Organic Housekeepers, cleaning with a conscience, saving the earth one tub at a time.General Manager Grieta Kinens uses the sponge alternative to clean kitchen sinks

Just say no to sponges
Sponges are dirty.

Organic Housekeepers uses the sponge alternative

The Sponge Alternative, left, is a safe and healthy substitute for the nasty sponge, right. There are a lot of myths surrounding the sponge, like you can disinfect it in the microwave or dishwasher. Both of these methods, according to Ellen Sandbeck in "Green Housekeeping," are myths.

The average sponge contains millions of bacteria because it stays damp from the moment it’s put into service until it’s retired. When you use a sponge to clean, it just spreads the bacteria all around the kitchen and house.

In the book "Green Housekeeping" by Ellen Sandbeck, she sites a study by Carlos Enriquez and Charles Gerba, microbiologists at the University of Arizona at Tucson. They collected and tested sponges and dishtowels from 1,000 kitchens in five American cities. They found dangerous bacteria, including E. coli, salmonella, pseudomonas and staphylococcus, which can cause food poisoning, living on at least two-thirds of the sponges tested.

Further research showed that the cleanest looking kitchen actually contained the most bacteria. Compulsively clean people, who wipe the counters all the time, are actually spreading bacteria all over the place. Bachelors, who never clean at all, actually have the most sanitary kitchens, the study stated.

Sponge Alternative
If it’s impossible for you to think about a cleaning life without the perfect combination of absorbency and tough scrubbing surface, here’s a cheap and safe sponge alternative from the book “Green Housekeeping,” by Ellen Sandbeck.

1. Cut the label end off one of the plastic mesh bags that produce come in, transforming the bag into a tube.

2. Fold a dishcloth or rag about twice depending on its size, and then fold the whole thing until it is the size of a sponge.

3. When you’re done cleaning, take out the rag, ring it out, and throw it into the laundry. Rinse the plastic mesh bag and hang it to dry.


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