Mrs Everybody has now crossed the Final Frontier! Hurray! She and Mr Everybody, for that matter, can get their toilets super clean without chemical cleaners. It has taken us a few years to work it out, and the challenge was quite extreme in the end, but what a sense of relief now have been successful! (Excuse the awful puns!) Please read on and find out how.
What causes the build-up in toilet bowls?
As with any cleaning task it is important to understand the nature of this grime. Know your enemy! Concreted grey or brown stains in the lavatory ‘ceramic glazed earthenware toilet’ bowl are of lime scale or iron from the water or pipes. Blackish stains could be from the manganese in the water or decomposed rubber from seals. Blue or green stains can derive from copper in the water, the use of copper pipes or the use of chemicals in the toilet. In fact you can get stains in the toilet bowl of almost any hue. A lot depends on the nature of your water. Further, nastier deposits might come from back wash. I spare you the details of those and other sources of germy grime. Start bidding them farewell!
Conventional chemical toilet cleaners are of either strong acids or bases, which are risky to keep in the house and toxic for the water system. You never quite know what is in chemical cleaners as the manufacturers don’t have to list all of the ingredients on the label. Toilet blocks are also commonly used either in the bowl or in the water reservoir. I have a particular distrust for blue ones – high in chromium. Anyway I can’t use these, firstly because I don’t have chemicals in my home – it’s my house and my rule. Secondly, I am allergic to chemically cleaned toilets. They can produce violent coughing fits in me. Finally I would rather use something with a natural and traditional aroma which will biodegrade quickly and which is safe for septic tanks and filtration ponds.
What are our weapons of choice against deposits and staining in the lavatory bowl?
A Small Black Pumice This is crucial for tackling concreted lime scale deposits.
Hemp Oil Soap This can be modified and left to deep clean the toilet. It is also the basis of our daily cleaner.
Soapnuts These are secured in the cistern to help prevent the accumulation of deposits and stains… Ah ha!
How to remove limescale deposits naturally
Be very brave or put on your non-leaky gloves on. Use gloves if you have any cuts on the hands or splits on the skin or cuticles. Gently rub the stains with the pumice, keeping the pumice wet. Just rub gently, yes gently! You will see the lime scale deposits breaking down straight away. Instant gratification. Go gently. Use the angles of the pumice stone to reach into every crevice. It is better not to use any type of cleaner while using the pumice so that to see what you are doing in the clear water. Flush the toilet and continue if needed. Flush again at the end.
Wash your hands, wrist and lower arms and scrub your nails if you have been a bare skin cleaner or if you feel the need. Wash the pumice and scrub it with a nail brush and soap. We use either multipurpose hemp oil soap or rhassoul clay for washing our hands and scrubbing our nails. However you managed this task, you deserve a Bronze Medal.
How to remove other resistant deposits, stains and grime
Some stains penetrate into the porcelain – which is slightly porous. Make a mixture hemp oil soap and either vinegar or bicarbonate of soda. Keep the mixture thick enough so that you can place it directly over the stain. It is best to give your chosen mixture time to work. The timing depends on your levels of patience and any sense of impending urgency! Try the other hemp oil soap anti-stain mix if the first one doesn’t cut it. Most stains will give into to either one of these assaults. Now you have removed all of the deposits and stains you are ready to deep clean the toilet bowl. You have done very well. You deserve a Silver Medal.
How to deep clean the toilet bowl
First, make your super but natural cleaner
1. Squeeze the lemon. This will make a lovely refreshing drink with the addition of either cold or warm water and honey or sugar if you like. You don’t have to be suffering from a cold to drink lemon juice. I drink some most days as it helps to keep the body more alkaline, plus it is full of fresh vitamins. You could also use orange or grapefruit.
2. Place the halved citrus shells and the pips into a pan of about 2 litres of hot water and simmer the rinds and pips for a few minutes to dissolve the oils. Add a dollop of hemp oil soap in at the end so that it dissolves too. You can add other essential oils if you would like to introduce your favourite aromas or enhance the anti-microbial action.
3. Remove the rinds or citrus fruit shells from the mixture.
How to deep clean the toilet with traditional soap
Now pour this hot mixture directly onto the residual water in the toilet bowl. You are forcing the cold water out of the toilet bowl and replacing it with hot soapy-citrus, natural and fresh toilet cleaner. Use the toilet brush to bring the soapy mix up to the water jets and under the rim of the bowl. Put the lid down.
Leave it alone for 10 minutes, and then give it a scrub to maximize the cleaning action while the water is still hot. You can leave the soapy mix for longer if needed, or even over night. There is no time limit, well not until somebody needs to use that toilet again! Then scrub the toilet and flush it. If you want to use vinegar or bicarbonate of soda or even both, creating a foam, then this is effective too and they can be used with the soap mixture to good effect. Now you deserve a Gold Medal! But don’t rest on your laurels – There is more!
How to clean the seat, lid and the exterior of the loo
Wipe the both sides of the lid with either a damp cloth or some damp toilet paper with the addition of a splash of soapnut liquid or a tiny dab of hemp oil soap. Wipe the flush buttons or pull handle. Then do the same for the both sides of the loo seat. Make sure that no soapy residue remains on the seat or else it will feel a bit sticky. The same method can be used to wipe down the porcelain on the foot of the toilet and the exit pipe. If you are using a cloth, don’t use it for anything else now. Place it in the washing machine afterwards, washing it at least 60 degrees Celsius. Wash your hands again.
How to keep the bowl sparking clean with soapnuts
You can help the toilet to stay cleaner for longer by doing what Mr Everybody has been doing. We live in a very hard water area and so toilet deposits are hard to prevent. After my toilet had regained its old sparkle, Mr Everybody put his thinking cap on, ruminated for a while and ran up (and down) the stairs wielding an odd sock from his odd sock mountain. He then stuffed it with 4 soapnuts. If you are lucky enough to have soft water, 3 probably will do. He opened the toilet water reservoir and tied the sock to the outlet pipe so that the sock could not block anything, tangle around anything and so that the soapnuts couldn’t escape.
Now whenever I flush the toilet, the toilet refills with a soapnut soap solution, modifying the water so that it behaves more like soft water. We like that. This makes the accumulation of deposits slower and I am sure that we can keep the dreaded deposits at bay. Once the foaminess stops, I will replace the soapnuts. I guess if the toilet was flushed very frequently, then you could add more soapnuts to keep the foaminess, aka, water softness up to the required standards!
Also each time the toilet is used for number twos, we use the toilet brush and some thinned down hemp oil soap. To do this take some naturally concentrated Hemp Oil Soap out of the jar and add some hot water, just off the boil. Gently stir it and the soap will thin down. Put it in a washed out squeezy bottle, (devoid of chemicals) preferably one with a nozzle for aiming at the water jets and under the bowl rim. I have added some essential oils to my thinned soap – The bathroom always has a fresh aroma.
As we use our DIY self-modified cleaner each time the toilet is used for serious business with the toilet brush afterwards, the toilet has remained perfect. I don’t think that there is a Platinum Medal, but if there was one, I would award it to Mr Everybody for his innovation.
If you have managed to restore your toilet to a show house model, then you can join the victory parade and celebrate with the Olympians later this summer! If you look hard, you will see Mr Everybody there.
Hemp Oil Soap for Cleaning
PS. If I see an order for all 3 products, I will select the best piece of pumice which I can find for cleaning the toilet bowl. If you order is not so clear cut, then you can always send me a message with the order, send an email or give me a quick call to make sure that you have the best shaped pumice for the task.