eco-friendly homemade cleaning products

Debunking Myths: Can Homemade Cleaners Really Do the Job?

You have probably heard that homemade cleaners can effectively replace commercial cleaning products, but do they actually work? In 2019, a Statista survey showed that approximately 38% of Americans made an effort to buy natural or organic cleaning products. So there is clearly interest in alternatives to traditional cleaning supplies. In this post, we will debunk some myths about homemade cleaners and see whether or not they can effectively do the job.

The Myths: What do People Believe About Homemade Cleaners?

There are countless myths surrounding the topic of homemade cleaners. Some believe that eco-friendly homemade cleaning products are always beneficial for the environment; others regard them as ineffective compared to their store-bought counterparts; and still others hold the opinion that they are too difficult or expensive to make on your own. These are just a few of the misconceptions surrounding these self-made household solutions.

Eco-Friendly or Misleading?

Many people believe that homemade cleaners are eco-friendly by default because they include natural ingredients, but this is not always the case. The cleaning process itself can be harmful to the environment if you use excessive amounts of water, for example, even with the most eco-friendly cleaning solution. Similarly, not all “natural” ingredients are environmentally friendly upon disposal.

The Superiority Debate

A common misconception is that store-bought cleaners outperform homemade cleaners in terms of cleaning effectiveness. However, studies have shown that natural cleaning solutions like vinegar and baking soda can effectively combat household germs just as well as any commercial cleaner.

Are They Difficult to Make?

Another myth surrounding homemade cleaners is that they require too much effort or cost too much to make. However, most homemade cleaner recipes have simple, affordable ingredients and easy-to-follow processes. They do not necessitate extensive knowledge of chemistry or complicated equipment.

Do-It-Yourself Versus Pre-Made: Pros and Cons

Every product has its pros and cons, and homemade cleaners are no exception. On the plus side, they offer control over the ingredients, which can be beneficial for those with allergies or sensitivity to chemicals. Nevertheless, making your own cleaners can be time-consuming compared to grabbing a bottle from the store shelf.

All Natural Does Not Mean All Safe

Just because a cleaner is made from all-natural ingredients does not mean it is safe to use without precautions. Vinegar, for instance, while effective as a cleaning agent, can cause skin irritation or eye damage if used improperly. Therefore, regardless of where your cleaning solutions come from, always use them with care.

Vinegar: The Miracle Cleaner or Overrated?

Vinegar’s reputation as an all-in-one miracle cleaner might be slightly exaggerated. While vinegar is great for many cleaning tasks, it does have limitations. For example, it is not recommended for use on porous materials such as unsealed wood or stone.

The Efficacy of Baking Soda

A solution of baking soda and water makes an excellent mild abrasive for cleaning surfaces like countertops and bathtubs. Despite being a staple ingredient in homemade cleaners, it is not a disinfectant and should not be relied on solely for sanitizing purposes.

Citrus Peels and Their Cleaning Power

Citrus peels can be used to make effective and pleasantly-scented homemade cleaners. However, this natural ingredient should be used judiciously as it contains oils that can damage certain surfaces like marble and limestone.

The Multipurpose Magic of Castile Soap

Castile soap, made from vegetable oils, is an incredibly versatile addition to homemade cleaners. From making foamy hand soap to gentle floor cleaners, it is undoubtedly a useful ingredient in the homemade cleaner arsenal.

Olive Oil: Not Just for the Kitchen

Did you know that olive oil can be used to polish wooden furniture? It is yet another example of how typical pantry items can be used beyond their culinary purposes and prove themselves as valuable cleaning agents.

Hydrogen Peroxide: The Natural Bleach

The natural bleaching properties of hydrogen peroxide make it a popular choice for homemade cleaners. While it’s useful in many instances, remember to wear gloves when handling it, as this product can cause skin and eye irritation.

The Final Verdict: Do Homemade Cleaners Work?

Overwhelmingly, the answer is yes. While not without their limitations or requirements for responsible use, homemade cleaners have demonstrated effectiveness comparable to commercial cleaners for many tasks.


It’s ultimately up to you whether homemade cleaners meet your needs. They can be an efficient, customizable, and eco-friendly alternative if used responsibly. Always do your research before using any new cleaner, homemade or otherwise. After all, an informed decision is the best decision.