunlight and heat can destroy the effectiveness of essential oils.
This cleaner can be used on most surfaces, but because it is made with vinegar, it’s best not to use it on granite or other natural stones, or on wood floors for mopping. Spot cleaning is ok. A weaker solution might be ok to use, but always do a test patch first to make sure there are no negative effects to your surfaces.
But that being said, it’s a fabulous natural kitchen cleaner, bathroom cleaner, window cleaner. It’s safe for kids to be around, and frankly, my 2 year old loves to help me mix it up and wipe stuff down with it. (She definitely takes after me! How else would one get a kid that actually enjoys cleaning??)
What essential oils are good for cleaning?
There are a lot of fabulous essential oils for cleaning! Did you know most have real antimicrobial properties? The list of good oils to use is truly endless and deserves it’s own post, but here are my favorites.
Lemon essential oil is antibacterial and anti-viral. It also is great for taking care of stubborn smells and leaving nothing but freshness behind (especially if you cook with garlic!)
Orange Essential Oil is so refreshing! Ants hate it, as well as a few other bugs, and is antibacterial and anti viral
Tea Tree Essential Oil – Also known as Melaleuca Oil is very purifying and cleansing. A perfect addition to any cleaning blend
Rosemary Essential Oil is also very popular. The woody, piney smell is not only pleasant but it is very antimicrobial. It’s a wonderful earthy balance to the brighter smells like lemon.
Lavender Essential Oil is a lovely soft note that is still very effective against germs and is also a natural bug repellant. If you’re a stress cleaner (like me) this is a fabulous addition to your cleaning products
Eucalyptus Essential Oil is also a really effective oil to add. It, too, is very potent in keeping away bugs and killing germs. BUT be careful with this one if you have young children at home!!! Many studies have been done showing that Eucalyptus Essential oil is unsafe for children under the age of 10! If it’s one you love, then make sure the kids are not in the room when you are using it.
The Essential Oil Cleaning Blends
These are my three favorite blends to use in cleaning. Each recipe is for 8 ounces of the homemade all purpose cleaner recipe above. My bottle is 16 oz/5 dl so I double these recipes.
Energizing Sunny Citrus
- 7 Drops Lemon Essential Oil
- 7 Drops Sweet Orange Essential Oil
- 3 Drops Lemongrass Essential Oil(optional)
Relax and Refresh
- 8 drops Lemon Essential Oil
- 8 Drops Lavender Essential Oil
- 3 Drops Rosemary Essential Oil
Warmth and Spice
You might also notice this smell a lot like “Thieves” blend, however I’m not affiliated with Young Living. This is my version of their blend. If you have a bottle of YL Thieves oil, then add 15-20 drops and it will do the same.
- 6 Drops Clove Essential Oil
- 5 Drops Lemon Essential Oil
- 3 Drops Cinnamon Essential Oil
- 2 Drops Eucalyptus Essential Oil
- 1 Drop Rosemary Essential Oil
- 8 Drops Lemon Essential Oil
- 7 Drops Tea Tree (Melaleuca) Essential Oil
Q: Is Apple Cider Vinegar a good disinfectant?
A: Yes! It can be substituted for white vinegar in this recipe.
Q: Can hydrogen peroxide be used as a disinfectant?
A: Yes. 3% Solution can be used undiluted on hard surfaces, such as countertops, toilets, and doorknobs.
Q: What is the ratio of water to vinegar for cleaning?
A: It depends on your preference. 1:2 or 1:3. Personally I prefer 1:2 (I have a little kid in the house, who knows what they touch when they’re out!)
This basic formula for cleaning will be a pleasant switch from the store bought varieties Use on bathrooms, widows, kitchen surfaces, tile floors and more. Armed with healthier options, go forth and enjoy your cleaning with your homemade all purpose cleaner!