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Cleaning with Essential Oils: Six Oils to Enhance Your Routine


Cleaning with Essential Oils: Six Oils to Enhance Your Routine

Essential oils can do so much more than just create a pleasant aroma around the home. Many have antimicrobial properties, making them a great alternative for cleaning your house. From the kitchen to the bathroom to the laundry, essential oils can be great additions to your homemade cleaning products.

Traditional commercial cleaners can be full of harsh chemicals that you don’t want around your food or your skin. So utilizing the cleaning power of essential oils can be a great way to create and maintain a healthy, environmentally friendly household environment.

If you are wondering what essential oils to use as effective cleansers, you’re in luck! We’ve compiled a list of some great essential oils for non-toxic cleaning.


Thyme essential oil has been shown to be highly effective against a wide range of germs at a dilution of 1%. Many natural cleaners on the market use the power of thyme to make safe cleaners for surfaces where little hands frequently touch. It has a fresh, herbal fragrance that smells great and mixes well with peppermint, spearmint, and lemon


Lemongrass oil, with a fresh, lemony, tea-like fragrance, is a wonderful addition to any DIY project for your home. The constituents in lemongrass oil give it a powerful advantage against germs. Effective at a dilution of 1%.


With a fantastically light, clean scent, Lemon Essential Oil is a wonderful addition to any DIY cleaning recipes. When you use lemon essential oil for cleaning, its refreshing scent works as a nice pick-me-up while you clean. Lemon oil is a particularly good choice for cleaning the kitchen sink where odors tend to accumulate. It’s also great to add a few drops to your laundry for an extra-fresh citrus boost.

Sweet Orange

Sweet Orange has a fantastic smell that is uplifting and bright. It contains a naturally occurring solvent called limonene that is great for cutting through grease and grime. Its antiseptic properties make it a potent cleanser for use on cutting boards, countertops, bathrooms and any surface where you want a germ-free clean. Its citrusy fragrance makes a great choice for diffusing to give the air a clean and fresh feeling.

closeup woman cleaning sofa


This minty oil has powerful cleaning properties with a cooling fragrance that smells great in the bathroom or the kitchen. It is effective against a wide range of germs at a dilution of 1%, so it makes a great choice for cleaning up after meal preparation. Try combining it with thyme or rosemary in your homemade cleaning products.


Lavender is a favorite essential oil because of its versatility and relaxing aroma. Its name is actually derived from the Latin word lavare, which translates as “to wash.” It is a very nice addition to homemade laundry soap and blends well with many other popular oils. Try blending it with peppermint, tea tree, or lemon in your next DIY cleaning product mixture.

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How to Use Essential Oils for Cleaning

It’s very easy to use simple household ingredients to create safe and effective DIY cleaners. For the bathroom, mix together water and baking soda with a few drops of unscented castile soap to make a paste. Then add around 20 drops of essential oils and mix. The paste is a great alternative to traditional bleach-based cleansers used on toilets and tubs.

For the kitchen, add vinegar to a spray bottle of water along with some cleansing essential oils of your choice. The amount you use depends on how much fragrance you prefer, but even a few drops can boost the cleaning power of water and vinegar. Use the spray on counters, stovetops, the sink, floors or any surface you wipe. Be sure to use gloves and shake well as the essential oils won’t be fully dispersed.

How do these ingredients work? Vinegar contains acetic acid which has the power to kill bacteria. Baking soda is alkaline and is excellent at removing stains. Castile soap produces a natural lather that is non-toxic and can be used on any surface. Not only are these ingredients safe, but they have also been used for generations — and they work! Have fun mixing in your favorite essential oils to reap their aromatherapeutic benefits while you clean. Since cleaners typically have higher dilutions of essential oils, be sure to use gloves when cleaning to avoid getting any cleaners on your skin.