Our friends over at the Eco News Network shared their Green Cleaning tips for our Earth Month Tip #6. They call it “taking the chemical free pledge.” I can get behind that. I just scrubbed out my shower with Seventh Generation Shower Cleaner. I don’t feel I need to hold my breath when spraying “green” cleaner around the room, which is nice.
These home cleaning tips and spring cleaning suggestions were given to Eco News Network by Marie Stegner, the consumer health advocate for Maid Brigade, the only Green Clean Certified housecleaning company in the United States. Here are todays Earth Month tips, courtesy of the Eco News Network:
The Kitchen: Swap the sponge for microfiber cleaning cloths. Sponges are a haven for bacteria and can lead to many illnesses. Instead, switch to reusable microfiber cleaning cloths for all home-cleaning projects. In addition to preventing bacteria and mold growth, the scientific weave of microfiber is so effective that fewer cleaning chemicals are necessary. The cloths also reduce landfill waste and include post-consumer recycled or organically grown materials.
The Office: Recycle or refill ink cartridges. Every year more than 300 million toner cartridges are thrown away. That’s nearly one million per day! What’s more, ink cartridges take nearly 450 years to decompose. Instead of tossing toners into the trash, recycle them. Many companies including Staples and Office Depot have recycling programs for all sorts of office waste. A typical print cartridge can be recycled and reused up to six times so it’s definitely worth the effort.
The Bathroom: Dispose of old medications safely. Avoid flushing old prescription pills down the toilet or throwing them into the trash. Medicine can actually get into surrounding soil and water supplies if this happens, creating an environmental hazard. Instead, contact the local pharmacy, hospital or medical center. Most have programs that take back old medications and dispose of them safely in their bio-hazard containers for incineration.
The Bedroom: Switch to an organic mattress. In the United States, 20 million mattresses are discarded each year! Even more alarming, the synthetic materials in conventional mattresses are not biodegradable and recycling programs for mattresses aren’t readily available. Switching to an organic mattress has the added benefit of reducing the risk of allergies and improving sleep due to the natural, chemical-free materials used in its construction.
The Laundry Room: Go fragrance-free. The fragrances in detergents and fabric softeners sometimes contain phthalates—chemicals that have been linked to cancer and reproductive-system harm in animal lab tests. Fragrances may also trigger asthma and allergic reactions with symptoms including skin and respiratory irritation, headaches, and watery eyes. Change to one of the many fragrance free laundry products on the market for an easy fix.
Sounds like good advice all around. Celebrate Earth Month with some good old house cleaning, green-style!
Credit: Eco News Network