Want to go plastic-free but unsure of how to clean your kitchen? Isn’t there plastic in everything? Anaita Sarkar, co-founder of Hero Packaging, shares her three quick plastic-free kitchen hacks to incorporate into your everyday life.
Two-ingredient multipurpose cleaning spray
Next time you need a cleaning spray, make this simple and effective one yourself. You can use a metal or glass spray bottle, or simply rinse and reuse an empty plastic one you already have.
Add 1 part vinegar to 3 parts water -this doesn’t have to be exact, but roughly this amount. You just want to dilute the vinegar. You’ll want to use plain white vinegar (super cheap and effective). If you want this to smell a little nicer, you can also add a few drops of essential oils like lavender, orange, clove or lemon. This isn’t essential though (pun intended)!
This cleaning spray is a super simple switch to make and works as a multipurpose cleaning spray. You can use this on your kitchen, on ceramic, wood, glass – just about anything!
Two-ingredient heavy duty cleaner
Hard dirt or grime? The DIY vinegar spray above is great, but if you have a tougher job like oven grime or bathroom mould, simply make a paste of vinegar and baking soda – cover your surface with this (doesn’t need to be super thick). Let sit for half an hour or so, before removing.
This simple switch will save you buying so many different bottles of heavy duty kitchen/oven/toilet/bathroom cleaner that are really just unnecessary.
For mould on ceilings, we recommend white vinegar with a little water (but keep it strong, no need to dilute a lot here!) mixed with a generous amount of clove oil. For flood prone or tropical climates, this recipe will save you!
Plastic-free garbage bags
If you’re using plastic bags in your regular garbage or compost bins, try swapping this out for newspaper. If your bin is huge, try using a smaller one and emptying it every day. We found that when we started composting our organic waste, our general waste reduced and never smelled terrible or had gross bin juice because there was no organic material in there breaking down.
If newspaper doesn’t quite work for you, try opting for compostable plastic bags over plastic ones, even for your general waste. You can also use these for dog poo and other cleanup tasks where you might have previously reached for a plastic bag. The compostable ones will break down much faster than their plastic equivalent, meaning that even in landfill they (and what’s inside) will likely break down much faster.
There are so many good DIY recipes and so much cleaning advice on the internet – if you’re trying to cut down on your plastic use and adopt more eco-friendly practices, jump on Pinterest and see what else is out there. The above are my used and loved recipes, but try your own combinations and see what works for you and your home!
-Anaita Sarkar is co-founder of Hero Packaging, an Australian founded home-compostable shipping packaging business committed to removing plastic from packaging and shipping in Australia and the world.