Homemade Cleaners

VIDEO: Homemade Cleaners for Spring Cleaning! It was such a pleasure to return to CTV’s Canada AM and share some tried & tested homemade cleaners. I use these concoctions regularly and can honestly say they work. There are a lot of dud recipes out there, but thankfully the ingredients are usually so cheap that it doesn’t hurt to experiment until you find what makes things shine for you!


1. Vinegar

2. Baking Soda

3. Antibacterial Dish Soap

4. Rubbing Alcohol

It costs around $5 for these ingredients and they will give you at least six-months worth of cleaning power. I especially like making my own all-purpose cleaning wipes, soap scum spray and a carpet/mattress freshener.

  • Cotton Rags
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup rubbing alcohol
  • 2 T dish soap
  • Container
  • Kettle

You can buy cleaning wipes pre-made and they’ve really come down in price. But it’s still cheaper, and greener, to make your own. I use these on so many different surfaces. They work great on granite counter tops. I like them for wiping down stainless appliances and sinks. I especially love these for cleaning spots and marks on my laminate flooring. Rubbing alcohol is a solvent which means it dissolves dirt and oil and it’s also disinfecting. It dries almost instantly so the initial hospital smell dissipates almost immediately. Still, use a bit of caution…don’t keep the container open and keep open flames and kids away.

  • Spray bottle
  • 2 parts vinegar
  • 1 part dish soap

I keep this on standby inside my bathroom and use it once a week. The best thing to do is take your shower, dry yourself off and then spray this on the damp tiles. It is quite strong smelling initially so make sure you step out of the bathroom for a few minutes while it gets to work. I let it sit on the tiles for fifteen minutes before wiping and rinsing. Vinegar is known to be a wonderful disinfectant. The acid crosses the cell membrane of bacteria and causes the cell to die. Most vinegar has five percent acetic acid, but you can now find stronger vinegar with six percent -that boosts its cleaning power by 20%! Either one you use will work well.

  • 1/2 cup baking soda
  • Zest from one lemon
  • Zest from one orange
  • Parmesan cheese shaker (bottle)

I like to keep my baking soda in cheese shakers because it’s much easier to sprinkle when I need to use if for cleaning. I add zest into the shaker and it gives the baking soda a nice fresh scent. Sprinkle this onto your carpets, furniture and even mattress. Let is settle for a little bit and then vacuum it up. Baking soda is a little controversial in the cleaning world. We know that it helps to neutralize the pH balance of acidic vapors aka: odors. So, it’s not absorbing the odors per se, but it is making the pH level more neutral so you can’t smell the bad stuff anymore.


Bonus! Here’s another video how-to for a cleaner that is amazing for sinks, tubs and spot cleaning. If you haven’t already, please subscribe to my YouTube channel for more frugal tips.



  • Reply April 2, 2015

    Joanne Davidson

    I watched the program this morning, April 02, 2015 and I’m looking for the facial recipes your had on t.v.

  • Reply February 18, 2015

    Alison Proteau

    I like your ideas for home made cleaning supplies. I began doing similar things about 17 years ago and you are correct in that there are a lot of useless recipes out there. I’m a big fan of tea tree oil and suggest that as an additive to your cleaning recipe rather than the antibacterial detergent. Use a plain detergent or liquid castile soap instead, and let tea tree oil do the germ killing for you. The triclosan in antibacterial products is harmful to both people and the environment. Just a suggestion. Keep up the good work in promoting cost effective and healthier alternatives to the harsh, expensive chemicals.

  • Reply October 16, 2014

    judy sieffert

    Love your website and all the tips. Only one suggestion: Antibacterial soap helps super bugs increase and become stronger so it would be better to recommend regular soap for cleaning.
    Thank you for this site.

    • Reply October 18, 2014


      Thanks for the comment, Judy. You’re right, regular soap will work just as fine in most cases too.

  • Reply October 15, 2014


    Love love your site! Looking forward to reading more!!!!

    • Reply October 15, 2014


      Thanks so much! I’ll keep at it for you!

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  • Reply March 30, 2014


    Just desire to say your article is as astounding. The clearness in your post is simply great and i can
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  • Reply March 23, 2014

    Johanna M

    I seen you on Canada AM his morning. I went out and purchased all the recommend supplies. Tomorrow will be a NEW WAY of cleaning day. I also signed up for your Frugal news emails. I look forward to using the homemade cleaners. Love your website. Thank-you

  • Reply March 23, 2014


    I just watch you on Canada AM and was very interested in your homemade cleaners which I will make today and start the cleaning. Thanks so much for sharing, love your website.

    • Reply March 23, 2014


      I’m so glad you’re inspired to try a few new things!

  • Reply March 22, 2014

    Lamia Chowdhury

    I’m watching you on CTV AM right now and just discovered your website! Going to give some of these a try. Thanks for posting!

    • Reply March 22, 2014


      Awesome! Thanks for watching and I hope you enjoy experimenting.

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