If you’ve read my Green Your Cleaning post, you know that it can be very simple to make your own natural cleaners and avoid the toxins commonly found in conventional cleaners. Today I have a guest post by Anna Aamone focusing specifically on DIY natural wood cleaners. Here’s what she has to say!
The world is bustling with shops that offer wood cleaners of all sizes, prices and forms. But most of them are just as toxic to people as they are to bacteria. With commercial cleaners, it is really hard to believe a label which reads “natural”, considering the harmful ingredients mentioned on the back of the bottle. And sometimes they are not even trying to lie; the bottle itself says “dangerous” or “toxic”. So what do we do then? Switch to natural products? There are many household ingredients that can make amazing cleaners, wood cleaners included. Before you spend a large chunk of money on commercial wood products, take a look at your pantry items. You may find something useful for a DIY natural wood cleaner.
Option #1: Olive Oil
If you are looking for eco-friendly wood cleaners, olive oil is one of the best alternatives to commercial products. All you need is some water and 1/8 cup of olive oil. Soak a sponge or wet a clean cloth and use it to clean your wood surfaces. Olive oil is also a great alternative to commercial wood polishers. Only a few drops of the liquid and ¼ cup of white vinegar can restore the shine to your wood surfaces.
Option #2: Lemons
Lemons are acidic and they can make effective nature-friendly cleaning solutions for your home or office. They kill bacteria, which makes them a perfect ingredient for your wood cleaning recipe. You only need a gallon of water and a half cup to one cup of lemon juice. Mix well. Soak a sponge, cloth or a floor mop into the solution and clean your wood surfaces. Let dry. The best part is, your home will smell fresh as opposed to the strong chemicals in commercial cleaners that give off a pungent odor and which – by the way – are very toxic.
Option #3: (White) Vinegar
You probably know how powerful vinegar is. It not only kills bacteria and removes mildew, but also is able to remove stains and bad smells. Additionally, white vinegar is effective against wax build-up and grease. The best part is that it is non-toxic, inexpensive and easy to find. Add ¼ cup of vinegar to one gallon of water and soak a sponge or cloth. Squeeze out excess liquid and rub your wood surfaces until you get all dirt and stains out. When you are done, either dry using a towel or let sit for a while. If possible, open a window to make sure the surface dries faster and the smell of vinegar leaves the premises. Note that both regular vinegar and white vinegar should work. Keep in mind that white vinegar is more powerful than regular and if you want quicker results, it is best to stick with white.
Option #4: Baking Soda
A natural remedy for scuff marks is baking soda. Thanks to its mild abrasive properties, it is a great ingredient for a wood cleaner. All you need to do is wet a sponge, add baking soda and apply on the affected area. Rub well until you remove the scuff marks. If necessary, let the baking soda sit for some time before you start rubbing. When you are done, rinse with another clean damp sponge. Towel dry to avoid wood swelling.
As you can see, these recipes are very easy and time-saving. You only need a few ingredients to restore the shine to your wood surfaces. Give nature-friendly options a try!
What do you use to clean your wood surfaces?
This article was contributed by Anna Aamone. She is a young entrepreneur, writer and home improvement enthusiast. She runs Domestic Cleaners Southgate in London.