A thrifty, green and minimalist cleaning kit

I never bought into having multiple specialised cleaning agents, what with being a bit of a greenie with sensitive skin. Our cleaning kit is pretty minimal as a result.

This week I jettisoned yet another product.  It turns out that anything bicarb can do, soda crystals can do better*. Soda crystals are a stronger alkali, which means you need less to do the same job; and a 1 kg bag costs the same as a 500g box of bicarb. I made a drain volcano this week as the bath was draining slowly; and a tablespoon of soda crystals did the job nicely.

Minimalist cleaning kit - vinegar, soda crystals, oxy bleach, soap

Our cleaning kit now consists of:
  • Soda crystals - they are just awesome - degreaser, deodoriser, toilet cleaner, drain volcano ingredient and laundry liquid ingredient/additive all in one!
  • White vinegar - I use this for surface cleaning, glass cleaning, descaling and as a conditioner when I wash towels. Also, those drain volcanoes.
  • Washing up liquid - I tried bar soap for dish washing, but our water is just too hard. I also mix it with water and vinegar for a shower spray.
  • Oxy-bleach or Borax substitute - I use this very sparingly in white washes. I made do without for years, but it's the best way to clean white school tops. I prefer the Oxy-bleach, but only buy it if I can find it packaged in cardboard, not a plastic tub. Both can be used to clean patios and decking apparently.
  • Bar soap - laundry soap ingredient and stubborn stain remover. I also use it to wash the lino floor in the hall. 
I occasionally borrow ingredients from the kitchen - lemon juice, salt and alcohol come to mind, but the above kit does the job for the most part.

I have a small collection of different cloths, rags and brushes for applying the products and elbow grease. The only place I use disposables is to clean the toilet and the potty - and one large roll of kitchen roll lasts months for this purpose.

I love it when I find that something can be done with even less money, waste and clutter.

*Apart from cakes. Stick to food safe bicarb for baking, obviously.

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