Store-bought household cleaners can be expensive as well as very harmful for the environment and your health. There are plenty of good environmentally friendly cleaners on the market today, but they are still expensive. Here's how to make your own.

There are a few green cleaning staples that you should have. Buy a large container of distilled white vinegar. This cleans almost anything, and it disinfects as well.

You should also have baking or washing soda. There isn’t much this doesn’t clean, either. Mix it with water or vinegar.

I love castile soap. It also cleans a lot, and it has a soap-like consistency. It is made from plants, so it is suitable for vegetarians and isn’t full or harmful chemicals. I use Dr. Bronner’s © castile soap. It is a good an ethical company, and their products work.

If you like a lemon smell, lemon juice can replace vinegar. However, it is a bit more expensive.

I also like to use essential oils such as lavender and tea tree oil. Sprinkle a few drops in your cleaning solution for a nice scent.

Here are a few recipes for some common household cleaners. You may want to adjust recipes or add other ingredients. Feel free to do so, as all of these ingredients are quite effective.

All-purpose spray: Mix 1 part vinegar with 2 parts water in a spray bottle. Use this to wash hard surfaces such as counters and windows. Use it in the bathroom to clean your sink and tub. If your tub is exceptionally dirty or has a lot of soap residue, I sprinkle baking soda on the grime and then use the vinegar. It cuts right through it.

Toilet bowl cleaner: You don’t need an expensive and harmful toilet bowl cleaner to get the job done. I clean my toilet by pouring a ¼ cup of white vinegar and ¼ of a cup of baking soda into the toilet. Scrub away!

Wash your car: To wash the exterior of your car, mix ¼ of a cup of castile soap with a bucket of hot water.  

Floor cleaner:  Why use chemicals to clean your floor? Mix ¼ cup of castile soap with 2 gallons of water. If there is a lot of grease on the floor, add about ¼ of a cup of white vinegar.

Laundry:  I use ¼ a cup of castile soap for each load. Use a little less or a little more depending on the size of your load.

Dishwasher detergent: I use equal parts baking soda and castile soap and start the machine. You might have to adjust your recipe or add vinegar depending on the quality of your dishwasher.

Dishwashing detergent:  I use straight castile soap instead of store bought dishwashing detergent.

Carpet cleaner: For light stains, I use the vinegar all-purpose spray. If I want carpet shampoo, I use a cup of warm water and half of a cup of castile soap. Rub the mixture in with a brush. If you have a really tough stain, pour some baking soda over it, and then use the vinegar spray and scrub hard.

Dr. Bronner's Soap