Simple & Sustainable Spring Cleaning Tips

With Spring just around the corner, we feel that there’s no better time than the present to start sprucing up our space. Not only does decluttering create a more mindful abode, but it can also contribute to your mental well-being. So, whether you like to clean room-by-room or tackle the entire house in one sweep, below are some simple and sustainable tips to get you through the season.

Use non-toxic cleaning products. Vinegar, water and baking soda can handle most daily cleaning needs. Use natural fiber sponges and cleaning agents that are biodegradable, phosphate-free, chlorine-free, and unscented.

One of our recent go-to’s has been making our own chemical-free cleaner. Not only is it all-natural, but it can also easily be customized with your favorite combination of scents. To make a standard all-purpose solution:

  • Mix 1-part vinegar to 1-part water in a glass spray bottle (plastic can occasionally react with essential oils, so it’s important to use a glass container)
  • Add 8-10 drops of your favorite essential oil
  • You can also add citrus peels to the above mix for extra cleaning power

Reduce paper use. Use rags instead of paper towels and wash them for reuse. Buy post-consumer recycled paper and recycle it when you’re done.

Repair instead of replace. Spring is wonderful time for a fresh start. But think twice before you throw out that perfectly good pair of shoes or piece of clothing from “last season.” The longer you use an item, the less virgin materials are needed to replace it.

Clear the Clutter by Categorizing

One of the most rewarding parts of cleaning is clearing out your closet. Start by separating all of your clothing into four categories:

  • donate
  • sell
  • throw-away
  • keep

Take your time when sorting and do your best to avoid creating a “maybe” or miscellaneous pile. Once you’re finished with clothing, move on to homewares.

Items that are still in good condition can be donated or gifted to a friend.

When it comes to donating, look locally for a no-contact option. Safely dropping off things you no longer use (but are still in good condition), will not only contribute to your community, but it will also help reduce your environmental impact.

Set Small Goals & Stick to Them

When it comes to cleaning, it’s best to commit. Setting small goals and sticking to them will make each task less overwhelming and motivate you to keep going. Start by making a list and cross things off along the way. If you live with others, cleaning can also be a fun group activity. Dedicate specific days and times to complete household chores with your roommates or family. Be diligent with daily projects and take comfort in knowing that almost no task will take as long as you think.

Master the Art of Organizing

Making sure that everything has a home will save you a lot of time in the long run. Spend a few minutes to walk around your home at the end of the day. Is there loose paper on the table? Are there dirty clothes in the living room? Assessing the state of your space is an easy indicator to your organizational needs. Here are some tips to help restore order: 

Laundry to Linens: Small baskets are a great way to keep household linens organized and looking fresh.

Pots to Pantry: If you find yourself needing a little bit of extra counter space, a wall-mounted shelf or rail is a stylish space saver. 

Magazines to Books: A small storage rack can lend a helping hand to stray publications, records, and books. 

Celebrate Successful Spring Cleaning

Once your checklist is complete, it’s important to celebrate a job well done! 

Learn more about EvCC Sustainability!

Mariya Zelenskyy – Media and Outreach Coordinator