We are all worried when we go outside to a smog filled sky. We are concerned with images of toxic waste being dumped into our waterways. However, we let hazardous, toxic, and carcinogenic chemicals into our homes daily in the disguise of common household cleaners. These chemicals are finding their way into our bodies.
The Household Products Toxic List:
The American Association of Poison Control Centers reports at more than 90% of poisonings happen at home. Medicines, household cleaners, and pesticides top the list of offenders.
A study on chemicals used in household products in New Jersey and Massachusetts showed that 28 million pounds of chemicals that are known or suspected neurotoxins, carcinogens, or reproductive or developmental toxicants were used in soaps and other detergents, in those two states alone. Additionally, 259 million pounds of these chemicals were accounted for in specialty cleaners and polishers.
Some tips on how to spring clean your home!
Take off your Shoes
Leave shoes at the door to keep out 80 percent of the crud they track in, per ISSA/Interclean. That can include nasty stuff like road sealant, pesticides and lead dust.
Crack the Windows
Indoor air can be five times as polluted as outdoor air, so open the windows whenever the weather permit.
Get rid of VOC’S
Trade your vinyl shower curtain for one made of cotton, nylon, polyester or EVA or PEVA plastic. (Not sure if it’s vinyl? Look for the number 3 printed on the recycling seal on the curtain or its packaging, or the letters PVC.)
In a 2008 study, vinyl curtains were found to release 108 volatile organic compounds (VOCs), chemicals that become gaseous at room temperature, potentially triggering headaches, nausea, dizziness and irritated eyes and throat. They’re also found in most paint, so look for cans labeled as low or zero VOC.
Instead of sprays (which add to your chemical load) or feathers (which just kick up more dust), use dry, unscented microfiber cloths, which attract dirty particles instead of scattering them.
Making your own Eco-Friendly Cleaner
Making your own eco-friendly cleaner is cost effective and easy. A few common household ingredients and your essential oils is all it takes. It’s cheap and earth friendly.
– 1 cup Water
– 1 cup Vinegar
– 2 tsp Liquid Castille Soap
– 25 drops Essential Oil of choice, i.e. OnGuard, Lemon, Melaleuca, etc.
Add all ingredients into a glass spray bottle. Soap will clump a little between uses. Shake well before spraying.