These days it may seem like everyone is “going green” but it can be an overwhelming process to get started with. This is undeniably good news for the environment, but how can we change our old non-ecological habits, which are sometimes well entrenched? Choosing environmentally friendly cleaning supplies can be an easy and effective first step towards transitioning to all green household products. Here are 5 tips to help you get started.
Reading the label should be the first step before buying any cleaning supplies. The best products will clearly list all ingredients on the packaging. Be sure to avoid anything that contains a hazard symbol if possible. If the product does not disclose its ingredient list on the package, it is safe to assume they are attempting to hide chemicals or other toxic ingredients. There were 8 toxins that are often hiding in cleaning supplies and should be avoided are:
If a product has an added fragrance, companies are not required to disclose what ingredients make up that scent. Therefore, toxic ingredients can often be used without consumers ever knowing it. Most fragrances contain phthalates, a toxic chemical that should be avoided. Phthalates are known to disrupt the endocrine system and can cause lasting damage.
To avoid these toxins, select products that are fragrance free or use natural scents, such as those derived from many essential oils.
Added coloring to a product is another indication that toxins are present. Most dyes contain petrochemicals, which can be harmful for humans. When selecting green household products, look to see that no coloring has been added.
Reducing the number of cleaning supplies, you use is another way to move towards environmentally friendly cleaning. Companies have spent millions of marketing dollars convincing consumers they need 10 different cleaners when the same jobs can be done with just 1 or 2.
Better yet, some cleaning jobs can be done without any cleaners! For example, to freshen the air in your home or office building, you do not need a synthetic air freshener that likely contains chemicals. Instead, open a window to get natural ventilation.
The best way to be sure of what is in your cleaning supplies is to make them yourself. Making products such as soaps and other cleaners is easy to do and usually requires only a few ingredients. Having a few basic ingredients on hand will be all you need to make dozens of different cleaning recipes.
Not only can you rest assured knowing that only safe ingredients are being used but often it will be more affordable than store bought green cleaning supplies. Recipes for any cleaning supplies you need can be found easily online, along with step-by-step instructions.
If you’d rather not make your own products, there are a number of great companies who have created safe and effectively cleaning supplies. Be aware that some companies try to mislead customers by marking their products are “natural” without adhering to environmental standards. Some ways to find true environmentally friendly brands are:
If you want to take steps towards sustainability by cleaning your office building or your business with environmentally friendly products, consider hiring a professional cleaning firm such as Can-Jan to take care of all your needs. Located in Montreal, we offer a variety of services. Call us!