When we started embarking on our journey to detox harmful chemicals from our lives, our cleaning products were high on the priority list to review. We had never really thought too much about it before… because what other choices does one have? We all want clean, fresh hygienic homes don’t we?
But once again, when I started doing a bit more research, I started to think to myself, why have I never questioned any of this before?
We have heard in the media in recent years about our collective over-obsession with ‘germs’, and the companies selling us cleaning products have certainly provided for the demand, with every other product labelled as ‘anti-bacterial’, ‘kills 99.9% of germs’ etc. But have we gone too far in our quest for cleanliness?
The ‘hygiene hypothesis’ was first proposed in the 80’s and since then, our understanding of the importance of our individual ‘microbiomes’ (the eco-systems of bacteria, fungi, viruses etc living in and on our bodies) has come a long way. It is now scientifically recognised that our microbiomes play an extremely important part in all aspects of our health, including our immune function, metabolism and so much more. This is a big topic, which I think deserves it’s own blog post, but suffice to say, we shouldn’t be waging a complete indiscriminate war on bacteria.
Apart from anti-bacterial ingredients we don’t need, there are also many chemicals in our everyday cleaning products we don’t want. For example-I looked up the safety data sheet for the kitchen spray we used to use. A screenshot of the data sheet is below:
As you can see the ingredients are classified as causing acute toxicity for oral, dermal (skin) and inhalation routes. I could list so many more from many more products but that would make this post far too long and tedious. I’ll give one more example though: Air freshener.
Air fresheners are one of my pet hates. I’ve always felt like they were poison, and avoided them as much as I could, not really knowing what was in them. However, they are used in our toilets at work. When I looked up the particular product, the full ingredients were not listed online but the safety warning said it all:
‘Do not breathe spray. Caution: Use only as directed. Before spraying, remove birds. After use, ventilate normally prior to returning birds to treated area. Use only in well-ventilated areas. People suffering from perfume sensitivity should be cautious when using this product. Air fresheners do not replace good hygiene practices. Solvent Abuse Can Kill Instantly’Product label safety information
Do not breathe spray??? I mean, isn’t that exactly what you do every time you spray it? And remove birds? It obviously is pretty poisonous for them too!
I’ll stop the doom there for now. I think basically what this all comes down to for me is that manufacturers of these types of products cannot be blindly trusted. We should all be reading labels and seeking to use products with ingredients not harmful to ourselves, our families, the environment and let’s not forget the birds (or our other pets!).
We have discovered a product we love, and our kitchen cupboard looks much better:
The three spray bottles you see are just different dilutions of the same concentrated product: Thieves Household Cleaner (far right). Thieves Household Cleaner is made up of:
- A vegetable-based surfactant (alkyl polyglucoside) that is compliant with Green Seal and EPA Design for Environment (DfE) standards
- Biodegradable cutting agents like sodium methyl 2-sulfolaurate and disodium 2-sulfolaurate (both ingredients rated 0 on a 10 point scale on the Environmental Working Group’s health hazard score – which is the best score possible)
- Pure essential oils farmed with no pesticides and distilled without chemicals (Thieves and Lemon) for natural cleaning
I’ll be honest, it’s not a miracle product. It smells amazing (think lemon and cinnamon) and it cleans some things very well: Glass and mirrors and kitchen and bathroom surfaces particularly. The heavy degreaser concentration cleans grease well if you clean promptly and let it soak a bit. But it’s never going to replace things like those crazy oven cleaners that dissolve all the baked in grease, the oven itself and the lining of your lungs.
I don’t mind though, it works well for everyday cleaning and will replace at least 80% of the various sprays we used to use, and a couple of other things.
It is also actually cheaper than conventional cleaners as well (I know!). Because it’s concentrated, you get roughly 26 bottles if you made it up to regular strength. At £21.60 per bottle, this translates to a cost of £0.82 per bottle of regular strength, £0.25 for glass cleaning strength and £1.86 for heavy degreasing strength.
This also means less plastic waste as I’ll save 25 plastic bottles each time I buy 1 bottle of Thieves Household Cleaner as I will reuse the glass bottles again and again to dilute the cleaner into.
You can buy Thieves Household cleaner and many other products like it from Young Living.
When you open a wholesale account by buying a starter pack, you will get 24% off all their other products for life.
Feel free to contact us if you have any questions.
This article contains an affiliate link. I will earn commission on any sales.