You probably imagine eco-friendly alternatives to your frequently used cleaning supplies as a worse value. After all, you can get a nine-pack of Scotch-Brite sponges for a little less than $7 – how do you beat that?
I’m here to tell you that we can be better stewards of our environment and get the most bang for our buck. Here are some great green alternatives for your most used cleaning supplies.
Traditional cleaning sponges are terrible for our environment and our health! Most traditional sponges are plastic. As we use these sponges for cleaning our dishes, tiny plastic particles get into our water supply, our food, and eventually into us. According to some studies, we eat as much as a credit card’s worth of plastic a week!
This is bad. Consumption of plastic has been linked to many adverse health effects in humans, including cancers, diminished fertility, impaired immunity, and more.
I note above that a nine-pack of plastic sponges goes for about $7, with each sponge lasting about two or three weeks when replaced as recommended. Meanwhile, this four-pack sustainable Walnut Scrubber Sponge from Public Goods can last at least twice as long, and it also costs about $7. At worst, the costs even out, and you get a sponge that’s better for you and the environment!
Paper towels are the epitome of wasteful. They are single-use, they come wrapped in plastic, and you need a ton of them for most jobs.
Enter the Swedish Dish Cloth. This pack of five reusable cloths goes for $25 on Etsy, and each one can endure about 100 days worth of uses. They are more absorbent than a single sheet of paper towels, made with biodegradable materials, and you can clean them in the dishwasher.
Compare that to this eight-pack of Bounty paper towels that goes for $22 on Amazon. Now, consider that the average household will use that whole pack in a single month. I think it’s clear what the better deal is!
I talk about peroxide a lot, and I’m not going to stop now. Along with being as effective as any brand-name all-purpose cleaner, peroxide is also one of the best value eco-friendly cleaning products you can buy.
The average 32oz all-purpose cleaner from a store like Target typically costs between $3 and $7, and usually comes in a disposable plastic bottle.
You need just half an ounce of peroxide diluted in 31.5oz of water to fill a 32oz reusable bottle with a peroxide solution that is as effective as an all-purpose cleaner. One gallon of a quality, concentrated peroxide like this one costs about $25. There are 256 half-ounces in one gallon, so every half-ounce costs about 10 cents.
According to World Population Review, the average person uses about 100 gallons of water per day at a daily cost of $2.40 for a family of four, or about 2.5 cents per gallon, less than one cent per 32oz.
So forget about Method, Simple Green, and Lysol! Making your own DIY all-purpose cleaner with concentrated peroxide and water will cost you about ten cents for the solution. As you might have deduced on your own, doing this with a gallon of peroxide means you can make 256 bottles of cleaner before you need to restock! It takes weeks, sometimes even months, to empty a 32-ounce bottle of cleaner, so this will last you years.
Thanks for reading this blog on great eco-friendly cleaning solutions! Do you have any great solutions you love? Share in the comments below!