Nine natural cleaning tips to avoid common mistakes

With the rise in popularity of ‘cleaning influencers’ such as Mrs Hinch, many people are enjoying the task of cleaning and getting organised more than ever before.

Online bingo company Tombola recently discovered that 28% of people spend 470 days cleaning over their working lifetime.

Over the past year, eco-friendly cleaning products have soared in popularity.

So Tombola has looked at how you can save time and money with these natural products, and with the help of natural cleaning expert Emma Reed they have produced some tips to help you to stop making these common cleaning mistakes.

1. Be careful when mixing products as they could produce toxic gas

“Don’t mix particular products together. White vinegar should never be used alongside bleach as when mixed, they create a toxic chlorine gas which can be very dangerous. White vinegar and castile soap cannot be mixed as these will just congeal and won’t be beneficial for cleaning.” Emma says.

2. Use tin foil to clean dirty pans and even keep your bananas fresh

If your pans are a bit dirty, you don’t need to leave them to soak overnight. Wet the pan, sprinkle baking soda, grab some tin foil and use it to clean the pan, washing afterwards (this is for use on non-stick pans). You can even wrap foil around the stems of your bananas to keep them fresh.

3. Don’t clean your windows on a sunny day

Vinegar makes for a great natural substitute for cleaning windows as it is cheap and doesn’t streak. But it’s best not to do it on a warm day as it could actually streak. The sun will dry the cleaning solution before you’ve had a chance to get to it, leaving you with streaks on your not-so gleaming windows. If you do choose to clean your windows on a very warm day, clean small surface areas.

4. Don’t go overboard on your baking soda or vinegar

There’s a common misconception that natural cleaning products don’t work, but they can pack quite a strong punch. So, be careful not to add too much of either when creating homemade solutions as you could be left with a volcano.

5. Allow your products to sit for 30 minutes or more

It’s important that you allow your products to do their work, rather than just wiping away. For instance, let the baking soda and vinegar paste sit in your oven for a minimum of 30 minutes, or overnight if possible. If you allow them to sit, not only are you getting your money’s worth, but you will notice the difference.

6. When cleaning your toilet, let the toilet brush dry and change every six months

You can clean your toilet with baking soda and vinegar and scrub with the toilet brush. But did you know that a wet toilet brush can hold a lot of bacteria? So, it’s best to let it dry before placing back in the holder. For best results, it’s also recommended that you change your brush every six months.

7. Don’t forget to clean your shopping bags with soap and hot water

If you regularly use the same bags when going shopping, they could be overdue a clean. One tip is to hand wash them with hot water and soap, spray with hydrogen peroxide and leave to air dry. Then, they’ll be as good as new and ready for the next ‘big shop’.

8. Don’t ignore your home’s touchpoints

It’s easy to focus on certain elements when cleaning your home and forgetting about touchpoints, such as light switches, door handles and remotes. But it’s important to clean them as often as possible to avoid spreading germs. You can do this by rubbing with a microfibre cloth each day.

9. Clean your washing machine for just 80p

For many of us, our washing machines are working overtime. They can also carry dirt, skin cells, pet hair and more that can get trapped. But you can solve that with your trusty vinegar for as little as £0.80.

All you need to do is add your vinegar and set on a wash cycle. Don’t forget to leave your door open after you have finished washing or drying loads to avoid any build-up of odours.

Emma revealed her top tip for making the switch to natural.

“When making the move to cleaning your home with eco-friendly cleaning products and you begin to research recipes and tips, you may be left feeling slightly overwhelmed, but my top tip here would be to look at the common factors in these recipes – the ingredients.

“Yes, the key ingredients are usually just the same handful over and over again with white vinegar, bicarbonate of soda, castile soap, citric acid and cooled boiled water as well as essential oils being the most popular. When you realise this, it will begin to make everything feel far simpler. Source these ingredients and you will be able to make almost any household cleaner that you require.”

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