Spring cleaning: that magical time of year when we triumphantly open our windows, clear the clutter, and freshen up our living spaces. At Kimberton Whole Foods, we know that you’re not only interested in keeping your home clean and your family safe, but in protecting our air, water, and environment, also.
The facts are scary: Common cleaners are known to contain carcinogens such as dioxane and formaldehyde. Adults and children have been known to develop asthma from fumes given off by ordinary cleaning supplies. Chemical burns, poisoning, allergic reactions, and even birth defects can result if common household cleaners are not handled and stored properly, or from repeated exposure. And, worst of all, the labels of cleaning products do not have to disclose their full list of ingredients, and so we as consumers are given very little information with which to make informed decisions and to protect our families.
Enter The Environmental Working Group (EWG), a non-profit organization dedicated to protecting human health and the environment through research and by educating consumers. Their website offers an extensive database of product guides and ratings, educational articles, and research. Their team includes scientists, policy experts, and lawyers who work to protect public health. In an effort to demystify cleaning product ingredients, the EWG provides an excellent glossary of common terms you’ll find on cleaning supplies. We also recommend reading their safe cleaning tips.
We know it’s a lot of work to not only sort through all this information, but then to search multiple stores for these approved products. That’s why we’ve compiled a spring cleaning guide complete with products rated positively by the EWG that can all be easily found at your local Kimberton Whole Foods. Let us help you make the most of your time, money, and efforts, while keeping your home safe for your loved ones, including children and pets.
Before you begin: Put on comfortable clothes, pull back your hair, and put on some music! If the weather is right, go ahead and throw open those windows. Put on a pair of cleaning gloves and send the kids and pets outside, if possible.
- Start your spring cleaning by first picking up the clutter: Corral books, magazines, toys, mail, and other odds and ends into their proper places.
- Collect and remove trash from all rooms of the house.
- Strip beds and collect laundry from all rooms of the house.
- Pick up small rugs from bathrooms and kitchens. Shake outdoors, then vacuum.
- Dust surfaces, working from top-to-bottom, using a microfiber cloth. (Don’t forget door frames, window sills, and ceiling fans!)
- Spritz windows with Citra-Solv Citra Clear Window & Glass Cleaner (or prepare your own Citrus Window Cleaner, directions below). Wipe clean with a newspaper to prevent streaking.
- Vacuum floors and upholstery.
- Wipe down countertops, cabinets, and the faces of appliances using a mild cleaner such as Aunt Fannie’s Cleaning Vinegar – it’s safe for food contact surfaces including high chair trays!
- Don’t forget the inside of the microwave – here’s a quick method: Add a quarter cup of vinegar to one cup of water and heat for 2-3 minutes. Use a sponge to wipe it clean.
- Wipe down your stovetop. Try Green Shield Organic All Purpose Cleaner Degreaser for tough grease.
- For the deepest clean, remove foods from refrigerator and wash out the interior using a mild soap such as Dr Bronner’s Pure Castille Soap – be sure to follow directions for diluting, check out some pointers here.
- Clean inside and around your sink. Try Zum Clean Sink & Surface Scrub, safe on ceramic, porcelain, and faucets.
- Finally, sweep and mop floors using Sun and earth Floor Cleaner.
- While you’re cleaning up your chemicals, consider cleaning up your food storage: try glass containers or Bees Wrap to keep plastics out of your home and away from your food.
- Replace rugs and wastebaskets.
- Clear counters and shower of all toiletries, make-up, and appliances.
- Clean shower using Boulder Clean Pure Foaming Bathroom Cleaner – it’s great for lifting up soap scum, mold, and mineral deposits and is safe for ceramic, glazed porcelain, stone, chrome, grout, and glass. Rinse walls and dry with a cloth. For faster cleaning in the future, try spritzing Earth Friendly Products Shower Cleaner after showers to prevent soap scum build-up.
- Clean remaining surfaces with all-purpose cleaner such as Dr Bronner’s Pure Castille Soap. Don’t forget the counters, sink, faucets, and cabinets!
- Clean toilet using Earth Friendly Products Toilet Cleaner and a toilet brush.
- Sweep and mop floors using Sun and earth Floor Cleaner.
- Replace rugs, bath mat and wastebaskets.
Clean up your laundry routine! Whether you prefer a powder, pods, or liquid, we have safe options to get your clothes clean:
- Nellie’s All-Natural Laundry Soda
- GrabGreen 3 in 1 Laundry Detergent Pods
- Sun & Earth 2x Concentrated Laundry Detergent
- Ecover Non-Chlorine Bleach Liquid – use to brighten and remove stains!
- Woolzies Dryer Balls – use to soften your laundry naturally and cut down drying time by an average of 25% per load.
What’s your spring cleaning routine? We’d love to hear from you in the comments!