- E-cloths - these are brilliant as you can use them with just water - no nasty chemical cleaning products needed - and they come in different varieties for different uses; glass, polishing, general cleaning etc. The one we have in our bathroom is great at polishing the sink and taps, it easily removes water and toothpaste marks!
- White vinegar is the best limescale remover I have ever come across. Ok, it does whiff a bit, but it's not really that bad and the smell goes as soon as the surface has dried. It also works really well as a fabric softener - just add a glug or two to the conditioner compartment of your machine as you would a regular fabric softener. And no, your clothes won't come out smelling of vinegar! If you do want some fragrance though, you can add a few drops of essential oil as well (I use lavender). White vinegar is actually something of a super-product, it has masses of different uses - check out www.vinegartips.com for more!
- Washing up liquid - I have used Ecover in the past which is very good, and smells really nice too, but it is a bit pricey. We're currently trying Sainsbury's own "eco" brand, Clean Home, which is cheaper than Fairy Liquid even, and I'm pretty happy with it. It smells nice, claims to have "reduced impact on aquatic life, reduced use of hazardous substances" and also points out that "masses of foam on the water is not necessarily an indicator of effective cleaning - it shows you are using too much washing up liquid!".
- Other "kitchen cupboard" products I've used are soda crystals and bicarbonate of soda, both of which are very good for cleaning out a scummy kitchen sink! Bicarb is a great deodoriser too, sprinkle it in stinky trainers and leave overnight to get rid of smells!
I'm actually quite keen to further investigate the idea of homemade cleaners, so I'm sure this is a subject that we'll come back to.
Til next time!