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Cleaning Your Shower & Toilet Without The Nasties

Cleaning Your Shower & Toilet Without The Nasties

It seems that you guys love to see photos of my icky toilet and shower because whenever I share before and after images on Facebook or Instagram, interaction is off the charts!

Here are photos of my shower screens before and after I used the following (very simple) method to clean them. (Note that I hadn’t actually cleaned my glass for a good 8-12 weeks – nope, not joking! ?)

Not bad, right? All it took was a few ingredients, 20-30 minutes of my time and the willingness to participate in a very light workout. I am the first one to encourage muscle-power over harsh chemicals, and some of my recipes require this, but not this one, no sir. I hardly broke a sweat, scout’s honour.

And how is this, from Kelly in the Facebook Discussion GroupMore proof that we don’t need to use heavy duty, store-bought cleaning products to achieve results like this!

 

Cleaning Your Shower & Toilet Without The Nasties

Makes: 270 g | 9.5 oz Prep time: < 5 min.

Ingredients

3/4 cup | 200 g | 7.1 oz citric acid

1/4 cup | 70 g | 2.5 oz sodium bicarbonate

30 drops of essential oils

My choice of essential oils…

My favourite essential oil in this recipe is clove but don’t be limited by my suggestions. Use oils that fit your budget, or those that you already have in your collection. Read here for more information.

 

Method

1. Add citric acid, sodium bicarbonate and essential oils to a bowl and mix until combined.

2. Transfer into container of choice.

 

To Use

In shower

Add mixture to a large bowl and slowly add enough water to make a paste. Use a microfibre cleaning cloth to smear over shower screens and tiles until covered. Leave for 20-30 minutes. Scrub well (with the same cleaning cloth or a scrubbing brush), then rinse well and dry.

In toilet bowl

Sprinkle mixture into toilet bowl and use toilet brush to scrub around sides and under rim. Leave for 20-30 minutes. Scrub again before flushing once or twice. Repeat process if necessary.

 


Recipe Notes

  • To avoid a sticky residue, make sure you rinse off all of the mixture completely.
  • If you have black tiles, test first in an inconspicuous area.
  • I strongly suggest you check out the blog posts under “Recommended Reading”.
Krissy Ballinger

Krissy Ballinger

Author, Advocate & Founder

With a background in health promotion, Krissy's passion is to educate and increase awareness on reducing the number of toxins that people expose themselves to on a daily basis, through an honest, simple and realistic approach.

She has sold over 20,000 self-published books and is now published as the author of Naturally Inspired, Simple DIY Recipes for Body Care and Cleaning.

Her recipes have taken her to the screen on more than one occasion, with morning TV appearances, and she received recognition as a ‘Woman Who Will Change The World’ in the AusMumpreneur business awards in 2018.

Citrus Cleaning Spray

Citrus Cleaning Spray

This Citrus Cleaning Spray now my go-to for all cleaning. It is particularly awesome at cleaning greasy splashbacks and getting grubby marks off my walls (why do my kids insist on touching them, climbing them, rubbing their feet all over them???).

I’ve made a little video to show you just how easy it is to make. Yes, you need to be a little organised, but, if you’re mindful to put all of your citrus peels into jars and covering them with vinegar, you’ll always have some brewing.

Krissy Ballinger

Krissy Ballinger

Author, Advocate & Founder

With a background in health promotion, Krissy's passion is to educate and increase awareness on reducing the number of toxins that people expose themselves to on a daily basis, through an honest, simple and realistic approach.

She has sold over 20,000 self-published books and is now published as the author of Naturally Inspired, Simple DIY Recipes for Body Care and Cleaning.

Her recipes have taken her to the screen on more than one occasion, with morning TV appearances, and she received recognition as a ‘Woman Who Will Change The World’ in the AusMumpreneur business awards in 2018.

Natural Fabric Softener

Natural Fabric Softener

This is my simple recipe for natural fabric softener. Fabric softener as we know it – the commercial stuff that is – is really not good for us. It’s not good for the environment either. It often contains some very questionable ingredients that are known to stick to clothing, irritate skin and aggravate allergies.

Companies (in Australia anyway) are not required to tell you what is in cleaning products, so we often won’t see panels on packets of softener which makes it hard to make educated decisions when out shopping. It often takes a little searching on the internet to find comprehensive lists, and even then, it is the companies choice whether they publish them or not.

Here is an example of ingredients within one popular supermarket brand of softener. From what I can see, most softeners available are similar in their contents.

Here’s a brief look into these ingredients:

Water

Any time you see water in a product, look for preservatives. Usually, not a good sign.

Quaternized Triethanolamine Diester

I can’t find much reputable data on this but Triethanolamine is petroleum-derived and may cause contact dermatitis.

Isopropyl Alcohol

not much to worry about in a cleaning product but not something I would use on my skin.

Quaternary Ammonium Acrylate/Acrylamide

Quaternary ammonium compounds rate poorly with EWG (my go-to for chemical research and advice). Although the data covers a broad scope, there is mention of toxicity to aquatics and moderate concern for asthmatics.

Fragrance

A toxic minefield and my most hated ingredient, unless derived from essential oils! Watch out for this one. There is a list of hundreds of chemicals used for fragrance formulation, and companies don’t have to tell you what they use – it’s their trade secret. Fragrance is associated with allergies, skin irritation, asthma, headaches etc.

Preservative

Interesting that they don’t tell you WHAT preservative. Some preservatives, such as Formaldehyde, are known to be carcinogenic to humans, others, salt, for example, is fine. So I’m dubious here.

 

You know how when you’re at the supermarket, you can smell the softener aisle a mile away (if you’ve been living a lower-toxin lifestyle for a while now, you’ll know what I mean!)? It really is something I like to avoid. I can even smell people’s washing when I take my daily walk if they’ve used softener – that’s how potent this stuff is! It sticks to your clothes, it coats your machine in slime making it hard to clean, and it’s terrible for septic systems and our waterways in general.

Have I convinced you to make the switch to natural yet?

For a long time, I have been using straight vinegar as a natural fabric softener. And it works well, so if this recipe seems like a little too much effort for you, then stick with that. But this recipe for natural fabric softener, ooh-la-la, it really does make my laundry nice and soft!

 

Natural Fabric Softener

Makes: 1.1 lt | 37.2 fl oz Prep time: < 5 min.

Ingredients

½ cup | 140 g | 4.9 oz fine salt

1 cup | 250 ml | 8.5 fl oz hot water (see recipe notes)

3 cup | 750 ml | 25.4 fl oz white vinegar (look for naturally fermented)

2-3 drops of essential oils (per use)

My choice of essential oils…

My favourite essential oils in this recipe are lemon and eucalyptus, but don’t be limited by my suggestions. Use oils that fit your budget, or those that you already have in your collection. Read here for more information.

 Method

1. Add salt and hot water to a bowl and mix until salt has dissolved.

2. Add vinegar and stir until combined.

3. Transfer into container of choice.

To Use

Shake well, then pour approximately ½ cup of liquid and essential oils (if using) into the designated softener compartment of your washing machine.

 

Recipe Notes

  • Water should be distilled, purified or pre-boiled and cooled to extend shelf life.
  • If the salt doesn’t fully dissolve, don’t worry too much – it will dissolve over time.
  • If you’re concerned about your washing machine then don’t use this recipe. I personally have had no issues at all, after years of using vinegar in my washing machine, but it is ultimately up to you.
  • I strongly suggest you check out the blog posts under “Recommended Reading”.

Krissy Ballinger

Krissy Ballinger

Author, Advocate & Founder

With a background in health promotion, Krissy's passion is to educate and increase awareness on reducing the number of toxins that people expose themselves to on a daily basis, through an honest, simple and realistic approach.

She has sold over 20,000 self-published books and is now published as the author of Naturally Inspired, Simple DIY Recipes for Body Care and Cleaning.

Her recipes have taken her to the screen on more than one occasion, with morning TV appearances, and she received recognition as a ‘Woman Who Will Change The World’ in the AusMumpreneur business awards in 2018.

Cleaning Your Oven the Non-Toxic Way

Cleaning Your Oven the Non-Toxic Way

I’ve created a simple guide to cleaning your oven the non-toxic way, so you can avoid using commercial oven cleaners. Have you ever looked into the ingredients in some commercial oven cleaners? A few of the common and worst offenders, found to be detrimental to our health and the health of the environment include:

  • Sodium Hydroxide
  • Potassium Hydroxide
  • Butoxyethanol
  • Ethanolamine
  • Fragrance
  • Butane
    … and the list goes on.

It can be hard to even find complete ingredients listings on packaging (Australian law doesn’t enforce it), or online. I respect companies that are transparent and list all ingredients on packaging (even if sometimes there are a few less than desirable ones). It shows us they have nothing to hide, allowing consumers to make educated choices.

So, let’s clean our ovens with a few simple ingredients and, wait for it… elbow grease!! Don’t be lazy 😉

 

Steps to Cleaning Your Oven the Non-Toxic Way

Step 1

Wait until you have used your oven and it is hot (or, you could heat it first but that seems like a waste of energy).

Step 2

Add about 1 litre of boiling hot water, 2 tablespoons of bicarb and one lemon (halved, squished and squeezed) into an ovenproof dish.

Step 3

Place dish on top rack and shut the door for at least an hour. The steam will soften any build-up.

Step 4

When it is all steamy, wipe down walls and door with a soft cloth, rinsing well between wipes in a bucket/sink of hot water and a tablespoon of castile soap.

Step 5

You may need to use a scouring sponge (or ‘steel-o’) on the racks, roof and tray if you cook roasts and fatty meats often. If you find the racks and bottom tray need even more work, soak them in your laundry sink with HOT water, ½ cup of bicarb and ½ cup vinegar overnight, and try scrubbing again. Another option is to use my Cleaning Paste.

Step 6

Make sure you wipe down your oven completely before use.

Bonus Tip

Stay on top of it rather than try to deal with months of build up!!!

Krissy Ballinger

Krissy Ballinger

Author, Advocate & Founder

With a background in health promotion, Krissy's passion is to educate and increase awareness on reducing the number of toxins that people expose themselves to on a daily basis, through an honest, simple and realistic approach.

She has sold over 20,000 self-published books and is now published as the author of Naturally Inspired, Simple DIY Recipes for Body Care and Cleaning.

Her recipes have taken her to the screen on more than one occasion, with morning TV appearances, and she received recognition as a ‘Woman Who Will Change The World’ in the AusMumpreneur business awards in 2018.

Stain Solution

Stain Solution

Clothes get dirty – Fact!
My natural washing powder recipe does the job to clean dirty clothes (and well!) – Fact!
Sometimes stubborn stains still appear that need a bit of extra effort to remove – Fact!

It can be tempting to go out and buy a powerful commercial stain remover/bleaching agent.

Please don’t!

I have trialled several different stain removing methods, and while I have a few options for spot treatment stains, I think I have hit the jackpot with this recipe for a natural pre-wash stain solution – mainly due to its simplicity and effectiveness, all with minimal effort!

The orange/red top got discoloured in the days when I was recipe testing and perfecting my natural deodorant recipes. Check out the result after soaking for 24 hours. Not bad hey?! It also works well on stained tea-towels, oil spots (and I get a lot of those working with different kinds of butter and balms!), and discoloured pillow cases.

So, If you have whites that are greying, greasy/oily spots or discolouring around collars and armpits, then give this a go. I have trialled this on whites, darks and colours.

Now, while I have never had issues with colour leaching, as usual, I have to remind you to patch test and proceed with caution as all clothing, materials and dyes are unique.

 

Stain Solution 

Makes: enough for single use Prep time: < 5 min.

Ingredients  

½ cup | 130 g | 4.6 oz sodium carbonate (washing soda)

½ cup | 125 ml | 4.2 fl oz hydrogen peroxide (3%)

5 lt | 1.3 gal (approx.) warm/hot water

Method

Add all ingredients directly to the laundry sink or a bucket and mix until combined.

To Use

Add stained clothing to solution and use a wooden spoon to push down and agitate clothing. Allow to rest, agitating periodically, for a minimum of 4 hours. Remove from solution and wash clothes as usual. Discard solution.

 

Recipe Notes

  • You can find hydrogen peroxide in the beauty aisle of most supermarkets. It is a natural alternative to bleach.
  • You can substitute the hydrogen peroxide for ½ cup | 130 g | 4.6 oz sodium percarbonate.
  • It is a good idea to take a ‘before’ and ‘after’ photos so you can see how well this solution works!
  • Remember to patch test if you’re worried your fabric dye will run.
  • Don’t make this solution in advance. Mix it up just prior to use.
  • I strongly suggest you check out the blog posts under “Recommended Reading”.

Krissy Ballinger

Krissy Ballinger

Author, Advocate & Founder

With a background in health promotion, Krissy's passion is to educate and increase awareness on reducing the number of toxins that people expose themselves to on a daily basis, through an honest, simple and realistic approach.

She has sold over 20,000 self-published books and is now published as the author of Naturally Inspired, Simple DIY Recipes for Body Care and Cleaning.

Her recipes have taken her to the screen on more than one occasion, with morning TV appearances, and she received recognition as a ‘Woman Who Will Change The World’ in the AusMumpreneur business awards in 2018.

Blank Canvas Fizzies

Blank Canvas Fizzies

These Blank Canvas Fizzies are PERFECT for so many applications:

  • In a steam bath or as shower drops for congested airways;
  • In the bath for a fun time for kids, or to help them with relaxation or congestion;
  • As toilet-cleaning drops (they work wonders with a light scrub);
  • In a foot spa;

…and the list goes on, and on, and on!!

I do have a little secret to share though, this Blank Canvas Fizzies recipe is exactly the same as my Fizzy Bath Drops.

BUT, this recipe is like a blank canvas.

Store your drops in a container or jar and add your choice of essential oils just prior to use. It’s so versatile and even a makes for a beautiful gift to give, perfectly paired with a bottle of lemon, peppermint or lavender essential oil for someone’s birthday, or maybe with eucalyptus or lemon for an under-the-weather friend.

I’ve chosen to call this recipe Cleaning Fizzies in my new book, Naturally Inspired, but don’t be confused – it’s all basically the same 😉

Blank Canvas Fizzies

Makes: 460 g | 16.2 oz (approximately 15 small, 5 large) Prep time: < 5 min. (allow 24 hours to set)

Ingredients

300 g | 10.6 oz sodium bicarbonate (bicarb)

130 g | 4.6 oz citric acid

30 g | 1.1 oz carrier oil (fractionated coconut oil and sweet almond oil are popular choices)

2-3 drops of essential oils (per use)

My choice of essential oils…

This varies depending on the intended use. See recipe notes below for ideas.

Extra equipment required…

Silicone moulds

Method

1. Add sodium bicarbonate and citric acid to a bowl and mix until combined.

2. Add carrier oil and mix until combined. Mixture should just hold form when squeezed together. If it isn’t holding together, add an extra teaspoon of carrier oil and mix again.

3. Spoon mixture into moulds and press down firmly until full.

4. Leave to set for 12-24 hours in a cool and dry place. After this time, turn moulds upside down and gently tap the bottom – fizzies should fall out easily.

5. Place on a tray or sheet of baking paper and leave to dry for a further 24 hours before storing in container of choice.

Thermal Appliance Method

1. Add sodium bicarbonate and citric acid to thermal appliance bowl and mix for 5-10 seconds on medium speed. Scrape down sides and repeat if required, until ingredients are combined.

2. Add carrier oil and mix for 5-10 seconds until combined. Mixture should just hold form when squeezed together. If it isn’t holding together, add an extra teaspoon of carrier oil and mix again.

3. Spoon mixture into moulds and press down firmly until full.

4. Leave to set for 12-24 hours in a cool and dry place. After this time, turn moulds upside down and gently tap the bottom – fizzies should fall out easily.

5. Place on a tray or sheet of baking paper and leave to dry for a further 24 hours before storing in container of choice.

 

To Use

Add essential oils directly to one fizzy (see recipe notes below for ideas for various applications). Drop into water (basin, bath, toilet etc.) and allow to fizz. Store in an airtight container, in a cool, dry place.

Recipe Notes

  • To colour these fizzies, you can use food colouring (natural is obviously my choice – beetroot powder or spirulina are my go-to’s); powder is the best option if you want to avoid the risk of premature fizzing.
  • My favourite essential oils in this recipe are as follows:
    – congested airways (in the shower, facial steam, bath) – lemon, eucalyptus and tea tree.
    – relaxing bath – lavender, frankincense, orange, ylang ylang, vetiver etc.
    – toilet cleaner (drop in the toilet) – clove, tea tree and lemon.
    Remember: don’t be limited by my suggestions. Use oils that fit your budget, or those that you already have in your collection. Read here for more information.
  • Did you know that adding one teaspoon of vitamin C powder to bath water while it is filling, helps to neutralise the chlorine present in unfiltered tap water, and I highly recommend getting some. For more info about the effects of chlorine, head over to the Super Soak – Bath Salts recipe.
  • I strongly suggest you check out the blog posts under “Recommended Reading”

Krissy Ballinger

Krissy Ballinger

Author, Advocate & Founder

With a background in health promotion, Krissy's passion is to educate and increase awareness on reducing the number of toxins that people expose themselves to on a daily basis, through an honest, simple and realistic approach.

She has sold over 20,000 self-published books and is now published as the author of Naturally Inspired, Simple DIY Recipes for Body Care and Cleaning.

Her recipes have taken her to the screen on more than one occasion, with morning TV appearances, and she received recognition as a ‘Woman Who Will Change The World’ in the AusMumpreneur business awards in 2018.

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