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From expensive window cleaners to air fresheners with nuances of headache-inducing chemicals, store-bought products are often not worth the price tag.
While commercial products may kill germs, studies have shown that they also contribute to indoor air pollution, skin irritation, respiratory issues, and long-term health issues.
If you have yet to stock up on spring cleaning supplies, skip the trip to the cleaning aisle and opt for natural ingredients found in the following DIY replacements.
All-Purpose Counter Cleaner
Counters are the most frequently wiped areas of the home. Leftover crumbs, sauce, and elbow grease are to blame for these messy areas, making an effective all-purpose cleaner an essential item in every apartment. As we find ourselves wiping down these frequented areas almost every day, it's important to be sure that each spritz is emitting natural ingredients. Luckily, a simple solution of equal parts water and vinegar will get the job done. The acidity of vinegar cuts through thick buildups, dissolving away most types of grime. For added appeal, include a few drops of essential oil for a spritz of sandalwood or a bit of bergamot.
Microwaves are one of the most overlooked, yet easiest items to clean. Simply mix together vinegar and a bit of lemon juice in a microwave-safe cup, place the solution in the microwave, let it run for 2 minutes, and leave the door closed for several minutes afterward. Then, open the door and simply wipe down the resulting condensation along with that marinara sauce from last week.
While purchasing furniture polish may feel like a testament to an elevated standard of cleanliness, there are ways to achieve shiny dining room chairs without the high price tag and harmful chemicals. Simply combine a quarter cup of vinegar with three quarters of a cup of olive oil and wipe down with a soft towel. If you're cleaning wood furniture, mix together a quarter cup of lemon juice with half a cup of olive oil and repeat the same process.
As the least favorite task on a to-do list, we often quickly squirt in too much expensive toilet cleaner, quickly scrub, and flush away the grime and the memory of the experience. While we can't necessarily make this task more enjoyable, we can make it more effective and affordable with this handy solution: First, pour half a cup of baking soda and about 10 drops of tea tree essential oil into the bowl. Then, add a quarter cup of vinegar and scrub while the mixture fizzes. Simply flush and marvel at your squeaky-clean bowl!
While commercial air fresheners may smell like a jaunt through the flowers, many are filled with chemicals that are anything but natural. If you love wafting scents of fresh florals or seasonal smells, this 2-ingredient air freshener will do the trick. Simply fill a mason jar about a quarter of the way with baking soda and then mix in 5-10 drops of your favorite essential oil. Insert cardstock into the lid, poke holes, shake it up, and wait for satisfying fragrances to drift through the air. If you'd like, turn your masterpiece into a work of art with paint, jewels, or any other additions that match your aesthetic.
Looking for more apartment-friendly DIY hacks? Click here to find your next project.
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