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Replace Toxic Products: DIY Recipes for Cleaning Products & More

Easy DIY Recipes to Replace Toxic Products


This post contains affiliate links.

Our world is filled with toxins we can’t avoid. You can’t always choose what air to breathe or what water to drink.

You can, however, choose to replace toxic products you may use in your home or on your body!

Here’s a list of easy DIY recipes for cleaning products as well as other household items and personal products that can help you do that. Many (but not all) of the recipes use essential oils which are the aromatic compounds of plants. These compounds have many amazing, beneficial properties.

In some recipes, the essential oils are optional. Take glass cleaner, for example. The essential oil doesn’t necessarily strengthen the cleaning power of the solution. It will, however, enhance your cleaning experience! A lingering scent of lemon is more pleasant than the harsh smell of white vinegar.

For other recipes, the essential oils do make a difference in the effectiveness of the outcome. They may contribute disinfectant, anti-septic, deodorizing, healing or other properties.


If you’d like to learn more about the myriad properties and uses of essential oils, the Herbs & Essential Oils Super Bundle is a great place to start.


Learn how to safely use herbs and essential oils in your home and body care.


This is a HUGE list . . . don’t let it intimidate you! Pick one item you want to replace in your home. I do not. Let me repeat, I do NOT make all these things! Dusting Spray? Ha! You actually have to dust to use that stuff!

You don’t have to make them all either. Choose what is important to you and do-able for your lifestyle. If you enjoy the one item you replace, pick another one. Have fun!


DIY Recipes for Cleaning Products and Other Common Household Items


Cleaning Products


All Purpose Cleaner

DIY Non-Toxic Cleaning Spray

Non-Toxic Homemade Cleaning Spray {Joy In My Kitchen}

Shower Cleaner

DIY Daily Shower Cleaner  {The Prairie Homestead}

Tub Scrub

Homemade Soft Scrub Style Cleaner {Te Amo Too}

DIY Scum Buster Bar {The Prairie Homestead}

Dusting Spray

Homemade Dusting Spray and Wood Polish {Nourishing Joy} (The first recipe looks rather involved! Scroll down for a simpler version.)

Simple Homemade Furniture Polish {Wit and Whistle}

Glass Cleaner

  • 1 1/2 cups white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup distilled water
  • 8 drops citrus essential oil

Add to a 16 oz. spray bottle and shake well. Shake before each use.

Floor Cleaner

Homemade Wood Floor Cleaner {Well Fed Homestead}

Carpet Deodorizer

  • 1 cup baking soda
  • 10-20 drops essential oil, lemon, melaleuca, and Purify are nice, freshening options

Shake together in a glass jar and sprinkle over carpet. Allow to sit for at least an hour, then vacuum.

Mattress Refresher

  • 1 cup baking soda
  • 10-20 drops essential oil, lavender, eucalyptus, peppermint, clove and rosemary have repellant properties to discourage future dust mites!

Shake together in a glass jar and sprinkle over carpet. Allow to sit for at least an hour, then vacuum.


Laundry Products


Stain Removers

DIY Stain Remover

image used with permission from Strangers And Pilgrims On Earth

DIY Stain Remover Spray {Strangers and Pilgrims on Earth}

DIY Stain Remover Paste {Don’t Waste The Crumbs}

Laundry Detergents

DIY Natural Liquid Laundry Detergent Borax Free {I Get It From My Mamma} (The one I’ve been using seems to be missing right now . . . this is similar.)

Homemade Borax Free Laundry Soap Powder {Practically Functional}


Homemade Bleach Alternative {Don’t Waste The Crumbs}

Brighten Whites and Remove Stains Naturally {Organic Authority}

Fabric Softener

Homemade Fabric Softener {Well Fed Homestead}

Dryer Sheets

I’ve never been a dryer sheet user. If a load needs a little freshening, I place 1-3 drops of lavender, lemon or doTERRA Purify on a wet sock or rag and throw it in the dryer with the wet clothes.

Homemade Dryer Sheets {View From The Fridge}

Another DIY variation from Stephanie Fritz, The Essential Midwife:

Get plain sponges without the scrubby side. Cut them lengthwise into 3 pieces. Place sponges in a glass container and pour vinegar over the top to cover them. Add about 10 drops essential oils; lavender or doTERRA Citrus Bliss are nice options.

Gently squeeze the sponge to remove most, but not all of the vinegar, and toss it in the dryer. Use more than one per load if you want. Return sponges to container with essential oils and vinegar when dryer is finished.  Refill with vinegar and oils as needed.

Roll up a ball of aluminum foil or use homemade dryer balls made of wool yarn to cut static.

Felted Wood Dryer Balls {The Seasoned Homemaker} (unravel an old wool sweater to make these extra thrifty!)

Spray Starch

Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle’s Spray Starch {Strangers and Pilgrims on Earth}


Room Fresheners




image used with permission from Happy Money Saver

DIY Fragrance Spray for the Bathroom {Happy Money Saver}

Company coming and no time to make the bathroom smell like you just cleaned it? Place one or two drops of your favorite essential oil inside the toilet paper roll tube for a pleasant illusion!


5 Easy Room Spritzer Recipes {The Prairie Homestead}

5 Fabulous Essential Oil Diffuser Recipes {Fabulous Farmgirl}

Mood Boosting Essential Oil Blends for the Diffuser {The Prairie Homestead}

Linen Spray

  • 1 1/2 cups distilled water
  • 3 oz. (6 tablespoons) rubbing alcohol, vodka, or witch hazel
  • 30 drops favorite essential oil combination, lemon/lavender, vanilla/grapefruit, peppermint/orange, lavender/geranium . . . the possibilities are endless!

Combine in spray bottle. Spray in drawers, linen closet, on sheets when making bed or just before getting in bed.

Bedtime Spray (for children’s rooms)

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons witch hazel
  • 6-10 drops calming oils, lavender plus orange, geranium, lemon or cedarwood
  • water
  • 4 oz. spray bottle

Put witch hazel in spray bottle. Add essential oils and swirl to mix. Fill remainder of bottle with water. Shake before using.


Personal Products


Insect Repellent for Personal Use

DIY Homemade Bug Repellent Rub-On and Spray Options {Don’t Waste The Crumbs}

Homemade Essential Oil Bug Repellent {GNOWFGLINS}

Natural Tick Repellents That Worked { A Mama’s Story}

Insect Repellent for Plants

  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon bio-degradable dish detergent
  • 10 drops peppermint or cinnamon essential oil

Combine in spray bottle and apply to plants as needed. This has been wonderfully effective on aphids and other bugs that like to attack my roses and tomatoes. The kids like to use it on the hordes of ants that invade the house each spring. It kills them instantly!

Anti-Itch Gel

Homemade Anti-Itch Remedy {Joy In My Kitchen} Works on bug bites, poison ivy and sunburn.

After Sun Spray

DIY Sunburn Spray {The Prairie Homestead}

Wound Disinfectant

Healing Boo-Boo Cream {Live Simply}

Anti-Septic Ointment {Venison For Dinner}

Owie Spray – for when they want you to fix it but not TOUCH it!

  • 15 drops lavender
  • 15 drops melaleuca
  • squirt of aloe gel
  • water

Combine in 2 oz. spray bottle and shake well before using.

Keep It Simple: Just swipe the band-aid pad across the top of the lavender or melaleuca bottle before applying!

Hand Sanitizer

  • 4 oz. spray bottle
  • 1 tablespoon aloe vera gel
  • 20-30 drops essential oil, any combination of lemon, lime, melaleuca, lavender or a protective blend
  • water

Mix aloe and essential oils in spray bottle. Fill with water. Shake well before each use.

Hair Care

Herbal Hair Spray {The Peaceful Haven}

Apple Cider Vinegar Rinse {Reformation Acres} This post has a ton of information about natural hair care. The vinegar rinse recipe (which has completely replaced conditioner for me) is about halfway through.

DIY Hair Mousse {The Sweet Plantain}

Healing Salve

Gardener’s Hand Butter {The Prairie Homestead} Don’t let the name fool you! This cream is also wonderful on winter-chapped hands and rough feet. It has found success in clearing up excema and undetermined rashes.


DIY Anti-Fungal Blend {Home For The Win} I’d leave out the peppermint and not use a roller bottle.


Homemade Lavender Deodorant {Live Simply}


My recipe was once scribbled on a small piece of scrap paper . . . I think it fell off the fridge and was eaten by dust bunnies! I’ve made it for a while, so I eyeball it each time now. My favorite EO combination is mostly peppermint with a touch of orange. Here are some options to get you started . . .

Homemade “Earthpaste” {Don’t Waste The Crumbs}

Coconut Oil Toothpaste {Our Small Hours}

Remineralizing & Whitening Toothpaste {Weed ‘Em And Reap} That’s one of my favorite blog names!

Bath Products

Calming & Detoxing Bath Salts {Recipes To Nourish} Use your favorite essential oil combinations. Peppermint/Eucalyptus is nice for sore muscles or congestion.

Every Day Shea Bubble Bath I’ve tried a couple bubble bath recipes with no success! The kids really like this one ’cause it makes a TON of bubbles, and a little goes a long way.


So many more could be included . . . but, I think that about covers the basics. And then some! ENJOY! 🙂


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Are you trying to reduce your toxic load? Tell me your favorite DIY product to make at home. (Or which one you’ll start with!)


DIY Recipes to Replace Toxic Products


Shared At: Thriving ThursdayFoodieFriDIYCoffee and Conversation, Women With Intention, Fellowship Friday, Saturday Soiree, Nourishing Joy, Art of Homemaking Monday, Good Tips Tuesday and Tuesday Talk.


  1. wow, this is a great list! Pinned to my DIY Cleaners board! Shared on G+ too!

  2. Brittany at EquippingGodlyWomen.com says:

    Oh my goodness! Impressive list! Already pinned for later! I need to start making more of my own cleaning products but I never seem to get around to it.

    • I pulled the list together for a class, so this was a good place to collect them! Hope you find some useful ones when you get around to it. 🙂

  3. This looks like a great list!! I will be pinning so I can check them out further later. I make homemade cleaners, but do not have much experience with essential oils. I have only used tea tree oil so far, but have considered adding in more.

    Thanks for linking up at Tuesday Talk!

    • I need to look into some of them further soon too. I think I should try a homemade stain remover next. Appreciate your work in helpin host the link-up.

  4. This is a really great and thorough list of stuff! I love making my own cleaning solutions at home. As a chemist, I know how harmful many of the chemicals are in typical cleaning solutions. Plus, it is fun mixing up stuff at home! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  5. This is a great collection of recipes…. so many ways to help our families be healthier… thank you for putting so many of them all in one post. 🙂

  6. I would like to make some kind of all-purpose cleaner next. I’ll pin your list to have to look at!

  7. I am going to try a tick repellent first thing. When Mary visited, each night we walked in the fields and she came back with ticks on her.
    I’ll try more as we get fully moved in and settled here.

  8. Definitely pinning this as I am getting ready to do order my first essential oils and have been on the hunt for homemade cleaning recipes for a while. Thanks for the comprehensive list! #Coffeeandconversation

  9. Stopping by from Women with Intention! I love the floor cleaner!!! I can’t wait to try it! We have hardwood floors throughout our home and was unaware of a natural floor cleaner…yippee! Thanks for all of these wonderful resources

    • Hope you have great success with the floor cleaner, Tia. I like your blog name and the cute “mamas” in the logo. 🙂

  10. Super helpful! Thank you, Abi!

  11. Stephanie says:

    i do my own laundry detergent, but i use Borax, so im jw why not use borax? what am i missing here Abi?!

    • If you have a recipe you love, Stephanie, stick with it! Some people are concerned about Borax since it can be used as ant poison, maybe other things – that’s the one I remember. Obviously, you don’t ingest laundry detergent, so that doesn’t bother some. Others prefer to be more cautious, especially if they have young kids who may chew on their clothes or are concerned about possible absorption through the skin. Yes, it gets rinsed out, but . . .

  12. I use vinegar and baking soda for a lot of cleaning tasks. I would love to try making my own deodorant, if it will work well. I have had success with natural deodorants, though.

    • Deodorant is one I haven’t done, Keisha. I do have a natural one that I like, isn’t expensive and lasts a really long time.

  13. I am definitely trying to reduce toxins in our home. Toothpaste is next on my list so I will try one of your links. Thank you for sharing this wonderful round up and for including some of our posts. I also love doTERRA oils and appreciate the giveaway! 🙂


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