Anyone trying to save money, use less chemicals in their homes and minimize the amount of trash their family puts in the landfills every year, might already be making homemade cleaning solutions—for everything from the kitchen to the bathroom and everything in between. In fact, if you have a bottle of white vinegar and a box of baking soda, you can get just about anything clean.

One of the easiest cleaners to make is by mixing white vinegar and water—-you can play around with the measurements and make it stronger or weaker according to your needs. I like to put it in a plastic spray bottle and use the solution to clean my sticky counter-tops, spills and splatters off the hardwood floor, the grime on the stove top, and the fingerprints off of door frames. It’s so gentle I even use it to wipe down the leather couch. Vinegar doesn’t smell after it dries and due to it’s high acidity, it kills germs and bacteria. It’s also environmentally friendly and very inexpensive.

We have a stainless steel sink and the best way to get it clean? With the mild abrasive properties of baking soda. I make a thick paste by mixing baking soda and water (or you can add a few drops of  dish soap) and scrub it around with my hands. It rinses off easily and leaves the sink sparkly clean. It does the same for the stubborn ring of kid-grime left in the tub after numerous weekly baths. It’s abrasive enough to clean but gentle enough that it won’t scratch (most) surfaces. Baking soda also makes a great a natural deodorizer–it absorbs smells instead of masking them. Sprinkle it on your rugs and let it sit before vacuuming, sprinkle the bottom of your cloth diaper pail with it–you can even sprinkle baking soda on your dog before your brush him to help get rid of the “doggy smell!”

There are dozens and dozens of more ways to use both baking soda and vinegar in your home and not just for cleaning the house—but that’s another blog altogether. Do you make any of your own cleaning products and if so, which ones? Do you do it to save money or to use less chemicals or because it’s better for the environment?