Sustainable lifestyle

Peep inside the pantry

You can often find the most ecological detergents at home from your pantry.


One of the most effective ecological detergents is vinegar. It is sour and removes limescale deposits, which makes it perfect for cleaning the taps in the bathroom. You can make a great general detergent by mixing 1 part of spirit vinegar and 9 parts of water. You can use it as such to wipe surfaces.

Glasses and plates also become clear when rinsed with vinegar water, and a mild solution with 1 part of water and 2 parts of water can be used even as a rinse aid in the dishwasher. In laundry, vinegar can be used as a fabric softener: a splash of spirit vinegar in the washing machine’s fabric softener compartment helps the laundry keep its colour and stay soft.

Vinegar can also be used to clean the coffee maker. However, don’t use vinegar on aluminium, marble or enamel.

Another miraculous product is bicarbonate of soda. Dull sinks and pots and tea cups with stains that are hard to remove obey its power. Make them shiny by wiping them with bicarbonate of soda and a moist cloth. You can also give new life to a thermos when you fill it up with hot water, add 2 tablespoons of bicarbonate of soda and let it sit for a couple of hours. Then, give it a good rinse. You can make your silver tableware shiny again with bicarbonate of soda and warm water, and clean the oven with a paste made of equal parts of bicarbonate of soda, salt and hot water.

An old cleaning trick is to clean burnt pots and a cookers with a moistened sugar cube, and you can try to remove a fresh stain of red wine by sprinkling salt on it. Also, the combination of lemon and salt is effective: cut a lemon in half, sprinkle plenty of salt on it and scrub the sink clean. And did you know that soaking clothes in sour milk helps remove moldy stains in textiles used outside?

24.10.2019 (Modified 14.6.2021)

Text Paula Ristimäki

Images Roope Permanto

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