Cleaning Toilets: Two New Products I like

With 2 little boys in my home, toilet cleaning is something I’m really interested in these days! 🙂

Tip: Vinegar neutralizes urine. Try it on toilets, carpet (don’t ask) with a water rinse.

The toilet was pretty dirty, so I started with my vinegar/water spray on the toilet, and wiped it down with a paper towel.

Next I sprayed with a new product from Seventh Generation: Bathroom Cleaner and wiped with a rag.

I found a great sale on Seventh Generation products (half off at Fred Meyer’s Founders Day Sale, plus used a coupon) so I picked up their bathroom cleaner to try out. It must be made with Thyme oil, as the strong smell suggests (thymol is a strong anti-bacterial oil, rivaling any chemical, yet is non-toxic). The spray comes out like a foam, which works well for wiping all over the outside of the toilet, around the seat, the floor, etc. It seemed to clean well, and I liked there being a nice scent at the end.

Last, I dumped about 1/4 cup of Washing Soda by Arm and Hammer (found it alongside the “regular” laundry detergents at the grocery store) into the bowl, and scrubbed with a rag. It seems to scrub just as well as baking soda, and the fresh scent is really great. Great deodorizer. It is all natural, but not edible, and should not be used in place of baking soda.

And now that the toilet is really clean again, we can consider painting a bullseye inside it!

How to get a Really Clean Bathroom (without asphyxiating yourself in the process)

Everyone knows how to clean a bathroom, right? Just grab your aerosol can of mega-disinfectant, spray everything in sight, wipe with a paper towel, swish the toilet with a brush, and shine the mirror with a fragranced blue liquid, and you’re done.

Perfectly clean. Or is it?

In addition to the sizable amount of grime left behind by this method, numerous toxic chemicals are left on the surfaces of your fixtures for hours or days. Not to mention all the dangerous vapors you had to inhale as you sprayed those products.

What if we cleaned our dishes this same way; some disinfectant spray and a paper towel for all the silverware and glasses after a party? Yuk, I’m not sticking that in my mouth. Although I never plan to put my mouth on my toilet, the same concept holds true: a soapy water wash is a cleaner clean.

It’s time for a new paradigm in bathroom clean.

A non-toxic clean:

  • Isn’t complicated, you’ll use items already in your kitchen
  • Can be much more affordable than using standard chemical products
  • Means you will remove the grime and odors, not cover them with disinfectants and fragrances

Read my post on Washing the Bathroom to get a blow-by-blow (albeit mundane) how-to on getting a really clean bathroom.

Washing the Bathroom

I admit. I was a skeptic when I read that vinegar and soda could really clean my bathroom. But after the learning curve, I’m convinced my bathroom is cleaner now than it was with those toxic chemicals.

What you will need:

  • 1 bucket
  • 1-2 clean dry rags, old washcloths work well
  • 1 spray bottle (don’t reuse a spray bottle that has had chemicals in it; some can react to non-toxic ingredients like vinegar to make deadly gases)
  • vinegar
  • water
  • baking soda
  • 1-2 paper towels
  • vacuum or broom
  • 3% hydrogen peroxide (optional)
  • essential oils fragrance spray (optional)

In the spray bottle, prepare a solution of 1 part vinegar to 3 parts water. Vinegar is an excellent cleanser of grime, and a mild disinfectant as well. If the odor annoys you (or brings back childhood memories of Easter-Egg dying), rest assured the smell will dissipate when the vinegar dries.

Step 1: Preclean Toilet

Step 2: Preclean Vanity

Step 3: Wash Vanity and Sink

Step 4: Mop Floor

Step 5: Wash Toilet

Step 6: Hydrogen Peroxide Spray

Step 7: Natural Fragrance

Step 8: Launder Rags

Step 9: Tub and Shower