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So, you’ve started adopting a plant-based diet. You’ve traded your white rice for heirloom rice and adlai. Maybe you even started using organic fertilizers for your backyard garden. But you’re looking for more ways to lead a sustainable lifestyle. What else can you do? Well, have you tried searching for greener ways to clean your home?
There are ways to maintain a clean household (or even workplace) without harming yourself, your family, and the environment. How? With all-natural cleaning products.
Natural cleaning products are bathroom cleaners, dishwashing soaps, all-purpose cleaners, air fresheners, drain cleaners, scrub pads, laundry detergents, and toiletries that use more natural ingredients and materials. Unlike conventional cleaning products, natural cleaners avoid hazardous chemicals such as sulfates, phosphates, parabens, formaldehyde, and ammonia.
Nature holds the ingredients that are necessary to clean our homes. And so, instead of the mentioned toxic chemicals, natural cleaning products can keep our homes sparklingly clean through vinegar, essential oils, plant-based surfactants, enzymes, and natural fragrances.
Making the switch to natural cleaners isn’t about just making yourself feel good. On the contrary, doing so leads to a lot of practical consequences.
Many of the household cleaning products we use, and even personal care products like shampoos and bath soaps, contain sulfates, phthalates, and dimethicone. Commonly disposed of in the waterways (think of where your shampoo and laundry suds go), these chemicals greatly impact aquatic life. Furthermore, volatile organic compounds like formaldehyde and methylene chloride can pollute indoor and outdoor air.
In contrast, the all-natural ingredients that are found in green cleaning supplies like this natural laundry detergent and this biodegradable dishwashing solution do not pose the same threats to the environment. They contain non-toxic ingredients and were manufactured using ethical and sustainable methods.
Green cleaning products typically (or should) don’t just contain natural ingredients but also come in eco-friendly packaging. Many makers of natural products make the effort to reduce plastic, water, and energy output to reduce environmental impact. Recycling habits are also commonly promoted among green manufacturers.
These shampoo and conditioner bars are good substitutes for your haircare needs. Not only do they contain botanical extracts that are good for your hair and skin, but with proper care and storage, they can replace two to three regular bottles of shampoo and conditioner.
And while regular toilet paper and kitchen towels put a toll on our forests and contribute to air and water pollution, bamboo toilet paper and cloth towels provide a more sustainable alternative. Each roll of this reusable bamboo eco towel is equivalent to 200+ rolls of regular paper towels!
Dyes, synthetic fragrances, bleach, ammonia, acetone, and sulfates — all common ingredients in household cleaners and personal care products — are not just damaging to the environment. They can also irritate our skin, eyes, and throat and can cause headaches or exacerbate asthma.
Recent studies have also found that parabens may cause reproductive complications and phthalates are linked to reproductive health issues in both humans and animals.
While it’s good practice to open your windows and wear gloves when using conventional cleaning products, it’s even better to just switch to non-toxic ones. Whether it’s hand soap or fruits and veggie wash, make sure to use one that contains natural ingredients.
It’s no secret that many cleaning products and personal care items are tested on animals. Most manufacturers of natural products, however, strive to create sustainable and cruelty-free products.
Choosing these hand and body wash gels from Kalina Organics and G Stuff allows you to clean guilt-free, knowing that no animals were harmed in the process of making these products.
You spent your hard-earned money on that floor and furniture — you can’t let toxic cleaning solutions ruin your prized possessions.
That’s right, conventional cleaning supplies with hazardous chemicals (e.g., ammonia and bleach) don’t just harm your health and the environment. They are also often corrosive, can leave marks, and can cause burns. Worse, they can cause accidental poisoning of small children and pets.
Using an all-natural degreaser and eco-friendly all-purpose cleaner means you can safely clean different surfaces of your house without worrying about the health of your family and pets and the risk of damaging your floors, walls, windows, carpets, pots and grills, and furniture.
Many cleaning supplies come with perfumes, synthetic fragrances, bleach, and dyes that can assault your senses and your lungs. Even after you’ve cleaned, the residue behind common spray cleaners can linger and increase the risk of asthma or aggravate it in people who already have it.
By making the switch to natural hand sanitizers, plant-based alcohol, and eco-friendly room and linen spray, you can enjoy a fresh-scented space with minimum impact on the environment and your health.
Many people assume that switching to all-natural cleaners is costly. While it’s true that many eco-friendly products cost more than their counterparts, they turn out to be more cost-effective in the long run.
Often, you’ll need to use less of these products to achieve the same sparkling results on your home’s surfaces (or your hair, as in the case of shampoo and conditioner bars). Since they don’t damage your possessions and don’t impact your health, you also end up not needing money for repairs and medical bills.
And if you’re in the mood for experimenting, many natural cleaning agents are already found in your pantry (e.g., vinegar, lemons) so you don’t have to shell out money right away. Just do your research and you can reduce costs with DIY cleaning products.
For more eco-friendly household items, browse echostore.ph or visit us at Unit 1B, Ground Floor, Manhattan Square Condo, 162 Valero St., Salcedo Village, Makati City.