DIY projects are a great way to utilize natural products in your home and cut down on your plastic use. Buying in bulk allows you to use less packaging and you might even be able to find the ingredients you need at a bulk grocery store where you can fill up your own reusable containers! These measures are important practices that contribute to a greener planet.
Making Cleaning Tablets
First, you will need to gather your ingredients:
- ¾ cup of baking soda
- ¼ cup of citric acid
- A spray bottle with water
- Essential oils, or fresh herbs, or citrus fruit for scent (optional)
After you have done that, gather your materials:
- A silicone mold
- A mixing spoon
- A mixing bowl
- Measuring cups
*Note: It is always a good idea to have a separate set of utensils, bowls, etc. that are used strictly for DIY projects.
Step 1: Mix dry ingredients (baking soda and citric acid) together until well combined.
Step 2: Grab an essential oil of your choosing and put in as many drops as you would like and mix until well combined. I used about 10 drops of lemon essential oil.
Step 3: Grab your spray bottle. You will need about 15 full sprays of water. It is important that you don’t activate the mixture too much during this step. I suggest spraying about 2 to 3 full sprays and then mixing. Continue doing that until you have sprayed 15 times. The mixture will start to bubble, but do not let it bubble to much before mixing the water in. The mixture should be moldable and keep its shape when pushed down with your finger.
Step 4: At this point, you can add in any complimenting herbs to the essential oil you have used. Just give them a rough chop to release their oils and toss them in. You can also add in the zest of any citrus fruit at this point if you’d like. I chopped up about 30 mint leaves.
Step 5: Spoon your mixture into your silicone mold a spoonful at a time. I suggest filling up about 3 tablet molds at a time so, so you don’t run out of the mixture, and then press down to compact. Add until it is about ¾ of the way full. Keep an eye on your tablets during the first 1-2 hours because they will start to puff up while they are still wet. Keep compacting them so they keep their form. After a couple of hours they will dry out a bit and form a crust which will prevent them from puffing up.
Step 6: Let them dry overnight. I was able to make 12 tablets one inch in diameter and 1/2 inch deep.
Gently remove the tablets from their molds. They should pop out of the mold easily and intact. Store in an airtight container.
In toilets – Drop 1 to 2 tablets in, wait 5 minutes, then scrub.
In sinks – Partially fill sink with water, drop 1 to 2 tablets in, wait 5 minutes, then scrub and drain.
In tubs – Partially fill tub with water, drop 5 to 7 tablets in, wait 5 minutes, then scrub and drain.
In garbage disposals – Run a thin stream of water, drop a tablet in, then run garbage disposal for 30 second. Turn off water and garbage disposal. After a few minutes, the tablet will full dissolve. Run a thin stream of water and garbage disposal again for another 30 seconds.
*Note: If you don’t have citric acid you can still create a same-day cleaner by using 1:2 parts baking soda to vinegar with the addition of essential oils, herbs, or citrus zest. Simply add baking soda into a bowl with any scent you would like and mix.
- For anything that already has water in it, like a toilet, quickly and carefully add the vinegar to the bowl of baking soda and pour quickly into the water. Let sit for a few minutes, then scrub.
- For anything that doesn’t already have water in it, like a tub or sink, evenly spread the baking soda mixture around and then pour the vinegar over the baking soda. Let sit for a few minutes, then scrub.