Homemade Scouring Powder

FullSizeRender (8)

This recipe is a cross between several I’ve come across in the online DIY community and several zero waste books. Conspicuously absent is Borax. You probably know why. Or maybe you don’t! (I have much more reading to do on this topic, so TBC! For now, it’s out.)  As with most recipes found here, this DIY is super easy to do zero waste, or at least with limited waste. If you don’t have a good bulk store near you, you are left with 2 – 3 cardboard boxes (the sodas and the salt) and a small glass bottle (essential oil…which in this case is not so essential). All of these things can be recycled. Certainly better than the plastic-contained, chemical laden store-bought options!

Please comment below if you have educated input to add to the borax debate! (Not-so-educated but curious comments also welcome!)


  • 1 cup baking soda
  • 1/2 cup washing soda
  • 1/2 cup cup non-iodized salt
  • 8 drops essential oil of your choice (I use lemon, but also like orange, mint…anything fresh, really!)


  1. Mix all ingredients together in jar, shake or stir. (Pizza topping jars are perfect if you want a plastic-free shaker!)
  2. Wet surface to be cleaned with water or vinegar.*
  3. Sprinkle concoction over the area and let sit for a few minutes.
  4. Scrub with brush, adding powder and liquid as needed.
  5. Rinse area or wipe with wet cloth.

*Note: Fight oil with oil!  Mix powder with olive oil at a 3:1 ratio for a paste that will tackle most grease problems. (i.e. baked-on grease, oily residue on stove or stove hood etc.)