We decided a long time ago that we wouldn’t clean our kitchens with anything we couldn’t safely eat. Think about it: When you wipe down a cutting board with a cleaner, that cleaner eventually makes its way into the food you chop on that surface.
Even if you're no domestic goddess, you've probably heard that vinegar is a powerful natural cleaner. You can clean with organic white vinegar, but we love using organic apple cider vinegar because we cook with it, too! It’s also easier to find organic versions, which mean it’s not made with GMO ingredients (many white vinegars are made from corn).
1. Shower spray
We wish we had bathrooms with lots of windows and sunlight, but the fact is that we don’t—and that can lead to mildew. Instead of using harsh chemical sprays, we keep a spray bottle of ACV near the shower and spray down the tile and shower curtain after each shower. The vinegar smell goes away really quickly, but if it bothers you, we’ve tried adding a few drops of grapefruit oil to the vinegar and it helped reduce the smell.
2. Drain de-clogger
We hesitate to add more toxins to our water system, so we don’t use commercial drain cleaners. Instead, when a pipe starts to get clogged we opt for a baking soda-vinegar one-two punch. We put about 1/2 cup baking soda down the drain and then pour 1/2 cup vinegar down after it. After about 5-10 minutes we pour boiling hot water down the drain. This usually does the trick. Or at least clears the drain out enough to use it until the plumber can snake it (what can we say, pre-war building pipes are tricky.)
3. Shiny hair rinse
When our bottle of ACV has about 1/4 cup left, we like to fill the bottle up with water to make a diluted solution and keep it in the shower to use as a hair rinse. The acid in the vinegar can help reduce product buildup and increase shine. We shampoo, rinse with diluted ACV, rinse with water, then condition.
Photo credit: Paul Delmont