Best Essential Oils for Cleaning Your Home Naturally
Homemade Essential Oils Cleaning Recipes
Cleaning your house shouldn’t mean inhaling and touching toxins – and it doesn’t have to! I know it sounds like a lot of work but the truth is once you have a few of the basic ingredients, making your own cleaning products is quick and easy! It saves time, money and is healthier for you and your family.
“The Organic Consumers Association reports cleaning products are among the most toxic of all products found in most homes and that these products were responsible for nearly 10% of all toxic exposures reported to US Poison Control Centers in 2000”
Most of what you need is available at your local grocery or discount store. You may even find many of these supplies already in your cupboard. Pick up the following ingredients on your next shopping trip and try it for yourself.
Best Essential Oils for Cleaning – Ingredients List
You only need one or two essential oils – pick your favorite aroma, or use an e3 Synergy blend.
Single Essential Oils
Thyme Sweet (Thymus vulgaris) – antibacterial, antiviral
Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) – antibacterial, antiviral
Tea Tree (Melaleuca alternifolia) – antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal
Spearmint (Mentha spicata) – antiseptic and clean fresh scent
Lemon (Citrus limonum) – antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral (Nothing says clean and spring like the crisp fresh scent of Lemon)
Protection – antiviral, antifungal, antibacterial
(A warm, spicy aroma , this blend combines germ fighting and immune system boosting essential oils: Cinnamon Leaf, Clove Bud, Eucalyptus Globulus, Lemon, and Rosemary ct. cineole)
Antiseptic Blend – antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal
(A fresh Lemon, Eucalyptus aroma. This blend combines germ fighting and air cleansing essential oils: Clove Bud, Eucalyptus Citriodora, Lavender, Lemon, Lemon Myrtle, Oregano, Palmarosa, Rosemary ct. Cineole, Sage, and Thyme ct. linalol)
Revitalize Blend – antiseptic, deodorizing, antiviral
(A refreshing, uplifiting citrus aroma combining germ fighting and air freshening essential oils: Bergamot FCF, Grapefruit Red, Mandarin Red, Orange Sweet)
Other Natural Ingredients
Baking Soda – Sodium Bicarbonate. Baking soda makes a great gentle scrub for kitchens and bath. It’s available in all supermarkets, as well as, in bulk through discount stores.
Salt –When you need a little extra abrasive action, such as on pots and pans, add a course ground salt to your cleaning mixture. A course ground salt such as Kosher salt works best (available in most supermarkets), but I have used regular salt when that was all that was available, and it still works.
White Vinegar – Vinegar is a mild acid making it beneficial in removing stains, lime deposits, mildew and soap scum. You can also use it to polish chrome, unclog drains, disinfect and deodorize. White Vinegar is less expensive than Cider Vinegar and can be used for most of your cleaning purposes. Cider Vinegar contains tannins; it may stain laundry when used during the wash. FYI White Vinegar can be made from natural vegetable ingredients OR may be a petroleum by-product. Heinz makes a vegetable based product (we are in no way affiliated with Heinz). Check the ingredients to know what you are purchasing. Note: Do not use Vinegar on Marble.
Washing Soda – Sodium Carbonate or Soda Ash; this is often found in the laundry aisle of your local super market.
Liquid Castile Soap – An olive oil based soap, available in most health food stores or online.
Spray bottles and Glass Storage containers
Best Essential Oils for Cleaning RECIPES
Simple 3-Ingredient Disinfectant Spray
Or, as Caryn likes to call it: the Cheap Sunglasses Spray, since your house will shine so much, you’ll need shades! A quick, easy, bleach-free substitute disinfectant spray is as easy as Thyme Sweet essential oil, warm water, and washing soda.
In a spray bottle, combine:
- 2 cups hot water
- 10 drops Thyme Sweet essential oil
- ¼ cup washing soda
Swirl gently to combine, then spray and wipe (with a dry or damp rag) in the kitchen, bathroom, and anywhere else you’d normally use a disinfectant spray. It works best when the water is hot/warm, so single batches are recommended.
Sink Scrub *
- ¼ cup washing soda
- ¼ cup baking soda
- 8 Drops of Essential oil – choose from any of the essential oils mentioned above
- ¾ cup white vinegar to use for rinsing
Combine washing soda, baking soda and essential oils in a glass jar and shake well. Sprinkle mixture in sink and scrub with a damp sponge. Rinse sink with vinegar and then follow with hot water. (If you need a little extra scrubbing power add 1/8 – ¼ cup Kosher salt to the mixture and scrub well, then rinse as above)
Dish Soap *
- 2 cups Liquid Castile Soap
- 25 drops citrus essential oils of your choice, Orange Sweet, Lemon, Lime. If you would like a little additional antibacterial add 10-15 drops of Tea Tree.
Add to a 24 oz bottle and fill the rest of the bottle with water. Shake to combine.
Toilet Bowl Cleaner
Tea Tree, Lavender, and Lemon essential oils all have antibacterial properties, and combined with the cleaning power of vinegar and baking soda, you can easily clean your toilet without harmful chemicals.
In a spray bottle shake to combine
- 1 cup distilled white vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon Tea Tree essential oil
- 10 drops Lavender essential oil
- 5 drops Lemon essential oil
Spray this mixture liberally inside and outside your toilet. Wait about 10 minutes, then sprinkle ½ cup baking soda into your toilet bowl. Using a toilet brush, scrub the insides of the toilet.
Mildew/Mold Cleaner 1*
- Fill a small spray bottle with White Vinegar add 10 drops of Lemon, Thyme Sweet or Tea Tree essential oil.
Spray on area let stand for 10 minutes, use a scrub brush or firm tooth brush to clean the area then rinse.
Mold and Mildew Cleaner 2 ***
- 2 teaspoons Tea Tree oil
- 2 cups water
Combine in a spray bottle, shake to blend, and spray on problem areas. Do not rinse. Makes two cups.***
- Add 2 teaspoons Tea Tree oil to 2 cups Vinegar
Straight vinegar reportedly kills 82 percent of mold. Pour some white distilled vinegar straight into a spray bottle, add Tea Tree oil, spray on the moldy area, and let set without rinsing if you can put up with the smell. It will dissipate in a few hours.
Glass Stove Top Cleaner
This simple recipe will restore your glass cook top to an almost new shine.
- 1 Tablespoon white vinegar
- 2 Tablespoon water
- 3 drops Lemon essential oil.
Mix all ingredients. Dampen a cloth with the mixture, rub well over glass cook top and wipe dry with a clean soft cloth.
Dishwasher Powder *
- 3 cups Washing Soda
- 1 cup Baking Soda
- 10 drops Lemon
Add all ingredients to a glass container, shake to mix well. Use 2 Tb of the mixture in the soap compartment of your dishwasher.
If you get a residue buildup on your glasses reduce the amount of the mixture used to 1 ½ Tb
Oven Cleaner *
- ½ – ¾ cup Salt
- ¼ cup Washing Soda
- 1 box (16oz) Baking Soda
- Scant ¼ cup Water
- ¾ cup White Vinegar
- 10 drops Thyme
- 10 drops Lemon or Lemongrass
Combine Salt, washing soda and baking soda in a glass bowl. Add enough water to create a paste. Remove oven racks and preheat oven to 250 degrees for 15 minutes. Turn off oven and leave the door open. Carefully spread the paste on the oven walls with a sponge and allow to set for 20-30 min. Combine the vinegar and essential oils in a spray bottle. Shake well then spray the oven walls with the vinegar and wipe clean. Rinse well.
Garbage Disposal and Drain Cleaner
To clear a blocked, stinky garbage disposal or drain.
- Pour ¼ cup baking soda into the drain
- Add ½ cup vinegar infused with 10 drops of essential oil – e3 Revitalize blend adds a deodorizing, citrus kick
Cover quickly with a drain stopper. Let the foamy reaction sit for 10 minutes, then flush the drain with hot water from the tap for another 2-5 minutes.
Ready Wipes *
Store multiple squares of cotton cloth (eg.. old T Shirts or kitchen towels) in a glass container filled with this mixture.
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup Castile soap
- 6-8 drops of Lemon, Lemongrass, Tea Tree, Lavender essential oil.
After use, rinse and throw the cotton squares in with your laundry. When clean add them back to your container with the water and soap.
Urine stains on carpet (presumably from pets) **
Blot up the initial stain, flush it with water, then apply equal parts vinegar and cool water. Blot it all up, rinse, and let dry. This will eliminate odors and stains.
Add a couple drops of E3 Purify to the water and vinegar solution to help remove odors
Wooden cutting boards **
Wooden cutting boards are great, except they can be a hothouse for bacteria (especially if grooves have been cut into the board with use). Disinfect it regularly with vinegar and Lemon essential oil to keep it (and your food) clean.
Simply pour about 1/2 cup of baking soda into a bowl, and add enough liquid detergent to make a texture like frosting. Scoop the mixture onto a sponge, and wash the surface. This is the perfect recipe for cleaning the bathtub because it rinses easily and doesn’t leave grit.
Note: Add 1 teaspoon of vegetable glycerin to the mixture and store in a sealed glass jar, to keep the product moist. Otherwise just make as much as you need at a time. ***
Streak-free Glass and Granite Cleaner
Cornstarch is the super-secret ingredient in this recipe, it makes all the difference for streak -free results,
In a spray bottle, mix
- ¼ cup of Rubbing Alcohol
- ¼ cup of White Vinegar
- 1 Tablespoon of cornstarch
- 2 cups of water
- 15 drops of e3 Antiseptic Synergy essential oil blend
You have to shake the mixture vigorously before spraying to ensure the cornstarch is evenly distributed in the liquid and fully-drying the surface is absolutely key. Use a paper towel to rub and wipe away dirt, then follow up with a clean towel or microfiber rag and keep buffing until the surface is completely dry.
- 1/2 teaspoon oil, such as olive (or jojoba, a liquid wax)
- Add 3-5 drops of Lemon Essential oil to the olive oil (before adding the lemon juice)
- ¼ cup vinegar or fresh lemon juice
Mix the ingredients in a glass jar. Dab a soft rag into the solution and wipe onto wood surfaces. Cover the glass jar and store indefinitely. ***
Mattress Deodorizer and Freshener
We wash our sheets often, but when was the last time you washed your mattress? Don’t panic, it’s easy to clean and refresh your mattress with baking soda and some essential oils.
- 1/8 cup of baking soda
- 10-15 drops e3 Revitalize Synergy essential oil blend
Add ingredients to a glass jar, shake well to mix. Once well-shaken, sprinkle the soda mixture onto your bare mattress. Let sit for 20 minutes, then vacuum any excess powder up, and re-make your freshly-cleaned bed.
To add a fresh scent to your laundry.
- Place 5-10 drops of your favorite essential oil on a damp wash cloth and toss into your dryer with wet clothes.
Dry as usual. e3 Sleeptime is our favorite blend to use when drying sheets.
Home’s Characteristic Scent
One of our readers said that she loved going to her aunt’s house because of the way the scent of it was so welcoming and heartwarming. When she had a place of her own, she wanted her home to have a characteristic scent. She knew she had accomplished her goal once one of her friends said: “I love coming to your house; it smells so good.” You can read her article about making her home smell good on Porch here. Do you want a characteristic scent for your home? Our free ebook, Listen to Your Nose: An Introduction to Aromatherapy, can help you formulate that “just right” scent.
Base Recipes were taken from the following sources
* Natural Home and Garden Magazine March/April 2012)
**30 Household Products Vinegar Can Replace by Nora Dunn
*** Care2.com How to Make a Non-Toxic Cleaning Kit Annie B. Bond April 3, 2009
Articles related to toxic chemicals in cleaning products.
8 Hidden Toxins: What’s Lurking in Your Cleaning Products?
Jessie Sholl, Experience Life Magazine
How Toxic Are Your Household Cleaning Supplies?
Organic Consumers Association
Bladder Cancer Risk among Laundry Workers, Dry Cleaners, and Others in Chemically-Related Occupations.
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine
Effect of exposure to detergents and other chemicals on biomarkers of pulmonary response in exhaled breath from hospital cleaners: a pilot study
International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health