From the beginning of time people have had to clean their dwellings, and as time has gone by, cleaning products have continued to become more and more “sophisticated.” But despite the “advances” in cleaning technology, I personally always go back to the basics when it’s time to get down & dirty with cleaning!
Here are my all-time cleaning favorites…”superstars” if you will….that will never take a backseat to “new and improved!”
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White vinegar is one of the most effective and easiest ways to clean and deodorize almost anything. Using just vinegar and water, you can clean tea kettles, coffee machines, lime scale, soap scum, and more! And when you combine vinegar with other cleaning ingredients, you can clean hundreds of things! In fact, we’ve done so many posts here on the blog that include vinegar, that I put together a mega-post of fifty of my favorite uses for vinegar!
Baking soda is my go-to ingredient for anything that needs to be scrubbed. Baking soda is abrasive enough to scrub away tough stains, grease, and grime, but gentle enough that it won’t damage most materials or surfaces. You can use baking soda on it’s own to clean toilet bowls, sinks, cutting boards, and countertops. Baking soda is also an excellent deodorizer, and makes it a piece of cake to freshen up your mattresses, appliances, garbage cans, drawers, closets, and more. For more ideas on ways to use baking soda, see my blog post dedicated to the topic here.
Salt is another natural abrasive that can help scour away stains and messes. One of the benefits of salt is that it is available from fine to coarse, and everywhere in between, so you can choose the type that will best fit your cleaning needs. You can also use it to scour things that you wouldn’t necessarily want to leave a harmful residue on, such as your pet’s food and water bowls. And since salt is usually close at hand, you can use it as a quick way to absorb an accidental spill at the dinner table. For more useful ways to use salt around the house, read my post here.
Rubbing alcohol evaporates very quickly, so it makes a great cleaner for things that you don’t necessarily want to get wet, like electronics. It’s also the best thing to use for getting things to really shine, like window panes and stainless steel appliances! I also like to use rubbing alcohol to help dissolve sticky messes, like sticker or bandage residue. For lots of other great uses for rubbing alcohol, read my post here.
While most people think about hydrogen peroxide in terms of cleaning wounds, it’s a great choice for other body-related cleaning tasks as well. You can use it to clean and sanitize your toothbrush and makeup brushes, and you can even dilute it with water and use it as a mouthwash! Hydrogen peroxide’s other super power is lightening and brightening. You can use it as an alternative to bleach to remove stains, brighten dingy laundry, lighten hair, whiten teeth, and more! (For more details about using hydrogen peroxide, be sure to check out my eBook Hydrogen Peroxide Magic! You can buy it in my shop, or download it for free if you’re an OGT Plus member!)
While these 5 ingredients are definitely my choices for all-time cleaning superstars, this list would feel incomplete without including a few more ingredients as Honorable Mentions! Click on each item to read about its many uses!