I love the disinfectant wipes you can buy (Clorox Wipes, Lysol Wipes), but they are expensive and not environmentally friendly! So, when I am making my own baby wipes and house cleaners, I take the time to make my own disinfectant wipes. Now, they do not use bleach or anything chemical, I simply use a mixture of vinegar, water and essential oils, including tea tree oil which is said to have disinfecting properties. I figure I am paying 1/16 or less of the price of one of those tubes of Clorox wipes. They are great for quick wipes, just as you would use the store-bought wipes. Here's what to do...
Cut paper towel roll in 1/2 (width-wise) with a sharp, non-serrated knife. Carefully remove the cardboard from the middle using your fingers to break it away from the paper towels. Remove the outer 1/2 of the roll by using your fingers to break apart one of the paper towels at a perforation and carefully sliding the two parts apart. Now you have two rolls. Save the outer one and you can use it as napkins or on your paper towel holder.
Pour water and vinegar in the holder and add 10 drops of tea tree oil and 6 drops of lemon oil. Mix well.
Put the inner portion of paper towels in the holder. You may have to work it in. Make sure you can get ahold of the inner-most paper towel, the one you broke the cardboard away from. This will be the piece that you can thread through the top.
Let the paper towel soak up the mixture and then carefully feed the inner sheet through the top. They will continually feed through this way and will break off at the perforations.
Essential oils can seem expensive, but you are only using them several drops at a time, and the little bottle lasts forever. You are still saving money, and not using harsh chemicals in your home or adding to a landfill.
Every little bit we can do to save money and the environment means something!
By Carrie from Okemos, MI
Awesome idea! I use the products that you mentioned anyway, might as well fix myself up something that will help me save time as well as money! Thanks for sharing that "recipe" for the cleaning product.
It's a great idea for all-purpose cleaning; but the jury is still out on how effective vinegar is by itself as a disinfectant ( also,not figuring in the water dilution).
This would still be great for quick cleanups and cut down on the $ spent for disinfectants, though.
Tea tree oil is a wonderful anti-viral, anti-bacterial & anti-fungal essential oil. However, be sure that the ratio you use is at least 5% to prevent "super bacteria" just like antibacterial soaps have been doing. Also, although is can be used directly on the skin some people have shown irritation so check on skin first. And do not use tea tree oil if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. Keep your tea tree oil out of the reach of children & pets.
Use coffee filters. Saves a lot more and easy too.