The cleaning aisle at the grocery store can be overwhelming. There are a million products, most of which do the same thing.
I was looking at my cleaning cabinet the other day and realized I have way to many products. Some were empty bottles, I had multiple brands of window cleaner, and multiple brands of several other products. After trial-and-error I figured out how to pair down my cleaning products and make some too.
Making your own cleaning products is more time consuming, but you eliminate the harsh chemical smell, plus DIYing is more cost-effective.
Here is what you need to make your own cleaning products:
Vinegar, dish soap (like Dawn, but any brand will work), water, baking soda, bleach, scented oil (if vinegar smell is disturbing), laundry fabric softener sheets, and a squeegee
And how to use these products to DIY your cleaning:
Countertops/General Purpose: 50/50 mixture of vinegar and water, optional: add scented oil
General Purpose deep clean (sinks, showers, countertops): mix 1/3 dish soap (Dawn) + 1/3 white vinegar + 1/3 water
Shower cleaner: baking soda + water (enough water to make a paste), sponge on and sponge off
Stovetop cleaner: baking soda + vinegar, scrub (will bubble/frizz)
Drain un-clogger: baking soda + vinegar, plunge
Windows: water + soap, rinse with water, wipe with rag, squeegee off
Baseboards: laundry fabric softener sheets
Note: the bleach is for minimum use, I use it a couple times a year to re-whiten bathtubs.
I also still use store-bought toilet bowl cleaner, Murphy's wood cleaner, Spot-Shot (for pet stains), and occasionally will use Windex and store-bought drain un-clogger.
If you don't want to mix your own products you will need:
A countertop cleaner (Fantastik or Windex Vinegar All-purpose), Shower Cleaner (like Tilex), stovetop cleaner, drain un-clogger, Windex, fabric softener sheets, wood cleaner (like Murphy's).
No matter if you're making your own product or buying you'llneed:
A duster (I like Swiffer)
Sponges with rough non-scratch side
Optional: a mop and/or broom with dustpan, bucket
Other cleaning-type products (in the same area of the grocery store): dishwasher detergent (I use the powder in a box, like Cascade), laundry detergent (I buy the cheapest liquid stuff, however I prefer Purex Free and Clear, its in a white bottle), laundry spray spot stain remover (like Shout), and bleach.
And remember here's a rough list of what you're cleaning (or a list of what-to-clean to give to your kids):
This post is part of a series titled "Things Every Home Needs"
Bedrooms. All you really need is a place to sleep and get dressed. So here are the basics. Keep in mind that I would recommend white linens because when laundry needs to be done it is easier to just throw in a load of whites with some bleach and not worry about colors. Plus, kids change their minds a lot, so buying white linens keeps things simple and saves money in the long run.
A comforter. I would highly recommend a down or down-alternative comforter.
Down keeps you warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Here is the one pictured above. This one is great. Or you could get a true down.
For the last three items (pillowcase and sheets), you can buy each of these items individually. However, usually it is cheaper to buy these in a set. I recommend Fieldcrest sheets from Target. These Fieldcrest sheets that have a faint stripe pattern which makes it super easy to make the bed instead of trying to figure out what side of the sheet is the long side and which is the short side.
Clothes storage (closet, dresser, under bed)
I really like these storage containers because they fit under a bed without having to use bed risers.
I prefer an alarm that can charge my iPod, has a radio alarm (so you wake up to a radio instead of BEEP-ing), and obviously displays the time, digitally. And if I'm being picky I don't like the time to be in displayed in red, I prefer green or blue. So this one is perfect.