We’re in week two of our Pre-Holiday cleanse and that means that for many of our cleansers, an inevitable urge to clean up their home, car or closet will soon emerge.
We call this the natural spillover effect. When you cleanse yourself on the inside and your mind isn’t running wild on caffeine and sugar, you start to think more clearly. When you’re thinking more clearly, you start to connect more deeply with your surroundings, oftentimes producing a spontaneous desire to clean out the junk drawer, reorganize your closet or donate the growing pile of stuff in the basement.
Tackling some of these big projects can feel quite liberating, especially if they’ve been energetically weighing you down (in come cases for years!).
I had one cleanser tell me this week that she cleaned out her basement and now she keeps going back downstairs just to look at it because it makes her feel so happy and light.
Sounds good, doesn’t? How would you like to feel this way about your entire life?
While this might sound like a grand idea in theory, the reality is oftentimes much different. It can feel daunting and even downright overwhelming to think about all the ways in which you want to detox or change your space. For many of us, we can’t even keep up with the mail and the recycling, let alone all the other “should dos.”
It’s a big long list that can feel intimidating – skincare, make-up, cleaning products, paint, toys, carpet, plastic Tupperware, microwave – where do we begin?
Like we do on the cleanse, we’re going to take baby steps and start somewhere that feels easy and doable. I like to think about it one room or one category at a time.
So today we’re starting with household cleaners because the reality is they are one of the most toxic and chemical-laden products in our home. Not only are some of these chemicals carcinogenic, they can also wreak havoc on other systems in the body. And what’s the point of an organic, gluten-free diet, if you’re using a formaldehyde-filled cleaner on your countertops?
Are you ready to get clean and green from the outside in? Check out my tips below on tackling your household cleaners and be sure to stop by True Goods stock up on some safe toxin-free products.
With love and toxin-free baby steps,
5 Ways to Detox Your Household Cleaners
Ditch your all-purpose cleaner: Most store bought multi-purpose cleaners promise a shiny countertop but leave a trail of toxic chemicals. In fact, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), indoor air can be 10 to 100 times more polluted than outdoor air! Try products that have less of a toxic impact like Seventh Generation, Ecover, or Earth Friendly Products. Or better yet, make your own using our Lemon Rosemary All-Purpose Cleaner recipe above.
Re-think the way you dust: Synthetic dusting wipes and aerosol sprays release a lot of unwanted chemicals into your home. Feather dusters are also not ideal because they tend to move the dust around in the environment rather than trapping it. Instead opt for a wet cloth or microfiber cloths. Microfiber cloths work well because their smaller fibers cling to the particles. I use an old cloth diaper and it does the trick.
Say good-bye to antibacterial soaps: Triclosan – the ingredient found in antibacterial soaps and detergents that lower or reduce bacterial contamination not only kills the bad bacteria, but also the good! And we need the good bacteria to survive. Research has shown that triclosan can actually cause antibiotic resistance and may be harmful to the immune system. I love hand soap from Napa Organics and Pangea. They smell delicious, are gentle on the skin and will get you clean without the carcinogenic potential.
Stop using bleached products: The EPA says that chlorine byproducts are 300,000 more times as carcinogenic as DDT (a commonly known insecticide). Whoa! This would include products like white chlorinated paper towels, toilet paper, and coffee filters. These are good options but take it another step by cutting up the old t-shirts that are sitting in the bottom of your dresser. Invest in some pretty cloth napkins. Buy a reusable coffee filter or switch to loose tea instead.
Dump your detergent and dryer sheets: Dryer sheets sure do smell great, but most will coat your clothes with chemicals like quaternary ammonium compounds and acetone, which have been linked to health ailments like asthma. These chemicals can also make your towels less absorbent! Big name laundry detergents like Tide and All contain tons of unnecessary chemicals that can be both hazardous to your health and the environment. We like Molly’s Suds, Ecover Lavender Fields and Boulder Liquid Laundry detergent. They’ll still make your laundry smell great without the worry of what might be lurking in them.