You’ve heard about “green cleaning”. What kind of products would be used for green cleaning?
The word I constantly get repeated is “natural and organic”. What does a natural and organic really mean?
A natural cleaning product usually refers to a product that contains natural ingredients. The term natural is NOT regulated therefore, this label is one that is heavily used by companies to lure their customers. A natural cleaning product does not ensure it is free of hazardous pesticides and toxins.
An organic cleaning product usually refers to a product with ingredients that are organically produced. The term organic is regulated by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and can only be used if the product contains 95% organically produced ingredients with just the exception of salt and/or water.
If a product attempts to use the label of “organic” ensure it is not less than 70% organically produced ingredients.
Is there a purpose to fragrances in cleaning products?
No, there is really no useful purpose of scents in cleaning products. The main reason why companies use fragrances is to cover the odors of any strong raw ingredients.
Can fragrances from cleaning products harm me?
It depends. Some people can develop symptoms. If you react badly to a smell from a cleaning product, listen to your what your body is telling you!
Common bad reactions are itchy eyes or tickly throat. If you get these, take these as a warning sign that you are allergic to that fragrance.
Other reactions to fragrances are sneezing, itchy eyes, headaches, nausea, and wheezing. If you do not listen to your body and create chronic symptoms then it adds up to asthma, chemical sensitivity, lethargy, and short-term memory loss.
REMINDER: FRAGRANCES DO NOT JUST ENTER YOUR NOSE! THEY WILL BE ABSORBED THROUGH YOUR SKIN!!
- Vinegar, sodium bicarbonate (baking soda), and salt can be ingest but remember too much of it can be toxic!
- Do not mix store bought products e.g. bleach and ammonia
- Never reuse store bought containers! (Even if rinsed out it can contain chemical residue).
- Do not mix homemade cleaners with conventional products as you can produce fumes that can be extremely toxic.
- With household cleaners always use labels with ingredients to remember what they are. (Store these appropriately and out of reach for children’s safety).
- Wear rubber gloves whenever you can. No one likes having dry hands. Even baking soda can dry out your hands so keep yourself safe!
Natural ingredients do not always mean safe! Always be alert of how your body reacts to different odors. You do not have to buy cleaning products that have fragrances. Think of fragrances as a cover. The useful purpose of it is more on the ingredients intended for it’s purpose.
You don’t have perform green cleanings but I highly recommend to slowly transition to it. Think about the safety of you and your family including pets and the environment. If you have any further questions, you can always seek professional cleaners to teach you a trick or two. It is way better to leave an environment healthier than it was before!