Vinegar, baking soda, baby powder, salt, lime juice, lemon rinds, and olive oil: Believe it or not, these 7 simple products can get rid of marks on the wall, clothing and carpet stains, shower tile dirt, silver tarnish, rust, scuffed shoes, oven stains, and the need for mothballs. After all, we're not big fans of cleaning products with labels that say: “In case of ingestion, contact poison control services immediately.” All the same, organic cleaning products are expensive (sorry, Seventh Generation).
Here’s how to be sparkling clean, without all the gross chemicals:
1. Adhesive Remnants.
Adhesive left behind by stickers and price tags can be a pain, but it’s easy to rub off the adhesive if you quickly sponge vinegar over the trouble spots and then wait 15 minutes.
2. Marks On The Wall.
Whether your wall was marked up by your errant gesture with a pen or your niece’s creative burst with a pencil, baking soda on a damp sponge should take care of it.
3. Clothing Stains.
If you have an oil stain (like salad dressing), cornstarch or baby powder will do the trick. Apply a thick layer and rub in well, let it sit for about 15 minutes, and brush away with a towel.
4. Carpet Stains.
Mix equal parts water and vinegar in a spray bottle and spray directly onto the stain. After letting sit for a few minutes, scrub with a brush and soapy water.
5. Shower Tiles.
For light cleaning, baking soda will do the trick. For trickier challenges like mildew, white vinegar will effectively cut through it. Use the vinegar sparingly, as it will also eat away at your tile grout if you use it too often.
6. Tarnished Silver.
Line a pan with aluminum foil and fill it with water. Then, add a teaspoon of baking soda and another of salt. Bring the water to a boil and briefly immerse your silver. After removing, polish with a soft cloth.
Put salt on the rust spots, squeeze lime juice over it, and leave for a few hours. This should loosen the rust enough that the leftover lime rind will scrub it off.
8. Scuffed Shoes.
Olive oil, mixed with a little lemon juice and applied with a rag, will make your shoes shine. Leave the mixture on for a few minutes, then buff with a dry rag.
9. Stained Oven.
First, run a wet sponge over the oven walls. Then apply the following mixture: ¾ cup baking soda, ¼ cup salt, and ¼ cup water blended into a thick paste. Avoiding bare metal and any openings, spread the paste over the inside of the oven. Leave it overnight, then remove it the next day with a spatula and a quick wipe-down. Any trouble spots can be fixed with steel wool.
10. Moths In The Closet.
Dried lemon rinds, wrapped up in cheesecloth, are a natural deterrent to the little pests.