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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Mint-Eucalyptus Soft Scrub Trial

Ever since I wrote this post, I decided that since I posted so many "recipes" that I'd never tried, I would go through each one and blog about my review of the cleaner.

In all honesty, I have a toddler and a business and lead a very busy life, so please don't expect cleaning posts every week! haha. 

So, in spirit of trying out each of these recipes one by one, last week I gathered all of the supplies and made the mint-eucalyptus soft scrub cleaner listed in the post above.

In case you didn't read that post, or don't remember, here is what I posted about this cleaner:

Eucalyptus-Mint All Purpose Disinfecting Soft Soap for Kitchen and Bath:

Erica says,"This soap can be used for dishes, handwashing, floors, stoves, refrigerators, sinks, and hands. It's mild to the skin but effective enough to get cleaning jobs done. The eucalyptus and mint provide a disinfecting quality as well as a fresh scent; any areas washed with this soap will be undesirable to crawling insects and flies. They'll stay away for quite a while."

5 cups grated castile soap
1/2 cup baking soda
1 teaspoon borax
6 cups hot peppermint tea
1 tsp eucalyptus essential oil

Put grated soap into a 3-quart stainless steel saucepan and add hot mint tea. Simmer for fifteen minute on low heat. Add baking soda, borax, and eucalyptus oil. Store in a labeled plastic jug or squirt bottle. Shake before using.

 So, here's my story on this cleaner.  I bought all of the ingredients-which took me several days because I couldn't find castile soap anywhere! If you are as lost as I was, try looking with soaps!  I only bought 3 bars which turned out to be about 4.5 cups grated. Not bad.  Everything else was fairly easy to find, and I had most of it on-hand already.

The cleaner was fairly easy to make, and made my kitchen smell uh-mazing.  Eucalyptus and mint has always been a scent combination that I love so I knew I would love the smell.  The castile soap added it's own very clean scent to the mix and it was just lovely.

I have to start out by explaining that I honestly did not know what a soft scrub was!  The mixture seemed just as thin and water-y as my normal vinegar solution so I tried putting a small amount in a spray bottle and sprayed down all of my counter-tops. Well, I attempted to at least. I got about half way through spraying and the nozzle started clogging up and that's about when I realized my mistake.  I decided to just wipe down everything I'd already done and go from there.  This whole time I was using the solution as a normal spray solution, and realized once I was "done" that I did it totally wrong.  In case you are like me and didn't know, You have to use water with soft scrubs!!!  I had to go back over the entire kitchen rinsing off the counters, but -oh boy- was it shiny and good-smelling when I was done!

The thing that drew me most to this cleaner was the boast that ants and crawling insects do not like the smell and will stay away for awhile.  It's spring here in Northwest Washington and let's just say that ants are inevitable.  My desire to find a way to keep them out of my house without using poisons is a pretty strong desire so this cleaner really excited me.  Unfortunately, the ants I had just gotten rid of the previous week came back with a vengeance only hours after I finished cleaning. They have yet to go away.  Looks like I'll be breaking out the poison again.

Despite the ants and the misunderstanding about the uses of soft scrub, I do still like this soap.  Yesterday I tried it out again in the main bathroom and I think this will become our regular bathroom cleaner now. It was easy to use with running water right there, I felt that it got everything very clean, and -as I've mentioned before- the smell is just delicious.

Over-all, I would say this cleaner is definitely worth the effort.  It makes quite a bit, so really it is much cheaper than the cleaners you can buy in the store.  It also has multiple uses which is great. Have I mentioned the smell? 

Have you tried this cleaner yet? What were your experiences with it?

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