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Sometimes (or very occasionally), there’s nothing better than doing a big clean. But have you ever thought about what you’re cleaning with? Every polish, spray and cleaning solution we use contains hundreds of chemicals, yet we liberally spray them all over the surfaces we cook on and eat off.

Could there be a better way? Can you get the same results with chemical-free products? Supermarkets offer many natural, toxin-free products, but why pay through the nose when you can make your own.

Here’s a round-up of some of the best natural cleaning solutions you can use to spruce up your cleaning routine.

  1. White vinegar

No cleaning hack is complete without a bottle of the whiffy stuff (not the same as what you pour onto your fish and chips FYI). It’s a miracle ingredient and cleans stubborn kitchen grease and dirt as well as removing stains from clothes. It’s eco-friendly, biodegradable and super cheap.

To make a white vinegar solution, mix 250ml of vinegar with 250ml of cool boiled water. Eliminate the smell by adding a few drops of your favourite essential oil, pour into a reusable spray bottle and get cleaning.

Tip: As white vinegar is acidic, don’t use it on stone surfaces or metallic paint.

  1. Olive oil

Not only is it delicious, but olive oil is a handy, chemical-free cleaning product and can be used to polish up items around the house. Stainless steel pans lost their shine? Add a bit of the good stuff to a soft cloth and rub your pots, pans and even your sink. It can also make your patent, leather or rubber shoes shine again.

Tip: Squeaky cupboard door? Spray a little olive oil onto the hinge to get rid of noise.

  1. Bicarbonate of soda

Just like white vinegar, bicarbonate of soda comes high on the list of natural cleaning ingredients that are super effective and eco-friendly. It’s also a great way to get rid of bad smells. Mix it with water to get rid of dirt and grease in the kitchen or sprinkle it on a sponge and scrub pots and Tupperware that have got stubborn stains.

  1. Lemon juice

While freshly squeezed lemon make a delicious cup of lemonade, it’s also a handy addition to your cleaning supplies. Mixed with water and some rinds, lemon juice can remove caked-on dirt and grime and adds a fresh-smelling scent to your home. Pour it down the sink to clear out your drain or mix it with white vinegar and water for an effective floor cleaner.