We had a wonderful weekend at the Lake Itasca Family Music Festival! A little bit of rain but nice and cool and not much for bugs! It was a great time of seeing friends and hearing some wonderful music. I didn't drink quite enough water on Saturday so had a bit of a headache on Sunday so drank lots on Sunday and am now back to normal.
Here is your next challenge in detoxing your home --
Change Your Cleaning Supplies, Part 2!
Now that you have tackled your all-purpose cleaning supplies, it is now time to re-think some specifics:
1. Dish Soap -- This is one of the last things that has changed in our house. I had trouble finding something that worked well, especially on grease/fats. I tried some of the DIY recipes using castile soap but they left dishes feeling greasy. I ordered BioKleen's Lemon Thyme from Azure Standard and I'm loving it! It works even better than Dawn! I'm leery of "natural/green" dish soap that I can buy at Walmart or the local grocery store because there are no specific ingredients listed and while Biokleen isn't super specific in its ingredient list either, I really like this: "Contains NO phosphate, chlorine, ammonia, petroleum solvents, alcohol, butyl, glycol ether, SLS or SLES, EDTA, DEA. No SARA Title lll, CA 65, or EPA priority pollutants. No materials listed by the ACGIH as hazardous." I'm going to stick with Biokleen! (I've been using Seventh Generation dish soap for a while now and it is OK...might need to go bac to Biokleen...)
2. Dish Washer Detergent -- We don't have a dish washer so I don't have first-hand knowledge of this. I've heard that using baking soda in the "soap" spot and white vinegar in the "rinse aid" spot works great. Those of you with a dish washer -- what do you think? What do you use?
3. Laundry Detergent -- We changed our laundry detergent when we started using cloth diapers because of all the problems that regular detergents cause with cloth diapers (leaking, smells, rashes, etc.) We started with Charlie's Soap and have tried a few others like Rockin' Green and Soap Nuts and I'm back to using the Charlie's Soap. I switched to Rockin' Green because of diaper stink (when we moved to a place with a front load washer) and it worked as well as Charlie's Soap but didn't get rid of the stink and Charlie's Soap was less expensive. I liked the Soap Nuts but didn't like that I had to "check" them after each wash to see if they could be used again -- I was never quite sure when to change them out. So, I'm back to Charlie's Soap for its ease of use and the great price. I've also heard good things about Country Save. (We switched to Biokleen Free and Clear Laundry Powder as it was cheaper than Charlie's Soap and it worked well. Now that we are a diaper free household! I've started making my own with Zote, washing soda and borax.)
4. Fabric Softener -- Don't use it! It is fake and full of chemicals! If you get rid of all the build up on your clothes from "regular" laundry detergents, you won't need it anyway (and your towels will absorb water again). Some people like to add white vinegar to the rinse cycle as a natural fabric softener but I haven't noticed a difference. Many people will add white vinegar to the rinse cycle when washing diapers but some claim this can add to diaper stink instead of getting rid of it. I haven't noticed a difference either way.
5. Dryer Sheets -- Don't use them! They are a fire hazard (they make dryer lint highly flammable) and just add a chemical layer to your clothes. If you feel like you have static problems, try adding wool dryer balls to your dryer, but usually getting rid of chemical build-up on your clothes will take care of the static issues. We use these dryer balls and I like them, they help clothes dry faster due to helping them tumble better. If you like the scent of dryer sheets, try putting a few drops of essential oil on a dry wash cloth and putting it in the dryer with your clothes -- all natural and lightly scented!
So, we're starting to get serious here! What is the first thing you want to change? The great thing is that the rest of your family still may not notice your changes -- except when their towels actually start absorbing water!
Blessings to you and your family!