This weekâ€™s eco tip is from Stephanie Zia at Hello Eco Living. Stephanie is the author of â€˜Done & Dusted â€“ The Organic Home on a Budgetâ€™. For more fabulous tips from this cleaning whizz, visit Blackbirdebooks to get your hands on a copy of her book!
1. Clean your windows and mirrors with a microfiber cloth. Spray a small amount of water directly onto the surface, wipe and voila! Crystal clear glass in seconds.
2. The best all-round stain remover is washing-up liquid. Use with cold water on protein stains (baby food, formula, egg, milk etc.) and with hot water on greasy stains. Use sparingly though, or youâ€™ll find yourself rinsing for ages.
3. To clean and deodorise your dishwasher, place a mug of white vinegar on the bottom shelf and run on a short, glass-cleaning cycle. Brown vinegar is okay if thatâ€™s all you have, but white vinegar is less smelly.
4. Add half a cup of Soda Crystals to your washing machine detergent tray. A coarser, tougher, and cheaper relative of bicarbonate of soda, Soda Crystals will soften the water and dissolve grease. Its a fantastic money saver, as youâ€™ll only need half the amount of detergent if you live in a hard water area. Plus the crystals will help keep the pipes in your washing machine clear and free of gunge.
5. To clean that brown lime scale that builds up around the bottom of your bathroom and kitchen taps, make a thick paste of salt and vinegar or lemon juice and scrub with an old toothbrush. For an extra stain-busting boost, use an old brush head on your electric toothbrush.
6. The Hydrogen Peroxide solution thatâ€™s used for cleaning, disinfecting and storing contact lenses in, is also an excellent bloodstain remover. Use it to treat other spills as well, like food and wine.
7. Keep a bottle of soda water on hand for emergency spills. The carbonated bubbles sink down and lift the stain with them as they rise. Even red wine stains can be completely removed in this manner if treated quickly enough.
8. A large kitchen flour sprinkler filled with borax powder makes for an excellent environmentally friendly toilet cleaner. Repackaging cleaning products is usually not a good idea, so be sure to place a big, clear label on the outside of the new container stating what the contents are. Store well away from your food cupboard and out of the reach of children.
9. Remove ink stains from tables and other surfaces by soaking a kitchen towel in soured milk*. Place over the stain, weigh down with vase or bowl and leave for 30 minutes. Rub. Repeat if necessary. If using on an absorbent surface, rinse the milk off with washing-up liquid and cold water.
* To sour the milk add a drop of vinegar.
10. Use a hairdryer to remove candlewax spills. Heat the wax with the hairdryer and then wipe it away with some kitchen towel as it melts.Â If the wax is on the carpet be careful not to heat it too much or the wax will sink. Remove resulting grease stain with a little washing-up liquid.
The Phantom Forest Team