Green Cleaning in the Kitchen with Hemp Oil Soap
Try Hemp Oil Soap for a rubber-glove-free cleaning experience and new cleaning adventures. Plant oil based soaps are the perfect complement to soapnuts. I do 99% of my household cleaning with either the Hemp Oil Soap or the Soapnuts. The soap is also described as Soft Soap – it comes in a thick gel-like consistency in a glass jar and this means that you can use the soap either neat or diluted.
This soap is left in their original fully concentrated form and you will soon realize just how little you need, sometimes just a tiny dab of soap will do the job. As an example, I cleaned every surface in my kitchen, except the ceiling, with about 20g of hemp oil soap.
The General Principles of Using Real Soap
Soap can be used neat or diluted in hot water.
Soap is more active in hot water.
Soap takes time to do its work. Half the time rubbing and scrubbing and protect the surface or textile by allowing the soap time to do its work.
Some surfaces require rinsing.
… Now for some tasks!
Cleaning in the Kitchen with Black Soap
Use Hemp Oil Soap, also know as Black Soap (though the soap is green) in its neat or diluted form for cleaning washable surfaces.
Hemp Oil Soap is ideal for walls which are painted in vinyl, emulsion paint or eggshell. Dilute the soap in hot water. Wipe the walls in a cloth wrung out in this hot soapy solution. Rinse the cloth frequently in the soapy water and carry on.
If was cleaning the wall to prepare it for painting, I would use a vinegar water rinse.
Use traditional soft soap to clean skirting board painted with gloss, or natural or waxed wood. Use Hemp Oil Soap in the same way as for walls.
Soft soap is the authentic soap for washing traditional flooring materials, parquet, tile, flag stone, linoleum / marmoleum, waxed wood, painted wood, waxed wood, bare wood, slate, marble, terrazzo, and modern materials, PVC.
If there is lots of dust, pet hair, plant matter, soil or other loose matter, gently sweep or hoover the floor first. To wash the floor, add a spoon of traditional soap to 1/2 a bucket of hot water. Use a mop, a floor cloth or whatever you normally use to wash the floor. Change the water if it appears dirty.
Use a dab of neat soap on very dirt areas and rub it with a cloth. Leave the soap on for longer for stained areas. If the floor is very dirty, pre-treat stains, or really grubby areas with the neat soap, or soap which has been diluted with a little water. Allow time for the soap to work.
For very dirty floors wash over the floor once, then take a second pass. If the soapy water gets very dirty, pour it away and make another soapy solution. Clean the bucket after use. Thankfully, with regular cleaning one pass is enough for most floors and most of the time there is no need to rinse, so you can put your feet up instead! Floors normally do not need rinsing!
Cupboard Doors, Knobs and Handles
Use a tiny dab of neat soap on a well wrung cloth or a sponge on stubborn finger prints and wash the surface with diluted hemp soap. Easy. Use the time you have saved to track down the grubby culprit.
Dealing with Slightly Burnt or Well Browned Steel Roasting Pans
The add some soap and hot water into the pan. Leave the soapy pan to stand while you are finishing the meal and enjoying your feast. When you are ready to clean the pan, pour some of the soapy liquid out and scrub with a scrubber. Rinse the pan under a stream of hot water. Done!
Badly Burnt Saucepans
Don’t despair, saucepans made of stainless steel, enamel or glass which are burnt can be rescued. Turn the heat OFF. Do not remove the saucepan lid. Allow the pot to cool. Once the pot is cool, scrape out the burnt matter. Then add 1 tsp of hemp oil soap to the neglected pan and some hot water, covering the burn area. Put a lid on it. Bring the water and soap in the pot to a simmer for 3-10 minutes. Watch the pot to make sure it does not suddenly boil over – saving yourself another job.
If you want to speed up the process, stir the soapy mixture in the burn pan over the heat with a wooden spoon, you will soon feel the the burnt matter lifting. Discard the hot soapy water. Now scour the pot gently with an appropriate scourer and a tiny dab more Hemp Oil Soap. Then wash the pot up. Repeat the process if needed. The simmering soapy water loosens the burn material and it slips off when the pot is scoured.
I would recommend only using saucepans and baking pans which contain no plastic components or teflon type coatings as they can poison the atmosphere as they are getting burnt or overheated. Also burning often ruins this type of cookware making it unsafe for further use.
The Extractor Fan
The extractor fan seems to be a magnet for dust and grease accumulation. Wipe the surface with a hot wrung cloth containing a dab of traditional soft soap, go all over the surface. Rinse the cloth as soon as it is loaded with grime. Go over the surface again with a little more soap wiping the sticky dirt away.
Alternatively make up half a bucket of diluted soap mixture, using this to wipe the fan hood, with a well wrung cloth, leave for a while and repeat. Polish the extractor fan with a dry cloth or chamois leather to remove any water marks.
Eco Washing Up
I mostly use my homemade soapnut decoction (the liquid reserved from boiled soapnuts) for my rubber-glove free washing up experiences! Soapnuts give the best finish on glass and plates. Everything comes out gleeming without the need to rinse.
Use use the Hemp Oil Soap for roasting pans, saucepans which are slightly or severely burnt, wooden items, cast iron pans and plastics.
Cleaning and Deodorizing the Wooden Chopping Board
If you don’t like your morning toast tasting of the previous evening’s garlic, then Hemp Oil Soap is going to be your best friend. Just rinse the board under warm water, rub a knob of Hemp Oil Soap over the board with a warm and damp sea sponge. Leave it on for a bit. Rinse with water using the sponge. Don’t forget to dry your clean and deodorized chopping board before the toast is ready!
Cleaning Cast Iron Pans
Have you just used your pan to cook kippers? And tomorrow you want eggs for breakfast? Don’t worry! Once the pan has cooled down enough, wash way the remaining oil, bits of kipper under a stream of hot water. Rub the adhering matter gently with your scourer, but don’t be too impatient as you have the hemp oil soap at your assistance. Now bring the hemp oil soap out to play. Rub a dollop over the surface of the cast iron pan and leave it on for a minute or so. Rubbing gently if you like. Rinse the pan and smell the surface. If you detect any trace of fish, repeat the process. Dry the pan and re-season it if needed.
The Washing Up Bowl
Left to its own devises the PVC washing up bowl accumulates disgraceful deposits of slime on its underside, deposits along its moldings and soapy scum in its scratched interior. I have seen some which should be classed as bio-hazards! Anyway stay calm! It is nothing that a hot wrung cloth or a sponge with a dab of hemp or olive oil soap can’t deal with! Be sure to get into every crevice. Wash the cloth or clean the cloth or sponge afterwards.
Cleaning the Kitchen Sink
If the sink is wet already simply wipe a knob of soap around it on a wet and wrung cloth, brush, scrubber or what ever you normally use. I never use synthetic sponges as they clog up with grease (and soap) and have very short and pitiful useful lives, plus they won’t biodegrade easily. I tend to use a natural sea sponge and a curled metal scourer. It is easy to rinse this sludgy slime from the scourer. Wash the cloth or clean the sponge afterwards.
Cleaning a Microfiber Cloth
Microfiber cloths work well when they are really clean, but they are difficult to clean just in a normal machine wash. So these cloths will need a little personal attention. Rinse them in hot water, wring them and apply a knob of Hemp Oil Soap. Rub or scrub the cloth until you see a bit of foam. You can roll the cloth, keeping it warm and leave the soap to work if they are very grimy. Add a dab more soap if needed. Rub until the dirt has lifted. Rinse the cloth until all the dirt and soap has been removed, using white vinegar to help if necessary. Then wash it in the washing machine, preferably with soapnuts. Microfiber cloths are not biodegradable, so I tend to stick to old fashioned sponges and a chamois leather.
Cleaning a Cotton Dish or Floor Cloth
Start by hand washing the dish cloth in the way described for microfiber cloths. Then either place the cloth in the washing machine if you are doing a hot wash or put your cloths in a medium saucepan with some water, a few drops of essential oil, a tiny bit more traditional soap and boil your dish cloths on the hob. Don’t let them over boil or soapy water will bubble all over the hob and you’ll have another cleaning job to do!
Once the cloths are clean, pour the water away let the cloths cool, or if you are impatient, pour cold water over them and rinse and wring the cloths. Give them rinse if you think it is necessary. Let them dry peacefully and recover from their ordeal!
The Refrigerator or Freezer – The Interior
Turn the devise off and unplug it. Read the manufacturer’s cleaning instructions and follow these, using natural soap in place of harsh chemicals. Remove the food, to a cool place, discarding anything out of date or offensive! Remove the salad drawers, shelves and the drain cover and clean them in the sink in hot water containing some dissolved hemp oil soap. Dry them afterwards.
Make sure that there is a towel on the floor and allow any frost or ice to thaw. Wipe any water or moisture from the interior of the fridge. Wipe the drainage holes and be sure they are unblocked. Pipe cleaners can help to clean the drainage holes. Then wash the interior with some soft soap dissolved in warm water. Rinse with a cloth in fresh water. Wipe dry. Replace the drain cover, the salad drawers and the shelves. Put the food back in. Don’t forget to plug the fridge or freezer in again, making sure it is turned on.
The Fridge or Freezer Exterior, Door Seals and Handles
These seem attract black gummy marks as well as random sweet corn kernels, unidentifiable drips and mold. Wipe it all away with a cloth wrung in hot soapy water. Use a tiny dab of neat hemp oil soap on any resistant black gummy marks. They will soon give up. Rinse the seals and other surfaces with fresh water and wipe them dry.
How to Clean Tiles and Ceramic Splash Backs with Hemp Oil Soap
Just wipe the tiles over with diluted soap with a hot well wrung cloth. The tiles will gleam in an instant. If the grout is dirty, scrub it with water containing dissolved hemp oil soap or neat hemp oil soap with a brush. You can modify the soap with vinegar and bicarbonate of soda to help clean any mold. (See below). Essential oils can help too. You can leave the soap on for a while (not letting it dry) to lift more dirt. Then wipe the tiles with a hot wrung cloth, or a sturdy sponge, rinsing as needed. Job done!
How to Clean Mildew from Tiles
Make up a potent mixture of plant oil soap, clear vinegar and bicarbonate of soda. It is best to tackle tiles like this straight after a shower when they are covered in condensation and the room is hot and steamy. Scrub the potent mixture over the tiles and into the grouting between them. Make sure that the extractor fan is turned off, leave the room and close the door to retain the heat and steam. Return in 10-20 minutes, scrub the tiles again again rinse them.
In the kitchen, the tiles might not have the benefit of much steam, so just leave the soap to work for a while longer, making sure it doesn’t dry out.
It is impossible to turn silica seals, usually found around draining boards and between the bath or shower and the wall, from black to white. Most silica sealants shrink and the mildew stains it black. Sorry! You can buy non-shrinking silica, which delays this tendency.
If you are excited to start your cleaning projects you can get your naturally antibacterial and British Hemp Oil Soap here.