While it’s great to be eco-friendly, cleaning products have to be powerful enough to actually work. The good news is that science has come a long way and you no longer have to burn your nose with bleach to be assured that something is clean. Here are some of the best eco-friendly cleaners that work well, smell great, and are safe to use.
As a species, we are evolving and getting smarter. This means slowly coming around to the importance of putting healthy and chemical-free food in our bodies – but let’s not forget that the things we spray in our house and breathe in are probably just as important.
Second hand smoke has become extremely regulated (in the USA at least); where and how you can smoke around people is restricted to specific areas. Yet ironically, we freely spray harsh and hazardous cleaners throughout our home’s air and clean our bodies, floors, counters and clothes with poisons.
The dangerous chemicals used in a lot of common household products are linked to cancer and other diseases, which should make you think twice before using them.
If placing carcinogens into the air concerns you, consider making the switch to healthy cleaning products that won’t pollute your lungs and bodies with massive amounts of chemicals . But, be careful; you might be surprised that a lot of the self-proclaimed “natural” or “non-toxic” cleaners can also be laden with harmful ingredients.
If you have any doubts about a certain cleaning product you use, check its score on the EWG site, which grades a cleaning product based on it’s hazardous chemical scale.
Here’s an example of the score for Pine-Sol, a seemingly innocuous cleaner that most of us have in our cleaning closet. This product scores a whopping D on EWG and includes chemicals that have been linked to cancer.
Use of these toxic products also has downstream effects for where they end up after we use them – in drains, lakes, landfills or back in our soil to place these pollutants back into the Earth again.
We all have a social responsibility to make a joint effort to right this ship. If you have the option to use something else (and most of us are fortunate enough that we do have these options), choose products that won’t hurt you and your family, and everything else they come in contact with.
If you are into using green products it only makes sense you should recycle your containers; most green products come in recyclable containers.
You might ultimately start to refill your bottles as well, as a lot of eco-friendly companies offer refillable options.
With a little concerted effort and minimal amounts of research, we can choose products that help us live healthier and keep the Earth in better shape.
“But research takes time I don’t have,” you say? Well, fear not – we’ve done all the homework for you. Unless otherwise stated, the selected products receive an A grade from the EWG, but also have very high user ratings.
You may know these guys from being on Shark Tank, where they proved that their plant based solution cleans and disinfects better than chemical competitors. Here’s the video where they rub raw chicken on a board and show the difference between the two cleaners’ residue.
Shark Tank Better Life
Watch the Better Life Pitch
If you love the smell of mint, this one’s for you.
A non-scratching powder cleanser and safe-alternative to Ajax or Comet, this can be used on toilets, sinks, and pots – sprinkle a little on a food-crusted pan and you’ll be amazed at how well this stuff works.
Similar to Bon Ami, this is a scouring agent that can be used on many surfaces, the difference is that this one smells like a peppermint stick.
When professional cleaning companies try this product, they won’t go back to anything else. It cleans to a sparkling shine. A wonderful solution for hardwood floors, this vinegar based cleaner smells great and will tackle getting rid of the worst old cleaner residue-haze.
Another product professional home cleaners go gaga for – because it smells fantastic from the essential oils it is made with and does a powerful job of de-griming any type of floor.
Disclaimer: This one was not on the EWG site but others rate it very high as a “Safe for Pets” and chemical-free cleaner that works really well. For those of you who remember Ed Begley Jr. (a t.v. actor from the days of yore), he’s the one who created this stuff.
Once you’ve used a natural cleaner like this, you won’t want to go back. While the actual smell is a light citrus that fades, there is no lingering chemical odor in the house, and the only thing you will notice is spotless carpets.
Toilet Bowl Cleaners
Although not as powerful as bleach, this product will get hard water stains off your toilet bowl. Reactions to its effectiveness and scent are hit or miss.
Disclaimer: Not rated on EWG, however all ingredients should check out as A rated. This cleaner smells great AND works, some say even better than bleach-based toilet cleaners.
Use this for a bathroom/toilet cleaner OR laundry – this non-chlorine bleach has no smell but still can whiten and disinfect like no one’s bizniz with a happy A rating from EWG.
All of the attitude products with the exception of some of the discontinued ones boast an A rating on EWG, not an easy rating to score for numerous items that span different categories – most of them revolve around washing toys and dishes for babies, or laundry detergents and stain removers. These dishwasher pouches are no exception to their A-game.
No chemical smells but lots of suds and clean dishes with this dish soap.
A natural, plant-based dish soap that won’t irritate your skin (even if you have allergies to some preservatives) that still works like normal soap and is also very sudsy.
This dish soap smells wonderful, is gentle on your skin and somehow is still a powerful, effective cleaner that rinses items clear with no film.
Great for those with sulfate allergies, this cleaner does work – but beware that it doesn’t show it with bubbles and suds. Some people have a hard time with using this due to the lack of foaming.
Works well, smells great, and is chemical-free and safe for the whole family.
A detergent that will cause no issues for allergy sufferers, cleans extremely well but gently (doesn’t strip out color), and has a pleasing light scent. While this version may seem a bit pricey, one reviewer stated this single bottle has lasted over a year and a half in a 2-person home.
For those who feel that the natural, crunchy detergents aren’t strong enough to get rid of man-stench, give this powder a try. The scent it will leave is strong, but fresh and clean smelling and will kick the butt of any foul odors your household can throw its way.
The high marks these items score in both reviews and ingredients should prove to you that you don’t need caustic cleaners to get the dirt out. Make your home look and smell great with these amazing products you can feel good about using.
What are your favorite natural cleaners?