14 Swaps That Are Simple, Safe & Sustainable
The last few months, I’ve been on a mission to rid my house of chemicals, especially ones found in cleaning supplies and beauty products. With a growing family, I find it more important than ever to create a safe home, but I don’t want to overcomplicate it. Instead, I’m actually reducing the number of cleaning and personal care products I use and simplifying my routines.
So while I’m sharing some of the swaps I’ve already made, there are still a lot I have to do. Hopefully something you read today will be an easy swap you can also make right now, because if you’re anything like me… you know that the products you’re bringing into your home aren’t safe and you want to make all the changes right away. But that’s not realistic for most people! (Time? Budget? Discerning the truth? There’s so many factors.) Let’s set ourselves up for success and choose one or two things that can be done today, and then slowly chip away at the rest.
You may be surprised (like I was!) that a lot of the safer products are actually less expensive than the ones full of chemicals. Isn’t that crazy? We’re paying so much to bring yucky things in! Click any picture for a direct link to a product I’m using or a recipe I’ve made.
Without further ado, here are my current swaps:
In The Kitchen…
My Honest Review: I love the aesthetic. It feels really good in my hands, and the wooden handle protects my already over-dry hands from being soaked while doing dishes. My only complaint is some items, such a wine glasses, are more difficult to clean because the brush isn’t flexible like a sponge. I’m hoping over time, it loosen up and I’ll come to love it even more.
My Honest Review: My best swap thus far! Easy to make, minimal ingredients, and it actually smells good! I don’t miss my Mrs. Meyers spray at all, as I feel like this replacement does the exact same thing but better. It doesn’t leave a residue and it’s safe, so I feel happy each time I use it.
My Honest Review: How did it take me so long to learn this? I’ve never found a solution that cleans the sink as good as this. It’s basically just baking soda + Dr. Bronner’s castile soap, and the result is incredible. It even got rust off that my magic eraser never could.
My Honest Review: I’ve been using this for over a year, and it’s absolutely worth the extra few quarters. Glassware is always spot-free and completely cleaned, and I’ve been impressed with this product.
In The Bathroom…
My Honest Review: I’ve always struggled to find an effective deodorant. This is literally the first ever that I consider effective, so that in itself makes the extra expense worth it. Highly recommend! My husband uses this brand, too. Tip-I’ve found it’s cheaper at my local Kroger grocery store than Amazon, but I included the Amazon link in case you can’t find it at your grocer.
My Honest Review: This is a great temporary solution, but I’ve had a few more breakouts than usual. The Botanics cleansing wash I had been using is actually fairly clean, but it does have fragrance. Fragrance=chemicals. I’m still on the hunt for a long-term solution for face wash that isn’t extremely expensive, but until then I’m satisfied with my Norwex cloth. I’m also currently testing out Beautycounter’s regimine, and I do really like it but it’s a bit pricey. I’ll update you once I find a permanent solution!
My Honest Review: I can finally paint my nails while pregnant! (I’m over here doing a happy dance!) I love Olive & June’s simple color line. They seem to have just the on-trend colors, and as a person who struggles with decision fatigue I really appreciate this. My only complaint is that they are only a 7 Free company, and I’d love to find a great nail polish that’s 10 free or even 12 free. (7 free refers to it being free of the 7 most harmful chemicals.) Also, I find it necessary to paint 3 coats which means some of them peel quicker than usual, and that’s a bummer. The color is gorgeous and I feel safer using it, so I’ll continue supporting them unless I find a 10 free or 12 free polish.
My Honest Review: This is a splurge. It’s really expensive and while I don’t feel great about that, I’m interested in using it through an entire bottle to see how long it last me. It seems like it works with such a tiny amount, that I’m hoping it will last much longer than the acetone nail polish remover. It’s soy based and does take a little getting used to, as it doesn’t dry on contact like the acetone remover. But! It also seems hydrating to my cuticles, whereas the acetone really dries them out.
In The Nursery…
Disclaimer: I had started to do this research before our baby was born, so most of the nursery items started out as chemical-free. I may do a separate post on that in the future, but I wanted to explain why there isn’t much in this section. :)
My Honest Review: We tried a lot of different wipes and these were my favorite, hands down! Even if they weren’t chemical-free, I found that they were absorbent while still being wet enough to clean up the mess, they aren’t too stretchy or too stiff, and they just feel good in my hands. Highly recommend!
In The Laundry Room…
My Honest Review: We’ve only used it for a week, but I am so impressed. Before Molly’s Suds, I had tried Seventh Generation and one other, “all natural” detergent, but I could never get the spit-up smell out of my baby’s clothes. (That is the WORST!!) My clothes actually smell good, and I’d consider this as effective as other detergents I’ve used in the past. I’ll update my review if something changes over the next few weeks.
My Honest Review: These haven’t actually arrived in the mail yet. Ha! I haven’t used dryer sheets for two years, but my hubby still does, and I asked him to switch to dryer balls. They will be here in a few days, and I’ll start using them, too. I can hardly wait for my clothes to come out of the dryer without crazy static! These were personally recommended to me by two friends, who I know and love and trust, so I am sure I’ll love them.
In The Whole House…
My Honest Review: I LOVE this hand soap! If it weren’t for the price, this would be my absolute go-to. However, I think the price is a little steep so I’m currently researching and trying new recipes to make my own hand soap. I’ll report back when I have a more economical solution, but this is what I’m using in the meantime and it is great.
My Honest Review: I wish I would’ve thought of this sooner! Instead of using the Swiffer spray that is delightfully good-smelling but also full of chemicals, I just spray the DIY all-purpose cleaner on a section of the floor and use the Swiffer mop to mop it up. Once I run out of disposable mop heads, I’ll invest in a microfibre reusable one. It’s simple and I love that this spray can be used for so many purposes!
My Honest Review: For outside windows, YES! I have really high windows, so I love the attachment piece that allows me to get to the top. It sometimes leave streaks, so I’ve had to redo more than one window. However, I will never wash outdoor windows again without this! For indoor, I like using it for the bigger windows and doors, but for mirrors or small windows, I have found two microfiber clothes (one dry, one wet) with water do just fine.
If you decide to make a swap, would you comment below and let me know which one? And give yourself grace-we’re all doing the best we can with what we know. Change doesn’t always happen overnight!