It's that time of the year again! Many of us are diving into in a spring cleaning frenzy, hoping to scrub every nook and cranny before the warm weather hits (and let's be honest, nothing feels better than reducing clutter & junk)! Here at Eco-Adventures, there's a lot of clean-up that happens after the winter season in preparation for the guests' return, every spring; it's very important to us that re-opening is done in a sustainable and eco-friendly manner. Along the way, we've learned a few ways to maintain a 'green' cleaning routine, and we want to share that with you.
Below are a few helpful tips & tricks that you can use to transform your cleaning routine into a 'green & eco-friendly' process. Although spring cleaning is satisfying, it's not always so great for our planet. We have also included a few links, so it's even easier for you to find eco-friendly cleaning supplies & materials that will help you along the way.
Stay eco-friendly and we hope you find this inspiring. Let us know if you tried any of our tips by emailing email@example.com
1. Ditch the Paper Towels
If you don't know it already, single use cleaning supplies are big no-no when it comes to conservation. More than 5 billion pounds of paper towel is disposed of in Canada annually (that's roughly 50 rolls per person). Producing all that paper consumes a lot of natural resources, including 110 million trees per year, and 130 billion gallons of water (source: loveyourplanet.ca).
2. DIY Natural Stain Removers
If you're trying to remove tough stains that accumulated over the winter, we have 4 natural ingredients with cleaning power that you should definitely know about:
A) Lemon - this bright fruit will leave everything sparkling with its acidic nature. Just add some juice to a misting bottle (we want to ensure we're conserving water) and spray it directly on the surfaces you want to clean. For extra tough stains, lose the misting bottle and rub a cut lemon right on top of the grime. Make sure you compost your lemon rind, or place it in a container with vinegar - it makes a great smelling natural cleaner if you let it sit for a few weeks.
B) White Vinegar - this powerful cleaning agent always gets the job done. It's great for: descaling coffee machines; brightening brass; copper or pewter; unclogging shower heads & more!
C) Baking Soda - also known as the ultimate odour & mildew remover. Keep your fridge smelling fresh by placing a small dish of baking soda inside. You can also use it to scrub tough stains, water, mildew and more. Here's 10 ways you can use baking soda to clean your home.
D) Coffee Grounds - pour your coffee grounds on your countertop in spots you have dried on food, and wipe with a reusable cloth. You can also put leftover grinds in the bottom of your garbage can to help kill odours.
3. The Newspaper Reinvented: From Reading to Cleaning
Did you know you can use your old newspapers to clean your windows or mirrors, streak free?! It won't leave any lint or dust behind, and is a great alternative to single-use paper towels.
4. Ever Heard of Secondhand Shops?
Ever heard the saying, 'one person's trash is another person's treasure"? If you're getting rid of old furniture, clothing or other household items, make sure you consider donating or bringing your goods a thrift shop or secondhand store. Just because you no longer have a use for something doesn't mean it won't be useful to someone else. Maybe you plan a clothes swap with your friends once everyone is done their spring closet clear-out, as a fun alternative!
Don't forget: batteries and electronics are recyclable. There's often places in your community that will properly dispose of these items. Here in Norfolk, you can head to the local Staples Print & Copy Centre.
5. Eco-Friendly Smells
The harsh chemicals and synthetic fragrances found in air fresheners, cleaning products, candle melts and waxes are not only harmful to the environment, but equally harmful to your health. Opt for a natural alternative like essential oils and a diffuser, or try soaking a cloth in lavender, and sit it next to an open window (not to mention, bugs hate the fresh smell). Consider opening doors and windows to air your home out naturally - particularly with the sweet smell of blooming plants in the spring!
6. Air-Purifying Plants for the Soul
Did you know that introducing plants into your home decor helps increase oxygen levels and improves your mood? Here's a list of air-purifying house plants that are almost impossible to kill. Not to mention, plants never go out of style!
7. Download the 'Earth Challenge' App
Particularly if you have kids, the Earth Challenge app is an excellent tool that allows you to monitor air quality and pollution data in your community & your home. It empowers young individuals, in particular, to take an interest in their local environment by measuring plastic pollution & air quality. In addition, the app offers users effective tools and tricks to help achieve environmental protection. Visit this site to download the app today!
8. Keep the H2O to a Mini-mo
(yes, we intentionally mis-spelled minimal for the sake of rhyming)
This should go without saying, but we thought a friendly reminder might help! Ensure you're doing things like turning off the tap when not in use, using misting bottles as opposed to buckets (tip: if you need to use a pail, ensure the grey water is used to hydrate plants instead of tossing down the drain), and switch to diluent-free cleaners that don't require water.