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Sure, you could buy expensive cleaning products full of scary-sounding chemicals. Or you could make your own at home. Here are five simple recipes for everyday cleaners that are easy, cheap and free of ingredients you can't pronounce.


Soap Flakes + Borax + Washing Soda = Laundry Detergent

Combine half a cup of soap flakes or grated bar soap (without artificial fragrances and moisturizers) with half a cup of borax and half a cup of sodium carbonate (aka washing soda like Arm & Hammer). Store in a jar with an airtight lid. Use 1 tablespoon per load.


Vodka + Essential Oil = Air Freshener

Fill a spray bottle with vodka (the ethyl alcohol in the spirit is a main ingredient in commercial air fresheners) and add 20 to 30 drops of your favorite essential oil for scent. Shake, then spray. Don?t worry: The booze smell disappears as the liquid dries.


Washing Soda + Borax + Vinegar + Essential Oil = All-Purpose Cleaner

Pour 1 teaspoon washing soda, 2 teaspoons borax, 2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar, 2 ½ cups hot water, 5 drops of lavender oil and 7 drops of lemon oil into a spray bottle. Shake well. Add ¼ cup of liquid castile soap and shake again.


Baking Soda + Tea Tree Oil + Vinegar = Toilet Bowl Cleaner

Sprinkle a half a cup baking soda into the toilet bowl, add 10 drops of tea-tree oil and a splash of distilled white vinegar. Let it fizz for a few minutes, scrub and flush.


Vinegar + Lemon Juice + Water = Glass Cleaner

Combine 1 tablespoon of vinegar with 1 quart of water. Add a touch of lemon juice for a citrusy scent if desired. Spray and wipe.

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