Non-Toxic Spring Cleaning

Someone once said, “Housework won’t kill you, but why take the risk?”  In today’s world,  the use of household cleaning agents is a big risk. These chemicals are the number one source of toxins in the home. They are are absorbed through the skin, inhaled into the lungs, and ingested as chemical residues that remain after dishes and other household items have been washed.

For thousands of years, water (with a few plants and other natural ingredients) was the only cleaning agent. Within the last fifty years, we have come to think we need floor finishes, tub and tile cleaners, and all manner of disinfectants. Few people realize that the same cleaning agents used to keep their homes “spick and span” are jeopardizing their health. Most cleaning products today contain petroleum-based surfactants and solvents. These ingredients have been linked to reproductive disorders, neurological problems, and cancer. Many of them have not been tested for their impact on human health, nor have they been tested for their impact on the environment.

Now is a good time to phase out old cleaning products and to replace them with safer options. Despite the continuing hype from manufacturers, cleaning rarely requires specialized or expensive ingredients. There are five basic cleaning ingredients every home should have:

  1. Baking soda is a good scrubber. It is abrasive, soluble in water, and anti-fungal. Baking soda requires a bit more elbow grease than chlorinated powders (cleanser), but your lungs won’t suffer during the job.
  2. Borax is also an abrasive, soluble in water—with good germicidal qualities.
  3. Vinegar is a deodorizer and sanitizer. Its mild acidity kills many bacteria and molds. The acidity will also remove mineral deposits.
  4. Castile soap is a great natural soap.
  5. Microfiber cloths are a relatively new addition to the world of cleaning. These untreated, reusable cloths are made of microscopic fibers that are spun into tiny, wedge-shaped strands. They can lift off dirt and grease, reducing or eliminating the need for harsh cleaning chemicals. A good quality microfiber cloth can last for years.

Here are a few simple cleaners you can make from the above ingredients:

Homemade All-purpose Cleaner
1 tsp. borax
1/2 tsp. baking soda
2 Tbsp. vinegar
1/2 tsp. liquid castile soap
2 cups very hot water

Add the first four ingredients to a spray bottle, then slowly add the hot water and shake until dry ingredients are dissolved.

Homemade Disinfectant

Add 1/2 cup of borax to 1 gallon of warm water.

The above homemade solution was used at a hospital to replace other disinfectants. The bacteriologist reported that it satisfied all hospital germicidal requirements.

Homemade Glass Cleaner

Add equal parts of water and either vinegar or lemon juice.
Place in a non-aerosol spray bottle and mix gently.

Note: If you have a water ionizer, the acidic water easily removes water spots from glass.          

Homemade Scouring Powder

1 cup baking soda
1 cup borax
1 cup regular salt

You’ll find many other recipes for  natural homemade cleaning solutions in Chapter 6 of my book, The Pure Cure, a Complete Guide to Freeing Your Life From Dangerous Toxins. And if you don’t want to make your own, there are plenty of environmentally friendly products in your local health food store or online. Have fun spring cleaning this year with your own homemade cleaners that won’t leave you and your family sick!

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Sharyn Wynters is a naturopath with over 30 years experience in health and wellness. She is also Director of Clinical Services for NORI (Nutritional Oncology Research Institute) and host of the TV/Radio show called “Get Healthy the Wynters Way with The Pure Cure!” (Thursdays from 1:30-2:30 p.m. on Visit her website at

When you purchase a copy of Sharyn's book by clicking the link below, a portion of the proceeds benefit Cancer Schmancer.