As a reminder of the connection from the previous post, Cinnamon and Vinegar: Quite the Pair, Part 1 of 2, I recently traveled to two drastically different countries of Liberia and Belgium. Both in which two topics came up: cinnamon and vinegar.
In Liberia, my supervisor asked if cinnamon could cover the smell of ammonia!!! I declare… My immediate response “why are you using ammonia?! I use vinegar to clean.” And here is where the vinegar part of the story continues.
We discussed the irritating and corrosive aroma of ammonia and how it is necessary to open all the windows and maybe even the doors to ventilate the area for health purposes. Yet, this is still unhealthy because the pungent scent can take a while to vaporize and what does that do for the environment as amounts are increasing with not only agriculture use but also household and industrial uses?
I insisted she no longer use ammonia or bleach. Bleach is how vinegar as a cleaning agent began a conversation in Belgium.
Announcement: As I am in the midst of typing about the horrors of ammonia and bleach, my own sister confesses during a conversation that she is using bleach! My own sister! Of course, I had to interrupt our initial conversation to stand on my soapbox about bleach. Use vinegar please!!! End Announcement.
We are walking along the beautiful town of Brugge and are suddenly hit with an odor wave of bleach. Someone was scrubbing her steps AND ruining our lungs and the environment. The most horrifying part was that the overpowering bleach scent lingered even after an hour had past (we had to pass the same area to return to the car).
That would never occur with the use of white vinegar for cleaning because the scent is gone as soon as it dries. To be fair, bleach may not be so harmful IF used correctly; however, most people are not diluting with water, following proper measurements, or have proper ventilation while cleaning. I recall, again in Liberia, walking into the office and bleach began to suffocate me. Everyone else is just sitting there all calm; but soon my eyes began to water and I just walked out of there. They questioned what was wrong. “The bleach! Everything on my face is burning!” Only then did my supervisor decide to speak up about the smell and I requested the front door and the sliding door next to me remain open.
Let’s be honest folks. Bleach has limited use AND we are likely intaking more than should be via use of public city water for washing clothes and dishes, bathing and toothbrushing. Why not keep levels at a minimum by using white vinegar instead to clean?
Yes. Vinegar is a disinfectant that is effective for killing most mold, bacteria, and germs, due to its level of acidity.
Yes. Vinegar can rid bad smelling drains and help unclog drains with baking soda.
Yes. Vinegar can brighten whites, and also colors, in the wash by adding 1/2 cup white distilled vinegar to the rinse cycle.
Yes. Vinegar can be used as a produce wash of 10% vinegar to 90% water. Simply cover fruits and vegetables, churn a time or two, and rinse thoroughly. Do not use for berries and such.
Yes. Clean cutting boards by spraying with vinegar. Let dry. Then spray with hydrogen peroxide. Let dry. Also, is a good practice to have separate cutting boards for meats/fish and produce.
Yes. Stop insect stings and bites from itching by dabbing them with a cotton ball saturated with white vinegar. For cuts and scrapes, use as an antiseptic.
Yes. Soothe sunburn with a spray of cold, white vinegar, and prevent some blistering and peeling.
The possibilities of vinegar are almost endless including gardening, vehicle, cooking and pet uses! Even apple cider vinegar is great for hair as a conditioner, cleaner, and assists with itching and too can be used for various projects.
Come on. Give vinegar a chance. At worse, you may end up loving it.