Bleach is a classic cleaning solution that many people regard to be “all-purpose.” Did you know, however, that bleach is actually more harmful than helpful in a lot of cleaning situations? Not only considering the amount of damage it can do to household surfaces if not used correctly, bleach can also irritate the eyes and skin, as well as having been linked to an increased risk of cancer.
Instead of risking your health and safety for a cleaning job that probably won’t be all that effective, keep reading to find out our top 5 products to swap bleach for, depending on what kind of cleaning you are trying to do.
If you are trying to brighten, lighten, or remove stains, opt for white vinegar. This is a more “natural” alternative to bleach and also in general does a better job. There are so many different ways and ratios to use white vinegar in cleaning.
In addition to laundry and general cleaning, white vinegar is both anti-fungal and antibacterial, making it a great product to use to get rid of mold.
Baking soda, or sodium bicarbonate, is great for cleaning both your home and your body. Similar to white vinegar, it can be used to whiten and brighten clothes, as well as your teeth!
It can also be used for removing stains on fabrics when made into a simple paste and applied directly to the site.
Hydrogen peroxide is one of the most effective bleach replacements when it comes to keep light clothes white and fresh, minus the damage and smelly price tag that comes with bleach. It can also be used to whiten your teeth by simply adding a few squirts to a cup of water once or twice a week and swishing in your mouth.
Hydrogen peroxide is also an effective disinfectant. You can use it to disinfect you cleaning tools, such as toilet brushes or scrubbers. Hydrogen peroxide is also great for getting out stubborn blood stains that resist only cold water.
Tea Tree Oil
In addition to being anti-fungal and antibacterial, tea tree oil also smells great, which makes it a great cleaning agent for anything you want to smell particularly fragrant afterwards. Tea tree oil is commonly used to clean kitchen and bathroom sinks, and bathtub and shower drains. Its disinfecting properties make it a great option for cleaning out any dirt, bacteria, or food remains, while simultaneously making the surface smell fresh and clean.
As well as kitchen surfaces, tea tree oil can be used for cleaning your toothbrush or retainer, two products which can harbor bacteria and potentially grow mold.
A third effective way to use tea tree oil is in the management and cleaning of pet products. Oftentimes, pet toys and bedding will begin to smell after heavy use. In order to make them stay fresh longer after washing, add one or two teaspoons of tea tree oil, in combination with detergent to the next pet load of laundry.
Although bleach has commonly been used as a household cleaning staple, there are in fact many substitutes that not only work more effectively, but are safer for yourself, your pets and family, and the environment.