Environmental experts estimate that your average home contains approximately 62 toxic chemicals — that we know about. Of the approximately 85,000 chemicals commonly used in commerce, only around 200 of them have been tested for human safety.
Because manufacturers are largely unregulated when it comes to their ingredient lists, companies can use just about any chemical they want — without first proving its safety. The American populace and environment have, essentially, become these manufacturers’ guinea pigs.
What we do know is that many of the ingredients so frequently used in household cleaners have been linked to serious health issues, such as asthma, cancer, reproductive disorders, infertility, hormone disruption, and neurological damage.
These chemicals are in laundry detergents and fabric softeners where they rub against your children’s skin. They’re in cleaning sprays that leave a chemical residue on countertops and hang in the air to be inhaled. Even the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) admits that the air inside modern homes is getting dangerously polluted.
“A growing body of scientific evidence indicates that the air within homes and other buildings can be more seriously polluted than the outdoor air in even the largest and most industrialized cities.”
It’s time to ditch these harsh chemical cleaners in favor of options that are safe for your family, and also the planet. (Read more about toxic cleaning products.)
Choosing Natural Cleaners that are Safe for Kids
We’ve designed our entire product line to be safe for use in every home, whether it houses newborns or ninety-year olds. All ingredients are carefully screened for safety. After all — we’re protecting our own families too! Read our founder’s story to understand more about why we are so passionate about being Always Safe for People and the Planet.
Here’s a list of natural household cleaners that are safe for your kids to be around and safe for them to use when they help you clean the house. With these natural options in hand, you don’t need to worry about what you’re exposing your children to!
- All Purpose Natural Cleaners with natural, bio-based ingredients
- Laundry powders and liquid laundry detergents powered by plant and earth-based ingredients
- Wool dryer balls. Choose these instead of dryer sheets, which are loaded with sticky, harsh chemicals that leave a residue on clothing.
- Oxygen Whiteners. With this in hand, you can completely avoid using bleach in every area of your home, including the laundry room!
- Dish Soaps made with bio-based ingredients. There’s no need for antibacterials and harsh cleansers or surfactants!
- Sink SCRUB™. This handy cleaner has hundreds of safe uses around the home.
Here are some natural cleaners you probably already have in your home:
- Distilled white vinegar (learn how to use it here)
- Baking soda (perfect for getting rid of odors and scouring surfaces)
- Liquid Castile soap
- Natural salt
- Hydrogen Peroxide
- Rubbing alcohol
- Lemons (and lemon essential oil)
Looking to make your own home cleaners? You’ll love our DIY Cleaning Recipes!
Please remember that ALL cleaning supplies (no matter how natural they are!) should be kept out of the reach of small children! Always contact your doctor if anything in your cleaning kit is ingested. Flush eyes thoroughly if any cleaning product comes in contact with the eyes.
Tips for How to Get Kids Involved in Home Chores
As parents, this seems to be one of the age-old struggles. Kids are perfectly happy to make the house a disaster, but most of them are very unwilling to help clean it back up.
The best way to make sure you’re not the one doing all the heavy lifting when it comes to keeping your house tidy is to get kids involved with household chores when they’re young. If tidying up is always a part of their life, they’re less likely to make a fuss when Spring Cleaning rolls around. Here are some ideas to make it happen!
Turn Cleaning into a Game
Kids can be tricked into all sorts of useful chores if it seems like it’s going to be fun. Here are some game ideas to get your kids motivated!
- Turn clean-up time into a race! Set the timer for 15 minutes to see how much they can get done!
- A game of pretend, anyone? Maybe the floor is lava. Maybe it’s time for all the stuffed animals to go to bed. Who knows! You can leave it up to the kids to come up with ideas too.
- Have a game of ‘find the special toy’! Assess the mess and choose one toy. Don’t tell the kids which one you chose. Whichever kid is the one to pick up the chosen toy gets some sort of small prize. Pick up time keeps going until this toy is put away. (Of course, the key to this game is to choose a toy that won’t get picked up right away…)
- Turn it into a competition. Who can do the most chores? Who can do the best job cleaning? Give the winners a small reward.
- Crank up your kids’ favorite music and have a clean-up dance party.
- Offer a family reward if everyone is able to work together and do a good job. It doesn’t need to be money, but something else that’s special, like pizza and movie night, or a family trip to the park.
- Hide spare change around the room when it’s time to dust. If the kids did a good job dusting, they can keep what they found!
Make Cleaning an Expectation and Routine
- Make it a part of a daily or weekly routine. If they’re expecting it and it’s just a normal requirement, you’ll face less opposition. Of course… this means YOU’LL have to adhere to the schedule as well!
- If you can afford it, give your kids a weekly allowance for doing chores. They should only get their allowance if they did their chores well and without complaining.
- No fun until the chores are done! If your child is responsible for doing the dishes, consider requiring that this chore has to be completed before he/she gets dessert. Or maybe this means no TV time until their bedrooms are clean. Choose whatever is most motivating for your kids.
- Put checkboxes on your list! We’ll admit it — being able to check a box is a dopamine rush. Anyone else ADD a box to check off when you do something that’s not on the list? Just us?
- Make a list of chores and assign some to each family member. It’s best to rotate chores if possible because everyone has a chore that they hate.
- Have a special song you play when it’s time for the end-of-day cleaning as a part of the daily routine of getting ready for bed.
Need More Inspiration?
Check out our blog for more articles brimming with helpful information, advice, and natural cleaning tricks we’ve learned over the years. We don’t want to brag — but we’ve got some housekeeping experts on staff!