Everyone wants to save money. For many, that means finding ways to cut down on household expenses. One great way to cut back on your grocery bill is to make your own versions of common household products that you use every day. These homemade versions are every bit as effective as the kind you buy in the store, and cost far less per use than their commercial cousins.
Homemade Laundry Soap
- One-half bar of Fels Naphtha
- One cup of washing soda
- One cup of baking soda
- One cup 20 Mule Team Borax
Use your food processor to grind these up together and store in an airtight container. Two tablespoons will wash a full load of laundry.
Having trouble finding the ingredients? Fels Naphtha is a laundry bar soap. You may be able to find it in your grocery store with the rest of the laundry items. It might also be in the natural cleaning section, or even with the hand soaps, although it shouldn’t be used for this purpose as it can be quite irritating. Washing soda, which is not the same thing as baking soda, can often be found with the fabric softeners. It is made by Arm & Hammer but your store may carry a generic brand. The Borax should be with the rest of the laundry detergents.
This toothpaste does not contain fluoride. If you are looking to eliminate fluoride or have a medical reason for doing so, or if your water is already fluoridated, this toothpaste will be fine.
- Three tablespoons baking soda
- One tablespoon table salt
- Six teaspoons glycerin
- Peppermint or cinnamon oil or another flavor you prefer
Mix the baking soda and table salt. Add the glycerin to the dry mixture. Mix in enough water to make a paste. Add a few drops of the oil for flavor. Keep the product in a covered container and use the same way you would use commercial toothpaste.
Glycerin should be available at a pharmacy. If it’s not available, ask the pharmacist to order it for you. The flavored oil may be in the baking section or in the natural section of your supermarket.
Homemade All Purpose Cleaner
- One teaspoon Borax
- Two tablespoons vinegar
- A few drops of dish soap (like Dawn)
- A few drops of your favorite essential oil for a nice smell
Place the Borax and vinegar in a 16 ounce spray bottle. Add enough water to fill the bottle and swish to dissolve the Borax. Add the dish detergent and the essential oil. Spray on messes and clean with a sponge or rag.
Homemade Window Cleaner
- One-half teaspoon mild dish soap
- Three tablespoons vinegar
- Two cups water
Combine ingredients in a spray bottle. Use exactly the same way you would use commercial window spray cleaners.
Quick Cleaning Substitutions
You probably have several items around your house that can be used in place of commercial cleaning products. For example:
- Baking soda can be used in place of scouring cleaners and won’t scratch surfaces.
- Vinegar can substitute for fabric softener and the smell rinses out. It’s also a great disinfectant.
- Rubbing alcohol is a powerful disinfectant and evaporates quickly.