What does “Green Cleaning” mean?

Just like with interpretations of how to “go green”, green cleaning also has a variety of interpretations.

Basically though, the main goal of green cleaning is to choose cleaning solutions and cleaning methods that keep our environment healthy.  Some cleaning supplies are “green” because they use substances like baking soda, vinegar and lemon in their product.  Others are considered “green” because they avoid phosphates, chlorine, fragrances and artificial colors.  And others state that they are “biodegradable” (meaning they are capable of decomposing back into natural elements).

Products may also call them selves “green” because they use packaging that was recycled or they donate a portion of their profits to environmental causes (although that doesn’t make the product “green” in my opinion).

The goal is to avoid certain chemicals commonly found in conventional cleaning products that are known or suspected to cause problems for the people that use them and the environment once washed down the drain.  Volatile organic compounds, used to enhance the performance of a product, can impair neurological functions, while other chemicals can act as respiratory irritants, carcinogens or reproductive toxins, depending upon the extent of exposure.

Do “GREEN” products clean as well as non-green cleaning products?

You will get many opinions on the subject.  Most will agree however, that green products require more work, more “elbow grease”, to obtain the same level of cleanliness.

And yes, Green products are usually more expensive.


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