Today, I am going to tell you all about how I save money on my cleaning supplies.
My cleaning supplies are going to sound really ‘green’. And they are. I use them not because I subscribe to ‘going green’, (there is nothing wrong with that at all) but because ‘going green’ is very cheap tightwaddish frugal.
My cleaning supply list looks like this.
- vinegar (disinfectant)
- ammonia (degreaser)
- baking soda (mild abrasive and deodorizer)
- hot water
- alcohol (disinfectant)
You can clean anything with these products. Notice that I don’t use bleach to clean with. Vinegar is a much better anti-bacterial than bleach. It cleans deeper than bleach and is less toxic. Plus I don’t much care for the smell of it. The only down fall is that it takes longer for it to disinfect than bleach.
You don’t have to purchase ‘green’ cleaning products. Make your own.
My basic cleaning recipe is this.
To one gallon of hot water, add…
- ½ c. ammonia
- 1/3 c. vinegar
- 2 tbsp. baking soda
Many people don’t like the smell of ammonia. The smell dissipates, but for those that want to make it smell ‘clean’ or what the advertising companies have deluded you into thinking ‘clean’ smells like, you can use essential oils.
These are the ones that I use. (I also use the Lavender oil for the girls hives. I put it straight on her skin and it instantly relives the itch)
I use this to mop floors, wash walls, clean sinks, toilets, anything and everything.
Anything and everything except the tub.
The tub is my weakness. I have bad knees, and to clean a tub, you must get on your knees. I know I could purchase one of those long handled thingies, but that is just another expense.
For my tub, I use Comet’s tub cleaner. (It is what works for me) I also use a mesh scrubbie thingie to scrub the tub with. It does all the work for me, so I am not on my knees any longer than necessary.
I have priced this at all the Dollar stores, and even Odd Lots. It is cheaper to purchase it at Stuffmart for me. It might not be so in your area.
And while we are talking about Dollar Stores, for me, they don’t save me any money. Just about everything in the Dollar stores are at least .03 cheaper at Stuffmart. (except for gift wrapping supplies~~I heart the Dollar store for that) Three cents might not seem like a lot, but over time it adds up.
For windows, I pour 1 cup of alcohol (or vinegar) into the bottom of a 32 oz. squirt bottle (found in the cleaning isle of Stuffmart or reuse a rinsed out Windex bottle) and fill it up with water. Alcohol provides a streak free shine…so does vinegar.
Dusting~~sigh~~I hate dusting.
So…whenever I do actually dust, ~~blech~~ I use a wool duster on everything that isn’t antique or real wood. For those, I use 1 c. olive oil and ½ c. lemon juice or vinegar. The juice/vinegar pulls the dirt out of the tiny cracks and crevices in your wood, and the oil feeds it. Put this in a squirt bottle, making sure you shake it before each use.
I really need to dust this house….double blech!
Now for laundry.
I have tried almost every brand of laundry soap, I have even made my own, and what I have found is that Tide is the best laundry soap out there. I purchase Tide in bulk, when it goes on sale, with coupons. I don’t purchase it any other way. When I’m in a really bad way, or have a coupon, Purex is my second choice.
Also, if you notice there is a black line on the lid of my Tide. I only use ½ of the least recommended amount. I do this with everything. You don’t need to use all that soap. Just because the manufactures have a ‘recommended’ amount, doesn’t mean that is exactly what you should use. This only serves them. You use more, so you purchase more, so they make more money.
Suds don’t necessarily equal clean. Your washing machine can not get all that extra soap out, unless you do extra rinses. What mostly gets your clothes clean is the agitation of them.
I only wash in cold. Hot water is twice as expensive as cold water.
I also use Clorox Bleach. I have tried no-name brands of bleach, but each and every one of them tend to yellow my clothing. Clorox doesn’t do that. I want my clothing to look nice.
There is also a bottle of vinegar up there. I use vinegar as a rinse for my towels. I scent my vinegar with Rosemary and Mint essential oils. Liquid fabric softener and dryer sheets leave a film on towels and cause towels not to be able to absorb as much liquid.
You can use vinegar as a rinse for all your laundry, but uhhh…I’m still a Princess in hiding, and I like my clothes to smell perfumed.
Mrs. Stuarts blueing. I use it in my whites. I dilute 3 drops in a cupful of water and put it in during the rinse cycle. This makes my whites look whiter. Your great-grandmothers used this too.
Last but not least, I make my own stain remover. I have used this for well over 12 years now, and it gets everything out except for tomato based stains. For tomato based stains, it lightens them. If anyone knows of a product that gets out tomato based stains completely let me know.
Here is what I use.
Equal parts of
Mix and put in a squirt bottle. Squirt your stains and scrub them lightly between your knuckles.
I use a solar dryer. It is the most frugal way to dry your clothes, and it is better for the environment too.
These things are what works for me. They are frugal (mostly) and non-toxic (mostly).
What works for you?
What do you do in these areas to save money?
What are your favorite frugal cleaning products? I’d love to know.
Especially what you use in your tub.