This may seem like a bit of a strange topic to write about, but if you’re wondering how I get by without commercial cleaners, then here’s how we clean the loo – naturally.
To clean the toilet, firstly, I pour a little undiluted white vinegar in the bowl and let it sit for a while. Then I sprinkle some bicarb soda around the bowl. I have a cheap plastic kitchen shaker that I store the bicarb in. Bicarb is a wonderful cleaning agent and a quick scrub with the brush gets rid of any stains in the toilet bowl.
There’s an ad on television at the moment for toilet cleaner which states that bleach doesn’t get rid of all the germs in the inside of the bowl. While I used to use bleach, I didn’t feel good about washing it into our waterways. I’m not worried about bacteria in the toilet because we don’t put our hands in it, and vinegar is an antibacterial – it will kill most germs anyway.
Once the inside is clean, I use my homemade spray and wipe for the rim, seat, lid, everywhere else. The spray has tea tree oil in it, which is also an anti-bacterial, along with the vinegar.
Finally I add a drop of pure essential oil in the bowl, the bin and on the inside of the toilet roll for a fresh smell. I like Manuka oil from New Zealand, which is a kind of woody, foresty smell and is also anti-bacterial. I imagine it’s probably not going to be everyone’s favourite smell. With three drops, the scent isn’t too strong and usually lasts almost a week.
As far as toilet spray goes, I do use it although I haven’t always. Of course, I make my own toilet spray. It’s very easy, just fill a spray bottle with water, add a drop or two of biodegradable detergent, and a few drops of your favourite essential oil, shake and use. I estimate it to be about 50c or less a bottle. I assume that the detergent acts as an emulsifier for the oil and water to mix, but I’m just guessing and you can leave it out.
I really enjoy nice smelly stuff, but am allergic to artificial fragrances and to me they all smell like fly spray anyway. The essential oil combination I use for my air freshener is 10 drops each of lime, grapefruit and orange and 5 drops of patchouli which is a woody smell also. The patchouli gives a nice undertone to the citrus. Citrus oils are among the cheapest, so I generally buy those as well as lavender, rosemary and eucalyptus. The great thing about making your own, is that you can customise it to exactly the smell that you like.
The upside to using homemade cleaners is that it’s really cheap, it’s environmentally friendly, it reduces waste, it’s non-toxic and it’s effective. If you use natural cleaners, I’d love to hear your methods for cleaning.