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A guide to spring cleaning with essential oils

Essential oils are often spoken about in the context of how good they are for the body and mind. We regularly champion specific herbs and flowers for improving mood, detoxifying the air, soothing aches and pains, or even healing sunburn.

But many of these oils also have properties which make them excellent household cleaners. For example, you’ve probably noticed many store-bought cleaning products have a citric scent. So it’s unsurprising to hear that oils such as orange and lemon are ideal for cutting through grease.

In this month’s blog, we’ll look at how you can use essential oils in your everyday cleaning, and offer some tips on how to use our favourites.

Which oils do I start with?

Before dousing every surface with your favourite essential oils, it’s a good idea to evaluate which ones are best for each cleaning task. As a general rule, citric oils are great for cutting through grease, limescale, and watermarks.

Combine 10 drops of lemon, orange, citronella, or a mixture of all three to white vinegar, and spray on the surface. Alternatively, you can use distilled water instead of vinegar - just add 2 teaspoons of baking soda for an extra degreasing boost.

As a natural anti-bacterial, tea tree oil is excellent for all-purpose cleaning. It’s an effective antifungal too, so be sure to try it out on areas prone to damp. Mix 9 parts distilled water to 1 part tea tree oil in a spray bottle, and mist any mould and mildew in the bathroom.

Lavender oil is one of our favourites for adding a subtle scent to fabrics and furnishings. Add a few drops of lavender to a clean towel, and throw this in with your tumble drying for beautifully scented clothes and linen. And if you want that delicious scent to last a little longer, apply your favourite essential oil to a few cotton wool pads, and leave them in your wardrobe.

Some precautions

Pet owners should take extra care when using essential oils in their cleaning. Tea tree, Wintergreen, and Pine oils are particularly harmful to dogs, so it’s best to either avoid using these for cleaning or only spraying them in rooms your pet doesn’t use. This article is really helpful for identifying which essential oils could harm pets.

Polished, painted, or wooden surfaces can also suffer damage if they come into contact with citric oils, which strip through treated surfaces. Be sure to cover these surfaces while spraying essential oil cleaners.

Now you’re ready to face the big clean! We’d love to hear your tips and tricks for spring cleaning with essential oils, and if you’ve tried some of ours we want to hear from you.

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