You'll be shocked at these ingredients you can clean with. - Leaf'd

You’ll be shocked at these ingredients you can clean with.

by Sarah Zitin
Sounds overwhelming, doesn’t it? Sustainable spring cleaning doesn’t have to be a pain in the butt if you break it down room by room. The kitchen is a good place to start because you spend so much time there.

Get rid of plastics!

First and foremost, buy glass containers, baggies that you recycle or that are biodegradable, and anything else that is plastic – find an alternative. There are many sustainable products on the Leaf’d Marketplace, some even in your grocery stores. You just have to look for them. Many states and countries have banned plastic use like straws, cups and other items, and non-plastic items are easier to find than ever. Next, go through every item in your kitchen like your coffee maker, toaster, microwave, pots and pans, bread maker – and see if they’re energy savers or drainers. If they’re old and on their way out, maybe it’s time to get a new one or a good recycled one. Vintage stores and thrift shops are full of household products that people divest of for another brand, model or item. Especially if you’re on a budget, give up your pride and think of how you’re contributing to a more sustainable planet. Bathrooms are another place where you spend lots of time, so keep it real, simple, recyclable, reusable and practical. Use wood instead of plastic, unwrapped soaps and shampoo (yes, they make these), or make your own soap and cleaning products with vinegar, essential oils and natural oils like olive oil or coconut oil. Think resourceful, be creative and find DIY recipes online.

Examples of DIY products:

Toothpaste:

1 tsp Activated Charcoal, 2 tbsp. baking soda, 2 tbsp. coconut oil, add a few drops of essential oil if desired.

Cleaning Product:

2 cups water, 1 cup white vinegar and about 10 drops of your favorite essential oil. Sink and Toilet Cleaner: 1 cup baking soda, ¼ cup hydrogen peroxide, 3-6 drops tea tree, lemon, orange or lavender oil. You get the idea. It’s so easy, fun and sustainable to make your own that you might not need to buy elsewhere. You can make just about anything you use in your home for almost any use. It takes ingenuity, good resources, creativity and a sense of fun. You can make these products with your kids as a project and the whole family gets involved! The wonderful thing about sustainable products is that you can make them yourself, they’re readily available on the Leaf’d website in increasing numbers, and if you don’t find them here, you’ll find them all over the internet. It’s no longer necessary to spend your dollars on stuff you can’t use, don’t need, is unsustainable, especially when you can make it yourself or buy sustainable items. In any room in your home, there’s always a place for sustainability, from furniture, to succulent plants, to electronics that save energy – on and on. Sustainable Spring cleaning is a mind-set of conscientious deletion and shopping. Build furniture, beds, dressers, desks, or get recycled items for your home. Flea markets abound in most places, are a treasure trove of hidden gems. Take your old clothing, or things you want to get rid of – to your local second hand store and exchange them for something “new” to you. You can literally find an entire wardrobe in many of them, and don’t need to retail it. Just make sure what you buy is in good shape with no major damage. Buy wisely and with caution. Sustainable Spring cleaning is common sense. Delete products that are environmentally unsafe, excessive, or that overuse energy. Your income level is immaterial regarding living sustainably. Do it to save money, for sure, but also for the sake of your children and their children. They’re well aware of the world we’re leaving them, and they seem to be smarter than we were. Many young people demand that their parents go green, and if you’re listening, sustainable Spring cleaning is a great way to clean it up and do the right thing!
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