5 Easy (and Affordable) Eco-Friendly Items to Add to Your Kitchen 

5 Easy (and Affordable) Eco-Friendly Items to add to your Kitchen 

The biggest misconception about going green is that it is difficult. I’ve had a lot of frustrating conversations with defeatist friends and family who’ve decided to make the change is too much trouble. 

Nothing could be further from the truth. Not only is are these five additions easy to achieve but the difference on your weekly pocket spend is not even noticeable – add these eco-friendly items to add to your kitchen and countertop.  

It was the Chinese philosopher, Lao Tzu, who said, “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” The same can be said for adopting an eco-friendly lifestyle. Start by replacing a single item or appliance in one room. Before you know it, your entire home and office will be a haven of earth friendliness that you can be proud of.

Being a lifestyle writer, I spend a lot of time in my own and other people’s kitchens. I can tell you that the room where people prepare food can be the most wasteful space of them all if you’re not careful. When you consider the single-use plastic, easily compostable food scraps, cleaning products, storage containers and so on, that go through a scullery, the possibility to either help or harm the planet will make your head spin.

If you have any of the following kit in your kitchen, you’re well on your way to having an earth-conscious space. 

  1. ECO FLOW NEEDLE SPRAY

R47, years of use.

If you’ve kept up with the news, you’ll know that while Cape Town managed to avoid Day Zero, the entire country is still teetering towards a great water depletion. We can’t continue to use water as wastefully as we have done in the past. Fix this nozzle to your faucet and you stand to save up to 80% of H2O every single time you open the tap.

  1. CHARCOAL WATER FILTER KOINS

R165 per box, 4 koins per box, lasting up to three months each.

Since we’re on the subject of water, one of the main reasons we buy it bottled is because it gives us the assurance that the water is clean, and the Ph Balance is low. While this may not help those who prefer drinking sparkling water to still, popping a few of these charcoal discs into your distilled water will purify it. Each koin can be used for up to three months, and protects you against all sorts of bacteria like e.Coli, and harmful chemicals like chlorine, lead & mercury.

  1. BREAD BAG

R60, machine-washable, lasts a lifetime.

You’re buying your bread from the farmers market, which means that you’re supporting small business owners, and you’re minimising your carbon footprint buying locally. Good on you! It would be a shame if your efforts were sullied by having to slide your fresh loaf into a film of single-use plastic. This unbleached calico drawstring bag is guaranteed to keep your bread fresh without compromising the planet.

  1. COFFEE FILTERS

100 filters for R45.

The world would be very depresso, if we didn’t have espresso. If You Care make wonderful coffee filters that are 100% unbleached (chlorine-free) and plastic-free. They’re particularly special because while they won’t harm the environment by laying in landfills for decades to come, they won’t compromise the quality and integrity of your coffee either. You needn’t worry about the packaging. These guys have pushed the boat out to ensure that you can recycle the box your filters come in. Everything can be popped into your compost bin when you’re done with it.

  1. BIODEGRADABLE BIN BAGS

10 bags for R36.

The planet’s collective waste is unacceptable. We are weighing down the earth with all our trash, and if we aren’t careful, there will be catastrophic consequences for our irresponsibility. We need to desperately reconsider what we are getting rid of, but how we are getting rid of it is of equal importance. 

Let’s all purchase biodegradable bin bags. I’ll say it again because this is important: LET’S ALL PURCHASE BIODEGRADABLE BIN BAGS! It seems silly that some of us are painstaking about separating out garbage for the bin men when we’re shoving it into plastic trash bags. Isn’t it oxy-moronic?

This PLA product is fully biodegradable under ideal conditions – they’ll break down completely within 45 days. If they end up in a landfill, it might take a little longer, but it won’t be much.

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REFERENCES: 

https://www.treehugger.com/htgg/how-to-go-green-in-the-kitchen.html
https://www.hgtv.com/design-blog/design/make-your-kitchen-greener
https://greenerideal.com/guides/an-environmentally-friendly-kitchen/

You Grow Gurl; Repotting Your Succulents Like a Boss

You Grow Gurl Repotting Your Succulents Like a Boss

If you’re a prospective plant parent, you might think that starting out with a succulent is a safe bet because they require very little water, so they must be low maintenance. Nothing could be further from the truth. As someone who got her green fingers dirty with a few Mammillaria cacti that didn’t last longer than two months, I can admit that tending to succulents is just as demanding as tending an orchid. 

You’d be better off raising a hardy snake plant of geranium. 

Though, in all honesty, there is nothing more rewarding than watching your dedicated efforts in tending to succulents pay off. So let me share some tips and tricks to repotting that might help you in the near future.

PICK THE RIGHT POT

People often fail at this first hurdle. If you pick a pot that is too shallow, your succulents run the risk of becoming root bound, too deep and your roots will shoot down without giving your plant the height you desire. You’ll also want to pick a pot with drainage holes so that water doesn’t sit in the soil and begin to rot the plant. Remember: succulents do well without water for days (sometimes weeks) at a time so if they sit in damp soil for a prolonged period, they will spoil very quickly.

PICK THE RIGHT SOIL

You wouldn’t expect the veggies from your potager to thrive in sea sad, would you? By that same logic, repotting your succulents in any old soil would be just as silly. Because succulents gather moisture from the air, and not always necessarily directly, you’ll need to purchase specific succulent/cactus soil that is rich in nutrients but that dries out quick enough that your roots don’t begin to rot. If you want to make your own potting soil, use 1 part coconut husk and 1 part pumice stones for outdoor succulents, while indoor succulents should consist of  1 part crushed pine park, 1 part surface and 1 part crushed granite.

REPOTTING

Now that you have all the components to repot your succulents, you can get started. 

  1. Fill your new pot up to ¾ with potting soil
  2. Gently remove your succulent out of its current pot
  3. ‘Tickle’ roots to get rid of any residue soil. This process is also effective in stretching out the roots of your plant.
  4. Place your succulent in the pot and tuck soil around the plant so it is packed comfortably into the new pot. Soil must reach the base of the succulent without covering any of the leaves or body of the actual succulent.
  5. If the plant hasn’t been watered in some time, add a little bit of water, though it is advisable that you wait a few days (up to two weeks) before watering your plant just so it becomes accustomed to the new soil.

BONUS: PROPAGATING SUCCULENTS

If you want to grow a few succulents for friends and family from your own plants, it’s fairly easy to do. Once you get the initial process down pat, you’ll be growing vegetative offspring in no time.

  1. Cut a leaf off as close to the stem as possible. Most people get this first step wrong and rack their brains for weeks after because nothing grows from their leaf, or it ends up going brown and dying.
  2. Place leaf on top of soil making sure the ends don’t touch the soil at all. Don’t plant it into the soil because it has no roots. The leaf still needs to mature before you start treating it like a succulent.
  3. Water the soil on a regular/daily basis. Again, this is a kind of gestation period so the succulent needs all the help it can get. Don’t be too heavy-handed with the H20 because it is a succulent after all and they thrive with little to no water, If anything, you’ll he dampening the soil do the leave doesn’t completely die, but it needn’t be drowned either.
  4. In three weeks, you’ll begin to see rosettes and roots begin to form at the ends of your leaves. When that happens, make sure your roots are always covered in soil and tend to them as you would your other succulents. 

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Sources/reading material:
https://medium.com/@sucstu/succulent-studios-unboxing-repotting-40ac6ab7d352
https://www.succulentsandsunshine.com/faq-items/when-is-it-time-to-repot/
https://www.themarthablog.com/2017/02/repotting-succulents-in-my-greenhouse.html
https://leafandclay.co/blogs/blog/how-to-repot-succulents
https://www.succulentsandsunshine.com/well-draining-soil-for-succulent-container-gardens/
https://www.succulentsandsunshine.com/how-to-propagate-succulents-from-leaves-and-cuttings/ 

What on Earth are Soap Nuts?

Just when you think you’ve heard it all, soap nuts pop out of the woodwork (literally) to solve another eco living necessity. But don’t go thinking that because they’re new on our green cleaning scene that they’re a recent discovery. These natural cleaning gems have been around for centuries, native to the Himalayas, parts of China and India, as well as South America and often, and, have been cited historically in folk remedies. We, of course, love them for their eco sudsy superpowers. Here’s how they clean and why you should give them a crack.

How do soap nuts clean?

Soap nuts, also called soap berries are not really nuts but rather the shell of a fruit from trees Sapindaceae family.

These trees need about nine years to mature and then drop their berries naturally for 90 years. The fruit is wild-harvested, the inner seed is then removed and the shell is dried in the sun without using any chemicals. The remaining dried shell is what we know and love as the soap nut.

The shell contains a substance called saponin which works just like a surfactant, basically breaking through the surface tension and able to penetrate the fibres in your clothing and linen fabrics. The dirt remains lifted and suspended in the water and is, of course, rinsed away into your greywater system or the sewage system without any traces of chemical toxins in them. Nifty, no?

WHY WE LOVE SOAP NUTS 

The more we can do in our day to day living without creating unnecessary muck the better we’re integrating with our environment. Here are some of our favourite reasons for enjoying laundry days with soap nuts:

  • Leave no trace:
    These nut shells don’t produce any foam or residual compounds that remain in the water. And once you’ve used your nuts they’re good to toss in the compost, providing further nutrition for your soil. And, did you know, on the growing front, these trees are great for the environment because the fruits are quite unappealing to insects and so require no pesticides.
  • Doubles as a fabric softener:
    There’s also no need to remove them in the rinse cycle as the little bit of saponin left over also acts as a natural fabric softener.
  • Hypoallergenic:
    An incredibly gentle cleaning agent, these are a great laundry alternative for anyone suffering from sensitive skin or eczema and psoriasis. They’re even mild enough for your baby clothes and cloth diapers.

USING SOAP NUTS IN YOUR WASHING MACHINE 

It might seem so strange at first to chuck a couple of fruit husks into your laundry so we’ve rounded up some tips on using them to make it, well, seem less weird.

  • Soap nuts work in hot and cold water cycles
  • The saponin in soap nuts releases quicker in hot water than it does in cold water

WASHING IN HOT WATER 

  • You only need the equivalent of three whole soap nuts per load
  • They’ll release all of their saponin in one wash

WHEN WASHING IN COLD WATER 

  • Use about 5 nuts per load
  • You can reuse them up to 6 times
  • Alternatively, pre-soak your cotton sack containing soap nuts in a little hot water to release the saponin
  • After a few minutes of soaking, add the mixture to the cold-water wash

Soap nuts will last months longer than your normal laundry detergent and just need to be stored in a dry area (so no humid and dank outside rooms) and also out of direct sunlight. Enjoy using these little gems from nature. We’re sure like the many who have already tried to use them, that you’ll find they’re really quite effective and remarkable.

And while money might not grow on trees, it’s pretty amazing how almost everything else we need for a natural health and wealth filled life, does.

Indoor Plants That Detoxify The Air

Power plants, as we like to call them, have the ability to remove toxins from the air of your home or office. For the sceptics out there, this information is for real; in fact much of the research on these beneficial houseplants has been done by the NASA scientists researching ways to create suitable space station habitats. All indoors plants (flowering or not) are able to purify indoor air to some degree through their normal photosynthesis processes. But some were found to be more beneficial than others in removing harmful household toxins, even removing 90% of chemicals in the air in only twenty-four hours!


The main household toxins of concern are:

  • Benzene – a known carcinogen found in cigarette smoke, detergents, pesticides
  • Formaldehyde, commonly off-gassed from paints, solvents and other synthetic materials.
  • Trichloroethylene found in solvents
  • Xylene found in varnishes, paints and paint thinners

There are many different kinds of houseplants that could be called power plants, but we have selected what we think are the 10 most common pot plants to find and use around the house.

This means these types of houseplants may just decrease your risk of cancers, asthma, allergies, auto-immune disorders and other diseases.

Common Name: Aloe Vera
Botanical Name: Aloe barbadensis

Aloe Vera, a very common plant in South Africa can remove formaldahyde from the air.


Common Name: English Ivy
Botanical Name: Hedera helix

English Ivy is known for removing the chemical benzene, and  is also fantastic for asthma and allergies and also removes formaldehyde.


 

Common Name: Gerbera Daisy
Botanical Name: Gerbera sp. or Gerbera jamesonii

NASA say that the Daisy is fantastic at removing benzene, and absorbs carbon dioxide and gives off oxygen overnight, which is said to improve your sleep. Definitely one for the bedrooms – baby’s room in particular!


 

Common Name: Marginata or Dragon tree
Botanical Name: Dracaena marginata

The Dragon Tree is known for purifying the air of the carcinogen, benzene, cigarette smoke and other household chemicals like formaldahyde, xylene and trichloroethylene from the air.


 

Common Name: Moth Orchid
Botanical Name: Phalaenopsis

The Moth Orchid can remove VOCs (volatile organic compounds) and formaldahyde, solvents and other synthetic materials from the air.


 

Common Name: Mums
Botanical Name: Chrysanthemum sp. or Chrysanthemum morifolium

Mums are very effective at removing benzene, and  trichloroethylene (found in solvents and cleaners), formaldehyde and ammonia from the air.


 

Common Name: Peace Lily
Botanical Name: Spathiphyllum sp.

The Peace Lily is known for removing benzene, mould spores in the air, (making it great for bathrooms, kitchens and laundry rooms); purifying the air of trichloroethylene and removing alcohols, acetone, and formaldehyde.


 

Common Name: Spider Plant
Botanical Name: Chlorophytum comosum

NASA places this the Spider Plant among the top 3 types of houseplants that are great at removing formaldahyde. Also removes carbon monoxide and other toxins or impurities.


 

 Common Name: Areca Palm
Botanical Name: Chrysalidocarpus lutescens

General air purifier, especially as it grows larger. It’s known for being one of the better performers in purifying the air.


 

Common Name: Boston Fern
Botanical Name: Nephrolepis exaltata Bostoniensis

The Boston fern acts as a natural air humidifier, removes formaldahyde and is reputed to be among the best in air purifying houseplants.


10 Other plants that are also able to detoxify the air are:

  • Areca Palm – general air purifier
  • Baby Rubber Plant – has a high oxygen content so helps with formaldehyde in particular
  • Bamboo Palm or Reed Palm – remover formaldehyde and acts as a humidifier
  • Chinese Evergreen– has a high oxygen content so helps with formaldehyde in particular, but also benzene
  • Corn Cane or Mass Cane– general air purifier
  • Dwarf Date Palm – removes formaldehyde and Xylene
  • Golden Pothos – – among the top 3 types of houseplants great for removing formaldhyde
  • Janet Craig – a good overall air purifier, removing most air pollutants.
  • Kimberly Queen Fern – cleans formaldehyde, toluene, and xylene out of your home.
  • Snake Plant – absorbs toxins, such as nitrogen oxides and formaldahyde.
  • Schefflera, or Umbrella Tree – removes benzene from the air

If you feel you are one of those people that no matter how much you love the leafies, you tend to land up with drooping, unhappy browning plants; or aren’t home enough to keep your them happy with plenty of care, you can always get yourself an air purifier – another simple way you can make sure you are breathing in cleaner, more wholesome air.

Related Links:

5 Essential Oils You Need For Your Clean, Green Home

Essential Oils for Your Home

You put so much effort into keeping your family’s home clean, safe and hygienic – but how “clean” are your household cleaning products really? When you think about the harsh chemicals that go into most commercial detergents, we’re sure you’ll agree that the only real “clean way to clean” is with pure natural alternatives! And the best news is, natural cleaning needn’t be expensive or fussy; it can be as simple as opening up your medicine cabinet and choosing your favourite essential oils.

These little beauties aren’t just sweet-smelling – they’re also loaded with highly concentrated antibacterial, antifungal and antiseptic powers that would put any commercial cleaner to shame! A few drops of essential oils go a long way, and one oil can do the job of several ordinary cleaners – so not only are they healthy and safe, they’re also highly economical.

There are so many wonderful, delicious-smelling essential oils available to help you clean your space the natural way; we struggled to choose our five favourites, but here they are: Continue reading “5 Essential Oils You Need For Your Clean, Green Home”

Smart Cleaning Tips for Your Home

Clean-home_web

A clean home is a healthy home, and when you choose natural cleaning products you can rest assured your home is safe and eco-friendly too. But even the most conscientious of cleaners have their pet peeves, with the occasional mess, muck or smell that stubbornly sticks around. This list of clever cleaning tips and tricks is just what you need to tackle those niggling cleaning challenges around your home.


 

A Better Bin Lining

Crumple up some newspaper and use it to line the bottom of a fresh garbage bag before placing it in your kitchen bin. The newspaper will absorb odours and leaks, saving you the hassle of dealing with nasty smells and messes from your garbage bag.


 

Mucky Mirrors

To clear dull-looking mirrors and glass surfaces, spray them with a mixture of ¼ cup white vinegar and 1Tbsp corn starch in 2 cups of warm water. Wipe them down with a little newspaper for a streak-free finish.


 

Grotty Cheese Grater

If you’re struggling to clean that cheesy crud off your grater, just use it to grate a chunk of raw potato. The potato’s hard firm texture and natural oxalic acid content will easily get rid of that hard-to-clean gunk, without the need for scrubbing or scraping.


 

The Glitter Trick

If you’re the crafty type, or a parent of creative kids, your house is likely to be the site of frequent glitter spills – and we all know that sparkly stuff is near impossible to clean up! The solution is simple though; simply take a ball of play dough and roll it through the spilled glitter. It will stick like magic – and the result is a sparkly ball of play dough that will still provide hours of creative fun (if it’s clean enough). Check out our recipe for natural homemade play dough here.


 

Burnt Pots & Pans

Fill the bottom of the pan with water, then add a cup of white vinegar. Bring the mixture to a boil, then remove it from the heat and add 2Tbsp baking soda. Empty the pan and give it a scrub; those scorch marks should make way for a shiny clean surface.


 

Toilet Tank Tip

This tip will save you a lot of scrubbing. First, get a glass jar with a metal lid (like a jam jar or mason jar), and fill it with vinegar. Punch a couple of small holes in the lid (use a small nail), then pop the jar upside-down into your toilet’s water tank. Each time you flush, a little vinegar will seep out of the jar, helping to keep the toilet bowl free of nasty build-up. Plus the jar will take up a bit of space in the tank, saving you some water usage.


 

Coffee Grinder

To clean the blades of your coffee grinder, simply grind a piece of stale bread or a handful of uncooked white rice; this will pick up debris from old coffee grounds, as well as lingering smells. This will work for your spice grinder too.


 

Tumble Dryer Towel Trick

The dryer is so convenient in winter, but it can really send your electricity bill soaring. To cut right down on drying time, simply place a clean dry towel in the tumble dryer with your wet items. The towel will help to absorb the excess moisture in the dryer, making the process that much quicker.


 

Do It Detergent-Free

Have you ever considered ditching the detergent and cleaning using nothing but water? It might sound impossible, but our  the range of cleaning goodies from E-Cloth will help you to do just that. E-Cloths have special super-absorbent fibres that trap dirt, dust, grime and grease, using just water and nothing else! These fab cleaning cloths have also been shown to remove around 99% of bacteria. Cleaning without detergent saves so much money, plus it’s kinder to the environment – needless to say, this is one of our all-time favourite cleaning hacks.

Do you have any super-smart household cleaning tips you use to keep your home spotless? Share your secret with us, we’d love to hear it!

Staff Picks: Our Team’s Favourite Green Cleaning Goodies

Staff Picks: Our Team's Favourite Green Cleaning Goodies

We’ve been talking a lot about green cleaning products lately, and about what makes them a safer, healthier and more eco-friendly choice than ordinary cleaners. So which cleaning products does our own green team use when they’re at home?

One of the best parts of working on the Faithful to Nature team is the chance to learn so much about the best natural brands on the market; and abundant opportunities to walk the walk rather than just talking the talk, by choosing natural alternatives to green our daily routines! We asked a few of our green goddesses which earth-friendly cleaners they love best, and here’s what they had to say:


staffpicks-jo

Jolene (Operations Manager) picked: Londa Bio-Bleach

“This bleach is so versatile, but I especially love that it works so well to remove stains from my clothes without damaging them or leaving white bleached-out marks. A little goes a really long way and it’s safe to add to my grey water that is recycled into my garden. Truly green cleaning!”


staffpicks-robs

Robyn (Director) picked: Triple Orange Wonder Spray

“I am all for keeping things simple and this spray is pure magic because it works well for everything from my kitchen to my bathroom! This means less hassle; less cost and less waste.”


staffpicks-gil

Gillian (Customer Services Ninja) picked: Earthsap Concentrated All Purpose Cleaner

“I love this as this is so versatile, I use it from cleaning tiles, to counter tops to my shower. And what’s best about it, it leaves me happy knowing that this product is not harmful to myself or the environment.”


staffpicks-lexi

Lexi (Marketing Assistant) picked: Greenman Natural Antibacterial Sanitiser

“The fact that there are no harmful chemicals in this product makes me feel safe. The smell of the product is very natural and not so overpowering.”


staffpicks-caryn

Caryn (Office Manager) picked: Greenman Toilet & Bathroom Gel Cleaner

“I love it because it smells so fresh and ‘clean’, it’s really effective and it’s an all-in-one, easy-to-use product for the whole bathroom!”


Spotlight on YOUR Top Green Cleaning Tips!

Organic kitchen cleaning

Our Faithful to Nature blog is all about providing you with the best information and inspiration on eco-friendly living and natural wellbeing. However, it must also be said that our faithful fans inspire us in turn!

During our annual Christmas countdown this past December, we asked our Facebook friends to share their top green cleaning tips in order to win an eco-cleaning hamper – and we just loved every tip we received. Hearing just how much our shoppers care about natural alternatives really is music to our ears. And we wanted to share this wealth of greenie knowledge with the rest of our fans! So here are some of our favourites – try them out for yourself and tell us what you think.


In the Kitchen:

Smart tips for tackling all those problem areas.

“Lemon juice cuts grease on dirty pots and pans and cleans work surfaces. Salt water disinfects and can be used to wash out fridges, surfaces and even used on small cuts.”  – Marina

“Bicarbonate of soda and water in a spray bottle to clean ovens!” – Pieter

“Use natural products to clean a microwave. All you need is a jug or bowl of water, lemons or concentrated lemon juice and a cloth to refresh and clean a really grubby microwave. This tried and tested method has been around for ages and works like a dream.” – Gloria

“To clean your dishwasher effortlessly, fill a dishwasher-safe bowl with 2 cups of vinegar and set on the top rack of the dishwasher. I used a small glass Pyrex container. Run through on a hot cycle with no other dishes in the dishwasher to clean and remove the musty odour.”  – Marlaine


In the Bathroom:

Some inspiring, earth-friendly ways to keep things clean and hygienic.

“I make my own kitchen and bathroom spray with water, vinegar, 20 drops of lavender and tea tree oil, it cleans, disinfects, keeps insects away and smells amazing.” – Jennifer

“If you have a slight blockage in a sink drain, pour bicarb in to cover the hole of the plug, then pour boiling hot water and vinegar down the plug hole, this should shift the blockage. Keep adding vinegar and water until the foaming of the bicarb stops.” – Lauren

“Natural mould removal and prevention: Add ten drops essential clove oil to 1L of water. Wipe mouldy areas with a cloth dipped in this solution… this also scares ants off.” – Sudika


In the Living Room:

Some of you sent in your own fab natural cleaning recipes for keeping floors, windows, tiles and furniture spic-n-span.

“Natural wooden furniture polish: 1 cup olive oil, half a cup lemon juice. Mix in a sprayer bottle. Shake well and apply to flannel cleaning rag or cloth, spread evenly, then use dry side of the cloth to polish dry.” – Anno

“Citrus Infused Vinegar: Fill a jar with (organic) citrus peels and pour undiluted white vinegar over them. Leave for a few days (up to 2 weeks) and strain out the vinegar to use as a natural cleaner. It works as a window cleaner (dilute with water), for mopping floors, or for disinfecting surfaces.” – Yolande

“Green Spring Cleaning Recipe for Grout: 7 cups water, half a cup baking soda, one third cup of lemon juice and one quarter cup vinegar – throw in a spray bottle and spray your floor, let it sit for a minute or two… then scrub.” – Audrey


For Pet-Lovers:

Some safe natural advice for those with furry family members:

“For smelly pet bedding (rodents, dogs, whatever) use vinegar instead of softener, and use a natural laundry soap (from FTN of course!). For super stubborn smells, soak in vinegar before washing. It removes all odours excellently. I also clean rodent cages with a vinegar and water mixture – effective and safe for my pets too.” – Mary


For Fashionistas:

Some great tips to keep your favourite clothes and accessories looking good as new.

“To brighten whites in your laundry, add half a cup lemon juice to the rinse cycle for a normal-size load.”  – Tharishia

“Best way to clean jewellery! Make a paste of bicarbonate soda and toothpaste, rub it through and rinse well. Will sparkle like new!” – Lydia

“To clean copper bangles, soak in a solution of vinegar + water (half cup water + 2Tbsp vinegar); soak for a few minutes and rub dry with a soft cloth.” – Sharon


To find out why green cleaning is the way forward, read our blog post about the benefits of eco-cleaning goodies – and the dangers of ordinary cleaning chemicals.

We always like making new friends – and spoiling them! Like us on Facebook to hear about more fab competitions, giveaways and tips.

Top Reasons to Green Your Cleaning Routine

The Case for Green Cleaning Products

If you are serious about having a clean, healthy home; be sure that you are not covering your home in “dirty” cleaning ingredients. It really is time for us to consider why our cleaning cupboard is often the most toxic and dangerous area of our home.

Most non-organic cleaning products contain chemicals associated with eye, skin, or respiratory irritation, or other human health issues. Additionally, the concentrated forms of some commercial cleaning products are classified as hazardous, creating potential handling, storage, and disposal issues for users. This is not even to touch on the environmental damage of cleaning products.

Our drains are not these magic holes that toxic ingredients disappear down – they come back to haunt us in our water and our soils in which we grow our food. On the plus side, the affordability, efficacy and choice of organic cleaning products is attractive. I do beg the question – given how expensive and life-draining poor health is; and how precious our natural eco-system is; why would one not give natural cleaning products a chance? In homes with younger children or animals that have more sensitive systems, it is particularly a no-brainer.

Do think about it please. The fact that those who use organic cleaning products maintain that they could never revert back to toxic alternatives speaks volumes.


Top Reasons to Green Your Cleaning Routine

Here are a few great reasons to switch to green cleaning products – if you haven’t been convinced already!

1. Every time you use a cleaning product, the ingredients in that product end up going into our natural environment (sprays and aerosols into the air, and detergents, soaps etc into the waterways). That means our precious plants and wildlife are feeling the negative effects of nasties like ammonia, petrochemicals and VOCs (volatile organic compounds). By making a small change, you can play a big role in reducing the toxic emissions into our environment.

2. Many conventional cleaning products are highly specialised, meaning they’re formulated for one specific purpose (toilet cleaner, tile cleaner, window cleaner etc). However because they are toxin-free and so gentle, many natural and organic cleaning products can be used as multi-purpose cleaning agents in several areas of your home – saving you a great deal of money in the long run. Imagine being able to replace 6 or 7 nasty chemical cleaners with one multi-purpose natural detergent!

3. You might be surprised to know that in the past 70 years, around 85 000 new chemicals have been introduced to the mainstream market; and many of them are not approved by the SPA (Environmental Protection Agency). That means there is a large amount of unregulated and possibly harmful chemicals present in your innocent-looking household cleaning products.

4. By following a green cleaning routine, you’ll also be dramatically reducing your family’s exposure to harsh toxic chemicals. This means a safer, healthier environment for you and your loved ones – and really, isn’t that what cleaning your home is all about?

Our Top Ten Green Cleaning Picks

Find out what our Faithful greenies have to say about some of our best-selling cleaning products.


Pure Simple Castile Liquid Cleaner

castile-soap

“I have used other earth friendly laundry soap etc before. This is one the best I have used so far. I also have these white uniforms that are very expensive and they get dull after a few washes. With this soap I am impressed with how much cleaner they look and even brighter!” – Susan

“I wash ALL my laundry with Pure Simple, after a long and difficult battle to find a product compatible with my chronic allergy to perfume.” – Karen

“Awesome product! I make my own doggie shampoo and all purpose cleaner using this liquid soap and its the best ever. Cost effective and safe enough for my dog who now has the whitest coat ever.” – Bronwin


Triple Orange Bio-Detergent

bio-detergent

“We use triple orange for almost everything in our household – from washing dishes, laundry, spot and stain removal (just rub directly onto the stain and leave a few minutes), to washing floors, counters, etc. I also like the feeling one has on ones hands after washing dishes as it is nowhere near as harsh as ordinary dishwashing soap.” – Joanne

“The Bio-det Orange laundry liquid works a dream, especially with our gym/ running clothes which can pose a smelly challenge!” – Romy

“I use this product to handwash all my underclothes. It does not leave an irritating powder residue if not rinsed thoroughly – a plus for those with skin allergies – and it has the most amazing scent which remains in your clean laundry. It also goes a long way.” – Anita


Earthsap Concentrated All Purpose Cleaner

earthsap-all-purpose

“I am very sensitive to the smells of chemicals in generic cleaning supplies, so I was so thankful to find this website and gain access to natural products. I have been very impressed with the Earthsap products that I have tried so far. I have been using the Dishwashing Liquid every day for several months now, as well as the All Purpose Cleaner. Both work just as well as the generic brands, without all the harsh chemicals.” – Christin

“On the first day of using this product, was the day my cleaning lady came in (she comes in once a week). She somehow got this product and my laundry liquid mixed up, and washed our laundry with this! I can safely say that this product is so awesome, it even cleaned our clothes, leaving them smelling great and soft 🙂 very gentle cleaning product!” – Anja

“Wow, wow, wow is all I can say. I have never liked handyandy or any other chemical multi purpose cleaner. This product blew me right off my feet. It is so strong and smells so good!!!! Thank you!” – Tanja


Londa Bio Bleach

bio-bleach

“I love this product and am so glad that you guys now stock the 5kg bag because I use it for all aspects of household cleaning and was flying through the smaller bags. I am so glad to find an environmental and animal friendly alternative to Vanish and it works just as well, if not better, for stain removal and keeping my whites and colours bright and stain free and the fact that its septic tank friendly is one huge added bonus! Love it!!!” – Sue

“I have a problem with curry stains on clothes, kitchen surfaces and dish cloths. Nothing gets these out as well and as completely as bio bleach. My husband gets stains on his work shirts regularly and if the base colour wasn’t white I was stumped. Yay……for this wonderful product. Thank you so much faithful to nature for sending me the sample. Will definitely be ordering some in the future.” – Trish

“We had a glass of red wine drop on our tiles recently which stained the grouting purple! I made a paste left it overnight it completely absorbed the stain, unbelievable! I swept it up afterwards as it was dried out again re-used it in the shower. Amazing stuff.” – Debbie


Greenman Toilet & Bathroom Gel Cleaner

greenman-toilet-cleaner

“Great value for a super product. The lavender smell is extremely subtle, it does not over-foam, rinses easily and cleans well. Super for everyday cleaning.” – Eloise


Better Earth Dishwasher Gel

better-earth-dishwasher-gel

“Love it. It’s very economical, as it lasts for ages. The smell is lovely and it cleans just as well as anything else I have used.” – Harriet

“Just fab! We were very sceptical but we put it through the lasagne dish test and it passed with flying colours!” – Sylvia


Bloublommetjies Soapwort Laundry Liquid

bloublom-soapwort-fabric-softener

“The Bloublommetjies laundry liquid and fabric softener are some of my favourite products to purchase from you guys. As effective as any commercial laundry detergent while also extremely cost effective lasting our household of 4 over a month.” – Imraan

“This product works so well, clothes are soft and non-static. I also like that the fragrance doesn’t overpower.” – Ingrid


Mother Nature Netted Stain Stick

netted-stain-stick

“The best stain remover I have found to date! Tried everything else, and this one comes out tops every time. Very effective and so easy to use. LOVE it.” – Santie

4 Essential Oils You Need for your Clean Green Home

You put so much effort into keeping your family’s home space clean, safe and hygienic – but how “clean” are your household cleaning products really? When you think about the loads of harsh chemicals that go into most commercial detergents, we’re sure you’ll agree that the only real “clean way to clean” is with pure natural alternatives! And the best news is, natural cleaning needn’t be expensive or fussy; it can be as simple as opening up your medicine cabinet and choosing your favourite essential oils.

These little beauties aren’t just sweet-smelling – they’re also loaded with highly concentrated antibacterial, antifungal and antiseptic powers that would put any commercial cleaner to shame! A few drops of essential oils go a long way, and one oil can do the job of several ordinary cleaners – so not only are they healthy and safe, they’re also highly economical.

There are so many wonderful, delicious-smelling essential oils available to help you clean your space the natural way; we struggled to choose our four favourites, but here they are: Continue reading “4 Essential Oils You Need for your Clean Green Home”