Natural Cleaning 101 – Eco Cleaning Guide

Would you like to learn more about eco cleaning for your home? Let’s take a look at all the tools, products, and tips you will need to create a natural, green home. If you’re looking for a better way to clean your home, this guide to natural cleaning 101 is the perfect place to begin.     

Eco cleaning kit, wooden scrubbing brushes, lavender, cut lemons, essential oils and baking soda

You may be wondering what essential cleaning equipment you should keep in your cleaning cupboard.  Often, people talk about cleaning products but not the tools you need to use them.

Investing in good quality equipment is important. Though it may cost more upfront, you will ultimately save more money. 

It doesn’t have to be fancy! Stainless steel and wooden products will last longer than plastic, so choose them if you can. 

I have been testing out my natural cleaning cupboard since moving into our new home to make sure I have the right tools for every job around the house. I’m excited to share these helpful tips with you. 

List Of Equipment For A Natural Cleaning Cupboard: 

  • Stainless Steel and Enamel Buckets
  • Mop 
  • Wooden Broom
  • Latex Household Gloves
  • Brush and Shovel
  • Wooden Scrubbing Brush For Dishes
  • Wooden Scrubbing Brush For Cleaning
  • Glass Jars
  • Linen Or Cotton Rags
  • Wooden Or Stainless Steel Pegs
  • Wicker Basket
  • Glass Spray Bottles
  • Glass Soap Dispensers
  • Twine And Tags

Each of these tools have a particular purpose in the eco cleaning cupboard and will help you to complete your cleaning tasks quickly and easily. Click to Shop the Post!

Stainless Steel Or Enamel Buckets

Buckets can be used for many things around the house, not just cleaning. Quality stainless steel buckets will outlast plastic ones. Plastic bucket handles always break so easily. 

You might like to look for some second-hand enamel buckets if you love collecting vintage items like I do. There are lots of beautiful options out there. 

In addition to soaking clothing or sheets, buckets will also be used to carry cleaning solutions for mopping floors, cleaning walls, and washing windows. You can also use them to transport cleaning supplies around the house, to put compost in, and to carry dirty rags. 

I have 2 stainless steel buckets in my home so I can soak clothes in one and clean with the other. 

Stainless steel cleaning bucket with linen rag drapped over the side

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Mop

A good quality mop is handy to have. The Cuban mop was something I had never heard of until I was researching eco-friendly alternatives to the common plastic mop. The tool is so effective, easy to use, and makes so much sense. We are no longer buying mop heads that disintegrate and end up in landfills. 

You only need cotton or linen rags that can be washed over and over once you have invested in the mop itself. You can also use special Cuban mop cloths if that’s easier for you.  After soaking the rag in soapy water, natural soap of course, and tying it around the mop, it’s business as usual. 

We have wooden floors in our kitchen and lino in our bathroom, so this mop style is perfect for us.

Wooden Broom

Using a wooden broom with natural bristles is the best way to go. Soft bristles are good for sweeping inside the house to avoid scratching the floors and hard bristles are good outside. 

I always sweep up any food crumbs around the kitchen with my soft bristle broom instead of pulling out the vacuum. After that, you can simply use a dustpan and shovel to get the dirt into the bin. 

Latex Household Gloves

Wearing gloves when you clean is important to protect your health and your skin. You can pick up bugs easy, especially if you’re cleaning the toilet! The best way to protect yourself is to wear reusable household gloves made of latex. There are a variety of filler-free options available on the market. 

Since I am a lifelong eczema sufferer, gloves have been essential in protecting my skin from infection. I have a few pairs of latex gloves lying around, some for washing dishes and others for cleaning the house. 

Brush and Shovel

Everyone always needs a handy brush and shovel. With them, cleaning up spills and broken things is much faster and less stressful. It’s much faster and simpler to sweep with the broom then collect with the brush and shovel if you have wooden or tile floors than having to grab the vacuum each time. 

For our home, I bought a wooden brush and a metal dustpan that are much more durable than plastic ones. I keep them in our laundry room, so they’re easily accessible. 

Wooden Scrubbing Brush For Dishes

Scrubbing brushes with bamboo or wood handles are perfect for washing dishes every day. I was pleasantly surprised at how easy it was to scrub after making the switch. 

Natural bristles are much better at cleaning and hold their shape much longer than synthetic ones. I was forever flattening plastic bristles on pots and pans that needed more elbow grease. 

My favourite part about these is the changeable scrubbing heads. You can replace an old scrubber with a new one when it reaches the end of its lifespan. You don’t have to throw away the entire brush every time. 

Wooden Scrubbing Brush For Cleaning

Dish scrubbing brushes usually have soft bristles, but this little powerhouse has harder bristles that make it ideal for scrubbing grime and grease. You can use this brush to scrub tough spots on your floors, in the bathroom, or around your home.

If you have a vegetable garden, you can also find similar vegetable scrubbers. 

Glass Jars

My biggest obsession is storing everything in glass jars. The cleaning cupboard is no exception. Cleaning ingredients, washing powder, dishwashing powder, dusting cloths, cleaning ingredients, and pegs are all stored in jars. 

Make boring things beautiful by storing pegs in pretty jars, it’s the little things in life after all!

I like to use wide-mouth Mason jars, Weck jars, or vintage Agee jars that I can find in local thrift stores. 

Linen Or Cotton Rags

Did you know that linen is naturally antibacterial because the fibres repel moisture? This makes it good to clean with. You can use old linen table cloths or invest in some quality linen cloths that will last for ages. 

Linen cleaning rags on marble bench top

Wooden Or Stainless Steel Pegs

Plastic pegs break, rust and disintegrate. You can never go wrong with stainless steel pegs, they don’t rust and last for ever. Investing in stainless steel pegs was the best decision I ever made. I could never go back. However, if you can’t afford them, wooden pegs are just as good. 

Wicker Laundry Basket

A wicker laundry basket is nice to have. I wanted a wicker basket for a long time, so when I saw one at the local market, I was thrilled. The laundry isn’t the best chore, so why not make it look pretty? 

Glass Spray Bottles

Glass spray bottles will become your best friend. They can be used to store homemade all-purpose sprays, window cleaners, room mists, and glass cleaners. Amber glass bottles are my favourite because they prevent essential oils from spoiling. 

You should have at least 4-5 of these so you can always store your homemade cleaning products. 

5 glass bottles and jars on a wooden board with mint and lime

Glass Soap Dispensers

It’s brilliant to use glass soap dispensers if you make your own liquid hand soap. Since I add essential oils to my soap, I like the amber glass bottles for these. The darker glass helps protect the liquid from direct sunlight, which can damage the oils. 

Twine And Tags

When you make natural homemade cleaners, you should label the bottles so you know what is inside. Putting tags on each bottle is an easy, affordable way to keep track of which cleaner you have. Plus it looks cute! 

My favourite way to label everything is with twine from the hardware store and simple brown tags that I buy from the dollar store. 

That’s a total of 15 items to clean everything in your house! 

These tools will last you a long time if you take good care of them. Don’t get rid of items that you already have in your home, such as buckets that are in perfect condition. Use them! Replace them with quality only when necessary. 

Shop Eco Cleaning Equipment

All Natural Cleaning Products

Now that we have gone over all of the eco cleaning equipment you may need in your cleaning cupboard, let us take a quick look at some of the products you can use to make your own cleaners.

  • Essential oils
  • Castile soap
  • Vinegar
  • Baking soda
  • Beeswax
  • Borax
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Quality salt

How do you clean without chemicals? 

A combination of the natural cleaning ingredients as listed above will make cleaning without chemicals super easy. I find my homemade natural cleaners like this all purpose spray to work so much better than chemical filled ones.  

What is the most effective natural disinfectant?

Essential oils are great for cleaning without chemicals. The oils are extracted from plants and have a multitude of benefits for natural cleaning. They can be used to make antibacterial spray, cut through grease, and even clean air of toxins. 

My favourite essential oils to clean with are lemon, lavender, tea tree, eucalyptus, rosemary, and peppermint.

Four essential oil bottles in a row, orange, rosemary, lavender and lemon

What are the main natural cleaning materials?

Personally I use Castile soap, essential oils, baking soda and vinegar the most. I find these to be effective to clean my home and enjoyable to use. 

It’s nice knowing the surfaces around our home and the air aren’t filled with toxins. 

Three bottles of castile soap in a row, tea tree, peppermint and unscented Dr Bronners bottles

Natural Cleaning Recipes to Get You Started

All Purpose Spray – This all-purpose spray is great for cleaning any surfaces around the house. Add in 10 drops of tea tree to make it antibacterial.

Toilet Cleaner – Pour ½ cup baking soda in the loo then add in ½ cup white vinegar and 10 drops tee tree essential oils. Let this fizz for a few minutes, then scrub and flush. 

Floor Cleaner – Add 20 drops lemon essential oil and ¼ cup castile soap to a bucket. Fill the bucket half way with warm water and mop floors as normal. I like to use Dr Bronner’s tea tree soap for the floors.

Laundry Odour Remover – Add ½ cup baking soda with the washing powder to get rid of bad odours. This is magic, especially when you have a tradesman hubby or kids that play sports! 

Fabric Softener – Add 2/3 cup of vinegar to your washing powder in the washing machine. By doing so, the soapy residue is broken down, leaving the textiles lovely and soft. More white vinegar hacks here

Mould Cleaner – Fill a 500ml glass spray bottle with water then add in 3 teaspoons tea tree essential oils. Spray on problem areas and let sit for 5-10 minutes then wipe away. Spray and leave to help prevent mould growing. 

Hand Soap – Don’t buy this anymore. Make your own hand soap with my simple but effective recipe. 

Stickers on Jars – Rub straight lemon onto the sticker or soak in a hot sink with 10 drops lemon essential oils. Leave for 10 minutes and wipe off. 

Find More Natural Recipes:

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I’d love to see what cleaning supplies and recipes you’re using tag me @makylacreates on Instagram.

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