February 17, 2010

Natural Cleaning Products

This week I want to share something that has really improved our quality of living. I am a cleaning fanatic. Yes, I am very particular about things being not only neat and tidy but also clean. I quickly wipe down the bathrooms every day to banish any germs lurking to attack my family. I clean the inside of my fridge on a regular basis. Yes, I disinfect the tooth brush holders and soap dishes weekly. You name it, I want to know that it is adequately clean.

The catch? I am also an asthmatic. Dust, mold, mildew and cleaning products are all triggers that will send me into weeks of wheezing and inhalers and steroids. Which means that cleaning day is a virtual nightmare waiting to happen.

This became so problematic that we had to take measures to eliminate as much of my cleaning duties as possible. But let's face it... no matter how much you delegate there are still things that need to be done regularly and if you are a home maker there are things that only you can do up to your standard.

I have tried baking soda and vinegar and other organic cleaners and they work OK. But to keep up with the dirt and grime produced by this family of nine, they don't do what I would like.

When we were on vacation last fall, I was wandering through Walmart looking for paper towels when I happened upon my new favorite products. Green Works by Clorox.

I have used a lot of 7th Generation products and swear by their laundry detergent, however, many of their products cost a great deal more than the chemical laden counterparts. Natural dish washer powder is shockingly more expensive
than the walmart brand, for example.

This line cost no more than the good old fashioned all purpose spray cleaners but boasted only all natural ingredients free of phosphates and other dangerous chemicals.

But did it work? It sure did! I was so pleasantly surprised. It had no nasty lingering smell and best of all I experienced itching, wheezing, sneezing, coughing. I am trying desperately to remember what the boys spilled in the sink at our vacation home but
I can't get it in my memory. I do remember that I was afraid it would NOT come out and one spray with the Green Works all purpose cleaner and a wipe with a paper towel and there was not a trace.

I usually leave the household products I purchase for the next renter who comes through, but not this baby. For fear of not finding it back home, I packed her up and toted that bottle all the way to Maryland from Georgia.

Imagine my delight when I saw Windex on the shopping list and discovered not only did our Walmart now carry the green works line but that there was a new member in the family. The glass and surface cleaner lived up to all the expectations that had been set by my all purpose cleaner.

Even still, I was not so sure about the dish liquid. I have been a Dawn girl since I set up my own house keeping almost twenty years ago. Nothing cut
through grease or held the suds like good old fashioned Dawn. Even my frugal hubby knew never to mess with buying any generic dish soap. So when this came on the market I had doubts, despite the flying colors of her sister products. I bought the bottle of green works liquid but grabbed a bottle of Dawn just in case.

That night, I stood by the sink in awe watching the suds build up. When I put my hands in the water I had to grab the bottle and make sure I had poured the right soap in. It felt just like my dawn. And it cleaned as well, too. Those suds lasted through dinner dishes for nine, getting them every bit as clean. Oh, and for those who don't know this trick... a little Dawn or Green works is great for rubbing into greasy stains in your laundry. In case you haven't guessed, she passed the laundry test, too. I almost feel guilty saying it, but that huge bottle of Dawn moved to the back of my cupboard.

So there you have it. A recommendation from one very picky homemaker to the other equally obsessed housewives out there who like to find ways to make your families a little a healthier and to those who like to make their work a little easier.

For more Works-For-Me-Wednesday-Posts go to We Are That Family



  1. Mama,
    yeah! i get to be the first commenter of the day!!
    This was well written. That stuff really is incredible. Praying your head is feeling better soon.

  2. great minds think alike.. we used exactly the same cleaners! :) Hope your feeling better! We've missed you!

  3. I've tried some of the Green Works products and have gravitated towards the Seventh Generation products. Although I think they're a bit more expensive. The Green Works were fine but did not like the smell of the toilet bowl cleaner.

  4. I am so glad to read this as I have asthma as well & cleaing products bother me! So glad to find your fun blog today. I've been blessed by my visit here. I am following & look forward to visiting you again. Blessings to you & yours!

  5. I've been using the Green Works line myself and agree that they are quite good! I have two birds in my house that are very sensitive to cleaning fumes, and I find this line to be just fine around them!

    Thanks for the post!

  6. I have used these products before and they do work,but I stick with vinegar and baking soda.I'm cheap like that!!! lol.Oh well I 'm glad you are feeling better!!

  7. I love the Green Works line but have never tried the dish soap. I'm going to get some tonight! Thanks for the tip :)

  8. you can make dishwasher detergent with borax and washing soda. i haven't tried it yet, but i do like homemade laundry soap. green products can be pricey, but i've had good luck with homemade.

    i'll be happy to test out that dish soap...that's one cleaner we haven't "greened" yet:)

  9. Thanks for sharing this info... I will need to check it out...my hubby and I are trying to eat more organic...and healthier cleaning products are a great idea too...

    Blessings & Aloha!
    (yay! a few days off from work, so am catching up a little on my favorite blog reads... I have housework organizing and drawing orders to get to too :o)

  10. I also use the Green Works dishsoap and really really love it. I originally bought the all-purpose cleaner too, but now I refill it with my own mixture of usually vinegar and water.

  11. We use greenworks as well and have really been impressed:)

  12. I just tried their dish soap also and was pleasantly surprised as well.

  13. I can't wait to try the dish soap. I haven't found any "green" products I liked for dish soap yet. I have stopped using any type of cleaner for my mirrors except water and a yellow Norwex window wipe. They're really pricey, but I stopped when I was pregnant and I haven't gone back.

  14. Kat,

    I too have used the Green Works line of products and have to say, they work really well. I have to pick up the dishwashing detergent because like you I didn't think there was anything out there as good as Dawn. You've made a believer out of me.

    Love and Hugs ~ Kat

  15. Thanks for the heads up - my husband has allergies too.

    Love to you

  16. It's good to know there are natural cleaning products out there that don't cost and arm and a leg. ☺


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