10 Steps to a Greener Home

In the past year or so I have been working to detoxify our home. Or less toxify. To go green. Or at least green(er).

No, I didn’t read a book and come home and throw a bunch of stuff out. I’m much to thrifty and practical for that. I also, wasn’t ready for that. Detoxifying can be overwhelming and scary, but here is how I made it simple and easy for my family.

10 Steps to a Greener Home

1. Make your own laundry detergent.

This is the first really “green” thing that I did, but I didn’t even realize I was doing it! I originally started making our own laundry detergent to save money; and yes, it absolutely does that, but it’s also amazing to see how few ingredients your laundry actually needs. Yucky chemicals out—pure goodness in. I use this recipe.

2. Replace spray cleaners with vinegar and water.

One day I ran out of spray cleaner (you know the stuff you spray your counters and clean your bathroom with) so I googled homemade cleaners and found out some interesting stuff, plus became a convert to vinegar solution for cleaning. (And they say procrastinating never pays off.) For general cleaning I use 1 part vinegar to 3 parts water.

Organic blackberries

3. Start buying the dirty dozen organic. 

I don’t always do this, but I’m trying to get organic with more and more of these fruits and veggies. Buying tip: Aldi has started carrying some organic produce and is generally cheaper than other grocery stores.

4. Norwex products

This is another great alternative cleaning product–cleaning cloths with antibacterial properties. I have kitchen cloths, bathroom cloths, a glass cleaner, a duster, and a couple of scrubbing options and facial cloths. They really are great!

5. Check care products on EWG.org.

Next time you buy, buy lower on the scale. Easy enough. One thing I definitely check here is soap, shampoo, and deodorant.

6. Cloth diapering

Not as hard as it sounds. You can check out more about my experience with cloth diapering; I use bumGenius 4.0s diapers.

Young Living Essential Oils

7. Essential oils

Essential oils are great to use for headaches, stress relief, to help ward of colds and flu, ease sore throats and more!

8. Coconut oil for lotions and conditioners

It leaves your skin feeling great and it is completely natural! I like to add lavender essential oil and then I smell like a garden. 😉

Natural deoderant

9. All natural deodorant

So I gave this one a try….it went okay. I used Primal Pit Paste . I thought it actually worked well during the day, but noticed a bit of more stinkyness in the morning–I guess I sweat a lot at night? Definitely worth looking into though since many antiperspirants/deoderants contain really strange stuff, including aluminum. Ew. TOMS of Maine is another popular brand of all natural deoderant.

10. Switch to antibiotic, hormone free grass-fed (if possible) meat 

Not always an inexpensive green option, but I swear it tastes better. And I feel better eating it. It’s worth working into your budget if you can–I would say 75% of the time we are eating “the good stuff”. Buying tip: We get a lot of our beef from my parents who buy half a beef from my Uncle every year. While they aren’t totally grass-fed they live a happy life on my dad’s family’s farm, have access to outdoors and are loved on by my cousin. When you buy a whole or half beef you are paying more for hamburger, but less steak. Worth looking into! When that’s not available we like to get meat at Yoder’s in Shipshewana. They have grass-fed and grain-fed meats that are all hormone and antibiotic free at good prices. I get organic chicken and turkey at Meijer. Last week I looked at organic, grass-fed beef at Meijer which had been about $7 a pound and it had jumped to $9 a pound. Yikes!!

Bonus–Buy a couple houseplants.

They naturally detoxify the air and they look pretty!

Have you embraced a greener life in any area? Tell me your favorite tips, switches, and resources! Have you tried any of these? Any definite “no thank yous”?

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