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A few years ago I got on a ‘let’s go natural and live clean’ health kick. I started looking for natural ways to clean my house without using all the toxic chemicals my family would breathe in the rest of the day, not to mention possibly get into. Then I found distilled white vinegar-jackpot! It is cheap, non-toxic, and a little goes a long way. My husband always jokes ‘better grab the vinegar’ every time I need to clean anything-and he is pretty much right. Why does it work? Distilled white vinegar’s active ingredient is acetic acid which has antimicrobial properties (meaning it kills fungus and bacteria). It is tough on dirt but gentle on skin, which makes it great for using around the house and your kids.
There are so many cool uses for distilled white vinegar but I am going to narrow it down to my favorite family friendly uses. Note: I am not a fan of the smell of vinegar. It will dissipate soon after you use it, but if you can’t wait you can add a couple of drops of essential oils to override the smell.
- Remove chewing gum from hair or car upholstery/carpet.
How to: Warm some distilled white vinegar and pour it over the gum, saturating the area. The gum will dissolve.
- Clean crayon of the wall.
How to: Dip a toothbrush in undiluted distilled white vinegar and lightly scrub.
- Remove stickers.
How to: Soak a wash cloth in undiluted distilled white vinegar and put it over the sticker for a few minutes (don’t leave on longer than 10-15 minutes or it may start to take off the paint). Wipe away the glue residue.
- Kill odor on mattress after your child has an accident on it.
How to: Put distilled white vinegar in a spray bottle and spray on accident to saturate. Let air dry. Next, sprinkle some baking soda on the accident to remove the excess moisture. Let sit until dry Vacuum residue.
- Clean sticky scissors.
How to: Wipe the scissors down with a cloth soaked in undiluted distilled white vinegar.
- Soothe sunburn.
How to: Put distilled white vinegar in a spray bottle and spray on the sunburn ever few hours as needed. To apply it to the face, soak a cotton ball and dab it on (watch the eyes, it will burn). You can also pour 2 cups of distilled white vinegar into a warm bath and soak.
- Stop insect stings and bites from itching.
How to: Soak a cotton ball in distilled white vinegar and dab on the sting or bite.
- Whiten teeth and stop bad breath.
How to: Dip your toothbrush in distilled white vinegar and brush your teeth one to two times per week
- Clean your fruits and vegetables to get rid of pesticides and bacteria.
How to: Wash fresh vegetables with a mixture of 1 tablespoon of white distilled vinegar in 1 ½ quarts of water. *Optional-add 4-5 drops of lemon essential oil boost the cleaning power.
- Laundry-Get rid of odors.
How to: Add 1/2 cup of distilled white vinegar to the final rinse cycle, or put it in the fabric softener area if you washing machine has it at the beginning of the cycle. Great for smelly sports equipment or clothes with odors that won’t go away.
- Laundry-Prevent colors from fading.
How to: Add 1/2 cup of distilled white vinegar with your wash. This protects color from fading.
- Clean windows in place of Windex.
How to: Mix 3 ounces of white distilled vinegar with 1quart of water. Spray and wipe down with a microfiber cloth.
- Clean shower tile grout.
How to: Spray distilled white vinegar directly on the shower tile grout. Let it sit for 5-10 minutes. Scrub with baking soda and distilled white vinegar mix until clean. Kills mold and mildew.
*To make scrubbing a whole lot easier, use this scrub brush that attaches to the end of a drill, or make your own at home.
- Unclog a drain.
How to: Pour ½ cup of baking soda in the drain then ½ cup of distilled white vinegar. Let the mixture sit for 30 minutes and flush out with boiling water. *if you have plastic piping just use hot water.
- Wash your hard wood floors.
How to: Get 1 gallon of hot water, mix in ½ cup of vinegar, and a couple drops of scented dawn dish soap. I love our Rubbermaid Reveal Spray Mop so you can use your own cleaning solution!
- Clean toilet.
How to: Pour 1 cup of distilled white vinegar into the toilet bowl. Swish it around the bowl with your toilet brush. Let sit for a few hours or overnight. Scrub clean.
- Clean toothbrush of kitchen scrub brush.
How to: Soak bristle end in cup of undiluted distilled white vinegar for 30 minutes.
What are your favorite uses for vinegar?
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