Cleaning the bathroom used to require one to open the windows and doors, lest we be strangled by the poisonous gasses emanating from the poisonous cleaners. But no more! No more suspicious cleaners with their mile-long ingredient list of unpronounceable words. No more $9.99 cleaners that can cut through steel – suspicious, eh? No more need to wear gas masks and rubber gloves, after all, if it burns your throat and skin in the time it takes to clean, what is it going to do as soon as your shower has filled with steam and you’re trapped in those noxious gases?

No – we’ve reached a time where we know there are ways to prevent clogs from occurring in the first place; we know that the most basic of cleaners are not only just as effective, but far less costly to our health, the environment’s health, as well as our pocketbooks.

With that in mind, here are The Budget Ecoist’s strategies for an easy, eco, inexpensive clean for the bathroom:

Prevention
Key to preventing toxic chemicals in the first place, preventative strategies are often the least expensive, smartest way to save cash and your drains. Using a hair catcher to cover your shower drain is a simple way to prevent hair from clogging your drains.

Another preventative measure that can go a long way is to wipe down the bathroom after using the shower. This will prevent water stains, mildew and calcium deposits.

Squeegeeing glass shower doors and walls after each use helps to remove soap scum and mineral deposits before they harden.

Open windows and/or doors when showering so that steam can escape, preventing mildew from building up. Another way to prevent mildew from building up is to have a good ventilation fan in the bathroom.

DIY Safe, Effective Cleaning Strategies
Inexpensive, safe “cleaners” include (among others) white vinegar, nonabrasive sponges, baking soda, water, tea tree oil, essential oils, and castile soap (we like Dr. Bronner’s.)

Baking soda scrub – Cleans grout, sinks, tubs. Mix 2 tablespoons baking soda with enough castile soap to create a foamy paste. Use a sponge to treat the affected areas. Leave on surface for up to fifteen minutes, then spray with vinegar and wash down with water.

Hard water clogged shower heads – Fill a sandwich bag with white vinegar and secure around the clogged shower head with a rubber band. Leave on overnight. After removing the bag, use an old toothbrush (old toothbrushes really come in handy for cleaning – don’t toss out!) to scrub the shower head and voila! Instant water pressure..

Glass cleaner – Mix equal parts white vinegar and water with a few drops of essential oil (we like lavender). Fill a spray bottle with the solution. Add as much essential oil as you require to mask the scent of vinegar. Spray and wipe down, leaving your bathroom mirrors and shower doors sparkling.

All-Purpose cleaner – Use on most surfaces including counters and walls. Fill a 16 ounce spray bottle with 2 teaspoons borax, 1/4 teaspoon castile soap, and hot water. Simply spray the solution on the surface, let sit for a few minutes, then wipe down with a sponge. For large surfaces such as floors, fill a bucket with a gallon of hot water, one teaspoon baking soda and two tablespoons of castile soap.

Mildew remover – Fill a 16 ounce spray bottle with 2 cups water, 1/4 teaspoon tea tree oil and 1/4 teaspoon lavender oil. Spray on the affected areas and leave it to dry. No need to wipe off.