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Make Your Own Go Green Homemade Household Cleaning Products

Updated on October 5, 2019
SoyCandleLover profile image

Green Living and Cleaning, conservation-minded of outdoor and indoor environments.

"My Green Cleaning Kit" shared via Creative Commons License
"My Green Cleaning Kit" shared via Creative Commons License | Source

Make your own Green Clean Products with Ordinary Household Items!

These Green Cleaning recipes are culled from many sources, while some include my trial and error tweaks. I have not used or tested every one of these yet, but I'm on my way.

Many of these safe green clean recipes include everyday pantry staples you already have in your home. Vinegar and baking soda (bi-carb soda) are completely safe and have many household uses. If you haven't tried green cleaning, these are the easiest and cheapest ingredients to start you on your ecologically friendly conversion. Try the window and glass cleaning formula recipe below to get started.

Important NOTE: If you are using up your store bought brands before converting...

... to Green practices save those containers and spray bottles. Most can be disassembled and run through the dishwasher, but I recommend removing them prior to the drying cycle to air dry just in case.

Cleaning with Old Toothbrushes? Yup!

Toothbrushes are the perfect size for lots of jobs around the house.  Wash them in the dishwasher, or submerg in boiling water for a minute, and all the cootie germs will disappear.
Toothbrushes are the perfect size for lots of jobs around the house. Wash them in the dishwasher, or submerg in boiling water for a minute, and all the cootie germs will disappear.
Pretty Purple Star!
Pretty Purple Star! | Source

This Green Clean Article Received a Quality Recognition Award

Once upon a time in Squidoo-land, this lens (article) earned a Purple Star. A Purple star would only be given to Giant Squids (Squidoo authors) with 50 or more certified quality articles. These were awarded to a few exceptional lenses per week. Here on Hubpages Editor's Choice hubs are comparable.

Green Clean = Common Household Ingredients

  • white vinegar
  • baking soda
  • borax
  • salt
  • herbs
  • olive oil
  • cornstarch
  • lemon juice
  • cream of tartar
  • toothpaste - the white kind without gel, sparkles, etc.
  • hairspray
  • isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol)
  • hydrogen peroxide

And lots more!

Trade Smart Reusable Cloths for Paper Towels

Smart 10041 Reusable Kitchen Wipes, 2-Pack
Smart 10041 Reusable Kitchen Wipes, 2-Pack
Super absorbent and reusable, I only need half a sheet to do most jobs. If you have children or pets that can create big spills, I highly suggest you leave the sheets whole. For little jobs I even have a sheet I've cut in quarters. See my photo below.

My SmartForNature Cloths

2 Green cloths were cut from a full size sheet and are what I use most.  The purple sheet was cut in 4 pieces for quick wipe sized cloths.
2 Green cloths were cut from a full size sheet and are what I use most. The purple sheet was cut in 4 pieces for quick wipe sized cloths. | Source

Reusable Tools... Wait! Don't Throw That Out! Yes, Really!

Save to reuse and repurpose:

Spray bottles and containers from your old non-green cleaning products (See intro)

Old toothbrushes (Run through dishwasher before use, or clean with soap and really hot water) Ideal for cleaning cracks and crevices that never seem to get clean.

Pipe Cleaners for even smaller crevices and tiny holes like my teeny bud vases (just rinse and let completely dry before storing)

Old bristle hairbrushes (Run through dishwasher before use, or clean with soap and hot water. Great for brushing furniture for pet hair.

Any more ideas for repurposed cleaning tools? Let us know in the comment section way, way, below. :)

Tension Rods Really Work to Hang all your Squirt Bottles

Green Clean - Surfaces

~ Window and Glass Cleaner ~

Fill a spray bottle with:

3 tbs. Ammonia

1 tbs Vinegar

Cool water

Wipe clean and polish to get that nice clear shiny appearance.

My Tweak: Add 1 squirt dish washing liquid and 1-2 food coloring. I use green since this was my first homemade cleaner. :) I now use blue since I don't have any store bought window cleaners in the house, and it helps to identify it as window cleaner for everyone in the house.

~ Glass Cleaner - Unscented ~

Would you believe CLUB SODA! If the smell of vinegar or ammonia gets to you use either flat or fresh club soda. Reported to work well at getting your glass and windows sparkling clean, and it's a cheap and easy option. Just pour into a spray bottle. Use as you would any glass cleaner.

* If you are using both options, I suggest color coding with a 1-2 drops of a different food coloring.

~ Furniture Polish ~

1 c. olive oil

1/2 c. lemon juice

Mix in spray bottle.

Shake well and spray a very small amount onto a cleaning cloth. Polish until no residue remains.

NOT recommended for floors- very slippery.

~ Cleaning Wipes ~

*See note below for Greener Version.

Use a round plastic container, drill hole in lid about 1/2 inch, get an extra large roll of good paper towels cut in half to make two small rolls (leave plastic covering on while doing this, electric knife works best)! Place one of the small rolls in plastic container. Save the other as a refill or make both.

Cleaning Wipes Cleaning solutions

~ General Surface Cleaning ~

1 1/2 cups white vinegar

1 1/2 cups water

~ Window and Glass Cleaning ~

1/2 cup rubbing alcohol

2 1/2 cups water

1 tablespoon white vinegar

Pour one solution on top of the roll in the container. Place lid on container, allow paper towels to absorb the solution for 4 hours to overnight. Open storage container and take out the wet cardboard tube from the center of the paper towel roll and toss. Now thread the inside of the paper towel roll where the card board was through the hole in the lid and close lid. After awhile paper towels may dry out, if so add more of the solution and let sit overnight before using again!

* Greener Version: Use Washed Rags cut into squares. Accordion fold to use container as above. Launder after use and return to container.

Image credit: "Rainy days" by Jason Harding via Creative Commons License.

Become a Facebook Fan below...

... and you'll get the

Green Clean Tip of the Day!

My favorite Green Mantra - Recycle, Reuse, Repurpose, Reduce...

And if you absolutely can't do one of these things, try giving it away.

In the U.S. Craigslist has a great listing for Free items and is very popular.

Image Credit: from the "Water Drops Collection" by Yogendra174 via Creative Commons License.

Caption Credit: Me. Inspired by the awesome image.

Green Clean - Kitchen

~ Drain Cleaner ~

Volcano Drain Cleaner and Freshener (The kids love this one)

Run water until hot. Turn off.

Pour 1 cup baking soda into drain.

Pour in 1/2 cup of Vinegar.

Let bubble and sit for 10 minutes.

Pour in 1/4 cup Vinegar again. It will bubble again.

Thoroughly rinse with hot water.

Image Credit: "Kitchen" by nerdcoregirl via Creative Commons License.

Reader's Suggestion for Alternative to "bleaching" Sinks

Thank you!!!
Thank you!!! | Source

Cleaning your Kitchen Cleaning Tools

Most sponges, kitchen and scrub brushes can be washed in your dishwasher with your next load.

Place on top rack. Air drying a load with sponges is recommended, or remove prior to drying cycle.

Citrus is the best natural fragrance

Oranges, Lemons, Limes, and Grapefruit.  It's all good!
Oranges, Lemons, Limes, and Grapefruit. It's all good!

Natural Fragrance Fresheners

~ Home and Drains ~

Quarter any citrus fruit and add water into pan. Simmer on stove top for at least 1 hour adding water if needed. When slightly cooled, pour some slowly down the drain to clean and freshen. When the rest is cooled, pour into a glass jar and refrigerate until the next time you need a little smell of citrus in your life.

*My Holiday Favorite involves oranges or apples, and GROUND spices: cinnamon, cloves, and allspice. Don't use whole spices unless you like to hear your disposal grind that way. Ask me how I know. It involves a child who was trying to help.

See the video below titled "More Cleaning Tips like using Tea Tree Oil" for more fragrant ideas.

~ Garbage Disposals ~

Any citrus-Lemons/Limes cut into quarters. Oranges cut into eighths. Feed 1 into disposal. Refrigerate remaining slices for future use.

I've recently starting freezing lemon wedges. If ice cubes can help sharpen disposal blades, why not frozen citrus? Works great and still smells WONDERFUL!

Green Clean YouTube videos

Way back when, Kermit was the only "Green" video when this article was first published in 2009.

With the popularity of green cleaning finally catching up, there are lots now. These are just a couple of my favorites using tips or ingredients not featured on this page.


Overnight Toilet Cleaning Removes Hard Water Stains

More Cleaning Tips like using Tea Tree Oil for Disinfectant

Green Clean - Floors and Carpets

~ Wood floor cleaner ~

1/4 c. Apple Cider vinegar

1 gal. water

Squeeze mop until just slightly damp.

Work in small areas at a time.

~ Floor Cleaner for Vinyl/No-Wax ~

1 c. vinegar

1 gal. water

Squeeze mop until just slightly damp.

Work in small areas at a time.

~ Carpet Deodorizer ~

(Especially good for pet smells)

Pour 2 cups of baking soda into resealable container./p>

Add 2-3 drops of fragrance or essential oil.

Close lid and shake.

Using a fork, flatten any remaining lumps and shake again.

Sprinkle powder onto your carpets. Let set for a few minutes. Then vacuum.

BONUS: Will also freshen your vacuum cleaner.

Image Credit: "Baby on a Bamboo floor" by Anathea via Creative Commons License.

What's your Favorite Green Clean Recipe or Tip?

See results

Green Clean your Appliances - Good for the Earth and your home health, too.

~ Microwave Cleaner ~

Thoroughly wet a hand towel, place in microwave and heat for 1 minute or until hot to the touch.

Wipe clean and dry.

For stubborn food scum, repeat.

If stains still remain on the bottom shelf, use baking to scour. then repeat hot towel process.

~ Stove top Cleaner ~

Use the above microwave cleaning process, or depending on the energy efficiency and quickness of your own home's water heater, use hot tap water for the towel.

For baked on soil, use baking soda, and if needed, an old but clean toothbrush to scour.

Rinse and wipe clean.

~ Oven Cleaner ~

This process is most likely to be more health conscience than green due to the energy involved opposed to using chemical cleaners.

Place water in a roasting or broiling pan.

Heat for 30 minutes at 350 or preferably heat with your next cooking task (not recommended with dry roasting or baking). Let cool

Using old towel, wipe clean for light soil.

If baked on soil remains, scour with baking soda.

If soil still remains, use hot and wet towel to loosen soil, and scrub with baking soda using an old toothbrush or hairbrush.

Rinse and wipe clean.

~ Washing Machine and Clothes Dryer Cleaners ~

After machine starts washing process, pause cycle, remove one of your wet kitchen or hand towels destined for that load, wipe washer and dryer clean, then toss back into the wash.

Resume cycle.

~ Refrigerator Cleaner ~

Fill sink with warm water with a tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar.

If at all possible, condense food items to a few shelves.

Remove cleared shelves to sink and wash. Dry. Rinse refrigerator walls, ceiling and floor as cleared inside before returning clean shelves to refrigerator, and remove more to clean.

Repeat as necessary for a clean and freshened refrigerator.

© 2016 Beth Webster-Duerr

Won't you sign my Go Green Clean Guest Book? Or share your favorite tip with us? - Anyone can leave a comment, so please do.

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    • RJ Schwartz profile image

      Ralph Schwartz 

      4 years ago from Idaho Falls, Idaho

      I know it sounds harsh, but I use an old butter knife in cleaning. I gently scrape off hard water buildup around faucets or use it with a rag on top to clean corners and edges where my tile meets my countertops. This is a great piece and gives me some ideas to try when I clean next.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      I use Eco friendly products to clean the spot in my home. These products are very effective to remove any kind of stain.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      This is great information. Thank you for sharing. I will actually use some of these methods in my cleaning business. Check it out for yourself

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      I love using vinegar to clean hard water stains off of glass shower doors. Spray it on and let it sit for a while. Wipe down with a micro-fiber cloth. This will make your glass doors shine every time!A great to keep your garbage can from stinking is to sprinkle baking soda into the bottom of the can and let it stay in there.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Great info! Thanks.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      A while ago I loved watching a program on BBC TV and it was to do with a team going into a home and cleaning it - with green products. I loved it but never wrote down their recipes and it is no longer showing. So I loved this lens as a lot of those things are mentioned here and now I have a place to go for a reminder if I have forgotten something. I use baking soda and white vinegar often in my home to clean away stubborn stains in the bath or walls etc and my sister uses vinegar for fabric softener.

    • Craftypicks profile image

      Lori Green 

      8 years ago from Las Vegas

      I love everything green especially cleaning products. Great lens

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Great tips on this lens. I have started looking for the best ways to clean my home without all the harsh chemicals. I will definitely make my own glass cleaner and at least start with that. Thanks again.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Excellent tips!

    • EcoPottiJo profile image


      8 years ago

      Great lens and one after my own heart as i have my own eco cleaning business:) One of my tips is for Squeaky door hingesRather than using WD40 or 3 in one oil try using olive oil. Works a treat and so much more eco friendly!

    • OUTFOXprevention1 profile image


      8 years ago

      We love green cleaning! Great information. We'll pass it along.

    • FunNaturePhotog profile image


      8 years ago

      Well done lens! Lots of info here.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      I'm always looking for ways to improve upon our eco-friendly lifestyle. Thank you for publishing these excellent ideas.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Great lens, I do a lot of this stuff myself, already. You had a few new ones for me, thanks.

    • Ann Hinds profile image

      Ann Hinds 

      8 years ago from So Cal

      Not only do I like this, I pinned it so it can be a handy reminder.

    • profile image

      OHG LM 

      8 years ago

      i keep a spice shaker of baking soda next to my dishsoap to sprinkle on tough greesy dishes

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      As their is a lots of pollution in the environment we can use Eco-Friendly solutions to keep the atmosphere fresh. For home cleaning we should use chemical free cleaners because they are environment friendly. Chemical based cleaner's particles remain in the air which is harmful for health.carpet cleaners London

    • truorder profile image


      8 years ago

      Thanks for the recipes and green tips.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Filtering your own water instead of buying bottled water is my tip! I invite you to visit my water filtration lenses. Really liked your tip for cleaning ovens. I'm going to try it!

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      I love your green tips! My household can become clean green with them and I thank you very much!

    • profile image

      Donnette Davis 

      9 years ago from South Africa

      Great info and tips, thank you very much.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Great information, thanks for the great recipes, I will use them.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Great lens

    • sdtechteacher profile image


      9 years ago

      These are wonderful ideas! Squidliked, favorited, and liked on facebook, too!

    • TapIn2U profile image


      9 years ago

      Loving the ideas you have here. Let's go GREEN! Fantastic lens! Sundae ;-)

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Thanks for sharing Go Green Clean and clean information:) Nice lens

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Great information means great lens. Thanks for sharing this and keep on promoting green cleaning products to save our planet and to keep one's health safe.

    • pkmcruk profile image


      9 years ago from Cheshire UK

      Congratulations on your Purple Star and added to my Purple Star Lensography

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      @hlkljgk: This is great advice! Thanks!

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      This is so incredibly helpful! As a mom who prides herself on being able to speed clean I'm now looking for more ways to make my speedy cleaning greener. Thanks!

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      this is a great lens...if everyone would do this, not only would we save the planet, but we would also save a lot of money!Blessed by a Squid Angel

    • ArdenBaird LM profile image

      ArdenBaird LM 

      10 years ago

      Very good ideas. Green cleaning is very important to be because I suffer from Multiple Chemical Sensitivities (MCS) and can't stand commercial cleaners of any kind. I'll be coming back to this page.

    • profile image


      10 years ago

      This is a very useful information. I share your concern for our planet. I will apply some of your caretakers. Thanks.

    • JohannDog profile image

      Johann The Dog 

      10 years ago from Northeast Georgia

      Fantastic info, thanks from a green dog!

    • profile image


      10 years ago

      Lots of great ideas here. Window cleaners are always a pest - let's face it, cleaning windows is a pest. Thanks for the advice

    • jolou profile image


      10 years ago

      This is a wonderful idea for a lens. I remember years ago my mother telling me vinegar was one of the best cleaners we could use. Nice to see people are going back to these harmless, yet very effective natural cleaners.

    • norma-holt profile image


      10 years ago

      Had to bless this lens. Its one that has remained in my memory ever since I first read it. Featured on Sprinkled with Stardust and on Save Planet EarthNorma

    • profile image

      Kimsworld LM 

      10 years ago

      I love this lens. I am always on the look out for greener things to clean the house with.

    • lollyj lm profile image

      Laurel Johnson 

      10 years ago from Washington KS

      WOW!! What a great lens!! Congrats on your well-deserved purple star.This is wonderful info so I've lensrolled it to all my lenses along with a 5 and fave.

    • AuthorNormaBudden profile image


      10 years ago

      I have a couple of lenses for you to check out. Your purple star lens has been featured at directory of purple starred lensmasters I've featured so far can be found at and congratulations!

    • Holley Web profile image

      Holley Web 

      10 years ago

      You knew I'd be here.. eventually :) Congratulations on the Purple Star and on becoming a Giant Squid!

    • WindyWintersHubs profile image


      10 years ago from Vancouver Island, BC

      Congratulations on your Purple Star. I'm always looking for green tips and solutions with everyday ingredients. Thanks for sharing! :)

    • PromptWriter profile image

      Moe Wood 

      10 years ago from Eastern Ontario

      Congratulations on making your green lens purple! ;)

    • lakern26 lm profile image

      lakern26 lm 

      10 years ago

      Love these ideas! I'll definitely have to try your suggestion for the carpet deodorizer - with 3 dogs, we really need that one :-) Great job!

    • RhondaAlbom profile image

      Rhonda Albom 

      10 years ago from New Zealand

      Great green cleaning tips. My favorite was the drain cleaning. I think my kids will love it too!

    • GonnaFly profile image


      10 years ago from Australia

      Some great ideas here! Thanks.

    • hlkljgk profile image


      10 years ago from Western Mass

      really great lens. as for a sink cleaner, we use dr bronner's hemp soap for the tub, so i'm sure it's great for sinks, too. it works better than conventional products i've used and it's super multi-purpose (we use it as dish soap, hand soap and once for shampoo in an "emergency" ;)

    • Sylvestermouse profile image

      Cynthia Sylvestermouse 

      10 years ago from United States

      Totally Awesome! These are all excellent suggestions! Angel Blessed and added to my Squid Angel Mouse Tracks lens.

    • SpellOutloud profile image


      10 years ago

      Nice list of recipes. I've been starting to make all our household cleaners and laundry detergent in an effort to save money and to stay away from harsh chemicals.

    • best-intentions profile image


      10 years ago

      @SoyCandleLover: Very nice lens! I own a natural home cleaning business and these are very good tips. Try hydrogen peroxide on your sink. If it's a few stains, scrub down the sink with baking soda and rinse well, then soak a rag in hydrogen peroxide and let it sit on the stain. Check often and rinse when stain has come up. If you need to do the whole sink, you can fill it to the top with cool water, pour in two bottles of the hydrogen peroxide, and let it sit. As another option, you can make a paste of sodium percarbonate (OxiClean) and water, apply to stains and let it sit, then rinse. Sodium percarbonate is much safer for bleaching than products containing chlorine. It breaks down quickly into oxygen and soda ash.

    • profile image


      10 years ago

      Now this is exactly the sort of Green lens I like to see in the Green category on Squidoo - SquidAngel Blessings for you!

    • norma-holt profile image


      10 years ago

      Great ideas and recipes. Top marks. Lensrolled to Save Planet Earth and faveNorma

    • SoyCandleLover profile imageAUTHOR

      Beth Webster-Duerr 

      10 years ago from Henrietta, New York

      @adoptiondesigns: Thanks so much! Not really, just doing what I can. :D

    • adoptiondesigns profile image


      10 years ago

      Thanks! This is a great lens! You're a pro!

    • SoyCandleLover profile imageAUTHOR

      Beth Webster-Duerr 

      11 years ago from Henrietta, New York

      Thanks for all your great comments! Does anyone knows how to bleach a kitchen sink a green homemade way? I've tried a few green ways, but not as pretty as my old cleaner Scrub-free with bleach. You'll get credit here with a lens link of your choice. :D

    • profile image


      11 years ago

      Great stuff--we will be trying some of these.

    • HorseAndPony LM profile image

      HorseAndPony LM 

      11 years ago

      Great stuff. Thanks for the tips. I love how you clean the Microwave and Drains. I am going to do this tomorrow. I hate to clean but it must be done.

    • profile image


      11 years ago

      Very nice!I am a 100% reformed green cleaning mom. My favorite cleaning products is vinegar and baking soda! Until I read your lens- I had forgotten all about club soda! I'm off to the store.....

    • profile image


      11 years ago

      Nice lens! You've got a great collection of tips and resources here. I'd love it if you'd drop by my lens and say hello when you have the chance.

    • profile image


      11 years ago

      This is a very interesting lens. You share a lot of helpful information here. When you get the chance, I'd love it if you'd stop by my lens on toxic-free living and say hello.

    • Adrienne Jenkins profile image

      Adrienne Jenkins 

      11 years ago

      So timely a lens.

    • KimGiancaterino profile image


      11 years ago

      Great tips... it's nice to have them in one place! We have several citrus trees, so I keep a basket of duds on hand to grind up in the disposal. Rosemary also works well.

    • dahlia369 profile image


      11 years ago

      Thank you for joining my Squidoo group! "Let us rise up and be thankful, for if we didn't learn a lot today, at least we learned a little, and if we didn't learn a little, at least we didn't get sick, and if we got sick, at least we didn't die; so, let us all be thankful."-- Buddha

    • Mihaela Vrban profile image

      Mihaela Vrban 

      11 years ago from Croatia

      You are one of November graduates! Come by and answer few questions to show the way to those who will follow! Wish you many, many more great lenses!

    • Mihaela Vrban profile image

      Mihaela Vrban 

      11 years ago from Croatia

      You are one of November graduates! Come by and answer few questions to show the way to those who will follow! Wish you many, many more great lenses!

    • profile image


      11 years ago

      Wow! Your lens is fantastic! I really like it so I gave you 5*. Keep up the god work!..Please try to stop by my lens. I would really much appreciate if you could rate mine too!Thank you so much!Zion

    • profile image


      12 years ago

      Great green tips! 5*

    • Mihaela Vrban profile image

      Mihaela Vrban 

      12 years ago from Croatia

      Nice tips! Welcome to Fresh Squid group! Glad to have you aboard!

    • Mihaela Vrban profile image

      Mihaela Vrban 

      12 years ago from Croatia

      Nice tips! Welcome to Fresh Squid group! Glad to have you aboard!

    • SoyCandleLover profile imageAUTHOR

      Beth Webster-Duerr 

      12 years ago from Henrietta, New York

      Thanks for the Welcome and the Kudo's. Be sure to stop by again for new recipes!

    • chefkeem profile image

      Achim Thiemermann 

      12 years ago from Austin, Texas

      Welcome to Squidoo - great start with these excellent "green" tips!.5*s

    • OhMe profile image

      Nancy Tate Hellams 

      12 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      Great Go Green recipes. Thanks.

    • profile image

      K Linda 

      12 years ago

      Thanks for the ideas. I hate using commercial cleaners...gag! 5*'s.

    • LisaDH profile image


      12 years ago

      Thanks for the recipes!


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