With spring break on the horizon, we’re finally getting close to crossing the finish line of winter and moving into the warmer months. You may be thinking about clearing out the clutter and doing some much-needed spring cleaning in preparation. You might also be thinking: how can I make my yearly ritual of spring cleaning more green and eco-friendly?
Ditch Toxic Chemicals for Greener Spring Cleaning
In the wise words of Marie Kondo, if it doesn’t spark joy, get rid of it (or something to that effect). And if you’re an environmentally conscious person who’s trying to live a more sustainable lifestyle, then toxic cleaning products definitely won’t spark your joy.
When it comes to cleaning products, it can be tough to determine which are safe to use for the environment and which are harmful. Many name-brand cleaning products include volatile organic compounds (VOC), which are full of chemicals and can have long and short-term health impacts.
Ditching toxic chemicals is just one way to upgrade your spring cleaning routine to be more green and aligned with a sustainable lifestyle.
5 Easy Ways to Green up Your Spring Cleaning Routine
This year, make the entire process of tidying up more eco-friendly with these tips:
1. Make Your Own Cleaning Solution
If you’re hoping to minimize the amount of harmful chemicals in your home, you’ll want to toss the toxic cleaning products and DIY your own instead. You can make your own all-purpose cleaner using just a few ingredients you probably already have on-hand like vinegar, baking soda and a few drops of essential oils.
2. Upcycle Old Items
One of the best ways to minimize your footprint and cut back on waste to help the environment is to repurpose or upcycle old items that would have otherwise ended up in the trash and ultimately, a landfill. For example, try turning old clothes you don’t wear anymore into rags you can use to clean surfaces around the house. Or turn old items like mason jars or wine bottles into vases to hold your spring flowers. Using what you already have in your home is a simple and effective way to reduce plastic waste.
3. Be Mindful of Water Consumption
Spring cleaning often involves plenty of water usage for mopping, scrubbing down surfaces and doing massive loads of laundry. However, the process of water filtration is extremely energy intensive, so cutting back on your water usage has a direct impact on your overall footprint and helps save the oceans. When doing your spring cleaning this year, think green and be mindful of running the tap unnecessarily, and only do full loads of laundry or dishes.
4. Minimize Waste for Greener Spring Cleaning
Using old clothes as cleaning rags will also help you cut back on paper towel waste as you clean surfaces like windows, countertops and mirrors. Try minimizing the amount of waste you produce while spring cleaning by ditching disposable paper towels and cleaning wipes in favor of a green alternative like reusable cloths.
5. Hang Your Laundry Out to Dry
Did you know you can significantly cut back on your overall carbon footprint just by hanging your clothes out to dry instead of opting for the dryer? With the warmer weather, try taking notes from the cottagecore aesthetic by letting nature dry your clothes instead of a machine. As a bonus, you’ll also be cutting energy costs and saving money on your utility bills by hang-drying your clothes.