(Family Features) More people than ever are looking for ways to get cleaner, greener homes and it's easier than you think. Here are some easy and affordable solutions to help you live more environmentally friendly. You may be surprised to find that you already have these household products on hand.
Baking soda is a natural, safe, effective and gentle solution for multiple personal and home cleaning needs. Make a paste of three parts baking soda paste made to one part water. Rub onto the silver with a clean cloth or sponge. Rinse thoroughly and dry for shining sterling and silver-plate serving pieces. Additionally, you can sprinkle on upholstery and carpet to get rid of odors, or add it to your face wash as a natural exfoliant.
Vinegar has acidity to help get rid of dirt and grime around the home. To clean cloudy glassware, soak paper towels or a cloth in full-strength white distilled vinegar and wrap around the inside and outside of the glass. Let sit before rinsing clean. To remove lime deposits on your old tea kettle, add 1/2 cup of distilled white vinegar to the water and let it sit overnight. In the morning, boil the vinegar for a few minutes and then rinse with water.
Did you know that lemon can be used to remove soap scum and clean and shine brass? Lemons have the acidity to help remove soap scum and hard water deposits, and have a fresh and natural smell. Just spray some lemon juice on tile surfaces to remove soap scum or hard water deposits. Squeeze lemon juice on a cloth and use to polish brass around the home.
Improve the air quality in your home by opening windows and doors while you clean. You can also invest in a houseplant or two. Plants serve as natural air purifiers. African violets and ferns are beautiful ways to help clear the air.
One of the best tricks to keeping your entire house cleaner? Go barefoot. Taking off your shoes when you come inside means you'll bring less dust, dirt, mold and pollens inside, and you won't track them all over the house.