Everyone knows that the bathroom is a dirty place. There are a host of chemicals that are often used for cleaning it and making sure that we get rid of all the bad things that so easily show up there (bacteria, water stains, soap scum, mold, and mildew). However, these chemicals are expensive and worse they are bad for our health, the health of our families, and even the environment. There are less expensive, all natural, and completely safe options for cleaning your bathroom. They work just as well or better then the expensive, dangerous, store bought varieties and they are easy to make and use!

A Note About "Green" Store Bought Options.
Recent times have brought about a variety of cleaners that are labeled "natural" and "green". These options are sold under a variety of names and more and more companies are offering them. However, these cleaning supplies aren't really safe for you, your family, or the environment. Rather they are "safer" or "greener" then the original varieties. If this is the option that you choose you will spend more for a product that isn't really a good option for the environment or your family. Considering making your own is the best option!

All Purpose Cleaner.
You can make an all purpose cleaner that really can be used everywhere. It is made from all natural ingredients and is safe for use all over the bathroom (and even next to your food or to clean your dishes!). To make it you will want to get a brand new spray bottle (don't reuse spray bottles, instead pick them up new at the dollar store). Fill the bottle about half way with water. Using distilled water (or water you boil on the stove) will make it more likely to last forever, though I make my cleaner in a gallon jug and have never had a problem with it. For most spray bottles this is about one cup of water. To that you will want to add three cups of distilled white vinegar. Then add about two tablespoons of lemon juice. To finish your all purpose cleaner you will want to add five to ten drops of your favorite essential oil. I mix spearmint and rosemary together for a wonderful scent, though citrus scents work well especially with the lemon juice.

This cleaner works really well for most messes. Spray down the sink, the tub, even the toilet if you wish with it and clean as you normally would. You can also use it to spray down the floor and wipe it up leaving your floors looking clean. Because of the vinegar and the lemon juice this cleaner naturally kills germs including bacteria and viruses. So go ahead and spray down the knobs and other hands on locations as well!

Listerine Toilet Cleaner.
While all purpose cleaner can be used to clean the toilet, it won't get rid of water stains and isn't your most powerful option. You can use Listerine mouth wash as a very effective toilet cleaner. To use it mix 1 part water and 1 part Listerine in a spray bottle (or fill your Listerine bottle with water when you reach about the half way mark). You can then spray the toilet down or slosh it up around the rim of the bowl right from the Listerine bottle (probably not a good idea to use it for the toilet bowl and then for your mouth again since it will need to get close to the toilet). Listerine kills germs of all sorts and is also good for getting rid of a wide variety of stains. Plus it will leave the bathroom smelling great and you can choose your own scent based on their flavors.

Powerful Tub Cleaning Option.
Your all purpose cleaner makes a great tub cleaner, but on those days when the tub is really dirty, greasy, or dealing with hard soap scum it is a good idea to give it a boost. To do this sprinkle the tub with baking soda. Then spray it down with the all purpose cleaner and scrub as you normally would. The baking soda will make a creamy paste that is great for scrubbing with and will help get up the nastiest of messes.

Floor Cleaner.
You actually have a lot of different options for cleaning your floors. You can use your all purpose cleaner. You can also use plain vinegar. If you don't like the smell of vinegar (and really, who does) then add a few drops of essential oil to the vinegar and let it sit for 24 hours. The oil will give the vinegar a better smell. You have two other options. You can add one full cap full of Listerine or one cup of hydrogen peroxide to your mop water and clean your floors using it. Any of these options will produce clean floors that aren't sticky, have no residue, have less bacteria, and are clean without the expense or chemicals of other cleaners!

The most common recommendation for homemade glass and mirror cleaner is to mix one part water with one part vinegar. This definitely works, but you can't add essential oils to it because they will cause streaks. Therefore if you dislike the smell of vinegar then you need a different option. For that different option take one part water and one part lemon juice. Add two tablespoons of vinegar and shake. Wash your mirrors with it. If you want an easy streak free finish then use newspaper as your drying medium. It will make sure there are no streaks and won't leave lint or dust behind.

Mold and Mildew.
Because mold and mildew are problems in the bathroom they deserve their own section. To kill mold and mildew you will want to use one of two products. The first is Listerine in a spray bottle (one part water and one part Listerine). The second is one part hydrogen peroxide and one part water (you can add essential oils if you wish, tea tree oil and chamomile are examples that will help to kill mold, mildew, and bacteria). Both of these products will work and in my experience they work equally well. Spray down the area and use a small brush to scrub up the mold or mildew. It may still leave a stain behind, especially on caulking and grout. It is important to catch it as early as possible because of this. It should be noted that hydrogen peroxide can bleach items, especially fabrics. Therefore be careful with this product.

All of these natural cleaning options are safe for your family. They are effective at getting the job done. They don't hurt the environment. They are inexpensive. Plus they kill germs and many of them even smell great or have the potential to smell great. They are also easy to make. So greening your cleaning routine can happen all over the house, including in the bathroom.