Dusting is one of those chores that’s very easily forgotten. Unfortunately, it’s not just necessary just for avoiding the ire of judgmental visitors. It’s actually an imperative for your health. Dust is a common allergen that can cause sneezing, itchy eyes, a runny, and can even trigger asthma symptoms. And the health risks don’t stop there.
You might think of dust as little more than dead skin cells and a few dust mites—a bad enough combination as it is. But a single piece of dust can also contain pieces of cockroaches, pet dander, and mold spores, which are not just gross, but common allergy triggers, too. And it gets worse. The truth is, dust is frequently also harboring toxic chemicals, like flame retardants and pthalates, which can cause developmental problems in babies and hormone disruptions. Clearly, this is not stuff you want to keep around.
However, it goes against common sense to clean away the allergens and toxic chemicals in your home by using products containing toxic chemicals and allergens. Unfortunately, many of the products most commonly used to wipe away dust contain both. Many common dusting products contain chemicals that have been linked to respiratory irritation, central nervous system depression, and cancer, among other health issues, according to the Environmental Working Group.
So, how should you tackle the dust around your house? In many cases, a microfiber cloth will get the dusting done just fine on its own. Sometimes, however, grease or actual dirt make it into the mix, and it’s time to call in the big guns. Fortunately, making your own home dusting spray is easy, affordable, and healthy, and it requires only a few simple ingredients to keep dust from settling around your home, mucking things up and making the air worse for everyone.
Water can be the base of your DIY home dusting spray. Start with one cup. To cut through grease, add ¼ cup of vinegar. To give wood a little shine and protection, add two tablespoons of olive oil (or any other liquid cooking oil, like canola or sunflower). And to make your house smell like it was just cleaned so that your hard work doesn’t go unnoticed, add 10-15 drops of essential oil.
Lemon essential oil is naturally antiseptic, antimicrobial, and antibacterial and has a classic clean scent. If that’s not your style, lavender oil has the same properties, plus a scent that is calming—just what you need after a long day of cleaning. Cedarwood, cinnamon, thyme, grapefruit, and sweet orange oil are also great options that will keep your surfaces clean without making your home smell like a candle store. If you have pet at home, however, be careful using citrus oil, which may be harmful to your feline friends, and dogs as well, if ingested in large quantities. Put all of the ingredients into a spray bottle (preferably one tinted amber to preserve the essential oils), and you’re ready to go.
Remember, this isn’t an exact science, so go with what smells good to you to make sure you keep up your dusting routine. Keep your bottle of dusting spray stored out of direct sunlight, and it should last you a long time. Better yet, considering this formula’s low cost, you don’t need to use it sparingly, either. For less than a dollar, you can make an all-natural dusting spray for your home that smells good and keeps you and your family safe on multiple fronts.
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