Monday, April 7, 2014

Easy Ways to Save Money: Stretching Your Cleaning Supplies

I have started a new topic category that I think can help all of us on our journey to be more frugal. Let me state that I know living a frugal life is hard! Most of the time it takes more effort! In a frugal life you exchange money (savings) for time and work effort. There is a reason that convenience sells in today's busy world! But that doesn't mean that you should give up on trying to save money. There are lots of things you can do to save money that don't take a lot of effort. Hence, a new topic was born! Under the new topic category of Easy Ways to Save Money, I will highlight tricks that take a minimal amount of effort but can have a big impact on your budget! I hope you will like (and use) these ideas!

For the first post, I would like to show you one of the easiest ways I have found to save money. I have been using this trick to stretch my cleaning supplies for years! It works with no loss of cleaning power! I always use it with commercial cleaning products and sometimes I do it with my homemade products as well (where applicable - if you use half vinegar and half water to clean your home now, don't dilute it any further.)

I have mentioned this trick on Facebook before, but I have never showed you how easy it is to do here on the blog! The example shown is for commercial hand dishwashing detergent. It works equally well for shampoo & conditioners, kitchen countertop cleaners, floor cleaners, bathroom cleaners, and liquid hand soap.

When you have an empty bottle of product, wash it out to rinse off any soap buildup or residue. Grab the new bottle of product. With both of these, you are now ready to start.

Pour half of the new bottle into the old one. 

Fill both bottles to the top with water. (My apologies for the blurry picture, my hand was wet and apparently I didn't do a good job of holding the camera steady!)

Instead of one bottle of product, you now have two! You have just cut your cost of cleaning in half!

I will grant you that the commercial product alone will be thicker. However, unless you are extremely frugal with how you much you use at one time, you are probably using more than you need! I know for a fact that the product mixed with water makes just as much suds and cleans just as well! Personally, I don't find that I use more because it is thinner. 

If you really think that you will end up using more because it is thinner, get a pump bottle that limits the amount of product dispensed at one time. I use one of those bottles for my shampoo. One squirt of half product/half water makes just as much lather as the thicker commercial product alone - and my hair is extremely long! 

This trick works for me and I know it will work for you! The best part is you won't notice the difference in the cleaning results because there isn't any difference. Contrary to what the TV commercials tell you, you just don't need a lot of any product to get something clean! 

If you purchase cleaning supplies from the store, this trick WILL save you money!

Now, that's living frugal!

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