9 Essential Oils For Cleaning
If you were to walk through your local grocery store's cleaning aisle, you would see rows of popular and common household cleaning products. But if you look closer, you'll notice that the majority of these products contain harsh and toxic chemicals that can be dangerous to use around your home and family.
Toss the toxins and clean your home in a safe, natural way with essential oils! Essential oils harness the power of plants, providing you with an easy and affordable way to care for your family in every way. While essential oils are great for aromatherapy and personal care, try using these nine essential oils to clean your home without worrying about nasty chemicals.
1. Lemon oil
Lemon essential oil is probably one of the most commonly thought of oils when it comes to cleaning, and there's a good reason for that! Not only does Lemon oil offer a fresh, light, and clean scent, but it is a powerful natural cleaner. Lemons contain antibacterial and antiviral properties, and those are harnessed in the oil, which makes it great for keeping unwanted germs at bay.
- Keep toilets and kitchen counters clean and germ-free by adding Lemon oil to your natural all-purpose cleaner.
- Polish wood floors or furniture. Combine 10 drops of Lemon oil with 1/2 cup of olive oil for a natural polish. You can also try this other natural polish recipe.
- Cut through grease and stubborn gunk on stove tops or in other areas around the house with a few drops of Lemon oil.
- Remove sticky residue.
- Brighten up white floors and tiles by adding a few drops of Lemon oil to a gallon of mop water.
- Brighten white clothes by adding a drop or two of Lemon oil to your laundry detergent.
- Deodorize a stinky trash can. Add 2 drops of Lemon oil on a cotton ball, and place it at the bottom of the trash can. You can add 2 drops of Eucalyptus oil for an extra freshening boost.
- Remove crayon marking on the wall. Add a few drops of Lemon oil to a clean towel, and gently rub off the markings.
- Loosen up tough stains in the microwave. Add 4 drops of Lemon and 1 cup of water to a microwave safe bowl. Put the bowl in the microwave for 4 minutes. Remove the bowl, and wipe the inside of the microwave clean.
2. Eucalyptus oil
With its menthol-like aroma, Eucalyptus is well-known for its ability to help open up the airways. But did you know that Eucalyptus oil is great for cleaning, too? Eucalyptus oil has antimicrobial and antiseptic properties, making it particularly great at fighting off yucky substances that can build up around the home, such as mold or mildew.
When diffusing Eucalyptus oil or adding it to a room spray, you can help purify the air. In fact, studies have shown that Eucalyptus helps fight against bacteria that can cause pneumonia, influenza, strep, and staph infections. So, adding Eucalyptus essential oil to your cleaning arsenal is a great way to naturally keep your home clean and your family healthy.
- Give your bathroom and hard surfaces a deep clean to fight off bacteria. Combine 1/4 cup of baking soda, 1/3 cup of natural dish soap, 1/4 cup of hydrogen peroxide, 3/4 cup of distilled water, and 30 drops of Eucalyptus oil in a squeeze bottle. Scrub the mixture into dirty surfaces with a brush, and let stand for 20 minutes before rinsing.
- Mix with water in a spray bottle, and spray around the home to ward off dust mites and rodents.
- Add to your natural all-purpose cleaner to fight against mold and mildew buildup.
- Deep clean your mattress or stuffed animals. Mix a few drops of Eucalyptus oil with baking soda for a dry wash, or add a few drops to your laundry detergent.
3. Lavender oil
Although typically known for its relaxing benefits, Lavender is also a must-have natural cleaner. Lavender oil contains the plant's natural antibacterial and anti-odor properties. Plus, Lavender oil is very gentle and great to use around smaller children. Adding Lavender oil to your cleaning routine can not only leave your home smelling fresh, but it can also help keep it free of bacteria.
- Spray down linens for a fresh and clean smell. Combine 1/4 cup distilled water, 3 Tbsp of witch hazel, and 20-30 drops of Lavender oil to a small spritzer bottle. You can also add about 10 drops of Peppermint oil for an extra crisp aroma.
- Freshen up your laundry. Add a few drops of Lavender oil to your detergent to prevent musty smells from building up in the washer.
- Deodorize smelly clothes by adding Lavender oil to your wool dryer balls.
- Give your natural cleaners an extra boost. Add 4-5 drops of Lavender oil to your homemade cleaners. Lavender pairs particularly well with vinegar.
- Boost your vacuum cleaning by adding 2 drops of Peppermint oil and 2 drops of Lavender oil to your vacuum bag.
4. Tea Tree oil
Similar to Eucalyptus, Tea Tree oil is one of the strongest cleaning essential oils you need to have. Tea Tree is antimicrobial, antifungal, antibacterial, antiviral -- just about all you need right there in one plant! With such powerful cleansing properties, Tea Tree essential oil is great for keeping germs and bacteria at bay. In fact, a study found that Tea Tree helps fight against the influenza virus. This essential oil is great for everyday cleaning, but even more so during the cold and flu season.
Note: Tea Tree can be erosive. We recommend NOT using Tea Tree oil on marble, granite, and plastic surfaces.
- Use daily to keep surfaces clean and germ free. Combine 2 cups of vinegar, 2 cups of water, 30 drops of Lemon oil, and 20 drops of Tea Tree oil in a spray bottle for a great all-purpose cleaner.
- Keep your shower clean and free of mildew or mold by spraying it down with a water and Tea Tree oil mixture after every use.
- Eliminate harmful bacteria by diffusing or spraying around the bathroom. Be mindful that Tea Tree is safer to use on porcelain than other materials, but be cautious using it on plastics, such as a plastic toilet seat.
- Deter pests and bugs by spraying a Tea Tree oil and water mixture both inside and outside the house.
- Freshen up stinky shoes. Add 2 drops of Tea Tree oil to a cotton ball, and place a cotton ball in each shoe. Let it sit overnight.
5. Orange oil
Orange oil works very similarly to Lemon, as they are both acidic and offer a clean, fresh scent. The vitamin C enzymes in Orange oil not only give your immune system a boot, but they also eat away at harmful bacteria to keep it from growing.
- Cut through grease and mucky residue with just a drop or two.
- Use as an alternative cleaner to Lemon oil.
- Wipe down cutting boards to kill bacterial without leaving behind an unwanted cleaner taste.
- Freshen the air and eliminate odors with an Orange oil and water spray.
- Keep your bathroom smelling great by adding a drop or two of Orange oil to the inside of the toilet paper roll.
6. Thyme oil
Thyme may be a spice that you keep in your kitchen cupboard, but it should also be an essential oil that you use on your kitchen counters. The thyme plant has powerful antiseptic and antibacterial properties, and the essential oil harnesses those benefits. In fact, Thyme oil is particularly good at fighting off food-borne bacteria. Studies have shown that Thyme oil is even strong enough to keep salmonella and E.coli bacteria at bay. Now, that's definitely something we want to use for cleaning our kitchen!
- Boost your dishwashing and kill lingering germs. Combine 1 cup of distilled water, 10 drops of dish soap, and 20 drops of Thyme oil together in a squeeze bottle. Use the mixture to give your dishes a deep clean.
- Add a few drops to your all-natural kitchen cleaner to wipe away dirt and grime, and to add an extra layer of protection against bacteria.
- Wipe down cutting boards, particularly those used to cut raw meat. Just add a drop of Thyme oil to your dish soap before washing the cutting board.
7. Peppermint oil
This cool, refreshing oil not only makes your home smell great, but it also keeps your home free of pests and germs. Peppermint oil is great for deterring a variety of pests and insects, so you don't have to worry about unwanted house guests. Plus, Peppermint essential oil is a natural antibacterial and antifungal, keeping your home free of harmful bacteria that is lingering around.
- Clean mirrors, windows, and stainless steel with Peppermint oil for streak-free results. Combine 3 cups of distilled water, 1/4 cup of witch hazel or vodka, 1/4 cup of white vinegar, and 20 drops of Peppermint oil in a spray bottle. Use the spray and a microfiber cloth or paper towel to clean glass surfaces.
- Add a few drops of Peppermint oil to your all-purpose cleaner to give the surfaces in your home an added layer of protection. This is great for kitchens and bathrooms.
- Eliminate odors by diffusing Peppermint oil or using it in a room spray.
8. Cinnamon oil
Cinnamon may not be an oil that you initially think of when you think of natural cleaners, but it is considered an oil of protection and prosperity. The cinnamon plant is antibacterial and antiseptic, and the oil is just the same. Not only that, but Cinnamon oil is great fro freshening the air and eliminating odors. If you're looking for a way to keep harmful bacteria and germs away from your family, use Cinnamon oil.
Note: Cinnamon oil is a hot oil. When spraying or using Cinnamon oil around the house, be careful with skin contact, especially with children under the age of 10.
- Avoid mold or mildew buildup by spraying Cinnamon oil in areas around the house that are more susceptible. You can mix 1 cup of water, 1/2 cup of white vinegar, 20 drops of Cinnamon oil, 10 drops of Rosemary oil, and 10 drops of Lemon oil together in a spray bottle, and use that mixture around the house.
- Keep pests and bugs away from the house. Mix Cinnamon oil with water, and spray in areas where you see pests. You can also add a few drops of undiluted Cinnamon oil to a cotton ball and swab around the area.
- Deodorize the air by diffusing Cinnamon oil or using it in a room spray.
9. Pine oil
Pine is one of those scents that just smells clean; just look at the ever famous Pine-Sol! Pine is in a lot of traditional cleaners because it is a great natural cleaner. Not only does it smell great, but Pine oil is a powerful agent against household germs, including mold, mildew, yeast spores, and E.coli.
- Purify the air in your home and eliminate airborne bacteria by diffusing Pine oil or using it in a room spray.
- Cleanse larger surfaces in your home, such as floors, walls, and counters, by adding a few drops of Pine oil to your all-purpose cleaner.
- Eliminate bathroom mold or mildew by wiping down surfaces with Pine oil.
- Remove dirt and grime from walls. Combine 1 cup of distilled water, 1 cup of white vinegar, 10 drops of Tea Tree oil, and 10 drops of Pine oil in a spray bottle. Lightly spray the affected area and wipe clean with a damp sponge. Rinse with water and dry.
Disclaimer: Rocky Mountain Oils is not liable for damage caused to any surface, flooring, or furniture that is cleaned with essential oils or these recipes. Essential oils are extremely potent and concentrated, and should be used with caution. Start by testing the recipe on a small surface area before using it on the entire surface.