Some of you might already be there, some of you will take a few weeks yet, but if there’s one thing we can bank on it’s that all of us will get bored enough during lockdown to deep clean our homes.
While the shops might be out of every surface disinfectant known to man, if you’ve got a bit of vinegar and bicarb on hand then you’re all set to go nuts on these eco-friendly cleaning hacks. A bit of vodka won’t go astray either so buy an extra bottle next time you’re stocking up.
Make Your Own Spray N’ Wipe
Run out of spray n’ wipe and not quite ready to face the supermarkets yet? Put some white vinegar and water in your empty bottle and you’re all set. There are about 100 different recipes for this on the internet, but my go-to is half a cup of vinegar with half a cup of water and a drop of dishwashing liquid. You can also add some essential oils to freshen up the smell if you’ve got them lying around. It might not be potent enough to kill Coronavirus, but if you’re just using it to wipe up spills around the house, it will do the job just fine.
Deep Clean Your Oven
Deep cleaning your oven doesn’t have to mean loads of chemicals. Bicarb and vinegar (as always) will do the trick.
All you need to do is create a baking soda paste with about two to three tablespoons of baking soda and a splash of water.
Remove all the trays from your oven, rub the paste all over the inside and then leave it to sit overnight. In the morning, use a damp cloth to remove the paste and then spray the oven with vinegar which will react with the baking soda residue and foam up. Wipe the vinegar out and repeat a few times and voila, your oven will be sparkling.
Clean Out Your Microwave
There’s not much magic to this one, just a bit of common sense. Put a bowl of water in the microwave and set it on high for two or three minutes. Leave the door closed for a few more minutes when it’s done to let the steam loosen up all those food splatters, then get at it with your homemade spray n’ wipe.
Treat Your Mattress And Pillows To Some Stain Removal
Pillows and mattresses can get a bit nasty after a couple of years, but there’s a pretty simple trick to removing those yellow stains. Just pour some bicarb soda on the stain, leave it for a few hours, then vacuum it up. Extra points if you can leave them out in the sun for a few hours to help lift the stain and kill bacteria.
Make Your Own Cleaning Rags
This whole physical distancing thing might go on for a while, so you might as well use the time to clean out your wardrobe and get rid of the old tees and tanks you’re not wearing anymore. But rather than sending them to landfill, cut them up and use them as rags for anything and everything. If you’re really bored and you have some sewing skills, you can go ahead and clean up the edges using your sewing machine.
DIY Your Own Air Freshener
If you’ve got a bottle of vodka sitting around the house, it’s time to make a decision: get drunk or make air freshener. We’re guessing you all chose the first option, but if you have enough wine, gin or beer for that, you might still want to make your own air freshener. All you need is a cup of water, a quarter cup of vodka and 20-30 drops of essentials oils of your choosing. Spray it around your lounge, around your bin, in your shoes or anywhere that needs a quick freshen up.
Give Your Stainless Steel Appliances A Scrub Down
We’re going to go ahead and admit we spent way too long testing out different eco-friendly stainless steel cleaning hacks that are floating around on the interwebs. The result? Just use your homemade vinegar and water spray n’ wipe with a microfibre cloth. If you’ve got really stubborn spots and smudges, put a drop of olive or coconut oil on a rag and rub them down, then follow it up with your homemade spray n’ wipe. Works a charm.
Make Your Own Shower Cleaner
We thought vinegar and water would do the trick here, but you’ll actually want a little vodka to help remove the scum that just loves to build up in your shower. Just mix a cup of vinegar with half a cup of vodka or rubbing alcohol, then top it up with 1.5 cups of water and 20-30 drops of tea tree oil. You can also add in other essential oils, but we like to use at least 10-15 drops of tea tree oil as it’s said to help kill mould.
Save Power On Your Tumble Dryer
We all know tumble dryers aren’t great for the environment, but if you live in an apartment it’s sometimes unavoidable. So instead, we’ve got a hack to save a whole lot of energy. When you add in your wet load of washing, add a dry towel. Take it out after 15 minutes or so and you’ll see it’s soaked up a bunch of water; meaning your wet load of washing will dry way faster.
Get The Sticky Residue Off Your Glass Jars
It would be great if all companies used those sticky labels that just peel right off, but we’ve all been faced with stickers that just won’t budge. While picking them off bit by bit might be somewhat therapeutic right now, there’s a much easier way. Mix one part baking soda with one part canola oil (almost any oil will do, so make it a cheap one) and then wipe it over the residue. Wait about 15 minutes, run it under some warm water and wipe it away.
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Image credit: Creatv Eight