Lauren Singer: How to Clean Up Your Cleaning Products

A DIY detox for your home.

Lauren Singer is a presenter at Wanderlust Hollywood and Wanderlust Festivals. Find out more | 2016 lineup | Buy tickets   
I have been making my own cleaning products for almost four years now. All of them. By doing this I avoid the many common, toxic chemicals found in store-bought cleaners. It also supports my Zero Waste, plastic-free lifestyle and has helped me to create a more minimalistic and sustainable home. While I used to use over 10 cleaning products, now my cabinet holds just three.

Toxins in the Home

Making your own products saves packaging and money—thanks to bulk bins and glass containers. But the best reason to DIY detox is because many conventional cleaning products contain toxic ingredients and possible carcinogens. You’d be surprised at the harmful ingredients you can find around your own home. Here are some to look out for: sodium lauryl/laureth sulfate, triclosan, parabens, formaldehyde, and fragrance.

A Safe, All-Purpose Cleaner

Instead of using store-bought products with unsafe chemicals to clean, utilize one simple product that can clean everything from windows to counters: organic white vinegar. Just put it in a spray bottle and go. Vinegar is a natural disinfectant, and the smell dissipates within 20 minutes. To temper the smell, dilute a cup and a half of vinegar with half a cup of water and 10 to 20 drops of an organic essential oil. Here are a few of my favorites, many of which have antibacterial and disinfecting properties: lavender, lemon, peppermint, rosemary, cinnamon, and tea tree. Making your own all-purpose cleaner is an easy way to reduce packaging waste, the price you’re paying for products, and the amount of toxic chemicals in your life.
journal_16_cover_1000This article appears in Volume 2 of the Wanderlust Journal, available at 2016 Wanderlust Festivals108 events, and select partner studios. Find more stories from this issue here