Green Alternatives for Conventional Cleaning Practices

By Elizabeth B. Goldsmith, Betsy Sheldon

Part of Green Cleaning For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Switching to greener cleaning practices can make your home a healthier place and save you money. Make the following easy, earth-friendly changes part of your green-clean lifestyle and you can reduce your carbon footprint at home.

Old Way Green Way
Running a load of wash in a hot dryer. Hang the laundry on the clothes line and let solar power do the
work.
Burning scented, petroleum-based wax candles or spraying room
freshener.
Neutralize room smells by using baking soda as an odor absorber
or burn soy or beeswax candles with natural scents.
Tossing kitchen scraps down the disposal or out in the
trash.
Put vegetable peelings, coffee grounds, eggshells, and
non-animal scraps in a compost bin for great garden food.
Cleaning counters with single-use, cleaner-soaked wipes and
then toss.
Grab a cloth rag — part of an old towel or diaper —
to scrub down the counter and then toss in the wash.
Turning the washer temperature to hot to get the dirtiest of
clothes clean.
Use cold water wash, presoaking or using a laundry booster,
such as borax or washing soda, as needed, and watch your clothes
maintain their color and last longer.
Using an antibacterial hand soap that promises to annihilate
all dirt and germs from your skin.
Wash hands with a plant-based castile or bar soap that does a
thorough job of wiping out virtually all germs.
Spraying your shower wall with a cleaner that you know is
killing all the germs — because it’s nearly killing you
as you breathe in acrid chemical odors.
Use a homemade or green, natural cleaner to get your shower
clean. You may have to put in a little more elbow grease, but
you’ve now got the lungpower to breathe through the
workout.