The Best Kind Of Cleaning With Essential Oils

cleaning with essential oilsThe move toward getting the chemicals out of our houses is one that is long overdue. It seems like every cleaner we use in American homes has a laundry list of dangerous chemicals in it that we need to keep away from our children. But I’m thinking, if I shouldn’t have my children near these harsh chemicals, then do I really want to be cleaning my house with them? Even if the kiddos aren’t ingesting them orally, the fumes and residue that harsh cleaning chemicals leave in our homes certainly can’t be healthy for them, right? When I started to hear about the different ways of cleaning with essential oils few years ago, I wondered if it was actually possible.

So in an effort to de-toxify my house, I began reading the labels of most of my household cleaning supplies. And then I started throwing some of them away. Some of them weren’t quite as “bad” so I finished using them until the bottle was gone, and then just never replaced them. You might imagine that my household is now filthy—but it’s not.

In fact, I feel like my house is cleaner than ever!

Because I’m using essential oils for cleaning, I feel more confident that my family is safe and healthy. Also, I save a ton of cabinet space in my kitchen and bathrooms that used to be cluttered up with various “magical” cleaners (which never worked quite as well as the bottle claimed). And I’m happy because I know I’m using all natural products that are environmentally responsible. Since essential oils actually come from the earth, it doesn’t hurt the earth when they go back into the air and the water system. It’s a win for my family and a win for the earth!

Oh, and did I mention that it saves me money too?!

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cleaning with essential oils

How to Start Cleaning with Essential Oils

Some people quit chemical cleaning cold turkey and go directly to full-on essential oils. I made the switch a bit more slowly. But the choice is up to you. Whether you start slowly or quickly, you’ll need to have some recipes and ideas on how to make the switch to “green cleaning.”

First, you’ll need to know the basics of which essential oils you need. Although there are a plethora of essential oils that have cleaning properties such as disinfectant, antimicrobial, and antibacterial, you can get by with just a few basic ones. Lemon, Lavender, and Tea Tree are probably the most critical. I also like to throw in some other citrus fruits (because I like to change up the scents sometimes), such as Sweet Orange, Grapefruit, Bergamot, and Lime. A few other powerful cleaning essential oils include Eucalyptus, Peppermint, Thyme, and Rosemary.

With a few essential oils and some other basic ingredients, you’ll be on your way to a naturally clean house in no time. The other basic items you’ll need include baking soda, white vinegar, some various soap-making products, and glass spray bottles or containers.

The Best Essential Oils

Recipes for Cleaning with Essential Oils

Make your house cleaner and healthier by using these essential oil recipes in your kitchen, bathroom, and other places around the house. Plus, you’ll save some money too!

Counter Spray

I love using this to clean the counters in my kitchen! But it’s really multi-purpose for anywhere in the kitchen and bath.

2 cups water

1/4 cup white vinegar

10 drops Lavender Essential Oil (Substitute Grapefruit if preferred)

10 drops Tea Tree Oil Essential Oil

Blend together and keep in glass spray bottle to clean counters and other surfaces. Leave spray on for a few minutes prior to wiping in order to add disinfecting power.

Citrus Dish Soap

Citrus is a natural degreaser. This one is Lime and Orange, but feel free to substitute your favorite citrus oils.

1 cup Liquid Castile Soap

15 drops Lime Essential Oil

15 drops Sweet Orange Essential Oil

Blend together and store in glass bottle near sink. Use in place of typical dishwashing liquid.

Sink Stain Scrubber

Use this in place of a harsh, powdered bleach cleaner.

½ cup baking soda

½ cup washing soda

8 drops rosemary essential oil

8 drops tea tree essential oil

1 ½ cups white vinegar (for rinsing)

Combine sodas and essential oils and store in an airtight container (preferably glass, but not necessary). Shake to blend oils well with powders. Sprinkle a tablespoon or so into the skin and allow it to stand for several minutes prior to scrubbing with a damp cloth or sponge. Rinse with vinegar followed by hot water.

Disinfecting Cleaning Wipes

Either use paper towels for disposable wipes, or cotton towels that can be washed and reused.

1 cup water

1 ounce Liquid Castille Soap

7 drops Grapefruit Essential Oil (or any disinfecting essential oil or blend)

Airtight container with lid

Mix together soap and water with essential oil. Shake well and pour mixture over cloths that are stored in container. Access whenever needed. Dispose or wash and re-use.

Toilet Bowl Cleaner

½ cup Liquid Castile Soap

36 ounces water

6 drops Lavender Essential Oil

8 drops Tea Tree Essential Oil

10 drops Lemon Essential Oil

Combine ingredients and place in spray bottle. If deep scrubbing action is preferred, sprinkle baking soda in bowl, then spray toilet cleaner. Scrub with toilet brush. Then flush.

Essential Oil Fabric Softener

Just like you would use a liquid fabric softener in your washing machine on the rinse cycle, try this:

2 cups white vinegar

8 T. baking soda

60 drops Lavender Essential Oil

Dissolve baking soda and vinegar together. Blend in essential oil drops. Use 3 tablespoons of mixture in rinse cycle for small load of laundry.

Household Ant Repellent

No matter how clean you are, ants can have a tendency to get in your kitchen and other places in your home. Try this little trick:

Apply 7 drops of Peppermint essential oil to a damp sponge. Wipe corners, crevices, and cabinets. Place drops of Peppermint or Citronella directly around the room where ants seem to be found in concentrations and near their entrance spots.

Please note: scents from essential oils will only repel ants and other pesky insects. It will not kill them. There is one very effective natural ant killer method that I know of which involves a borax and sugar mixture.


Cleaning with essential oils is something that truly can change so much about your life. Essential oils can make your life simpler, healthier, and more natural while also saving you money. Join me in green cleaning and see how much better you feel!

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