When life gives you lemons--instead of spending money on expensive green cleaning products--try using them to clean your house
When even "green" cleaning products can sometimes contain questionable ingredients, there are all kinds of natural alternatives made from ingredients found right in your cupboard. Sure, baking soda and vinegar get all the glory when it comes to natural cleaning, but there are a few other unsung green cleaning heroes: not the least of which is the humble lemon.
There's a reason that so many store-bought cleaning supplies boast a lemon fresh scent. Lemon juice has antibacterial and antiseptic qualities that make it a great addition to any green cleaning arsenal. Here are six reasons lemon juice will be a powerful, versatile addition to your cleaning regimen.
1. Lemon juice can be used instead of bleach
Lemon juice can work as a gentle replacement for toxic chlorine bleach in the wash. Half a cup of lemon juice in your washer's rinse cycle can help brighten whites if you hang them to dry in the sun.
2. Lemon juice works great as a degreaser
Because the little buggers are so acidic, lemons make a great degreaser. Try adding a bit to your dish soap when hand washing stubborn pots and pans. If you use a dishwasher, a teaspoon of lemon juice mixed with your detergent ups the grease-fighting power.
3. Lemon juice is excellent at cutting odors
Stick half a lemon in the fridge to keep food smells at bay. You can also rub lemon juice on your hands after cutting up more...fragrant...food like fish or garlic. The lemon juice will neutralize the smell on your hands. If your kitchen has a garbage disposal, try tossing some lemon peel down there. Your whole kitchen will smell lemony fresh!
4. Lemon juice can remove stubborn stains on stubborn places
Stubborn stains on your countertops? Try squirting a little lemon juice on the stain, letting it sit for a bit, and wiping off. All but the trickiest stains should wipe away prety easily.
5. Lemon juice makes cleaning with vinegar more tolerable
If the smell of vinegar gets to you, adding a bit of lemon juice to your vinegar-based all purpose cleaner helps mask that aroma. A 1:1 mixture of lemon juice and water makes a good all purpose cleaner, too! Just make sure to do a spot check before spraying on walls or wood.
6. Lemon juice is also a pretty good glass cleaner on its own
Lemon juice doesn't just work alongside vinegar, it can work pretty well independently too! A few tablespoons of lemon juice in 2 quarts of water makes an excellent glass cleaner.
I bet there are even more ways to use the power of lemon juice to clean your home. Do you guys have any suggestions?
Image Credits: Lemon. Creative Commons photo by natalia-p