Child-Friendly Cleaning Advice and Tips for Eco-Friendly Parents

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Cleaning the house is one of those things that just makes you want to pull your hair out!

I know first hand as a mother who works full time and always has about a million and one things to do in the short time that I actually spend at home of an evening!

One thing that has really helped me is getting Olivia involved, even with only tidying up her toys, it allows me to do a daily run around with the hoover and just get a bit done!

Chrissy has put together some more tips to help busy parents with their cleaning schedules, and, not only that, but also tips on how to make your cleaning eco-friendly! I know I for one am particularly terrible at needing cleaning products that probably are quite harmful (honestly, if it smells like lemon, it’s probably in my kitchen somewhere!), so I am especially glad to read these tips for a clean and safe home!

While they might make your home smell like a fresh meadow, cleaning products have actually been shown to be as bad for your lungs as smoking 20 cigarettes a day. Not only are these types of products incredibly dangerous for the health of your family, but they can also be harmful to the environment as they contain dangerous chemicals that spray out into the local air. While this all might sound a little overwhelming, there are actually really easy and cheap ways to give your home a deep clean that won’t cause harm to your family or the rest of your household. 

Keep it Simple

As a parent, especially to a newborn baby or even a toddler, you might fall prey to the age-old desire of wanting to sterilise your entire home to keep them safe. While this is a normal feeling, you’ll actually want to remember one thing: keep it simple. Just as nutritionists recommend eating food with the most simple ingredients possible, experts recommend the same for cleaning products. The same study that revealed just how dangerous cleaning products are also noted that microfibre cloths and water are usually sufficient enough to do the trick. 

DIY All-Natural Cleaning Products

If you need a little more help than mere hot water is providing you with, try lemons. Lemon juice, water, and a little vinegar mixed together are actually enough to lift grease, dissolve any dirt and grime on appliances and even disinfect the surfaces of your home. Vinegar can also help clean certain floors, leather sofas, and even wine glasses. To create an all-purpose cleaner that’s safe on the environment but also smells great and won’t affect your allergies, you’ll want to combine equal parts water and vinegar and add about 20 drops of your favourite essential oil. Shake, spray and enjoy the aroma while also enjoying keeping your air fresh and clean.

    

Pinterest has some amazing DIY cleaning products that are all natural and homemade (and, of course, much better for the environment)! Some of our favourites are these…

Make Cleaning Fun

You’ll be able to reduce the amount of time and products spent cleaning your home if you can clean periodically throughout the week. Waiting until enough dirt, dust, and grime have built up so that it becomes noticeable will require you to use more product to get it off your floors, walls, and appliances. To avoid this, try to make cleaning fun. Set aside about ten to fifteen minutes a day to turn up the music inside your house, take off your shoes, and let the kids run crazy. The catch here is that they can run around, dance and sing at the top of their lungs during this time period, but only if they’re cleaning. If you have especially competitive children, this works great as a game, too. Challenge them to see who can clean the most every day and watch how they take to cleaning as if it’s actually something fun.

A Clean Home Makes a Happy Mum

By making a few simple changes and ensuring you’re always practicing child-safe cleaning, you’ll find that your home is cleaner and your family is healthier. This will result in a very happy mum that can rest assured knowing she’s taking care of her home and family in the best way possible.

If you liked this you may enjoy reading…

5 top tips to reduce your household plastic wastage

Many of us have been made more aware of our plastic usage since Blue Planet II was aired, and due to the ‘blue planet effect’ many people have begun to attempt to reduce their plastic wastage. I’m a big believer in looking after the environment and trying to live a sustainable lifestyle, so here are some top tips on reducing the waste and use of plastic in your home.

1. Try plastic free cleaning

White vinegar diluted with 3 parts water makes for a great surface cleaner. You can buy it in bulk to avoid buying cleaner in unnecessarily small cleaning bottles, plus buying in bulk means there’s always some around and you’re unlikely to be caught out with nothing to clean up with. Plus, if you’re not keen on the vinegar smell, here’s a tip – pop some vinegar in a big glass jar, and fill with citrus peels. The longer you leave it in the fridge, the stronger the citrus smell. Big efficiency, small cost.

2. Switch up your bathroom supplies

Ditching toiletries which won’t biodegrade will reduce your plastic waste massively. This includes disposable razors and toothbrushes (3.6 billion plastic toothbrushes are used each year, and 80% of these end up in the ocean). Instead, try a bamboo toothbrush which will biodegrade in 2 years. You can also make a big impact by switching to naked toiletries – use bar soap instead of soap from a plastic dispenser, shampoo bars  and try soap instead of shower gel to minimise your use of plastic bottles. Avoiding face washes with microbeads will also help reduce your impact on the environment. A tube of facewash can contain 330,000 microbeads, most of which will end up in the ocean (and eventually you, if you eat fish).

3. Say no to plastic straws and other single use ‘fast food’ items

This is the obvious one. More than half a million plastic straws are used every day globally, and they take around 500 years to decompose. Further, while single use coffee cups are technically recyclable, they use plastic polyethylene to make them able to hold liquid, and are contaminated with drink. This makes them harder to recycle, and in the UK alone there are only 3 recycling plants able to do this. How can you help? If you like drinking with a straw, you can buy loads of great reusable ones online. They don’t take up much room in your bag, and you’ll always be prepared. Likewise, pick up a reusable coffee cup – most coffee shops will fill it for you with no questions asked, and some will even give you a discount for using your own cup.

4. Make a few swaps in the kitchen

Let’s face it, we’ve all been frustrated with the whole ‘I’ve stuck the cling film together and now I can’t use it’ scenario. If you purchase beeswax wraps, you’ll never have this issue again, plus you’ll be doing the environment a favour. The wraps come as a pre-cut square, and mould to the surface you’re putting it on by using the heat of your hands. When you’re done with it, simply remove it, wash it and leave to dry. You could also try swapping your tea bags for loose leaf tea. Unfortunately, tea bags are made using plastic particles, which means that while the tea inside will biodegrade, the bag itself will be left in landfill for years. While we’re at it, you could also try giving chewing gum a miss – like tea bags, it includes plastic and will never biodegrade.


5. Try reusable nappies and sanitary products

The products we use to keep ourselves clean have a huge impact on both the environment, and our bank accounts. The best solution for both is to buy reusable nappies and sanitary products. Did you know that disposable nappies will take over 200 years to break down? And given that the average household uses 5,000 nappies per baby, that’s a lot of waste. Likewise, the average woman uses 11,000 disposable menstrual products in her life. Ouch. Using reusable products like nappies and menstrual products is not as daunting as it might first seem, and is a lot friendlier to you and the environment – they don’t use harsh chemicals, and are less likely to end up in the ocean.  There are so many different types of reusable nappies available which are just as easy as using disposables, and reusable sanitary products don’t have to be scary either. See Maria’s post for more info.

Whether you try all these tips, just one, or something totally different, any changes you make are for the better!

If you liked this you may enjoy reading…

How my menstrual cup changed my life

Deciding to use cloth nappies

ENDED:#RNW2018 – Reusable Nappy Giveaway!

***WINNER ANNOUNCED IN THE COMPETITION WIDGET***


Reusable Nappy Week happens every year and is a great time to get into cloth – not just because the warmer weather means quicker drying times. The popularity of reusable nappies is soaring (yay!) and during RNW each year there are special discounts with so many retailers and competitions for prizes of all sizes. If you’ve been thinking about trying cloth now is the time to give it a go!

We have teamed up with Ashford Cloth Nappy Library this Reusable Nappy Week to bring you the opportunity to win a large (9-12kg) Bambino Miosoft cloth nappy cover and two prefold nappies to use inside it. Please note, this competition is for UK entrants only.

 
#RNW2018 Prize - White hook and loop fastening Nappy Cover

If you want to try cloth and don’t know where to start, find your nearest nappy library here.

 
We would love for you to share but it is not a requirement to enter the competition. 

ENTRIES FROM OUTSIDE THE UK WILL NOT BE COUNTED.
Winner to be announced on Tuesday 1st May 2018.

#RNW2018 GIVEAWAY!https://js.gleam.io/e.js

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