Behold: super classy pictures of vinegar on a toilet. My toilet, if you were curious. Well, my old toilet. I took these pictures before we moved but have just now decided to share them.
Ahh vinegar. That's right, we're friends now. We weren't always friends... And to tell you why, I must go back to middle school. Unfortunately. Once when I was of middle school age, I had a beloved aquarium. It was 29 gallons with plenty of lush green (plastic, ahem) plants and freshwater fishies. At one point, I had a tiger barb named Melvin. I can't remember any other names at the moment, but that's really beside the point. Arizona had incredibly hard water, and at one point I was really frustrated with all of the water deposits built up on my aquarium's glass. I was moaning and complaining to my mom about it when she suggested cleaning it with vinegar. I curled my lip in disgust and I'm pretty sure I physically spat at the idea. Gross, really? There's no way. But moms are always right, aren't they? Vinegar did the trick and took away all of the hard water deposits without killing any of my fish.
Thinking about it now, it seems to be a pretty good rule for cleaning. If it's safe enough for Melvin the fish, it's safe enough for me.
I read a great book recently called The Healthy Home by Dr. Myron Wentz and Dave Wentz. It has some silly dialogue (if you read it, you'll know what I'm talking about) but was really useful. And rather scary as well. There are so many toxic things in our home that we never stop to think about.
Take cleaning products for example. The book explains, "We use sterilizing products in the hope of avoiding a cold or flu, but those agents don't go away in just a few days. Solvents that break down organic matter will also break down the same sorts of molecules you find on your skin and your lungs. They need to be toxic in order to kill germs."
I'd rather not be using cleaning products that not only break down germs, but also my own body and my family's body. This article has more information if you're curious, and I also recommend reading The Healthy Home.
Which leads us to back to vinegar.
There's plenty of online resources and recipes for making your own non-toxic cleaning products. Me, I like easy. So, once I stopped buying toilet bowl cleaner I made the switch to vinegar. Did I whip up some cleaning recipe? Nope, I just dump some vinegar straight into the bowl. I use my toilet brush to wipe the vinegar up the sides of the bowl, let it sit for 5-10 min, and then scrub again and flush. Works like a charm.
I think the best part is that vinegar is dirt cheap! You can buy it be the buckets for a few dollars.
For even more awesomeness, check out this website called 1001 Uses for White Distilled Vinegar. A good friend, indeed!