DIY cleaning products
1 part water
1 part vodka or witch hazel
4-5 drops of essential oil (optional)
Mix all the ingredients together in a spray bottle and use as necessary.
Pro tip: hanging fabric items outside in the sun is a great way to refresh them as well!
Citrus rind (not necessary but it is a good way to give them an additional use before composting)
Put the citrus rinds in a container and cover with vinegar. Let sit for at least a week. The citrus power get more concentrated when you leave it longer. Eventually your citrus rinds will turn grey which means it’s time to take them out. At that point, drain all the liquid and toss the peels into the compost.
This spray can be used as a general surface cleaner, as a window/mirror cleaner (use crumpled up newspaper to remove streaks) and, with baking soda, as a grout/tile scrubber
ZERO WASTE ENZYME CLEANER
Enzyme cleaners are cleaners that break down protein, starch, or fat-based messes (ie. natural ones) when other cleaners may just mask the smell but not remove the problem.
10 parts warm water
3 parts citrus peels
1 part sugar
1 tablespoon yeast
Add all ingredients to a jar and seal. Burp (open the lid) the jar daily to let off pressure (you may need to do this for up to a week).
3 tablespoons grated castile soap
1 teaspoon washing soda*
15 drops essential oil
2 cups water
Add soap to warm water and heat on stove until melted. Once melted, remove from heat and add in the washing soda. Let sit overnight. In the morning, mix well and add essential oils.
*Washing soda is readily available but also easy to make. Put a thick layer of baking soda on a baking sheet. Place in oven at 200 degrees celsius for an hour, stirring twice. Cool and store in air-tight jar.
OPTION #1: VERY SIMPLE
1 part salt
3 parts baking soda
Mix together, store, and use about a tablespoon per load. (Source: Wasteland Rebel)
OPTION #2: LESS SIMPLE
1 cup washing soda
1 cup baking soda
1 cup citric acid
1/2 cup salt
Mix all together and store in an air-tight container. Use about 1 tablespoon per load.
1 bar of castile soap (grated or thrown in food processor)
1 cup of baking soda
1 cup of washing soda
5-10 drops of essential oil (optional)
Adapted from Wasteland Rebel’s site.
Mix all the ingredients together. Use 1-2 tablespoons per load.
If you want to turn this into a liquid detergent, add 2/3 cup boiling water to grated castile soap and dissolve. Then add other ingredients and carefully add water until you reach a gel-like consistency. You can also add white or citrus vinegar as a softener.
ZERO WASTE DRYER SHEETS
5-10 drops essential oil of choice
Place cloth in container and cover with vinegar + essential oils. You want enough to make them all wet, but not have standing liquid. Make sure your container is closed tight. Use 2-3 sheets per load and then re-soak as needed.