Non-Toxic Household Cleaning Essentials

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Non-Toxic Household Cleaning Essentials | Cobalt Chronicles | Houston Lifestyle Blogger

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Branch Basics (I recommend either the STARTER KIT + OXYGEN BOOST the LAUNDRY KIT – Get 10% off Starter Kits with code COBALT) | Thieves All-Purpose Solution | Glass Bottles | Custom Labels | Place Mats

As I’m sure you know, I’ve been on a mission to swap out all of my products to clean, non-toxic products. I started with swapping out my skincare, makeup, and body products. Now that I’ve almost completely swapped out those products for clean alternatives, I’ve moved on to ditching the toxins in our household cleaning essentials. I made the switch to non-toxic household cleaning essentials when we relocated to Houston. It was the perfect time to ditch all of the traditional household cleaners and replace them with non-toxic alternatives.

Non-Toxic Household Cleaning Essentials

Currently, I use a mix of two brands for most of my household cleaning products – Young Living Thieves and Branch Basics. You could easily choose one brand to get the job done, but I like both for different reasons.

I prefer to use Thieves to make my surface cleaner and glass cleaner (more on both below) because of the smell of the Thieves solution. The smell is strong, but I really like it! You could easily use the Branch Basics concentrate (in the Starter Kit) to make both of these cleaners too.

One thing I don’t like about the Thieves is that I’m not a fan of the ordering process at Young Living (sorry!). In my opinion, they make the ordering process more difficult than it needs to be. I’m not a “member” – I order one-off products at the retail price. With that said, I do like the Thieves All-Purpose Solution, so I bite the bullet and order that product along with the Thieves hand sanitizer and sanitizing spray (great for travel). Tip: I batch my orders so that I only have to pay shipping on one big order as opposed to a few small orders every so often.

One thing that’s great about both the Branch Basics Concentrate and the Thieves All-Purpose Solution is that they both last forever! Both are highly concentrated cleaning solutions, so a little goes a long way! You’ll see what I mean in the “recipes” below! You use the concentrates to make all of your cleaning products. Keep this in mind when comparing the price of these products to traditional cleaning products.

Why Switch to Non-Toxic Cleaning Household Cleaning Essentials

Common household cleaning product brands (ones I had under my sink and in my laundry room too) contain harmful chemicals. I use the Environmental Working Group (EWG.org) as my go-to spot for information on commonly used household products to check to see if the ingredients used in the products I’m using are safe. The EWG has tons of research on its site along with a really useful database that you can search for specific products – the EWG rates each product with a grade and identifies what potentially harmful ingredients and the potential effects of those ingredients are in each product.

You can find the easy to use search tool at the top of this page, simply enter the product you’re interested in, for example Formula 409, and hit enter. With the 409 example, you can see that it receives a D grade because of chemicals that may cause/worsen asthma and/or respiratory problems.

Commonly Found Chemicals in Household Cleaners (via the EWG)

  • Formaldehyde, a known human carcinogen, is sometimes used as a preservative or may be released by other preservatives in cleaning products. It may form when terpenes, found in citrus and pine oil cleaners and in some essential oils used as scents, react with ozone in the air.
  • The chemical 1,4-dioxane, a suspected human carcinogen, is a common contaminant of widely-used detergent chemicals.
  • Chloroform, a suspected human carcinogen, sometimes escapes in fumes released by products containing chlorine bleach.
  • Quaternary ammonium compounds (“quats”) like benzalkonium chloride, found in antibacterial spray cleaners and fabric softeners, can cause asthma.
  • Sodium borate, also known as borax, and boric acid are added to many products as cleaning agents, enzyme stabilizers or for other functions. They can disrupt the hormone system.
  • Many leading “green” brands sell superior products, among them Green Shield Organic and Whole Foods’ Green Mission brand. But not all cleaners marketed as environmentally conscious score high. Some “green” brands such as Earth Friendly Products do not disclose ingredients adequately.

Now that you know a little bit more about why it’s important to make the switch to non-toxic household cleaners, let’s jump into how I use Thieves and Branch Basics to make my own non-toxic household cleaning essentials!

Surface Cleaner

The surface cleaner is so easy to make! I use this to replace 409 and Clorox surface cleaners. All you need is one cap full of the Thieves All-Purpose Solution and water. I use these glass bottles from Amazon (the quality is awesome and they look pretty too!), and I ordered labels from this Etsy shop. Add one cap full of Thieves to the bottle and then fill to the top with water. I use it everywhere! Kitchen, dining table, bathroom, my office etc.

What you need: Thieves All-Purpose Solution, Water, Glass Spray Bottle Note: The Branch Basics Starter Kit includes everything you need to make a surface cleaner too! (Get 10% Starter Kits with code COBALT)

Glass Cleaner

The glass cleaner is essentially the surface cleaner plus vinegar. All you need is one cap full of the Thieves All-Purpose Solution, one tablespoon of vinegar, and water. The vinegar leaves glass surfaces streak free! Add one cap full of Thieves and one tablespoon of vinegar to the glass bottle and fill to the top with water. This cleaner is a replacement for Windex or similar cleaning solutions.

What you need: Thieves All-Purpose Solution, Water, Vinegar, Glass Spray Bottle Note: The Branch Basics Starter Kit includes everything you need to make a glass cleaner too! (Get 10% Starter Kits with code COBALT)

Laundry Detergent

This is one of my favorite non-toxic household cleaning essentials! I recommend purchasing the Laundry Kit or the Starter Kit from Branch Basics as it has everything you need (even the Concentrate, which you can use to make other cleaning essentials!). You can use code COBALT for 10% off all Starter Kits.

The Laundry Kit comes with a refillable laundry detergent bottle that has line markers for how much concentrate (soap) you need to add and how much water to add to the bottle. Simply fill the laundry detergent bottle with the concentrate to the soap line and then fill with water up to the water line. That’s it! And the best part, you only need to use one cap full of the detergent for each load of laundry. The concentrate lasts a long time!

For an added boost to your laundry, you can add one scoop of the Oxygen Boost (included in the Laundry Kit) to each load. I use the Oxygen Boost on loads that need a little extra cleaning or brightening.

I shared this detergent on Stories and received a few questions about the smell of the laundry detergent – it doesn’t really have a smell. If you’re looking to freshen up the smell of your laundry, I recommend grabbing a couple of these wool dryer balls (great replacements for dryer sheets) and adding a few drops of your favorite essential oil to the balls (I use lavender oil).

What you need: Branch Basics laundry detergent bottle and concentrate (both included in the Laundry Kit and Starter Kit) and water.

Other Uses for Thieves All-Purpose Solution

Check out this page for 29 DIY cleaners that can be made with the Thieves All-Purpose Solution.

Other Uses for Branch Basics Concentrate

All-Purpose: Appliances, Dishes, Granite, Grills, Highchairs, Jewelry, Marble, Natural Stone, Pacifiers, Pots & Pans, Stains, Stovetops, Sticky Spills, Yoga Mats

Bathroom: Tile, Grout, Countertops, Sinks, Showers, Tubs, Toilets, Fixtures, Shower Liners, Soap Scum

Streak-Free: Windows, Mirrors, Glass Surfaces, Computer Screens, Phones and Tablets, Fixtures, Aquariums, Shower Doors, and Picture Frames

Foaming Wash: Hands, Face, Body, Baby, Hair, Pets, Removing Make-Up, Shaving, Dishes, Fruits & Vegetables

Laundry, Stainless Steel, Wood and Vinyl Floors, Carpet

Check out Branch Basic’s User Guide for more specific applications and instructions.

Other Uses for Branch Basics Oxygen Boost

Pre-Treating + General Stain Remover: Sprinkle directly on stain and spray all-purpose cleaner to saturate powder. Agitate and let sit. Soak if necessary. Wash.

Pre-Soaking + Hand Washing: Separate whites from colors. Pre-treat stains with all-purpose cleaner. Add ½ scoop in a sink or tub filled with enough water to cover item(s). Soak until clean. It could be a few hours or up to a few days, depending on the stain. If hand washing, rinse well before drying.

Bathroom Tile and Grout: Spray surface with all-purpose cleaner. Sprinkle Oxygen Boost on area and let sit several minutes. Scrub clean and rinse.

Carpet: Treat stain with all-purpose cleaner. If boost needed, use 1 tsp of Oxygen Boost in 1 cup water. Apply minimal solution. Agitate. Let sit 5 to 30 minutes. Agitate. Blot up excess moisture. Vacuum when dry.

Discount Code for Branch Basics

Shop Branch Basics here. Get 10% off Starter Kits with code COBALT.

Non-Toxic Household Cleaning Essentials | Cobalt Chronicles | Houston Lifestyle Blogger

Branch Basics (I recommend either the STARTER KIT + OXYGEN BOOST the LAUNDRY KIT – Get 10% off Starter Kits with code COBALT) | Thieves All-Purpose Solution | Glass Bottles | Custom Labels | Place Mats

Non-Toxic Household Cleaning Essentials | Cobalt Chronicles | Houston Lifestyle Blogger
Non-Toxic Household Cleaning Essentials | Cobalt Chronicles | Houston Lifestyle Blogger
Non-Toxic Household Cleaning Essentials | Cobalt Chronicles | Houston Lifestyle Blogger

Branch Basics (I recommend either the STARTER KIT + OXYGEN BOOST the LAUNDRY KIT – Get 10% off Starter Kits with code COBALT)| Thieves All-Purpose Solution | Glass Bottles | Custom Labels | Place Mats

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