Why not go all-natural with your cleaning products too?
Well, it's time to add another section to their all-star résumé, because some of them also carry major disinfecting properties. That makes essential oils perfect for creating DIY cleaning products—good-for-you alternatives to chemically-enhanced, store-bought sprays and scrubs.
Of course, their sensory appeal is a major selling point. "My favorite reason for [cleaning with essential oils] is probably their amazing smell—you can channel your favorite eucalyptus spa treatment or whip up a vanilla-lime bathroom scrub," says Melissa Maker, YouTube sensation, professional cleaner, and author of Clean My Space. "But at the end of the day, they're natural, antimicrobial ingredients to use in your home."
Each oil has its own specialty, says Maker. Citrus scents (lemon, orange, and grapefruit) are filled with limonene, which is known to aid in degreasing and lifting soil off of surfaces. Eucalyptus is said to be anti-bacterial, antifungal, antiseptic, and antiviral. And tea tr ee oil is another powerful disinfectant that's known to be antimicrobial. (One caveat: If you're pregnant or have pets, consult your ob-gyn or vet to make sure the oil you're choosing is safe.)
In Maker's opinion, the product recipes that follow are perfect for anyone who wants to make her cleaning products, well, a little cleaner—whether that's at the beginning of a spring decluttering spree or for maintenance post-Kondo cleanse.
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