Tips for a Greener Lifestyle: Offbeat Household Product Replacements!!

Real Estate Agent with Papillon Real Estate, LLC


Today I woke up to the lovely sight of my cat 'missing' his litter box (did he do this because I bought a different cat food??) whatever the reason I had a nice mess to clean up at 7am...first I grab the 401, then the floor polish, then the airfreshner..what alot of products for a little mess! So I decided to do a little research into household products..hmmm...maybe there was a way to live a greener lifestyle with these products??Here are some points I found:

* Their use may release toxic and hazardous vapors into the indoor air which may be unhealthy for our families.

*The purchase of potentially hazardous products creates a demand for toxic chemicals which contributes to environmental pollution due to the development, manufacture and transportation of these chemicals.

*When hazardous products are used, they are releasing chemicals into the ground and wastewater stream which may contaminate our groundwater and present a problem to wastewater treatment facilities.  Most often hazardous products are not disposed of properly and are landfilled or incinerated where they release their toxins to the environment.

*Household products include cleaners, fresheners, laundry products, drain cleaners, dishwashing detergents, carpet shampoos, polishes and pesticides.  Exposure to toxic household hazardous chemicals from ingestion, inhalation or skin contact can produce acute (immediate) or chronic (long term) health effects...GREAT!!! So, with all that cheery news, I started to look into some more natural alternatives and was atually pretty surprised at what I found!!!

An alternative to furniture polish is SPAM!!! Yep, SPAM! Joey Green has great alternatives for many household products, I actually watched a YouTube video of him using this and it worked great!!

MUSTARD..great for hotdogs and also.....a DECONGESTANT!! Yep, just rub it on your chest instead of the Vicks! Who would have thought you can live a greener lifestyle with the help of mustard??!!

Now VINEGAR (all I have is balsamic! Not sure if this would work!!) has alot of uses: mix it with BAKING SODA, pour down the drain, follow with boiling water and voila! Clear drain!  You can also clean glass and windows if you mix vinegar with water.

Now ladies, do you dye your hair?? Did you know that Whole Foods actually sell environmentally friendly HAIR DYES?? I know I didn't...I must admit though, if it means having to do my own hair, I think I will have to pass on that one for now!

Mommy's, if your child gets the head lice, don't grab the harsh chemicals...grab the MAYO!! Yep, smother your childs head in mayo or VASELINE put under a shower cap before bedtime and wash thoroughly the next day...if that seems a little weird for you, you can also brush hair with an all natural conditioner and comb through.

Are you a hair product fanatic?? Why not spike your hair with TOOTHPASTE? Again, I saw Joey Green doing this! If you want a more gel like appearance use JELLO!

For silky smooth legs, forget the Nair...use PEANUT BUTTER for shaving I actually tried this and recommend the smooth as oppose to crunchy variety!!!

So there you have it! I have a list of things to buy this weekend and actually I really liked the peanut butter shaving alternative, so that is my rather odd baby steps to a greener lifestyle, STEP 3!...the rest I have yet to try!!! Does anyone else have any wacky alternatives??


Comments (7)

Georgie Hunter R(S) 58089
Hawai'i Life Real Estate Brokers - Haiku, HI
Maui Real Estate sales and lifestyle info

I'm not so sure about rubbing my furniture with SPAM... but I know for sure that baking soda and vinegar can replace most of the so called cleaning products on the market.  As for that drain cleaner... you need to wait until all water is gone from the sink or tub, then pack a bunch of baking soda down the drain, add an equal amount of vinegar and let it bubble away.. add more vinegar as long as it keeps bubbling... then flush with boiling hot water, and use the plunger until the clog clears.  Much easier on the environment and your lungs than Drano.  Just use plain old white vinegar and save the balsamic for cooking.  : )

Use baking soda instead of Ajax and Comet - why would you want to smear toxic chemicals all over your kitchen counters where you prepare food?

Apr 29, 2008 01:53 PM
Shelly Montalvo
Papillon Real Estate, LLC - Coral Gables, FL
Georgina, I totally agree! We might as well spray comet on our plates before putting the food on! The spam thing actually looked like it worked really really well!! I found some of these ideas so offbeat I had to write this! Thanks for the tip about the drain cleaner, I have used Drano a few times and and the smell is so strong, it's awful!
Apr 29, 2008 02:12 PM
Sabrina Kelley
ERA Herman Group Real Estate - Woodland Park, CO
Woodland Park Colorado Mountain Homes and Land

If I used Spam to polish my furniture I am afraid the legs on my couch might be gnawed off before I returned from my listings appointments. The other suggestions to keep away from toxic chemicals are good. 

Clean at what price is what I ask.  

Apr 29, 2008 07:07 PM

I find it a little hard to believe that you can really use SPAM to polish furniture, I can't wait to try this one out. For some reason I have that old Monty Python skit running through my head right now (SPAM, SPAM, SPAM, SPAM, SPAMMMITY, SPAM), LOL.

Anyway, an article that you might find of interest along these lines can be located <a href=>here</a>. It will tell you about someother great alternative household cleaners. Let me know what you think please, and if you can think of any others let me know please.

Apr 30, 2008 02:30 AM
Tiffany Wilson
eReal Estate Corp - Redondo Beach, CA
SFR, First Time Home Buyers & Investors

I have used store-bought and homemade, natural cleaning products in the past.  They always work great.  Here are a few other ideas that your article made me think of:

  • funny thing - lice like CLEAN hair!  That's because it's hard for them to "stick around" when someone has greasy hair.  The mayo works because of the grease.  You can get nicer smelling results by just putting some veggie oil in your hair.  Even nicer, mix some peppermint, rosemary, and tea tree essential oils in the OIL (NOT directly in your hair).  Just 1-2 drops of each in maybe 1/8-1/4 cup of oil.
  • Vicks isn't bad - except that I think it is made with mineral oil (BAD!).  you can make your own "Vicks" by mixing essential oils of eucalyptus, peppermint, and rosemary (see a trend?) with vegetable oil.
  • I am pretty sure there is a natural oil out there that you can use for furniture polish, but I don't recall which one right now.  Possibly jojoba oil?  Skip the essential oils in this one though, as some essential oils can actually harm paints, varnishes, and even plastic.
Apr 30, 2008 05:02 AM
Shelly Montalvo
Papillon Real Estate, LLC - Coral Gables, FL

Sabrina - Yes, I am not sure I want to rub my furniture with Spam either, I wonder how on earth he discovered this? Maybe he was eating a Spam sandwich and just felt the urge to rub the coffee table with it?? Who knows...people are odd!!!

Lee - Thanks for the link, I will check that out for you have me thinking about Monty Python too!! (Spam, spam, eggs and spam??!!)...

Tiffany - I like your suggestions for the head lice alot more than the Mayo!! The Vicks suggestion sounds great! Does it work as well? I am also sure there are other alternatives for furniture polish also, I just thought the Spam thing was crazy! Especially when I saw how well it seemed to work!

I meant to include this in the Blog, but here you go everyone!!

Apr 30, 2008 05:59 AM
Monty Python is way cool.
May 01, 2008 02:35 AM