Is Green Cleaning as Clean as Chemical Cleaning?

Green cleaning, while generally acknowledged to be better for people and their homes, is surrounded by quite a few misconceptions that cause it to be written off or not tried at all. One of these main falsehoods is that green cleaning doesn’t get surfaces as clean as traditional chemical cleaners. This simply isn’t the case. Green cleaning, while using natural ingredients, can be just as effective as its chemical counterpart. It just utilizes different elements to do so, relying on well-proven ingredients from nature and natural sources that work to keep harmful agents at bay.

Resins

One of the main ingredients that green cleaning products use, and that we use as well in our products like Non-Toxic All Purpose Cleaner, is a mixture of resins.

The most commonly used types are pine and citrus, but others are also utilized.

When included in cleaning products, resins serve a valuable purpose—containing and removing microbes. This mirrors what they do in nature. In their natural state as part of trees, resins heal cuts and abrasions, acting as a barrier between the tree tissues and foreign invaders that may potentially harm the plant. They provide barriers in the cleaning products as well—this time between people and microbes that live on surfaces. Below, we’ll highlight three ingredients commonly used in green cleaning products and how they work to keep your home both green and clean.

Eucalyptus Oil

A popular oil that is used in a number of industrial and medicinal settings, eucalyptus oil has strong anti-microbial properties. This substance when inhaled has been shown to treat upper respiratory infections and kill airborne bacteria. It works just as well on surfaces to kill bacteria and microbes.

When using eucalyptus oil in cleaning, you can also get the benefit of a natural bug barrier. Insects do not like the smell and will stay away from the odor, helping you to not need to use a chemical agent for that task either.

Essential Oils

Many of these natural substances have antiseptic, antifungal, antibacterial, and antiviral properties.  When used in a green cleaning products, essential oils bring that same anti-microbial power to your surfaces and can prevent infections and the spread of illness.

Salt

Because of its texture, salt is excellent for naturally scouring anything from a dirty sink to baked on food off of pots and pans. But salt also works as an antimicrobial agent. Salt is a desiccant, so it removes the water from the cells it comes into contact with. By removing the water, it slows the growth of these cells, reducing the bacteria and preventing odors.

These are only a few ingredients used in green cleaning.  But from these examples, it is clear that the elements used in these products are just as powerful as their chemical counterparts. Don’t feel like you have to sacrifice cleanliness for health.  You can use products that are chemical free and keep yourself and your family safe.

Sources:

http://greencleancertified.com/green-living-home/monthly-column/Five-Safer-Green-Ways-to-Kill-Germs

http://greencleaning.about.com/od/GreenCleaning101/tp/10-Eco-Friendly-Ingredients-For-Everyday-Green-Cleaning.htm

 

Image via flickr user Shaylor