June 28, 2022

The 10 best natural cleaners (clean green & eco friendly)

What are the 10 most basic, natural cleaning supplies? If you prefer natural cleaners and making your own natural products, you’ll love to use these natural cleaning supplies with your homemade cleaners.

When you have a good set of cleaning supplies and a few simple ingredients, you can clean the home without harmful chemicals. Let’s keep it natural and simple and take a look at 10 basic, natural cleaning supplies that get the job done.

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1. Horsehair broom

This is by far my favorite cleaning aid we have at home. Why a horsehair broom? You can clean hard (wood) floors just as well with a horsehair broom as you can with a vacuum cleaner. The natural fibers of the horsehair create a static effect. As a result, even the smallest grain of sand does not remain on the floor. It easily picks up dust and because of the flexible bristles the dirt does not “shoot” away as is often the case with synthetic fiber brooms. Even if you move the brush over the floor with very little pressure, it will take up all the dirt. Around skirting boards, chair legs, etc. too. The fine hairs move easily around small corners.

 

If you are going for a horsehair broom, or any other product that contains parts from animal origin, always choose a brand with a good reputation. The broom I use is from the Redecker brand. They still mostly produce in Germany, and they have been doing so since 1935. It is a brand that stands for quality and here you can be sure that the materials have a responsible origin.

Always hang the broom when you store it. If you put the broom away while it rests on the bristles, they will “sag” to the side over time. If there is a lot of dust or hair in the brush, you can carefully comb it out or even wash it.

If you have children, it’s also worth considering a broom for daily sweeps. A vacuum cleaner is, especially for small children, much more difficult to handle than a broom. Children often love to help in and around the house. And child-size cleaning supplies are lovely for them to use. At Redecker they even have a small horsehair broom, perfectly sized for children.

Horsehair broom

2. Horsehair brush & dust pan

A horse-hair broom with a metal tin is of course the perfect companion for the horse-hair broom. Indispensable for small sweeping jobs and for sweeping up everything that you have swept together with the horsehair broom.

The same applies to what I already said about the horsehair broom. If you get one with a handle, you can easily reach everything without bending over. Most dustpans with a handle have a notch to hang the broom in. This is convenient because this way the dust pan & brush can stand on it’s own and to prevent the brushes from sagging to the side when you rest the brush on the hairs.

This is also a good option for children, so you may not need to purchase an extra, small horsehair broom for the children. Instead they can just use this one.

I think, that a brush made of horsehair and wood and a metal dustpan also look very nice. You can actually just leave it where you use is, it blends perfectly in a natural, simple interior.

Free Printable

Image to show the free, editable chore chart.

Task list

Everyone knows what needs to be done. Keep your cleaning on track with this clean and crisp printable.

Click the image to go to the Resources page

3. Spray bottles

If you want a simple cleaning routine, you”ll enjoy making cleaning products yourself. Most cleaning products can be made from things you probably already have in your pantry. In the “resources” at the bottom of this blog post I give two more suggestions for books that are very useful if you want to make cleaning products yourself.

When making your own household cleaners, it is convenient to choose a spray bottle made of amber glass. Amber glass blocks UV radiation and this makes it very suitable for storing cleaning products that contain essential oils, for example. The effect of essential oils can be reduced if it is exposed to light and UV radiation. The amber colored glass blocks UV radiation so that the effect of the essential oil is not diminished. Amber glass is also readily available, afforable and strong.

In addition, you can give the cleaning products a nice, personal label and stick it on the glass. They are also convenient because you can buy the supplies in bulk. You store the supplies separately and you mix what you need in the spray bottle. This way you always have cleaning products in stock.

4. Non-scratch sponges

Sponges that don’t scratch are great for pans or work that requires a little more elbow grease.

When I chose sponges, I go for the kind that won’t scratch. You can also use it to wash glasses and clean windows.

There are plenty of natural options available, made from plants for example. Not only is it a better choice because it’s a natural material, but it just looks a lot nicer if you ask me. A fluorescent pink or bright blue sponge does not exactly decorate the kitchen.

A combination of cellulose and loofah are a perfect pair. The soft cellulose side can be used for glassware, for example, and the harder side of loofah fibers can be used to remove stains that are more difficult to remove.

5. Hard floor brush

I searched for a good mop for a long time. I tried a steam mop, but after a while a plastic part broke off, which was irreplaceable of course, and therefore the steam mop was no longer usable. Then I tried a spinner mop. It cleaned well, but it was also made of plastic and died after after a short period.

I had enough of all the plastic options and was determined that my next mop was going to be one made of stainless steel or wood. Then a scrub brush passed by. Just a hard brush that you can attach a handle to.

The hard brush is definitely an item you want to add to your most basic, natural cleaning supplies. It’s great for scrubbing tiles first and then mopping them. For floors that cannot be scrubbed I use the scrubber and fold a mop cloth over it. I rinse the mop the cloth regularly. It’s fast, easy and… simple!

What’s great about a separate scrubber and mop cloth, is that you can put a lot of pressure on the scrubber and mop (great for tough stains). Also, because the mop cloth is just a cloth it dries quickly and it’s easy to rinse.

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6. Cotton/ microfibre mop cloth

I already told you something about the mop I use; the combination of a scrubber and mop cloth. Most of the time I fill my bucket with hot water, add some natural soap and a drop of tea tree oil, or lavender essential oil for the living room. That’s all. No harsh chemicals, just some natural ingredients. This works very well with a large cotton or microfiber cloth. Old bath towels also lend themselves well for this job.

If you are handy with the sewing machine you can make one that fits snugly around the scrubber. Old t-shirts work well for this. The best way to use them might be to make them a few layers thick.

Isn’t it annoying that it keeps coming off? No, it doesn’t come off every time if you fold it well around the scrubber. It will slowly loosen up with the movement, but this isn’t a big deal because by the time it’s loose, it’s probably time to wring out the mop anyway.

7. Cotton/ microfibre cleaning cloths

Cleaning cloths are of course indispensable as surface cleaners. You basically use them for everything. For the kitchen counter, bathroom, dining table, you name it.

If you don’t have them yet, go for a nice color and good material right away. It’s such a versatile product, you’ll use it a lot. While I’m not a fan of plastic, microfiber cloths do clean really well. And usually, just a damp cloth, perhaps with some white vinegar and a few drops of essential oil will do a great job.

Nevertheless, there are many nice alternatives such as knitted cloths, cellulose cloths or just regular cotton ones. You just don’t need anything fancy.

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8. Stainless steel bucket

To take your soapy water with you, you need a good bucket. If you can, buy a decent stainless steel bucket. These are strong and will last for years. Unless you’re going to do things other than cleaning, it will last a long time.

They are also easy to clean and do not retain odor or color as can sometimes be the case with plastic.

9. Dishwashing supplies

If you wash dishes by hand, it will be a lot more fun if you can use something beautiful for it. Especially if you leave the washing up supplies on the counter, it is nice if it matches the style of the kitchen a bit.

There are many options for a nice brush made of wood with, for example, coconut fibers. And, for the glasses a non-scratch sponge should not be missing here. Also a regular, wooden dish brush and of course a nice rack to let everything dry.

10. Good resources

I get inspiration for a simple life from many different things. But these two books are definitely my go-to resources when it comes to cleaning.

The Organically Clean Home by Becky Rapinchuk is indispensable in your basic natural cleaning supplies resources. It’s a handy guide that you’ll go back to again and again because there’s so much in it. A more in-depth review of the book can be found in my post about Best books for the (new) homemaker. A must for a homemaker who likes to keep it simple.

Simply Living Well by Julia Watkins is rich in cleaning tips and recipes for home cleaning products. It is also just a lovely book with lots of useful tips and beautiful illustrations. Julia also places a nice emphasis on using natural, zero waste items. Which is handy if that’s what you prefer. She gives an overwiew of items you can replace with more sustainable options. You can also find the book by Julia Watkins in the post Best books for the new homemaker for a more extensive review.

The book Simply Living Well by Julia Watkins opened to one of it's first pages. The left page has a picture of a garden and on the right is written text.

Let’s summarize…

I hope this is a helpful list for you. If you’re just starting out, I would advice you to keep it really simple. There’s not much you need and usually the simplest options gets the job done. In case you already have a good amout of cleaning supplies, use what you have. By the time something needs to be replaced, go for the natural & simple option. Here’s the list of 10 most basic, natural cleaning supplies.

  1. Horsehair broom
  2. Horsehair brush and dustpan
  3. Spray bottles
  4. Non-scratch scrubbers
  5. Hard floor brush
  6. Cotton/ Microfibre mop cloths
  7. Cotton/ Microfibre cleaning cloths
  8. Stainless steel bucket
  9. Dishwashing supplies
  10. Good resources

I’m not sponsored by Redecker, it’s just a brand a love for it’s craftsmanship and simplicity.

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4 Comments

  1. Diane Gail July 8, 2022 at 10:25 pm - Reply

    And now I’m pining after new cleaning supplies ;)

    • Tahnee July 9, 2022 at 6:25 am - Reply

      Hehe :D They look pretty, don’t they? Which makes the task more enjoyable.

  2. Jenny July 8, 2022 at 11:32 am - Reply

    This is a great post with lots of helpful tips. My family is about half switched over to natural cleaning products (it’s a process and one that was slowed by the pandemic). So, it’s helpful to get some inspiration and ideas to keep us moving towards an all natural cleaning products home.

    • Tahnee July 8, 2022 at 7:32 pm - Reply

      Glad to hear it was inspiring to read! It’s definitely a process that takes time, but once switched it’s so nice to know it’s all natural :)

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