Safer Alternatives for Bathroom Cleaning
Weve got some simple solutions that are good for you (and gentle on the Earth).
Frustration: Warmer weather can turn your bathroom into a giant petri dish for allergy-aggravating mold.
Fix: Commercial mold and mildew products often contain bleachand come with a warning label about the hazards of inhaling the fumes. For a safer way to clean grout, combine 1 cup water and ½ cup 3-percent hydrogen peroxide solution (available at grocery stores) in a spray bottle. Spritz the grout, allowing it to dry without scrubbing or rinsing. To protect grout in the future, apply the low-toxic Safe-coat Grout Sealer ($12.90; 800-281-9785).
Bright idea: Concerns have grown in recent years about the safety of chemicals known as phthalates. Theyre used in some plastic shower curtains and can become airborne in a shower. Its impossible to know if a given curtain contains phthalatesbut you can switch to one thats cotton or canvas, with a separate nylon liner. We like Garnet Hills all-cotton zinnia shower curtain ($45; 800-622-6216).
Green tip: The Rainshowr Shower Filter converts chlorinated water (found in municipal systems) into water that wont dry out your skin and hair. Models vary but start at about $35; filter inserts, which last up to 9 months, cost $17.50 each (800-243-8775).
Remove a mold splotch on a tiled or painted wall by blow-drying it, then brushing it away with a paper towel