As a homesteader, I wash my dishes by hand, and thankfully I do, because if I had a dishwasher I may have missed out on the “mother of all things useful”. Well besides duct tape that is!
Sitting next to my kitchen sink are three blue-liquid filled bottles of various sizes. One of the bottles contains liquid dish soap, one is a spray bottle filled with water and a little bit of liquid dish soap, and the last one is a little foaming hand soap bottle filled with water and yes, liquid dish soap.
The first bottle, needless to say, I use to wash that sink full of dishes. The second bottle is used to spray a little soap on those, two or three lunchtime, or snack dishes that don’t require the whole dog and pony show of filling a sink full of water just to clean a few dishes. And the last bottle is for washing my hands. Each bottle contains “the number one bestselling national-brand blue liquid dish soap” – well, for me it’s the generic brand of that national brand.
Now, the kitchen counter isn’t the only place I have this liquid gold … er blue in a bottle. I also have a small squirt bottle sitting on the bathtub ledge that contains half dish soap and half vinegar. I spray down the walls and tub; wait fifteen minutes and then wipe them down with a damp sponge. No scrubbing needed – and that means for tough soap scum and that hard to remove dreadful bath ring. Just wipe clean.
And for my windows? I put a couple of drops of dish soap in a gallon of water and then put in a spray bottle. I use it just like any window cleaner … spray and wipe! In fact, this dish soap and water can double for a multi-purpose cleaner to clean ceramic tile and no-wax/linoleum floors, and bathroom and kitchen counters and sinks.
I also have a spray bottle under the kitchen sink just in case an ant or two decide to get the “not-so-smart” idea to try and blaze a trial for their ants friends to the inside of my house. I spray their path with the dish soap and water mixture and wipe dry. A slight residue of the dish soap remains repelling further activity (note: this is non-toxic to humans and pets.) And, I also have a bottle of this liquid genie in a bottle out in the barn to use as a black fly zapper. Spray em and watch them dive and crash like the red baron! bzzzzzzz – splat!
But cleaning and repelling insect are just the start of the uses for this blue wonder! You can also wash your hair and face. If you have an problem with oily facial skin, use a drop or two with some warm to wash your face. I don’t have oily skin but after a day of working out on the homestead, I can get pretty dirty and greasy. I keep a little foam dispenser filled with water and a few drops of the dish soap to wash my hands and face with. The foam dispenser produces just enough of the soap to get all the grease and grime off. And in the winter time, I sometimes put Vaseline on my face (I know, I know … its petroleum) and baby oil on my arms and legs to hold the moisture in while outside. When bathing I will use a little dish soap and warm water to remove them.
And hair? If you are like I used to be, there is a ton of product in your hair – volumizer, hair spray, heat protectant, mousse, styling gel, and so on and so forth. Once a month use the dish soap as a shampoo to remove all this build-up without damaging your hair! Or if you get a little zealous with the hair color and it comes out too dark (not me oh course), wash it with the dish soap to pull some of the color out to look more natural.
Have you noticed the common denominator in these uses yet? It’s the soap’s degreasing agent. The dish soap can be used to remove oil-based stains like lipstick, grease, butter, motor oil, cooking oil. In fact, I’ve even used the dish soap on grease splattered shirts that I have already washed and dried several times by just putting some dish soap on the stains and letting it sit a while before rewashing – and presto … the stains are gone!
For outdoors, you can add the dish soap mixed with a little corn oil to remove paint or grease from your hands after painting or working on the car or tractor (or any oily-greasy job.) You can wash your car with the dish soap by adding one teaspoon to one gallon of water – it works great for getting that road grease out of the wheel and fender wells. And after you use your dirty tools, soak them in dish soap before put them away to remove all the oil and grime and prevent rust from forming on the tools. After all, it’s all about taking care of your things and keeping them nice!
Now I can go on and on for the uses for this blue liquid time saver but why spoil all the fun! Experiment on your own and see what works for you!
But the biggest bonus of all for me and this blue wonder liquid? Redundancy! As a preparedness-minded person, if and when the poo ever hits the fan, instead of having bottle after bottle of “all-things- cleaning”, I will have one that does it all! (well almost.)
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