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Make Your Own Fabric Softener

November 01, 2009 By: NB Category: Basic Formulas, Clean Formulas

laundry softener

fabric softener

Here’s an easy and inexpensive way to soften your laundry without liquids that have to be added to the wash or dryer sheets in every load.

1/2 cup baking soda

1 tablespoon arrowroot powder

1 tablespoon rice flour or corn starch

1-3 drops of any essential oil you like

Fill a small sachet and keep it in the dryer until the scent is gone.

NOTE: Do not use fabric softener on towels and washcloths (it inhibits their absorbency) or bathing suits.

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Make Your Own Laundry Detergent

November 01, 2009 By: NB Category: Basic Formulas, Clean Formulas

laundry

laundry detergent


It’s easy and cheap to make your own eco-friendly laundry detergent. The following recipe will make enough detergent for 30 loads and has a shelf life of 4 months.

5 cups soap flakes

5 cups baking soda

2 1/2 cups washing soda

2 1/2 cups borax

Use 1/2 cup of detergent per full load.

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Make Your Own Scouring Cleanser

September 29, 2009 By: NB Category: Basic Formulas, Clean Formulas

scouring cleanser

scouring cleanser

As a general rule I don’t recommend scrubbing or scouring surfaces on a regular basis – it does eventually damage the material.  But there are occasions when it must be used if we are to rescue the surface in question.

For those times I like this cheap and easy creme scouring cleanser which is safe for a multitude of materials including glass, enamel, fiberglass, plastic, wood, stone, and metal with one exception.  This scouring cleanser contains baking soda.  NEVER use baking soda on aluminum surfaces. It attacks the thin unreactive protective oxide layer of this otherwise very reactive metal and the finish will oxidize and become cloudy and whitish.

1/4 cup liquid soap

1 Tbsp borax

3 Tbsp baking soda

3/4 cup very warm water.

Mix the water and liquid soap.  Add the dry ingredients and stir until grainy.  The shelf-life of this scouring cleanser is 3-4 months.  Remember to clearly label your container and keep out of the reach of children and pets.

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Eight Great Uses For Baking Soda

September 14, 2009 By: NB Category: Clean Chemistry, Safest Cleaning Agents

sodium bicarbonate

sodium bicarbonate

Baking soda, also known as sodium bicarbonate and to a lesser extent as sodium hydrogen carbonate, is a chemical compound found in the mineral natron. It is a white solid that is crystalline in structure but can appear as a fine powder with a slight alkaline taste. The natural mineral form of sodium bicarbonate is nahcolite but it can be produced artificially. Besides helping our baked goods rise and have a light texture, baking soda is a wonderful additional to our cleaning arsenal. Here’s why:

  1. Baking soda is antiseptic and helps kill germs not only in our homes but for personal hygiene as well. A paste made from baking soda and 3% hydrogen peroxide is a safe and effective alternative to commercial toothpaste. It also makes a good natural deodorant. It is more effective than vinegar, salt, or hot water alone when washing vegetables to remove pesticides.

  2. It’s anti-fungal and not only helps kill mold and mildew but will neutralize their odors.

  3. Baking soda will dissolve tarnish. A solution of baking soda in warm water ( 3 Tbsp to a quart of water) with a piece of aluminum foil laying in the bottom of the container will remove tarnish from silver when it comes in contact with the foil.  Caution: This method should NEVER be used on any plated items, only solid metal, and never on any piece of aluminum, or the finish will be damaged.

  4. Baking soda is a powerful odor absorber – in the fridge, freezer, down the drain, on carpets, upholstery, fabrics, even a pair of smelly sneakers.

  5. It’s gently abrasive. A smooth paste of baking soda and water will help scrub off caked on, baked on, dried on gunk from glass cook-tops, porcelain, fiberglass, stainless steel and enameled metals.

  6. Baking soda softens hard water and is superb as a fabric softener. As an aside. you never want to use a fabric softener on towels and washcloths – it hampers their absorbency.

  7. Baking soda will extinguish small grease or electrical fires. Don’t use baking soda on a deep-fryer fire though – it might cause the flaming grease to splatter.

  8. It is effervescent when combined with vinegar and will work wonders cleaning a grimy oven or clearing a clogged drain.

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