My 4-year-old and I decided to make some quick and easy (and cheap!) cleaning products for the house. He likes to help out with cleaning, and I want him to help. He spilled his yogurt drink on the counter today and said “Mom, I spilled my drink but I clean it up.” I think I may have gotten this parenting thing right the third time 🙂
We use an essential oil cleaner in a glass spray bottle, and it is a bit difficult for his little hands to pull the spray trigger. I decided to try making a cleaning wipe so he could easily clean up after himself.
I used to make fun of people who made their own baby and cleaning wipes, but look at me now! I’m an essential oil junkie. Seriously. I love them. I know how important it is to reduce toxic chemicals in our homes. These cleaning wipes took me less than 5 minutes to make and cost about $1.50 (paper towels, vinegar, approx. 25 drops of essential oil). I use doTerra essential oils; I’ve been very happy with what I’ve learned about their testing (significant) and commitment to responsible harvesting.
I used half a roll of paper towels because I had them left over from making baby wipes. To do the same, take a roll of plain paper towels and cut them in the middle so you have two equal, smaller rolls. A serrated knife works ok, an electric knife works better. You may also use reusable cotton squares, which I plan to try in the future.
- 3/4 cup water (I used filtered)
- 3/4 cup distilled white vinegar
- 15 drops lemon or wild orange 100% essential oil
- 10 drops melaleuca 100 % pure essential oil
- 5 drops lavender 100% pure essential oil
I placed the ingredients in a glass bowl, gave them a quick stir, and pressed the paper towel roll into the bowl. Next, I turned the paper towel roll over and pressed again. The roll absorbed all of the liquid.
I removed the cardboard center, separated the individual sheets (this took a few minutes only), and placed them in glass jars with lids for storage simply to make it really kid friendly. My kids can easily open the jar and pull one out, rather than yank out a mass of paper towels still connected together.
Finally, I tested them out! First stop, kids’ bathroom. This place can really be a horror show. There was toothpaste on the wall that’s about 4 feet from the sink. How does that even happen? Not to mention the toothpaste crusted all over the sink every morning. Seriously. EVERY MORNING. With one wipe I cleaned the sink, counter, and faucet. With another I cleaned the exterior of the toilet. They left a clean surface and a beautiful shine! Lemon, lavender and tea tree all have antibacterial properties, and tea tree has antifungal properties as well.
Since I was already channeling Martha Stewart (making Star Wars costumes today as well), I decided to complete my natural cleaning arsenal with an essential oil window cleaner. The cleaner I use for my counter, which does not contain vinegar, leaves streaks on the glass. This window cleaner took less than 2 minutes to mix up and is even cheaper to make than the wipes. Recipe can be found here: http://doterrablog.com/diy-make-your-own-natural-window-cleaner/