Did you know that most household cleaning products contain an average of 17 toxic VOCs – volatile organic compounds? These compounds are known to cause headaches, nausea, respiratory issues and even cancer, as stated in a study by Professor Anne Steinemann.
Steinmann and her colleges tested 25 home cleaning products and found that – “Each product emitted [one to eight] toxic or hazardous chemicals, and close to half (44 percent) generated at least 1 of 24 carcinogenic hazardous air pollutants, such as acetaldehyde, 1,4-dioxane, formaldehyde or methylene chloride. These hazardous air pollutants have no safe exposure level, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.”
If this is the case, why are we not made aware of these harmful chemicals on our product labels? – Labelling VOCs is not required and often even “green” products still use fragrances, which are also toxic and cause migraines and breathing difficulties among people exposed to them. Think about that for a moment – If someone sprays an aerosol can of deodorant near you, do you sneeze or cough if you inhale it?
If we’re not being told what’s in our cleaners then it’s time to take things into your own hands and turn to natural cleaning products like these:
- White Vinegar – An easy solution of vinegar and water can clean surfaces, mirrors and even polish your silver
- Baking Soda – A powerful agent for removing tough stains in clothing, carpet, dishware and even clogged drains
- Coconut Oil – Not just useful in cooking and cleaning your teeth, it can be used on wood surfaces, removing sticky goo from your floors or lubricating squeaky door hinges. Here is one from my favorite brands – Purium’s Tropic Oil
- Castile Soap – A timeless classic when it comes to natural cleaning products. Combine 3 tbsp. with 2 cups of water and 1 tbsp. of tea tree oil to create a natural surface spray
- Lemons – You can use the juice or the peel in many ways to add a lemony fresh scent to your home. Place a few chopped lemons in your fridge to remove odors, rub half of a cut lemon on your chopping board with salt to cut through grease or combine the juice with a vinegar, water and baking soda mix to use as a surface spray