White vinegar is a pretty amazing household cleaner. It’s incredibly cheap; cuts through dirt, grease, odours and soap scum like nothing else; can be used in a myriad of different ways; and is kinder to the environment than many cleaning products you can buy. It’s a bit of a miracle cleaning product really when you think about it. However, there is one downside to vinegar, and it’s quite a biggie. Vinegar smells of, well, vinegar. Which isn’t entirely ideal sometimes, and isn’t to everyone’s taste. Particularly if you are using it in a small space. I’ll quite often use a vinegar spray to clean my kitchen, but don’t want it smell like I might have been eating fish and chips. In this instance I turn to essential oils to fragrance my vinegar. Or, when I’m feeling super thrifty: I turn to kitchen scraps and herbs from my garden to infuse the vinegar with citrus peelings and my favourite botanicals for a deliciously scented DIY eco-friendly cleaning spray that’s light on the pocket.
Clean With Infused Vinegar: Wendy's DIY Eco-friendly Cleaning Spray
Here’s how to make it
1. Take a bottle of white vinegar (never malt, white wine vinegar, rice vinegar or any other variety: just white) and pour it into a clean glass jar. Keep the glass bottle the vinegar came in - you’ll need it later.
2. Add a good handful of citrus peel (at least two orange’s worth of peel per 568 ml bottle of vinegar) and/or a large handful of fresh herbs.
3. Leave in a dark spot to infuse for at least 14 days (leave it longer and it will take on a stronger scent).
4. Sieve the vinegar, and pop the peels/herbs in to your compost bin. Decant half of the vinegar back into the jar for use later, and decant the other half of the vinegar into the glass vinegar bottle.
5. Top up the vinegar in the bottle with cooled boiled water - so the vinegar and water is a 50/50 solution, and add a spray nozzle.
6. Use as you would any other cleaning product, however do not use on granite, marble or natural stone
, as it will damage these surfaces.
7. Your diluted cleaner should keep for around 8 weeks, undiluted it will keep indefinitely.
My favourite combinations
- Lavender and sage
- Lemon, Lavender and Thyme
- Grapefruit and Rosemary
- Lemon and Lime
- Lemon and mint
Feel free to play around with what you have and with what grows in your garden or window box.
If you don’t have enough citrus peel to hand, you can pop it in the freezer until you have enough. You don’t even have to defrost the peel - just pop it straight into the vinegar when you are ready. It’s that easy!
We'd love to hear how you got on with your own DIY eco-friendly cleaning spray! Which ingredients did you use? Let us know in the comments below or tweet us @wearethought
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