Green Spring Cleaning
Spring is finally here! It’s time to open up windows and air out the stuffiness of wintertime. Spring is nature’s way of bringing in new life, new beginnings, and hopefully new cleaner, greener habits! Most everyone waits in dread or anticipation for their households’ annual spring cleaning projects to begin. This year, why not consider the environmental impact of common cleaning habits. Socket is here with a few ideas on how to form eco-friendly routines.
Let’s start with the big stuff: cleaning supplies. You’ll no doubt be using a variety of cleaning materials and supplies as you dive deeper into cleaning your space. Rather than coat your home with an assortment of chemicals you can barely pronounce, choose the greener route and try some natural approaches to cleaning. There are several online resources where you can find DIY cleaning recipes, most of which include household products that you already have- such as vinegar, baking soda, and lemon juice. There are natural alternatives for polishing wood, removing stains, disinfecting, and so much more. If you’re not into the DIY approach or simply don’t have time to perfect your recipes, there is an increasing number of environmentally friendly products that you can find on your local supermarket shelves. From laundry detergent, to dishwashing soap, anti-bacterial, and more, there are many products that will meet your needs and allow you to be greener this spring.
Next time you reach for that roll of paper towels to assist you in your cleaning, consider using non-disposable materials. In fact, the United States alone uses 13 billion pounds of paper towels a year with the number increasing every day. So try the more eco-friendly approach and use reusable washrags, sponges, and scrub brushes.If you can’t utilize reusable rags, then opt for recycled paper towels instead, just keep in mind that sponges, rags, and scrub brushes are more durable and last longer than throw away paper towels.
This is one of Socket’s favorite home-cleaning tips- add some air purifying plants to your home and savor the benefits of fresher air. If you love buying supermarket flowers to add a touch of color to your life, you’ll love the aesthetic of permanent potted plants that not only make your home inviting but improve your health by purifying the indoor air. Great plants such as Aloe, Bamboo Palm, Peace Lilies, and many others eliminate stagnant air that allows pollutants to build up in your home!
Speaking of the aesthetic of your home, are you planning to slap on a new coat of paint this year? If the answer is yes, be sure to research the brand of paint you are interested in. Many paints contain VOC’s that can harm the health of you and your family. VOC’s-Volatile Organic Compounds are found in paints, glues, and a variety of other products you use and store at home. These are hazardous air pollutants that could settle into your walls and be released into the air you’re breathing. Do your research and look for paints that are healthier for you, your family, and the planet.
Last but certainly not least is donating! What should you do with the piles of junk you’re finally ready to let go of? Donate! Donate! Donate! After all, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. So when the day comes that you’re ready to throw open the windows and declutter the house you’ve been hibernating in throughout those long winter months, always remember: donate, don’t trash. With any unwanted clothing, furniture, or décor, donate it to local charities and don’t just toss in the trash to take up space in a landfill somewhere. For broken or unwanted electronics that you cannot donate look for responsible recycling areas. Set your goal to send as little as possible to landfills during your spring cleaning. Metro also offers places to responsibly dispose of any hazardous material that you’re ready to get rid of.
Are you ready to get started on your spring cleaning yet? Try these tips to help motivate you while you’re hard at work and see how much good you can do for the planet just by giving your cleaning routine an extra thought! Pair these tips with the ones found in our Sustainable Garden blog to really ramp up your eco-consciousness this season!