Eco-Friendly Spring Cleaning

Eco-Friendly Spring Cleaning

A rubber gloved hand holding a card that says "Eco Friendly Spring Cleaning with From Here to Home Essentials"

Low-Waste and Budget-Friendly Tips for Cleaning Your Space This Spring

It's Spring! Time for new flowers, cute baby animals, warmer temperatures, spring training...and spring cleaning! This spring, you can make your spring cleaning more eco-friendly AND budget-friendly. Let me preface by saying: the most green, most budget-friendly thing you can do is to use what you already have. You don't need to buy any fancy gadgets or new tools if you already have something that works.

General Cleaning

  • Vacuum carpets and baseboards. Shake off rugs outside if possible.
  • Sweep and mop all floors in the home. Instead of a Swiffer or similar product, you can use a rag made from an old shirt or cut up towel to attach to your Swiffer cleaner. Or use a traditional mop with a little Castile soap in a bucket of water (test a small area before using on your whole floor). 
  • Dust all shelves, corners, and decor. Instead of a disposable duster, you can use a microfiber cloth or a rag, both of which can be washed and reused.
  • Empty and wash all trash cans. Put in compostable bin liners, like the Blue Bag, or others. 
  • Clean your windows with a diluted vinegar spray and wipe with a rag or Swedish dish cloth (or microfiber towel if you have one already- might as well use it). 
  • Use a rag attached to a long stick or broom handle to dust ceiling fans, baseboards, light fixtures, or anything else high up. 
  • Dust or vacuum your blinds. Wash your curtains if they can be laundered. 
  • Tidy up and organize all living spaces, especially the ones where piles accumulate. (In my house, that's the kitchen counter and the landings between staircases.) 
  • If you have items you no longer use, need, or want, gift them on FB Marketplace, a Buy Nothing group, re-sale shop, clothing swap, or a local charity. Make donating the last resort (because many donations are simply thrown into a landfill).
  • If it is within your budget, chip in with neighbors to buy a Terracycle box for all those small items that aren't quite trash, but not quite recycling either. 

Kitchen Cleaning

  • Wipe down counter tops and stove tops with a cellulose sponge or Swedish dishcloth and some diluted castile soap, vinegar, or UnBleach.
  • Run the cleaning cycle on your oven. Remove all baked in food debris and open a window before hand.
  • Add some food-safe wood oil (like mineral oil) to your cutting boards and wooden utensils.
  • Dispose of expired foods and spices in your pantry, spice rack, fridge, and freezer, ideally with your compost service or compost bin. (I use Compost Crew. Veteran Compost is also local, for those of you without yards.)
  • Clean and put away all dishes. Wash the sink afterwards. 

Bathroom Cleaning

  • Use UnBleach or diluted castile soap with a compostable brush to scrub tub/shower. 
  • Clean countertops with Swedish Dishcloth or cellulose sponge. 
  • Clean toilet. 
  • Shake out and launder rugs.
  • Wipe down mirrors with a diluted vinegar mix and wipe with a rag or Swedish dish cloth.  
  • Gather up all used towels for laundry. Wash with laundry powder. You can wash towels in tap/cold- the dryer cycle will also kill germs! Use a little vinegar in the rinse cycle as fabric softener. You can line dry or use dryer balls to cut down on drying time. 

Bedroom Cleaning

  • Tidy up and dust dresser, bedframe, nightstands with a rag or towel.
  • Remove all linens and wash with laundry powder. Soften with vinegar in the rinse compartment. Use dryer balls to speed up drying time (or line dry). Like with the towels, you do not need to use hot water, especially if you are using a dryer. 
  • Wash your pillows too! 
  • Sort through your clothes and pare down what no longer fits, is in poor condition, or you no longer wear. Recycle in your community or through a service, donate to a local shelter, or distribute through your local Buy Nothing group or other clothing swap.
  • Do any remaining laundry that is in the laundry basket, under the bed, on the floor, or in a suitcase leftover from the holidays (no judgement here!). 

Bonus Deep Cleaning

If you're exhausted and done with cleaning, by all means, be done! If you want an extra deep clean, add in these steps: 

  • If you have the time, willpower, and can rent or borrow the equipment, or have it already, steam clean the floors, carpet, and upholstery. 
  • Deep clean your appliances, including your washing machine, oven, dishwasher, and refrigerator/freezer. 
  • Use a gentle brush and some cleanser to clean marks off the walls. 
  • Tidy up and re-organize your garage (extra bonus points!)

Don't forget to wash all your rags, Swedish dishcloths, and microfiber towels after you're done cleaning! And of course, once you're done, it's time to light the ceremonial post-cleaning candle (is that just me?). My house isn't actually clean until I do that!

Spring cleaning can be done in a single day, or broken up into shifts- there's no rule that says you can't clean one space per day! Spring cleaning doesn't have to leave you feeling light-headed from fumes, buried under paper towels, or be overwhelming. Pick a place to start, play music or a podcast, and have at it!