Had a little photo shoot yesterday with my new cleaning products...check them out on Facebook!
The "before" shot includes 16 products, estimated cost $53:
Dish soap, Dishwasher soap, Comet, Laundry soap, Oxyclean stain pre-treat, Room spray, SOS pads, Bleach, Windex, Goo Gone, Murphy’s Oil, Easy Off, Greenworks cleaner, Greenworks Toilet, Dishwasher Jet Dry, Bleach stick
The "after" shot has 10 products estimated cost $84:
Dr. Bronner’s Soap, Palmolive dishwasher soap, Baking soda, Borax, Thieves Household Cleaner, Vinegar, Distilled water, Essential oil, Spray bottles, Steel wool
I am really interested to see how the cost/benefit piece plays out here - natural products are more expensive at first glance....AND many of them are concentrated so will last longer...and, oh by the way, are better for the environment. Phosphates and other chemicals present in many cleansers enter our waste water system then can become runoff that affects our streams, soil and drinking water...in a nutshell.
I had a quick conversation with the young man at the grocery check out - he wanted to know why a bottle of soap (Dr. Bronner's) cost $11.99. When I started to explain about chemicals and waste water and runoff , his eyes glazed over - I think he was expecting the "short answer"! His response was that we don't really have to worry about the cleaning chemicals unless they somehow get out of the "system". He was pretty sure that the system (you know, pipes and things) would contain everything...hmmmm. I had no time to really reply (he was glad I'm sure!) since he was scanning my last item - he took my payment and sent me on my way. I am still learning about this aspect of "green living" so I was a little relieved as well...My guess is the main objection to natural products is cost, followed by effectiveness, then necessity. I want to be able to counter all of these! Let the learning begin :)
What little knowledge I do have right now about natural products (besides being a former Girl Scout, liking the smell and having a gut feeling that maybe, just maybe, there is a link between the chemicals we use and the health of our water, air and soil...hmmmmmm) is thanks to my new friend Amy Jane Stewart from Ithaca, NY - her company is Organica Jane http://www.organicajane.com/home.html
I went to one of Amy's "Home Green Home" classes in July that was truly eye opening - so many everyday cleaning products actually have pesticides in them! Nice. She has researched hundreds of products and is a smart, cool and fun professional in the essential oils education, natural health and green living world. Sign up for her newsletter and blog for great info on products, recalls, remedies and check out her Organica Jane line of health products! Oh, and take a looky loo at her TV debut on the Dr. Oz Show!!!
So, I will confess that yesterday....I cheated (already!) and used up a Clorox Bleach Stick to remove a Pumpkin Spice latte stain from my white shirt...I did not try very hard to use the alternatives - that will have to change! So as of NOW, all my old products are put away! Maybe you could use up what you have then replace them with more environmentally friendly products?
Start small - just start!!!
Have a Nothing New Day - Kristin