• Top 10 Best Eco-Friendly All-Purpose Cleaners to Buy Online 2019 1
  • Top 10 Best Eco-Friendly All-Purpose Cleaners to Buy Online 2019 2
  • Top 10 Best Eco-Friendly All-Purpose Cleaners to Buy Online 2019 3
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Top 10 Best Eco-Friendly All-Purpose Cleaners to Buy Online 2019

We’ve long been fed this idea that cleaning our homes has to be an almost dangerous endeavor, that toxic chemicals are necessary to kill all the nasties that could be lurking around. But that’s simply not true, and toxic cleaners aren’t just bad for bacteria, they’re harmful to us and the environment, too.

Luckily, there is an increasing number of eco-friendly, non-toxic cleaners that get the job done just as well. But if you’re new to the world of eco-friendly cleaners, it can be hard to know where to start. In this guide, we’ll talk about the main factors to consider when choosing the best cleaner for you. At the end, we’ve also got a list of our 10 favorites to help you begin your search.
  • Last updated: 10-24-2019
  • 123 views
Table of Contents

How to Choose an Eco-Friendly All-Purpose Cleaner

Since all-purpose cleaners could literally touch every surface of your home, it’s important to consider both the makeup of the cleaner as well as your own situation.

Labeling: Make Sure It’s Transparent About Ingredients and Cleanable Surfaces

One of the worst things about cleaning products is that they are not required to disclose ingredients, so we really have no way of knowing what’s in them. If a cleaner has ingredients on the bottle, you already know that it’s head and shoulders above the rest.

For the Most Natural Cleaners, Look for Familiar Ingredients

For the Most Natural Cleaners, Look for Familiar Ingredients
Surprise, surprise! You don’t actually need dangerous chemicals to clean things effectively. In fact, some of the best cleaners include ingredients that you might be able to buy yourself. Some ingredients that you might find are baking soda, vinegar, essential oils, and good old-fashioned soap.
Just be aware that vinegar and some essential oils may be unsuitable for certain surfaces, so always check to see the usage instructions before you get to cleaning your whole house. This is especially important for those looking to clean easily damageable surfaces like leather and unfinished wood.

Avoid Harsh Chemicals and Artificial Fragrances and Dyes

Avoid Harsh Chemicals and Artificial Fragrances and Dyes
It’s hard to say “avoid chemicals” since even the cleanest, greenest cleaners will likely have a few chemical-y or scientific-sounding ingredients on their label, and it’s impossible to decipher every single one. Some commonly known chemicals to avoid include ammonia and bleach.
Luckily, by checking to see if the cleaner even has an ingredients list, you’re likely cutting out the worst chemicals for you (because guess what, the ones that are full of harmful chemicals don’t want you to know exactly what’s in them).
But there are still a couple of seemingly benign things to avoid including artificial fragrances and dyes. Artificial fragrances are full of phthalates, which are known hormone disruptors, as well as volatile organic compounds that can cause headaches and respiratory distress. Dyes, on the other hand, are simply added chemicals without added benefits.

Be Wary of Greenwashing: Look for Reputable Stamps and Certifications

Greenwashing is when a product claims to be more healthful than it really is in order to look more appealing. This happens all the time in food products, but did you know that it can also happen in cleaning products?

Official Seals Guarantee the Product Has Been Rigorously Tested

Official Seals Guarantee the Product Has Been Rigorously Tested
It’s kind of trendy to be eco-friendly right now–that may even be the reason you’re here. In response to that, a lot of products now claim to be “natural,” “green,” or “organic.” But unlike food items, there’s no regulatory system to define what these terms mean for cleaning products.
A lot of times, these “green” versions of chemical-laden products are simply the same formulation minus one or two ingredients. So in order to really figure out what’s good and what’s not, you’re going to have to look past the appealing organic-looking labels, no matter how enticing they may be.
An easy way to cut past the greenwashing is to look for reputable stamps and certifications. Some examples of stamps to look for are Green Seal, EcoLogo label, or EPA Safer Choice Label. All of these involve high standards and rigorous testing.

Environmental Working Group Ratings: A Simple Guide to Toxicity and Transparency

Environmental Working Group Ratings: A Simple Guide to Toxicity and Transparency
The Environmental Working Group is an environmental advocacy group that conducts research and oversight on agriculture, toxins, and corporate accountability. To get a quick, simple overview of how green a product is, look towards the EWG’s A-F rating system available on their website.
The EWG considers a number of factors when coming up with a product’s grade including ingredients, transparency, and government toxicity datasets.
While it isn’t perfect—not all products are rated, products can be penalized for listing general ingredients instead of specific ones, and these ratings are based on calculations rather than testing—it’s a decent measure of how “green” you can expect a product’s ingredients to be.

Don’t Choose Antibacterial Unless You’re Immunocompromised

Don’t Choose Antibacterial Unless You’re Immunocompromised
Many scientists think that the next big health crisis is going to be antibacterial-resistant bacteria due to our overuse of antibiotics and antibacterial cleaners. We’ve been tricked into thinking that bacteria equals dirty and dangerous, when in fact the majority of bacteria have no effect on us or are even helpful.
So on top of creating antibacterial-resistant strains of the bad bugs, using too many antibacterial products actually disrupts the good bacteria too. Unless someone in your household has a compromised immune system and requires a squeaky clean environment, you can put the antibacterials away and stop freaking out about germs.

Top 10 Best Eco-Friendly All-Purpose Cleaners to Buy Online

Now that you know what to look for in an eco-friendly all-purpose cleaner, here’s a list of our 10 favorites for you to consider.

10. CleanSmart Daily Surface Cleaner (2 Pack)

$12.99

CleansAny non-porous surface
Certifications
EWG Rating
AntibacterialYes

9. Puracy Natural All Purpose Cleaner (2 Pack)

$12.91

CleansAll surfaces
Certifications
EWG RatingA
AntibacterialNo

8. Greenerways Organic All-Purpose Cleaner

$10.00

CleansAll surfaces
CertificationsEcoCert, USDA Organic, Non-GMO Project
EWG Rating
AntibacterialYes

7. Method All Purpose Cleaner, Ginger Yuzu (8 Pack)

$31.60

CleansCounters, tile, stone, wood, glass
Certifications
EWG RatingB
AntibacterialNo

6. Better Life Natural All-Purpose Cleaner, Clary Sage & Citrus (2 Pack)

$11.06

CleansAll surfaces
Certifications
EWG RatingC
AntibacterialNo

5. Biokleen All Purpose Cleaner, Super Concentrated

$10.60

CleansMost surfaces
Certifications
EWG RatingA
AntibacterialNo

4. Aunt Fannie’s All Purpose Cleaning Vinegar

$8.49

CleansMost surfaces except stone and some woods
Certifications
EWG RatingA
AntibacterialNo

3. Earth Friendly Products ECOS All-Purpose Cleaner, Parsley Plus

$4.84

CleansAll surfaces
CertificationsEPA BfE, USDA Biopreferred
EWG RatingB
AntibacterialNo

2. Pure Cold Pressed Orange Oil Concentrate

$25.89

CleansAll surfaces
Certifications
EWG Rating
AntibacterialNo

1. Frosch Natural Baking Soda Multi-Surface All Purpose Cleaner Spray

$13.99

CleansMost surfaces except unsealed wood, waxed or oiled surfaces
CertificationsEcolabel
EWG Rating
AntibacterialNo

Are Eco-Friendly Cleaners Effective?

Are Eco-Friendly Cleaners Effective?
There’s this pervasive idea that although eco-friendly cleaners are better for us and the environment, they aren’t very great at cleaning.
While it may be true that some traditional cleaning products are super effective because they’re toxic (the chemicals in oven cleaners, for example, melt fat and protein AKA the stuff that humans are made of!), that doesn’t mean that eco-friendly options aren’t effective.
Many are just as effective as their toxic counterparts right off the bat. Those that are not may require more setting time or an extra layer of product, but they work in the end. And ultimately, isn’t it worth a little extra effort for a cleaner that isn’t going to harm you?

Summary

There you have it–a quick (not dirty) guide to finding the best eco-friendly cleaner for you. By switching out your cleaning supplies, you’re not only doing good for the Earth, but also for the health of you and your family. And considering all-purpose cleaners are used for so many things, that could be huge.
By Jacqueline Oshiro

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