Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Every Last Drop

Ingredients for making cleaning fluid

As you know, if you use essential oils, you end up becoming addicted to them and you use up a LOT of oils! Of course you want to save the little bottles for sharing samples or mixing up your own oil blends or for splitting a large bottle so you can take a smaller one with you for travel... the uses are endless! If you're going to re-use a bottle you want to make sure every bit of scent has been removed and you also want to make sure you get every last bit of oil out of the bottle.

Essential oils are really strong, so even the residue coating the inside of a bottle can be useful. I make use of these two ways. First, I layer Epsom salts in a jar with empty oil bottles mixed in. The scent of the oils transfers quickly to the salt, so in about two weeks I have scented Epsom salts which I use as bath salts. Then after I take the bottles out of the salt they can be used again. The second time I submerge the bottles in either isopropyl alcohol or white vinegar and leave them in a closed jar for about three weeks. At the end of this time the oils' scents will have transferred to the liquid and the bottle labels will be loose and easy to remove as well. The alcohol or vinegar scents won't be as strong either. When the scent has transferred I pour the jar of liquid and oil bottles into an empty Young Living Thieves Cleaner bottle using a funnel to catch the bottles. Go slowly during this step. The resulting liquid, about 8 ounces or so, is my concentrate, NOT my finished cleaner.

This time I'm using vinegar as a base.

I prefer the vinegar cleaner, especially for my wood floors, but the rest of the family likes the alcohol. Which you use depends on your preference and also what surfaces you will clean. Alcohol is especially effective on porcelain sinks and tubs and chrome and anything else that has a shiny surface. Vinegar is great for hardwood floors and wooden tabletops but it tends to leave a dull residue on shiny surfaces like granite. After you pour the concentrate into your bottle then top it off with water. I use 8 ounces of concentrate in a 14.4 ounce bottle topped off with water, so not quite a 50/50 mixture of water and concentrate. Then I turn the bottle upside down and rightside up a few times to mix.

I re-use an empty bottle.
Smell the mixture when you've finished mixing it and decide if it has enough scent for you. If you want a stronger scent I recommend adding about 10 drops each (for this size bottle) Young Living Thieves and Lemon or Purification essential oils. I've read posts where people say if you use lemon oils you have to use a glass jar. While it is true citrus oils will degrade plastic I have not had trouble using Young Living's empty bottles, which are after all how they package their cleaner with lemon oil. Just be aware, however, some people prefer glass jars for storage.

My cleaner is a concentrate, just like Young Living's, even after it's mixed. I sometimes use it straight on really dirty surfaces but I usually dilute it quite a bit. If I am mopping the floor for instance, I will use only about a capful of concentrate in a 1/4 full bucket of water. I absolutely adore Young Living's cleaner, but let's face it, even with the wholesale discount from my Young Living Membership it's expensive, and I have all these oils to use to the last drop! So I buy theirs when I can and use mine the rest of the time. Since it seems like I'm always cleaning, I go through a lot of cleaner! As always, for more recipes and tips, make sure to "like" my Naturally Amanda Facebook page and keep reading the blog!

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