Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Tip of the Day: Cleaning Substitutions that Save Money

This is the third segment in a series about saving money by using homemade remedies and substitutions for more expensive products used in beauty, health and cleaning supplies. My first post on this topic covered various beauty aids. If you missed it, you can check it out HERE.

The second post about using home remedies to save money on medications and ointments can be seen HERE, if you missed out on this part.

Today, I'm going to focus on cleaning supplies, but not before I mention just a few substitutions that my savvy readers were aware of. Thank you so much for contributing!

Raeshell, at 3 Maples said that if you have ants, put out cornmeal. They will eat it and can't digest it, so they die. It may take longer than using chemicals, but it works.

Dusti, at Where's Dusti has a list of homemade household products and beauty products on her blog. She also let me know the organic coconut oil, unrefined, is the best product in the universe. Check out her site to find out what it is used for.

Joeh at Cranky Old Man has a remedy for depression. If you want to find out what it is, check out the comment section of last week's post on medical substitutions.

A sure-proof way to remove any stain including blood, grass stains, juice stains, etc. is found by combining 1/3 part water with 1/3 parts ammonia, and 1/3 parts dishwashing soap. Spray this mixture on just like you would Spray 'n Wash. Let it soak in, and then wash. A sprayer-full will last forever!

To clean drains, put the following down in order, (DO NOT MIX TOGETHER): 1/2 cup salt, then 1/2 cup baking soda, then 1/2 cup vinegar. Follow with hot water.

To clean grease of of hands, (those who work on cars,) use shaving cream in one hand and sugar in the other. Rub your hands together and rinse in warm water.

Gum can be dissolved and removed from hair and clothing by rubbing with butter or peanut butter if you don't have Thoro. You can also put articles in freezer and let freeze; then chip off the gum.

For general household cleaning, mix 1 Tbsp. ammonia with 1 Tbsp. liquid detergent and 2 cups water. Can use all at once or put in spray bottle for touch-ups.

To clean a yellow ring from your toilet bowl, drain the bowl by pouring a gallon of water into it, (this will make the water go down below the ring.) Then pour a can of Coke, not diet, on the ring and brush, then rinse.

Coke can also be used to clean the grease stains in your driveway. Just pour the Coke onto the grease and brush with a broom.

To clean burned-on stains on cookie sheets, cover them with baking soda, then with a small amount of hot water. Let soak for 10 minutes, then scour with baking soda and a scrubber. This also works with baked-on or dried-on food in a casserole dish or pan. If food is very hard, let sit an hour before sponging clean.

To deodorize and freshen carpets, combine 1 cup of crushed, dried herbs, (rosemary, lavender, etc. ) 1 tsp. ground cloves, 1 tsp. cinnamon, 1 tsp. baking soda. Sprinkle over carpet. Allow to sit for a few minutes, then vacuum.

Clean gold and silver jewelry with 3 parts baking soda to 1 part water. Rub on gently, then rinse. Buff with a soft cloth. Shine platinum jewelry with dry baking soda buffed on with a soft cloth.

Baking soda can be used for 1000's of things. To finish up my segment of using substitutions in order to save money on household supplies, I will mention some interesting uses for this incredible substance next week. Tune in!

In the meantime, if you know of, or come across, any home remedies or substitutions that will help us all save money, look and feel better, and live cleaner, please email me or comment here.


  1. Excellent cleaning tips! I actually came across 2 I wasn't familiar with. We also have 6 kids, 5 boys and 1 girl and like any busy household I find stuff in places where no one should even be sitting down. Have a great day.

    Sharon from voiceboks.com

  2. Thanks for this! I'm always searching for ways to get certain stains out. I'm glad you've put all this in one place. Love your blog!

  3. I have also poured coke down the toilet, but only when I hear "Police! Open the door!!"
    Vinager will clean hard water mineral deposits off anything.
    Am I the only guy that reads your blog?


  4. Great ideas, thanks! I follow your daughters cupcake blog and now am following you! I guess great blogs run in the family!! Thank you for the lovely comments on my post! Have a great night with your lovely family!

  5. Gosh I wonder what the coke does to our stomachs!! Thanks for the great tips~Lisa

    I am all a twitter about life


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