Balance, Wellness

All Natural Ways to Clean your Home this Fall

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Turning a New Leaf

When it was finally cool enough here on the East Coast to turn off the air conditioner, my heart was frankly aflutter. Fresh air! Sunshine! Crisp autumnal breezes! What could be more welcoming after a sticky, humid summer? Well, the layer of grime and pollen that had accumulated on my window panes and sills was not exactly welcoming. Suddenly, my desire to bring the outdoors in was overridden by a need to somehow get it, and all its residual friends, back out.

Clichés tell us that spring is the time for cleaning, and while it's true that warmer temperatures are a great incentive to rid your home of stale winter air the opposite is also true: soon it will be time to close up and turn in, and you'll want that air to be as spring-like as possible for as long as possible. Cleaning all around your house is of course best done regularly, regardless of the season. But, if you need some calendar-specific incentive--or are looking for some new methods and products to make where you live a haven for good health rather than a bacteria breeding-ground--fall is a great time to get back into good cleaning habits that won't dirty the planet.


Several wonderful, sustainability-minded companies make it easy to swap out some of your go-to products for more natural solutions. Click to see which ones made the list.


Photo: Rachel Titiriga
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Mrs. Meyers Clean Day Detergent

Revive your wardrobe, even if you keep your same old clothes from last fall, with Mrs. Meyer's Clean Day laundry detergent. With great scents like geranium, doing laundry will be less like a chore and more like a leisurely stroll through the park. Mrs. Meyer's can bring the smells of nature indoors all around your house with its full line of products that use essential oils instead of chemicals, in everything from dish soaps to all-purpose sprays that smell like apples and sunflowers.
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Method All Purpose Cleaner

Method All-Purpose Cleaner in French Lavender can be used on surfaces all around your home, from wood to kitchen counters to glass (be gone, window grime!). Besides transporting you to the rolling hills of Provence, this spray--and all Method products--comes with the added features of 100% recycled, sleekly designed packaging and renewable, non-toxic, biodegradable ingredients.
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Seventh Generation Dish Soap

Seventh Generation dish soap will prevent your delicious fall meals from sticking around in places other than your belly. The scentless Free & Clear formula is hypoallergenic--to protect sensitive hands during even the most intense, stuck-on scrubbing--and their full line of household products uses cruelty-free ingredients from Europe.
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DIY Options

You might be surprised, too, that you probably already have some of the best all-natural cleaning products. These cabinet staples are masters for the really dirty jobs, and their accessibility makes it that much easier to get them done.


Combine lemon juice and baking soda to scrub stains from cutting boards and counter tops (though best not used on porous or delicate surfaces).
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Coffee Pot and Mugs

Mixing equal parts white vinegar and water in your automatic coffee pot will rid your morning joe of residue plus banish the brown rim around the decanter. Just pour the solution into the reservoir, run one brew cycle, wash the decanter, and run again with clean water.


For stains in coffee mugs, soak overnight in a solution of one part baking soda and two parts water, then wash as normal.


Photo: Paul Appleyard
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Easy Oven Cleaning

Hate the harsh smell and drying effects of bleach? Rid your shower of health-hazardous mold by spraying the walls with vinegar. Let the shower run on hot for 10 minutes with the bathroom door closed (to allow steam to build up), then wipe with a towel or sponge. To remove tough stains from grout, make a paste of baking soda, water, and vinegar and scrub with a toothbrush or sponge.


Photo: Chalon Handmade
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All Natural Disinfectant

Hate the harsh smell and drying effects of bleach? Rid your shower of health-hazardous mold by spraying the walls with vinegar. Let the shower run on hot for 10 minutes with the bathroom door closed (to allow steam to build up), then wipe with a towel or sponge. To remove tough stains from grout, make a paste of baking soda, water, and vinegar and scrub with a toothbrush or sponge.


Photo: Shelly T
Jennifer Kurdyla

Jennifer Kurdyla

Features Editor at Peaceful Dumpling
Features Editor Jennifer Kurdyla is a New York City girl with Jersey roots and a propensity for getting lost in the urban jungle. An experienced publishing professional, yoga instructor, home chef, sometimes-runner, and writer, she adopted a vegetarian lifestyle in 2008 and became vegan in 2013. She has written for The Harvard Review Online, The Rumpus, and Music & Literature and maintains a wellness-based website, Be Nourished, which features original writing and recipes. Follow her on Facebook, Instagram @jenniferkurdyla, Twitter @jenniferkurdyla, and Pinterest.
Jennifer Kurdyla
Jennifer Kurdyla

Jennifer Kurdyla

Features Editor at Peaceful Dumpling
Features Editor Jennifer Kurdyla is a New York City girl with Jersey roots and a propensity for getting lost in the urban jungle. An experienced publishing professional, yoga instructor, home chef, sometimes-runner, and writer, she adopted a vegetarian lifestyle in 2008 and became vegan in 2013. She has written for The Harvard Review Online, The Rumpus, and Music & Literature and maintains a wellness-based website, Be Nourished, which features original writing and recipes. Follow her on Facebook, Instagram @jenniferkurdyla, Twitter @jenniferkurdyla, and Pinterest.
Jennifer Kurdyla
  • Mary Hood

    Thank you for sharing these wonderful tips, Jennifer! Fall cleaning sounds like a great idea 🙂

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