Why Not to Use Standard Household Cleaners

Just like makeup and personal hygiene products, many household cleaning supplies can be toxic and contain potentially very harmful chemicals. However with the severity of the potential danger lurking in many cleaning supplies, warning labels like “may be fatal” or “causes severe burns” are written right on the bottles!!

It’s scary enough to use these kinds of products as an adult, but now that we have (soon to be) two children in our home who tend to try to get into everything, having these kinds of products in our cabinets is downright terrifying. Here are a few examples of popular products that contain some frightening chemicals –

Scrubbing Bubbles Bathroom and Shower Cleaner – contains butoxydiglycol, which is banned in parts of Europe and can cause damage to the lungs.

Drano Professional Strength Kitchen Crystals Clog Remover – says on the label that it can cause blindness, burns, and even death.

Lysol Toilet Bowl Cleaner with Lime and Rust Remover – claims to be “harmful or fatal if swallowed” or can cause “irreversible damage” if it comes in contact with your eyes.

Many spray cleaners like Clorox, Febreze, Lysol, etc. – These an other spray cleaners contain things like ethanolamine which is an asthmagen meaning it is known to trigger asthma attacks or even cause people to have asthma.

These are just some of MANY dangers that come along with the chemicals found in the myriad of cleaning products we all use all the time. Not to mention the chemicals that are thought to be  carcinogenic and/or cause hormonal issues that are found in many of them as well. So with all of this in mind we very quickly decided that we wanted to transition to healthy cleaners made from the most natural ingredients possible. It has definitely been a long journey of trial and error and we are still experimenting with some things, but thankfully we’ve found many wonderful substitutes that have given us peace of mind and that we even feel safe letting Ezra use when he wants to “help” mom clean!

Better Life Cleaning Supplies – This was the very first natural cleaning supply company that we tried and we were immediately impressed. They work well, are relatively affordable, smell nice, and are made of very natural ingredients. They have tons of products including household cleaners, laundry products, dishwashing products, soaps and lotions. We really like their “Whatever” cleaner, as well as their dusting spray, bathroom cleaner, and quite a few others! Check out their products at this link.

Honest Company Cleaning Supplies – We started experimenting with the Honest Company when we began using their diapers with Ezra. They have a wide variety of baby products, cleaning supplies, sunscreen, laundry and dishwasher products, and even some feminine hygiene products. We’ve been really happy with the quality of the products and the natural ingredients contained in them. We currently use their sunscreen, dishwashing and laundry detergent, and hand soap along with many other products including baby products. You can see more about the Honest Co. here.

Young Living – I have to mention the wonderful products from Young Living, as well as the endless cleaning possibilities with essential oils alone. Young Living has general house cleaners, dish and laundry products, toothpaste, and has also recently added products like sunscreen, bug spray, baby products, and even a makeup line! Since their products include essential oils, they smell so good and have the added benefits of the essential oils themselves. See more about why I love Young Living and how to purchase products on this blog post.

You can also substitute essential oils alone for things like air fresheners and dryer sheets, and add them to homemade cleaners like a mixture of water and vinegar to clean counters, showers, floors, etc. My favorite oil for cleaning is Thieves because of its antibacterial properties. I spray it in the shower, use it to help clean toilets, add it in when mopping the floors- just about any way you can think of! Plus is smells like some kind of spicy cinnamon concoction so it makes your entire house smell amazing!

So those are just a few of the companies that we have used and still currently use for natural cleaning supplies! These are some great places to start with if you’re interested in transitioning to a more natural lifestyle, However, I would highly recommend familiarizing yourself with the harmful chemicals that you want to avoid instead of just taking my word for it! The “Think Dirty” app is a great one to download to your phone so that you can double check the safety of cleaning supplies before purchasing them. It ranks products from 1 to 10 (1 being the healthiest with the lowest amount of harmful chemicals) and lets you know which ingredients are cause for concern. Even some products from the companies mentioned above are ranked higher than others, so feel free to look each product up before you purchase it to make sure that it is as healthy as you’re hoping!

My last tip for this transition is to not panic! It is so easy to get overwhelmed, throw everything away, and purchase every natural product you can think of in order to get those chemicals out of your house ASAP. But just try not to stress and start slowly. Download the app or just research some of the chemicals you’re currently using and throw out the most concerning ones. Then try to use something relatively gentle like windex or vinegar until you can make a few small purchases like a general household cleaner, laundry detergent, dish soap, and a bathroom cleaner. Then slowly work toward finding products that you like and feel will work best for you and your family. It’s not as daunting as you think once you see how many wonderful products you can find that are free of those dangerous chemicals, sulfates, phlalates, and parabens. Don’t force yourself to make the transition in a day, and commend yourself for working towards a healthier lifestyle for yourself and your family. If I can do it, I know you can too 🙂

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