PFJ – Week 2

Week 2 of Plastic Free July!

How are you all going with the challenge?  What have you found the most challenging & what has been your biggest win to date?  I’d love to know so leave a comment below.

When I first started on my Plastic Free Journey, one of the places I found easy too reduce my plastic was with Cleaning Products.  Not only are they housed in plastic, are full of all sorts of nasty chemicals with are unkind to you & the Planet but they are damn expensive – a surface spray for this room, a special mould busting spray for that! 

Did you know you can clean you home with a few very basic & inexpensive ingredients?  Items which no doubt you already have in your cupboards. 

Basic Utensils

To get you started its a good idea to invest in a few key Cleaning utensils if you don’t already have them.  If you do have plastic ones, just replace with more earth friendly options as they end their life, no need to whip out & get more.

Plenty of stores are starting to stock alternatives to Plastic & they don’t need to come with a big price tag – shop around.  You may even find them in your regular supermarkets.  There are some links below for online places to purchase but check out your local health food shops etc for them. they look damn stylish too.

  • Coconut fibre, metal or copper Scrubbing pad – ditch the plastic one!
  • Wooden dish washing brush
  • Wooden/natural bristle bottle cleaner
  • Cotton Dish cloth
    • Make you own from old towels/tea towels
    • Get crafty (my crafty mum made the one below) & knit or crochet one – or buy online
  • Wooden Scrubbing Brush
  • Wooden Loo Brush
  • Rags – chop old towels & clothing
  • Old spray bottles – save those spray bottles ready for reuse
  • Natural Rubber gloves
  • Dishwashing Liquid – can be purchased at your local bulk store, BYO jar/bottle to save costs & pop it in an existing squeezy bottle 

Basic Cleaning products

Baking Soda – Natural deodoriser,  is abrasive & brightens

  • Can be purchased from your local supermarket in Cardboard boxes (McKenzies) or in Bulk from local bulk stores

Liquid castile soap  

  • Dr Bronners is great & can be purchased in 3.8L containers, mine has lasted me nearly 3 years! Start with a smaller bottle if you prefer though & keep to an unscented one.  That way you can use it for all sorts of things & change the scent with essential oils.
  • You will find at some health stores or it can be purchased online.

White Vinegar – its acidity makes it effective for dissolving oil, grease & soap scrum. Don’t leave for long periods on areas that are porous like tile grout though.

  • Refill your own bottle in some bulk stores.  Manly Food co-op sells in bulk but failing that opt for the largest bottle you can find in the supermarket.

Essential oils – perfect to lift the mood of any cleaning job as well as disinfecting & deodorising

Disinfecting oils – Lemon, Tea Tree, Peppermint, Lime

Deodorizing oils – Lavender, Eucalyptus oil, Tea Tree, Peppermint
DIY Recipes

Now with these few goodies you can make everything you need to keep your house & clothes sparkling clean.  These are all recipes I use on a regular basis.

*With all new recipes it’s important to test patch first as all surfaces are different.


All-purpose Spray

  • 1-part Liquid Castile Soap
  • 20-parts Water
  • 5-10 drops Eucalyptus Oil – add any other oil you like
  1. Add ingredients to a repurposed spray bottle & use.
  2. Use to spray surface & leave for a few minutes then wipe down with a damp rag.
  3. Perfect for cleaning the bathroom sink, shower bottoms & walls, toilet seat & bowl.

*Eucalyptus oil is a natural disinfectant; perfect to kill any stray germs


Toilet Cleaner

  • ¼ Cup Baking Soda
  • Tea tree oil
  • White Vinegar
  1. Sprinkle the baking soda into the bowl & spritz liberally with white vinegar, watch it fizz & add a few drops of tea tree oil.
  2. Leave for 5-10 mins.  
  3. Give the bowl a good scrub with your loo brush & finish the seat/surrounds with your lovely all-purpose spray & an old rag.

Bathroom Cleaner

  • ½ Cup White Vinegar
  • ¼ Cup Baking Soda
  • 10 drops Tea tree oil
  1. Mix together in a big bowl; you need a bigger one as it will froth up.
  2. Transfer to a repurposed jar ready for use.
  3. To use, scoop a little out on a brush or rag & scrub away.

*Great for stainless steel, burnt pots & tough surfaces

*Note this is an abrasive cleaner so is not recommended on soft surfaces like plastic basins. Patch test first; use the grout cleaner recipe.


Grout Cleaner

  • 1 Cup Baking soda
  • 1 Cup water
  • Tea tree oil
  1. Mix together in a repurposed jar ready for use.
  2. To use, scoop a little out on a brush or rag & scrub away.

Lemon Vinegar

  • Citrus peels & scraps
  • White Vinegar
  1. Fill a jar with white Vinegar & add lemon/orange peels. Sit for 2 weeks. Remove & compost peels. Use in cleaning recipes or dilute 1:1 with water & add to a spray bottle for an all-purpose spray.
  • Great all round scented vinegar for use in cleaning recipes or as a cleaning spray
  • Add ¼ Cup to the end of your washing load to soften clothing

Liquid soap for dirty mitts

  • 1-part liquid castile soap
  • 10-Parts water
  • 1 tsp Baking soda
  • 10 drops of Tea tree oil
  • 10 Drops of Lime or peppermint oil
  1. Add to repurposed hand pump bottle
  • You can use any combo of oils you like.  I love lemon myrtle in summer as its zingy & fresh but a warmer smeeling oil like lavender in winter.

Laundry powder

  • 2 Cups Baking soda
  • 1 bar of castile soap – Dr Bronners is a goodie
  • 10-20 drops Eucalyptus oil
  1. Place 1 cup of baking soda in the oven at 200°C for one hour, mixing after 30 mins. This process turns it into Washing power.
  2. Grate the bar soap into small pieces.
  3. Mix the washing soda, remaining baking soda, grated soap & oil well in a bowl & transfer into a repurposed jar.

*To use add one scoop to your wash


Fabric softener

¼ Cup of white vinegar at the end of the wash will soften things right up


Glass cleaner

Spritz white vinegar onto the glass & clean with an old rag


Wood Polish

  • 1 Tbsp. Olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. of water
  1. Combine in a repurposed glass bottle.
  2. To use add a small amount onto an old rag & wipe wood.

*Always test patch first


 

So it can be super simple to clean naturally & without plastic.  Reuse any of your old spray bottles & it will be even cheaper!

What other recipes have you tried on yout Plastc free journey>

 

Much Plastc Free love

Sarah

xx

 

Its Plastic Free July time!

Why use something for a few minutes that will spend the rest of yours,& your great, great, great grandchildrens lives, attempting to break down in landfill or killing in the ocean?

You may have seen the ABCs Series War On Waste & have been inspired to make some changes but if not, Plastic Free July is a great place to start!!

If you are already on your way, what can you pledge this July to do to reduce it even more? Perhaps you can encourage your friends or families to sign up & make some changes?

PFJ is a super busy toime for me this year, with 6 workshops you can get involved in

What is Plastic Free July?

It is an initiative started in 2011 by a small group in Perth to educate residents on waste & has now been embraced by millions worldwide in over 130 countries. Impressive stuff!

It aims to raise awareness of single-use disposable plastic issue and challenges people to be active in reducing their use.

Why participate?

Once you register you will nestled & supported by the PFJ team & receive handy tips & tricks to support you along the way – they have loads of great tips aready on their site to get you started.

  • Apart from the small amount of plastic which has been incinerated EVERY piece of plastic which was ever produced still exists on earth somewhere.
  • Plastic bottles, bags and takeaway containers that we use just for a few minutes is made from a material that is designed to last forever.
  • These plastics:
    • Break up, not down, – becoming permanent pollution (& small morsels mistaken for food by marine life)
    • Are mostly downcycled (made into low grade product for just one more use) or sent to landfill (where they have no chance of breaking down)
    • Can ‘escape’ from your household bin, trucks, events etc. to become ‘accidental litter’ & end up in waterways and the ocean 
    • Scientists predict there will be more tonnes of plastic than tonnes of fish by 2050 
    • Transfer to the food chain – carrying pollutants with them & into our bellys
  • Australians alone send 1 million tonnes of plastic waste to landfill each year which has a devastating effect on our Marine life & Eco system when it ends up in our ocean

What do I need to do?

Joining the challenge is simple……choose to refuse single-use plastic during July….thats it!

  • You can participate as much or as liitle as you like…. one week, a month or dip your toes in with the TOP 4 challenge – plastic bags, bottles takeaway coffee cups & straws – even committing to using a Resuable cup is a win!
  • Plastic shopping bags, plastic cups, straws, plastic packaging…basically anything that’s intended only to be used once and then discarded.
  • Collect your unavoidable single-use plastic and share it with the PFJ team at the end of the challenge.
  • Remember – this is a challenge, you dont need to be perfect, just starting is something!
  • OK sign me up!

If you are keen to make a change & help look after this delicate but amazing planet Register for Plastic Free July here  or for more information go to their website Plastic Free July

Here is a Printable Tip list I have created to get you started.

To help you along yout way I will be having a comp via Instagram (which I have yet to pop up) with loads of yummy goodies from my store.  I’ll fill you in more on that as PFJ gets started.

Im pretty excited about you all getting on board this year & joining me.  Would love for you to leave a comment below about what you plan to do!!

With Plastic free love!

Sarah

DYI Lemon scrap Vinegar

A little while back whilst I was in the process of making Limoncello (we are rather fond of it), I was wondering what I could do with the leftover lemon flesh.

You see, Limoncello only requires the lemon rind to make its beautiful nectar & as I had sourced organic un-waxed lemons I wanted to use every little last piece of them.

What to do?Pinterest…my favourite friend would enlighten me for sure!

I came across a recipe to make a lemon spray which can be used for all sorts of cleaning jobs & its ridiculously simple.  Its the perfect way to reuse those rinds or peelings from citrus fruit – zero waste eating!!

Are you ready…here goes….

  1. Take your lemon or orange scraps, flesh, peels, whatever & add them to a big ‘ol jar of white vinegar – you can get bulk vinegar at some bulk shops (its cheap too), but if you can’t get hold of it, purchase the biggest bottle you can find & recycle it when finished
  2. Leave them to sit & merge into lemony, vinegar goodness for at least 2 weeks
  3. Remove the scraps, compost or dig a hole in the garden…or someone else’s garden on the sly.
  4. Dilute the lemon vinegar 1:1 with water & add to a spray bottle
  5. Get cleaning

*If you’re feeling fancy pop in some sprigs of rosemary.  It looks great & adds a nice scent as well.

Once you have this in your spray bottle the world is your oyster!

  • Use it in place of your regular kitchen sprays (will make short work of bacteria as it is a known disinfectant)
  • I do recommend a patch test first on surfaces, just to be sure – vinegar is acidic & you dont want to it to spoil anything so dont forget to dilute it with water!!
  • For loo cleaning add ¼ cup of Bi-carb soda (is there nothing this wonder powder can’t do) in the bowl & spritz in your lemon vinegar.  It will fizz up – leave for 10 mins & clean with your toilet brush – plastic free cleaning at its best!

Now if you are wondering how that Limoncello (recipe here) is coming along, its not far off.  It has another 2 weeks to sit with the peels & sugar syrup until I can give it a test – I will keep you in the loop as to its success!!

Much PF love

Sarah xx