Homemade Mondays: Scented Vinegar Cleaning Spray

We use this to clean almost everything in our home. Vinegar contains about 5% acetic acid, which has antimicrobial properties and will disinfect nearly as well as bleach, but without the environmental and health concerns. If you would like to read more about that, and when bleach is appropriate to use, here’s an article that goes into much greater detail.

From a user standpoint, my vinegar spray and a microfiber cloth or old piece of flannel clean windows just as well as windex (not that the windows around here are always or even usually hand-print free; ahem). It can be sprayed thoroughly on a cloth and wrapped around faucets or laid over stuck-on food spots, to be wiped off easily later.

If you have some pretty basic supplies, making this cleaner only takes the time necessary to open and close bottles, pour, and shake. I really like when homemade things are easier, cheaper, and better than what you can buy at the store. This is one of those times.

Scented Vinegar Cleaning Spray

Ingredients and Supplies:

Distilled White Vinegar (this is the cheapest option, but other vinegars may work)

essential oils of your choice*

water to dilute, if using

old empty spray bottle, rinsed**

small funnel


Funnel essential oils into the bottle first (that way the vinegar will catch any drops that end up on the funnel by mistake). Use about 20-30 drops, depending on your preferences, the oils you chose, and the size of your bottle. Fill the bottle half-way or more with vinegar, then fill the rest of the way with water. For extra disinfecting power use straight vinegar and don’t add any water. Shake and use.

*there are many essential oils that do very well in cleaning applications. Lemon, sweet orange, tea tree, and lavender are popular and easily accessible. Eucalyptus, Thieves blend (or some mix of oils like rosemary, clove, cinnamon, etc.), peppermint, or other scents that you enjoy will also work nicely. Follow good sense guidelines for using essential oils, and be aware that some oils are not recommended to put on your skin undiluted as they are very concentrated (to make about 10-15 pounds of tea tree EO they start with approximately 1,000 pounds of raw materials; it makes sense to use oils as needed but sparingly for a number of reasons).

**the spray bottle pictured there is a fun drinking bottle from an afternoon out, the cap of which turned out to be the same thread size as the top of a bottle of some store bought cleaner I had sitting around from a long time ago. Now I feel fancy when I clean.


2 thoughts on “Homemade Mondays: Scented Vinegar Cleaning Spray

  1. I use vinegar too. I actually add orange or lemon peels to a bottle of store bought vinegar (forcing them through the neck)…filling it to the brim…then I let it sit on the counter for two weeks. i strain the vinegar and then follow your 1 part vinegar to 1 part water rule. Great solution of you don’t have essential oils handy.


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