How to Make Natural Household Cleaners


As natural mamas, we want to clean our homes without harming our health. I remember cleaning my first apartment after college and having to open the windows because I felt dizzy. Little did I know at the time it was from all of those toxic fumes!

Fast-forward to today, there’s a whole slew of natural cleaners on the market for those who want to avoid inhaling all of the nasty stuff. But mamas, they’re EXPENSIVE!

That’s why I love these DIY products that offer the best clean without hurting your health or pocketbook. There are no harsh fumes, chemicals or toxins. The ingredients are natural, accessible and affordable.

Thanks to EarthEasy.com for the inspiration!

All-Purpose Cleaner

Mix 1/2 cup organic white distilled vinegar or lemon with 1/4 cup baking soda into 1/2 gallon 2 litters of water. Great for bathroom fixtures, tile floor, glass, windows and even mirrors. (Don’t use on marble or wood.)

Mold & Mildew Cleaner

Mix 1/2 cup 3% hydrogen peroxide or vinegar with 1 cup water. Or better yet, mix 1 tsp. tea tree oil with 1 cup of water.Put in a spray bottle and squirt on mold and let sit for up to one hour. You can also add 1-2 TB of baking soda which will start to bubble from the acidic cleanser (and this means it’s working :) Scrub with sponge or brush. Repeat if necessary. You can also make a thick paste of water, baking soda, and a few drops of tea tree oil for stubborn spots. Great for bathroom tile!

Carpet Stain Remover

Mix equal parts white vinegar and water in a spray bottle. Spray directly on stain, let sit for several minutes, and clean with a brush or sponge using warm soapy water.

Rugs/Carpet Cleaner

Sprinkle baking soda or cornstarch on rugs/carpets and wait several hours before vacuuming

Floor Cleaner and Polish

Most floors can be cleaned using 1/3 vinegar to 2/3 water. Add a few drops of mint or citrus essential oils for a nice, clean scent. However, if you have wood floors, I would recommend investing in a bottle of Dr. Bronner’s Liquid Soap or Sacred Lotus’s soap if you prefer unscented or want to add your own essential oils. A few drops of the soap goes a long way and it’s guaranteed to be safe on wood.

Wood Polish

Mix 1 cup olive oil to ½ cup lemon and rub small amount into wood. A little goes a long way!

Antibacterial Spray

Put a dozen drops of lavender, eucalyptus, or peppermint essential oil into 1 cup of water. Both are naturally antibacterial and won’t dry your hands out like the ones with alcohol in them.

How about YOU? What are your favorite cleaners for home?

About Genevieve

After battling weight, digestive, and immune system issues for years, I know firsthand the harmful effects of conventional life. Through a long road of detox, I discovered the healing power of natural living. This transformation spread into every area of my life - physical, emotional & spiritual. Now I'm on a mission to help other mamas live happier, healthier lives.

Please note: Many links on this site, especially those to Amazon, are affiliate links. Should you click on these links and purchase something, the price is no different for you and I earn a small commission. Thanks for supporting Mama Natural!

Disclaimer: The statements made here have not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration. These statements are not intended to diagnose, treat or cure or prevent any disease. This notice is required by the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act.

32 Comments

  1. Kevin Kyrie October 31 at 12:26 am

    Well said. I really appreciate this wonderful post. If without any outside products it is possible for natural household cleaning, then it is simply great.

  2. House Cleaning London September 9 at 1:42 am

    Hey, I am absolutely delighted with this wonderful blog! Really helpful content.. Thanks for shared

  3. Jessica July 22 at 3:50 pm

    Vinegar in a spray bottle does wonders – great on stainless steel appliances and to spray inside a trash can or compost can to neutralize any smells.

  4. Morgan July 22 at 3:30 pm

    Does anyone have a recipe for a shower spray? One that you would spray after each shower so that the gunk wouldn’t build up as quickly.

  5. Megan March 6 at 1:07 pm

    I try to make all my cleaners from scratch because I know what is in it and it is SO much cheaper. My laundry detergent is 1 4lb box of baking soda, 1 4lb box super washing soda, 1 box 20 mule borax, 1 box oxi clean (optional- it does get your clothes brighter but it makes me nervous to put it in there) and 4 bars of grated zote laundry bars. The great thing about this is that it literally takes about 1/2 cup per large load. It cost about $15 to make it and it will last a family of 3 about 6 months. It is also safe with cloth diapers so you don’t ever have to strip them again because there is no build up. It also gets just about every stain out.
    I make my own baby wipes so I thought what about making your own natural herbal Clorox disinfecting wipes for your counters and everything else around your house. So you follow the wipe recipe and then add tea tree essential oil because it is a disinfectant. Anyways my list goes on from dish washing detergent to hair shampoo.

  6. Seattle IT Consulting September 15 at 9:25 pm

    A good way to completely get rid of the chemicals in your household cleaning is to use soap nuts organic laundry detergent. They can be boiled down & used for pretty much any kind of cleaning you need to do.

  7. Orlando Window Cleaning June 18 at 3:24 pm

    We love this trend for homeade, natural cleaners bucause in most instances they do work just as good,

  8. Shannon A October 8 at 2:07 pm

    I also make my own dish washing liquid. 2 TBS Dr. Bonner soap grated. 1 TBS of Arm and Hammer Washing Soda, 1 TBS Vinegar 1/8 tsp of tea tree oil and up too a 1/4 of a tsp of your favorite essential oil. I love lavender and lemon. Then take a 1 1/2 cup of hot water and pour it in the mixture and then wisk it together until there is no clumps. I store it in an old bottle and then let it sit for a while to let cool, it starts to thicken. It doesn’t bubble up much, but it cleans so nicely. I also bought an entire book on cleaners from Frugally Sustainable Blog and have been using those recipes for months. I love it. All made from Vinegar, Borax, Washing Soda, Baking Soda, essential oils and water and coconut olive or Jojoba oil.

    • Megan October 11 at 12:59 pm

      ohhh, that’s a good idea! I’ll have to try that one :)

  9. Elizabeth October 3 at 9:14 am

    Lemon Juice should work too get rid of the toilet bowl smell ick!
    I make my own ‘bleach’ alternative. Take 1 1/2 cup hydrogen peroxide, and 1 1/3 cup of lemon juice put into a gallon jug, fill up top with water and shake. It works great! My whites have never been whiter! Also gets out icky mustard and red wine stains, puts pour onto the stain and then add some in the wash. :)

  10. larisa cox October 2 at 11:39 pm

    How about the toilet bowl? I find that nothing but commercial cleaners get rid of the smell. Any suggestions?

    • Jamie October 3 at 8:59 am

      Hi! I put vinegar in the bowl for an hour, and then dump in baking soda and watch the fizz. This cleans beautifully and gets rid of the funky smells and stains.

      • Shannon A October 8 at 2:01 pm

        I take baking soda and put lemon and Lavendar, and tea tree essential oil and then add vinegar pour it in the bowl, swish it with a scrubby and let it sit for 30 minutes and flush..makes everything smell great!

    • TashaMarie October 9 at 8:29 am

      You could also try Seventh Generation’s toilet cleaner. It works really well. One of the toilets in our house is a really cheap HomeDepot special that came with the place and that stinks really quickly. Seventh Gen. is the only thing that we’ve found can combat the smell. (Which is great now that we have the extra “hover over the toilet time” while cleaning dirty diapers.) What a surprise that a natural cleaner can do what a chemical one can’t! *All sarcasm intended with that last remark.*

  11. Amanda October 2 at 6:19 pm

    I have been using vinegar on my hard wood floors for a while and have never had any problems. Maybe it just depends on the finish or type of wood? I’m interested in trying out the dr bronners for cleaning around the house though! Love the list, it’s such an easy change to make

    • Genevieve October 2 at 8:52 pm

      Yes, I know many people that do vinegar for wood, no problem. I wanted to give heads-up though as it doesn’t work for everyone.

  12. Melissa October 2 at 3:37 pm

    Dr. Bonner’s sorry auto correct got me!

    • Genevieve October 2 at 8:40 pm

      I think Dr. Bonnets sounds cute :)

  13. Melissa October 2 at 3:37 pm

    I use either the mint or tea tree dr bonnets for everything! A table spoon in a spray bottle with water cleans my house regularly and I have 4 very gross kids lol!!! I also use it in my carpet scrubber same just a table spoon in the water tank instead of commercial carpet cleaner. I scrub upholstery with it too including my car! Seems expensive at first but when you realize how far a big bottle goes you save hundreds a year! I hate the smell of vinegar but I use it sparingly for windows. I use soft cloth and elbow grease for things like the tv. My kids have asthma and allergies if I spray commercial stuff they can’t breathe.

    • cammi December 19 at 5:12 pm

      Melissa, I have an alergy problem with smells also, it is to a point that even shopping will make me sick or have an asthma attack. how I wish they would out law perfumes and such. Does the tea tree oil bother your kids? I am scared to death any more to even think of trying new things.

  14. Monica October 2 at 2:26 pm

    Bookmarked :) We move into our new house middle of this month, I couldn’t be more excited! Being new to this natural living business, I’m happy to start on a clean slate and not allow harmful products into our new home!

  15. Amy Moy October 2 at 11:58 am

    These all sound fabulous! I’d really love to start making these and save some $$$! One question I have: how long will these last in spray bottles? Should I expect them to last as long as the all-natural products I buy on the shelves?

    • Genevieve October 2 at 8:42 pm

      Yes, all of these ingredients will last long.

      • Amy Moy October 3 at 12:42 am

        Sweet! Thanks!

  16. Ashley October 2 at 11:56 am

    I love making my own cleaning solutions! I like to know every ingredient in products I use, plus it’s way cheaper!! have you read the book, the naturally clean home? It’s awesome.. Has a recipe for just about anything you’re cleaning. Plus has cool tips, my 2 favorite is- 1- I put some essential oil drops on the inside of the toilet paper roll in my bathroom, so every time it moves, it fills my bathroom with a good smell. 2- I put lavender drops on an old ripped up shirt and throw it in the dryer with my clothes :) way cheaper than fabric sheets(which I stopped using years ago)

    • Genevieve October 2 at 8:42 pm

      Love the scent ideas! Thanks for sharing :)

  17. Brittany October 2 at 11:54 am

    Use orange peels (that would just be thrown away) and soak them in vinegar for up to 10 days. Put into a spray bottle with some water and tada, and all-purpose cleaner that smells orangey :)

    • Genevieve October 2 at 8:43 pm

      I love orange-scented cleaners! Great tip.

      • Megan February 9 at 12:26 am

        One of my all time favorite cleaners is called Orange TKO. You used to could buy it in the lawn and garden section of Home Depot but they stopped carrying it about 5 years ago so I buy my off of mynaturalmarket.com this stuff is amazing and it does absolutely everything. It is 99% organic and it only takes like 1 tablespoon to like a quart of water so a 16 oz bottle will last forever. I have used it as a pesticide, to clean hardwood floors, during flea season I spray on my dogs to keep fleas away ( it kills them on contact). I literally can’t think of anything that I haven’t used it for.

    • Alexandra October 3 at 12:12 pm

      Brittany, that is a fantastic idea! I can’t wait to try it.

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