Many times, I have left the store ranting about how much money we spend on cleaning products. Why should it cost so much to be clean?
This question brought me home to my computer and I began to "google" for safe and inexpensive alternatives to expensive commercial cleaners. I found that many can be made from common household products and are much less harmful to our environment.
I first found these recipes for window cleaner: Window Cleaner (#1) - Measure 3 tablespoons ammonia and 1 tablespoon vinegar into a sprayer bottle and fill remainder with cool water. Add a drop of two of blue food coloring to duplicate commercial cleaners. Window Cleaner (#2): Put 1 pint alcohol and 1 tablespoon liquid detergent in a gallon jug and fill with water. Put in spray bottle.
I also ran across this recipe for Kitchen Cabinet/Woodwork Cleaner/Polish: Mix one-half cup turpentine, one-half cup boiled linseed oil, one-fourth cup denatured alcohol and one-fourth cup white vinegar. Mix and use to wash off dirt or just as a polish. This is a little smelly for daily use, but I did use it on some woodwork in an older house and it did a wonderful jub of cleaning.
For cleaning really dirty white socks, I found White Sock Stain Remover: Mix one-half cup bleach and 1 cup automatic dishware soap with 1 gallon water. Soak overnight to do it right. Launder as usual.
There were also recipes for a number of home remedies such as these two for Sore Throat Gargle: #1 - 1 cup warm water, 1 teaspoon honey, 1 teaspoon lemon juice, and a dash red pepper. Mix and gargle. #2 - One-half cup warm water, 1 teaspoon vinegar, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon baking soda. Mix all together and gargle for sore throat. For Poison Ivy - Mix 2 tablespoons Boric Acid and 2 tablespoons powdered alum in a pint of boiling water. Dip cotton in solution and put on poison several times a day. For Sunburn - Brew strong tea and place cooled teabags on areas of severe burn. Sponge tea onto burn periodically. The tannic acid in the tea helps to draw the heat out of the burn preventing blistering. (We've used this one a lot - it really works!)
I found the vinegar will clean just about anything and is actually recommended to clean laminate wood floors. A cup of vinegar added to your dishwasher once a month will help keep mineral deposits from your water from accumulating on the racks and moving parts.
Next time, before you run to the store for cleaning products or medicinal items, check some of these sites for alternatives: