Image from Guide to Living Naturally
I love walking into a freshly cleaned home smelling softly of lavender and orange. Getting there with three dogs and two cats however, is no small feat. I know that products such as Febreze® are quite popular in homes across America, but I’ve never been able to use them without sneezing and my throat swelling. Same goes for ammonia, bleach and many other “clean” smells. So I make my own cleaners and pretty much called it a day on the odor eliminating sprays.Image from © H.J. Heinz Company
Then I read Clean House, Clean Planet by Karen Logan and realized I was trying much too hard. Distilled white vinegar is the solution. We are not endorsed by Heinz but I do find that it has the most light and clean smell out of the brands I’ve tried.
I’m not sure what Karen’s recipe was, but I usually just fill a fine mist spray bottle (around 8 oz. but use what you have) with vinegar and 15-30 drops of essential oil. My favorite is a lavender and orange blend but peppermint, lemon and apple are refreshing and it is pleasant to change with the seasons. If I feel it needs some antibacterial qualities, I’ll use tea tree oil. There are many great sources for essential oils, I really love Mountain Rose Herbs.
Image from Amazon
I often spray this in my basement just to freshen the air and when we’ve been away from the house, I just walk through and mist everywhere. Please note: As with all cleaners, spray and then walk away, do not breathe in the mist. The vinegar will absorb the unpleasant odors and then the vinegar smell will disappear after a few minutes as well. Use this just as you would any commercial odor eliminator and feel better knowing you are not absorbing any cyclodextrins into your body. I am not claiming to know that is the active ingredient in the odor eliminator, however, due to a little research I found several resources making that claim and I could not find any ingredient list or MSDS on the website. It’s safe to say that you would probably choose the more familiar, edible ingredient to spray all over your home for which your children and pets will potentially come into contact.
There is so much more to say on the matter, but why complicate things?