There were two things that motivated us to stop using normal cleaning products. Firstly, there are so many toxins and chemicals in the products we buy that aren't great for you or the environment. Secondly, even the more natural and eco-friendly products come in plastic bottles. Some are recycable, but not all.
You might be lucky enough to live near to a waste free shop that has fill up stations for different cleaning liquids, but if not why not try out some of our simple home-made suggestions below.
Ecozone make a laundry egg that contains natural cleaning pellets and lasts for 720 washes (and you can get refills). It works well for most washes but sometimes I add some essential oils on a cleaning cloth and put it in with it to get some nice fragrance going! Every now and again I use some normal detergent (buying the kind that come in cardboard boxes) to give things like white bed sheets an extra clean.
Another alternative is to use soap nuts. I haven't used them yet, but friends have and say they're great!
Brushes and scourers
Why not replace your plastic brushes, sponges and scourers with some more eco-friendly alternatives. There are lots of options online for wooden dish brushes with natural bristles (find ones with replaceable heads), and eco sponges.
The ones we got on amazon came in thin plastic packaging, which was irritating. I'm keeping my eye out for some in local stores for the future!
Make your own multi-purpose spray
There are lots of different combinations of cleaning spray out there so play around to get what suits you. I use half water, half white vinegar and add some essential oils.
Add the rinds of lemons, limes and oranges to your vinegar and store for a few weeks before using...the citrus helps the cleaning and (more importantly?) lessens the smell of vinegar.
Buy concentrated liquid
If you're not up for making your own products from scratch you could always buy cleaning products that are in concentrate form and use it to regularly top-up your own spray bottles.
We're a fan of Dr Bronner. They make this concentrated cleaning liquid. A couple of tablespoons of this plus a litre of water and you're good to go!
A good microfibre cloth can make a big difference to your cleaning and they work well on all surfaces (in my experience).
They work well with just warm water, so you don't even need to use much cleaning product with them if you don't want to.
Ecozone make a great 2000 flush toilet cleaner that you put in the cistern. It's made from plastic but lasts so long it's better than buying other products regularly.
Ours keeps things clean but seemingly turns the toilet water blue in sporadic bursts...no idea why!
Biodegradable bin bags
Although we go through far less bin bags these days, it's another easy switch to make. Co-op sell biodegradable bin bags, but If You Care also do some as part of their range.