When it comes to buying cleaning supplies, most people snag the first uber-pricey name-brand product they recognize on the shelves and go with it. But do you really have to spend that much on cleaning products? Surely there’s a less expensive way to keep your house sparkling!
DIY cleaning products are the perfect substitute. They cost a fraction of the price, plus you’ll know exactly what you’re spraying around your house.
Here are our top DIY cleaning product recipes, made with inexpensive, commonly-found ingredients.
Scented All-Purpose Cleaner
Save money by using one product to clean multiple surfaces. This cleaner from Good Housekeeping is not only multi-use, but it will leave your whole house smelling fresh. And its main ingredient, white vinegar, is only $3.99 per half gallon.
- White vinegar
- Lemon rind
- Rosemary sprigs
Add one part vinegar to one part water in a spray bottle. Add lemon rind (or lemon essential oil) and rosemary sprigs. Let the mixture sit for one week before using. This can be used in multiple areas of your home. The lemon and rosemary will add a fresh scent, and the lemon rind may give your cleaner an extra boost.
This recipe from the Pioneer Woman will keep your kitchen germ-free for much less than anything you can find in stores! Because your kitchen doesn’t just need to be clean, it also needs to be disinfected. Adding essential oils with antibacterial properties makes all the difference.
- White vinegar
- Antibacterial essential oils: cinnamon bark, oregano, thyme, tea tree oil (melaleuca), lemongrass, peppermint, rosemary, lavender, eucalyptus
Fill a spray bottle with one half white vinegar and one half water. Add 15 drops of essential oils for every 25 ounces. You can use just one essential oil or any combination you prefer; cinnamon, thyme, and oregano have the strongest antibacterial properties. Shake well before each use.
Pro Tip: Most essential oils can be found for under $10/bottle on Amazon.
Sometimes your kitchen needs a deeper cleaning. This degreaser from Bob Vila cuts right through the grease and oil, making kitchen cleaning a breeze with inexpensive ingredients you probably have on hand. Castile soap might be the exception, but you use such small quantities that one purchase can last for months!
- White vinegar
- Castile soap ( Bronner’s on Amazon is only $7.99)
- Baking soda
- Warm water
- Citrus-scented essential oil
Combine one cup of white vinegar, 1/8 teaspoon of Castile soap, one tablespoon baking soda, and three cups of warm water in a spray bottle. Add 20 drops of a non-acidic essential oil, such as one of the citrus oils. Shake well then spray. Allow to sit for 5-10 minutes before wiping down.
You can use this on cooktops, countertops, pots and pans, and inside your oven.
Yes, your toilet needs extreme cleaning. But that doesn’t mean extreme expense! You can make this toilet cleaner from DIY Natural for almost nothing with common household ingredients.
- 1/2 cup of baking soda
- 1 cup of white vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon tea tree essential oil (natural disinfectant)
Combine vinegar and tea tree oil in a spray bottle, and spray in and around the toilet. Allow to sit for several minutes. Sprinkle baking soda inside the toilet bowl; scrub with a toilet brush. Use a clean dry cloth to wipe the vinegar solution off the exterior of the toilet.
Keeping your shower pristine can be a pain - literally. All of that scrubbing will leave your arms and shoulders sore for days. That is, unless, you use this inexpensive scrub-free shower cleaner from Smart Schoolhouse.
- Dawn dish soap
- White vinegar
- Scented essential oil (optional)
Ideally, you would be using this solution with a soap-dispensing dish wand, but any container will do. Add 1 part Dawn dish soap to 1 part white vinegar. If you don’t like the smell of vinegar, add a few drops of essential oil. Shake well before each usage. It will cut right through soap scum and shower buildup.
Tips for Using Essential Oils
Essential oils are an excellent way to make your DIY cleaning solutions smell better and mask the scent of some of their ingredients, especially vinegar. Some oils are known to have stronger antimicrobial properties, especially cinnamon, oregano, thyme, and tea tree oil.
Just because an oil is marketed as “all natural” doesn’t mean that you can use it on all surfaces. If you aren’t sure, research with the manufacturer or test on a small, inconspicuous area before spraying.
Always buy high quality oils that have not been diluted; make sure they are 100% pure with no added scents. And do try to buy organic oils whenever possible.
Cleaning won’t be fun, no matter what products you use. But at least with these inexpensive DIY cleaning solutions, you’ll be saving money every time you clean your home!