It’s time for another dose of the “Your New Normal” series, designed to help you make simple changes to become healthier and happier. Each month I share the theme; a habit to change and I post a few articles on the topic to give you a bit of encouragement to make the change.
This month’s topic is how reducing our exposure to chemicals when cleaning (Previously I’ve written about reducing our exposure to chemicals in beauty products, so check that out). Sounds easy in theory, but no so much in practise right? Well this month I want to enlighten you on some of the chemicals found in household cleaning products, why we need to be worried about this and what we can do to change!
Why are you always on about chemicals?
It’s a fact of life that chemicals are all around us, all day – every day. They are in our clothes, home furnishings, infant car seats, baby toys, cookware, cars and cleaning and beauty products. They sneak into things you wouldn’t think they could be in (did you know your clothes could have chemicals in them?). This constant, daily exposure is making us sick.
Very sick. And we don’t even know the full extent yet.
Chemicals can cause asthma, allergies, skin irritation, developmental delays, hormone disruption or even cancer. If that’s not enough to make you think about what you’re using – nothing will!
In the wise words of Alexx Stuart:
In my opinion, even if there is a small chance something might be harmful to us; if we can avoid it it’s not worth the risk.
What can we use instead? Nothing works as well as harsh chemicals…does it?
It may appear as though harsh chemicals are all you can use to clean some areas. In a past life I myself have sprayed “Exit Mould” in the shower and watched the dirt disappear before your eyes (and nearly fainted from the fumes in the process). But is that ease worth everyone in your family getting sick? I don’t think so.
I won’t lie to you – natural methods sometimes require a little more elbow grease to get to the end result. However I’m confident you can achieve the same end result. If you want to!
Money Money Money
If the healthy aspect doesn’t grab you, how about if I talk about money? Cleaning products are expensive to purchase (even more so if you try to go for a greener, cleaner option). If you purchase toilet cleaner, spray and wipe, a floor cleaner, disinfectant wipes and a window cleaner you would spend over $200 per year on cleaning products (that’s excluding washing powder, dishwashing liquid and many other convenience products that are available now). So more likely you may be spending at least triple that (depending on your bargain hunting prowess I suppose).
If you purchase some bi-carb, white vinegar, some eucalyptus oil and a lemon or two – you cost will be under $50 for the year.
That’s a big difference, isn’t it? Not to mention it is simpler to shop for – you only have to remember a few items!
Granted I use enjo a lot for cleaning which does have a high outlay, but depending on your spend – you will come out in front soon enough!
So what’s my habit to change?
This is another big exercise if you are going to go the full hog…so as always I suggest starting small! Next time one of your cleaning products runs out – why not try and use an alternative you have at home – such as baking soda, bi carb or vinegar. See if it works for you and if so – move onto the next item!
You will have less to buy, your shopping will be simpler and your house safer!
On my Pinterest board “Eco Friendly Household tips” you will find some great ideas on alternative cleaners to use. I’m working my way through what works and what doesn’t, so let me know if you have any questions on what I use!
Further reading/points to note
As a further exercise (for those of you not quite convinced!) I’d love for you to have a look around your home and make a rough count of the different cleaning products you have. If you have multiple, perhaps look at the different ingredients in each of them and look on the EWG database to find out their rating.
Does that help with the decision? I hope so!
For further reading, the EWG has a guide to the best brands to purchase (some brands may not be available in Australia). For myself, when I do buy cleaning products, I tend to purchase from Eco Store.
What cleaning products do you use in your home? Are there any that you are unsure of whether they are safe, or what you could use as an alternative? Let me know below!
Go on comment please…don’t be shy. I love comments, it makes my day!
Welcome to…Wellness Wednesday!!!
It’s also time for another Wellness Wednesday! Every Wednesday, myself and the lovely Dr Sash over at From The Left Field open a link up and we’d love to see your wellness posts! Anything from clean eating, to fitness, to taking care of your body, taking care of your mind, taking care of the kids, whatever makes you feel good and keeps you well. Simply post your fave wellness post for the week. Sound good? Come join us! x