By now, we are all pretty familiar with the term “toxins”. For some, it may conjure up images of a chemical plant or the dirty exhaust coming out of a beat-up truck. But did you know that toxins may be lurking in our homes? Scary, right? But it doesn’t have to be! Something is only scary when we aren’t aware and/or don’t know what to do about it. Know better, do better is a saying I like to remind myself of. So, I am breaking it down into 7 simple steps to a toxin-free home.
These are basic steps that you can take today with minimal cost, time, or effort. Simple changes, made one at a time, lead to progress. And that’s what we’re after, right? Progress over perfection (another favorite saying of mine!). So, let’s get to it!
7 Simple Steps To A Toxin-Free Home
1. Leave Your Shoes At The Door
Our shoes can track in dangerous pollutants, such as lead, cadmium and pesticides that can be harmful to us. Just think about the fact that whatever we step on, we track back into our home.
Since our shoes are absolutely disgusting (hello, gum we stepped in at the mall), it’s best to clean them every once in a while! I also like to keep a pair of slippers that I reserve strictly for indoor use. This helps, particularly in the cold winter months, when are tempted to keep your shoes on!
2. Breathe Clean Air
Did you know that 75% of American homes use synthetic air fresheners (from candles to room sprays) that contain numerous amounts of chemical agents, all of which live under the umbrella term “fragrance”, and have been linked to cancer? This term fragrance includes over 3,000 toxic chemicals, of which companies don’t have to disclose under FDA’s Trade Secrets Non-Disclosure Agreement. And as recently as 2018, fragrance has been referred to as the “new second-hand smoke.” Pretty scary, right?
But there are safer ways to make your house smell fresh- change out the air vents, add some plants to your decor, and diffuse essential oils. All three of these are toxin-free, and will actually help support your body!
3. Switch to Non-Toxic Cleaning Products
Ditch the nasty chemical and petroleum-based cleaners in your home and use clean, eco-friendly products. You can even make your own cleaners using non-toxic ingredients, such as Dr Bronner’s Castille soap and water!
I use the Thieves Household Cleaner from Young Living, which is a non-toxic cleaner made from essential oils and glycerin. I use it on every surface in my home, from glass, to toilets, to granite countertops, and even clean my kids’ toys with it!
4. Beautify Naturally
Did you know that your skin is the largest organ in your body? And that it absorbs up to 60% of what you put on it? So, it’s important to know that what we’re putting on (and in) our bodies isn’t going to harm us in the log run. Much of the ingredients used in traditional beauty and personal care products contain hormone and endocrine disrupters, and some are known carcinogens! Opt for “cleaner” options. The EWG (Environmental Working Group) is a great resource for researching non-toxic products. As an alternative, you can even make your own clean skincare for a fraction of the price of high-end skincare.
5. Clean Your Fruits and Veggies
Remember that just because your produce is organic, doesn’t mean it’s free from germs, pinworms, and other nasty things. In fact, if it’s locally grown without pesticides, that’s all the more reason to wash!
One of my favorite ways to clean my fruit and veggies is to use a mixture of equal parts water with distilled white vinegar, and spray over my produce before running them under warm water.
6. Use Less Plastic
Plastic, even the kind that’s BPA-free, can leach toxins into your food and drinks, especially when heated. Switch to glass, whenever possible.
One economical way to do this is to save the glass jars that store things like jam or pickles, and reuse them for food and drink storage! For example, I drink water out of a large mason jar.
7. Use Wool Dryer Balls
I know they smell good, but dryer sheets are one of the most toxic things in the American home. They are made with chemicals and heavy fragrances that are bad for your body and for the environment. Wool dryer balls, on the other hand, are safe to use, chemical-free, and help de-lint your clothing! Still craving that fresh dryer-sheet smell? Put a couple drops of your favorite essential oil onto them, and there you have your very own non-toxic dryer sheet!
And there you have it! 7 simple steps to a toxin-free home that you can take today. I want to know- what things are you doing to clean up your home? Let me know in the comments below!
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