These Are The Best Natural All-Purpose Cleaners At Whole Foods Market
As summer starts to wind down and we begin the crawl toward autumn, it's the perfect time to give our homes a little extra love. Trading in beach trips for cozy Sundays at home also means swapping that once-a-week light dusting with a more thorough cleaning routine. Believe it or not, recent research has found that indoor air is typically more polluted than outdoor air, and the pollutants inside (think: chemical VOCs from household products and a buildup of germy bacteria and fungi) are more likely to cause health issues than those found outdoors.
But no need to fear the fungus (sorry, had to): These days, there are a handful of naturally derived cleaners on the market that will clear your home of residue without leaving any harsh chemicals behind. And if your green cleaning arsenal is looking a little low, Whole Foods Market is a great place to stock up.
Why go to Whole Foods Market for your cleaning supplies?
Though the home cleaning market is notoriously lacking in transparency, Whole Foods Market maintains a running list of banned ingredients that you'll never see in the cleaners on its shelves. "Some common ingredients not allowed in household cleaning products on our shelves include phosphates, chlorine, synthetic colors, and formaldehyde-donors," explains Jody Villecco, global quality standards coordinator at Whole Foods Market.
To make it easier for consumers to distinguish the best of the best, the brand developed its own three-tier rating system, called an EcoScale. Green is the top tier, followed by orange and yellow. You should see a product's eco-scale clearly marked in a tag hanging from shelves.
"Beyond the quality standards, our buyers look out for naturally positioned cleaning products that are efficacious and go above and beyond to help our customers and the Earth, whether that's using sustainable packaging or introducing innovative ingredients," Villecco says.
Here are some of the greenest, cleanest products that have the Whole Foods Market seal of approval and are available online. Their ingredients have also been found to be safe according to the Environmental Working Group's database for chemical toxicity, as well as Know What's In Your Soap—a super user-friendly interface that aggregates EWG information (try it out the next time you're stumped on whether to add something to your cart!):
1. Seventh Generation Disinfecting Multi-Surface Cleaner, Lemongrass Citrus
This multi-surface cleaner features a simple list of ingredients that have few or no known or suspected hazards to health or the environment. However, people with sensitivity to essential oils might want to steer clear, because it does have a few of those, such as lemongrass and oregano.
Seventh Generation Disinfecting Multi-Surface Cleaner ($2.99)
2. Aunt Fannie's Cleaning Vinegars
Available in some Whole Foods Markets, as well as Target stores, Aunt Fannie's Cleaning Vinegars earn an A ranking from the EWG. They combine white distilled vinegar with essential oils for an all-purpose product that's almost simple enough to whip up in your own kitchen.
Aunt Fannie's Cleaning Vinegar ($7.99)
3. Dr. Bronner's Pure-Castile Liquid Soap
This OG of the green cleaning world combines safe, organic ingredients (some of which are fair trade, too) in a mixture that can be used in countless ways. Dr. Bronner's is also one of the first major brands to publicly embrace regenerative growing practices, which could be a big win for the environment.
Dr. Bronner's Pure-Castile Liquid Soap ($17.99)
4. Counter Culture Clean
Bonus! This one isn't available on the market yet, but Villecco told us it will be available in certain Whole Foods Markets once it is. This unique all-purpose cleaner will be formulated without chemical fragrances or colors, and each bottle will be packed with 13 probiotic cultures to keep beneficial bacteria right where it is. Yep, the probiotic revolution is coming home, and we're all about it.
Counter Culture Clean (coming soon!)
On a budget? Make your own cleaner instead!
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