Homemade All-Purpose Cleaner

Learn how you can safely make affordable and nontoxic all-purpose home cleaner with these easy-to-follow instructions.

| February 2016

  • Borax, castile soap, essential oils, and water are all that you need to make this nontoxic home cleaner.
    Photo by Charity Burggraaf
  • Create the DIY home you've always wanted with more than 100 recipes, tips and inspirational ideas from blogger Erica Strauss in "The Hands-On Home."
    Cover courtesy Sasquatch Books

In The Hands-On Home (Sasquatch Books, 2015), Erica Strauss provides readers with more than 100 recipes, tips and inspirational ideas. This no-nonsense, seasonal guidebook to reducing consumerism and increasing DIY covers everything from cooking and preserving to nontoxic home and personal care.

You can purchase this book from the Capper's Farmer store: The Hands-On Home.

All-purpose cleaner

For all-purpose cleaning of counters; hardwood, laminate, or tile floors; painted or stained woodwork and painted walls; and even spot touch-up cleaning of mirrors and stainless steel, I use this alkaline, residue-free cleaner. I have a bottle in both my upstairs and downstairs cleaning totes and keep another under the kitchen sink for fast access. This is as simple and thrifty as it gets for routine cleaning. I add a drop of green food coloring to this spray, so it matches the fresh peppermint scent and my kids never mistake it for water.


2 tablespoons borax

1/2 teaspoon liquid castile soap

Hot water



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