Cheapest and Safest Cleaning Products on the Planet

Posted by on March 12, 2009 | 18 Comments

So often I forget the many wonders that lie within my humble pantry. Cheap and completely non-toxic, there are few better cleaning agents than the staple ingredients in our food pantries.

My personal favorites: white vinegar and baking soda.

vinegar2bakingsodaI was reminded of their powers due to two pairs of new jeans I just purchased. I had been hesitating on washing them. I wanted to be able to dry them, to shrink up the legs just a bit, but was afraid the nice deep blue color would fade. Then I remembered the trick of soaking clothes in vinegar to help prevent bleeding and fading. I ran the jeans on delicate cycle (the shortest wash) with just cold water and 1 cup of white vinegar. I then loaded up the washing machine and ran the load as normal, on the regular cycle. After drying, they still looked like new, success!

I also rely on baking soda for the safest and easiest way to clean the oven. Siimply sprinkle baking soda everywhere and mist it down with water. Leave it be, and let the soda do its work. Later, the baking soda and scum wipes off with ease.

I was really excited to find this website on 1001 Uses for Vinegar. So many great ideas … definitely check it out! Some very interesting ideas.

While I was writing this (coincidentally) my husband emailed me a good Consumer Reports article on 7 Ways to Green Clean – and cut costs. I can’t wait to try some of these out.

Now, tell me, do you use vinegar and baking soda for any of your cleaning needs? Are there any other “homemade” cleaners you use? Please do share!!


Filed Under: Tips, Ideas, and Deals

Comments (18)


  1. VeggieGirl says:

    I looove baking soda!! So versatile!!

  2. Sarah says:

    It is always the natural simple things that work the best.

  3. Christina says:

    I like mixing vinegar with water for glass cleaner – it gets windows and glass squeaky and sparkly clean!

  4. Thanks for the tips! I will try this!

  5. Happy Cook says:

    I too use vinigear in my cleaning, especially the windows etc…. and the baking soda i use it a lot,for example to clean the sstains inside the tea pot etc…

  6. Nowheymama says:

    Baking soda is GREAT for getting kid-related smells out of laundry, carpet, etc.

    We’ve just started making our own wrinkle releaser with Downy and distilled water. 🙂

  7. RunToFinish says:

    I need to be more green with my cleaners, it’s one of the areas where I have not made the sounds horrible but I feel like i need to use up what i have

  8. Michelle says:

    Hmmm i like to eat my vinegar and baking soda more than i like to “use” it. I once put a whole box of soda in my mini fridge to get rid of the smell, but it didn’t work!!!! hahahahah Bad luck you think??

  9. Amberlyn says:

    Thanks for the link to that vinegar website. I never knew that adding a bit of vinegar to my dog’s water bowl would help get rid of these fleas. I’m going to have to start making my own cleaners since I’m allergic to almost everything in commercial cleaners. sigh. I’ll let you know how it goes though

  10. Diana says:

    lemon juice is good for cleaning the fridge. so is vinegar. i always feel weird about putting chemicals where i put food!

  11. Meghan says:

    Yes- All I have too! They extend to my bathroom too! Baking soda and vegetable glycerin tooth paste, cider vinegar hair rinse, baking soda face scrub… And of course a little coconut oil to moisturize.

  12. Jaime says:

    I love this site and have followed it for quite some time but today I’m going to comment because I love vinegar and baking soda. Up until now I’ve only used it to clean out our dishwasher, coffee pots and used them in my laundry to get stains and odors out…but today you have opened up a whole new world for me. Thanks!!

    P.S. I’m looking for a homemade dish detergent and a homemade laundry detergent recipe if you have one.

  13. Ruby says:

    I use vinegar to get sweat smells out of clothes – just place on the sweaty area and then wash as usual. Works a charm!

  14. Maggie says:

    My all-purpose spray is 1 part vinegar, 5 parts water, 3 drops of dish soap and essential oils for fragrance. I use it on pretty much everything in the house. For fragrance I was using orange and clove in the winter but now I’m mixing lemon and lemongrass.

  15. jenny says:

    i keep a spray bottle of vinegar in the shower to prevent mildew. also, after juicing lemons, i rub the spent half over the stovetop to cut greasy splatter after cooking.all natural and green–definitley the way to go!

  16. Thanks for the links. I’m always looking for a more enviro friendly alternatives.

  17. Anna says:

    Thanks for posting these links! This is great!

  18. Jen says:

    Yes these are the tried and true best! We’d all be healthier if we just stuck mainly to these wonder cleaners and a bit of elbowgrease 😉

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