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Homemade Glass + Surface Cleaner

After reading the book, No More Dirty Looks around two years ago, I’ve been acutely aware of the chemicals in my cosmetics and cleaning supplies. Since then, I have steadily been replacing my chemical laden everyday items with more natural substances. In addition my interest in decreasing the environmental effects of these items, I am also generally pretty sensitive to fragrances and artificial dyes so I try to stay away from them. One simple way to reduce your chemical exposure and save some money is by making your own glass cleaner.

So Pretty is as Pretty Does Glass Cleaner

I started with an old Windex bottle, no sense in letting the bottle go to waste.


To remove the label I soaked the bottle in hot soapy water and gave it a good scrub, but I did have to use a little Goo-B-Gone to get the last bit of the adhesive off. Don’t worry, the irony of using a harsh chemical in order to stop using another harsh chemical is not lost on me.

Empty spray bottle

Next, I gathered my ingredients. I researched a lot of different recipes online and the majority used similar proportions, so I followed proportion guidelines, but came up with my own formula.

Ingredients for glass cleaner


  • 2 cups of pure steam distilled water
  • 1 1/2 cups of distilled white vinegar
  • 20 drops of lemon essential oil

distilled water


After pouring your water and vinegar into the spray bottle, add your lemon oil.

Lemon essential oils

{love the scent of this lemon essential oil, plus it cuts through grease}

lemon essential oil

Fill the dropper and squeeze into the spray bottle. Repeat until you’ve used around 20 drops.

Lemon essential oil

Place the top back on the bottle and give it a good shake.

Complete formula

And, that’s it for the glass cleaner itself. But, what fun would it be without some custom packaging?

Custom labels

I made these labels on Snagit and then printed them on a sheet of Avery full-sheet label paper.

Cutting labels

Then, I cut the label to the appropriate size for the bottle. I blame my inability to cut a straight line using scissors on being left-handed, so I use a paper trimmer to ensure straight lines.

Cutting labels

Lastly, stick the label on the bottle. That’s all there is to it. Now, I have my own “brand” of glass cleaner, which by the way, works very well.

So Pretty is as Pretty Does Glass Cleaner

In addition to being better for the environment and not coming with the warning, potential respiratory irritant, it also saves some money. Here’s the cost breakdown:

A 26 oz. bottle of Windex is $3.43 at Walgreen’s.

A 26 oz. bottle of So Pretty is as Pretty Does Glass Cleaner is $1.53.

$0.17 for distilled water
$0.46 white vinegar
$0.90 lemon essential oil

For the first bottle, there is the added cost of the label, which was $1.20. So, the first bottle of homemade glass cleaner is actually $2.73, providing a savings of only $0.70. But, each bottle thereafter will provide a savings of $1.90. For me, that works out to about $12 in savings a year. If you make your own household cleaners or if you try this formula, I’d love to hear from you. Happy cleaning!

6 Comments Post a comment
  1. MightyMama #

    Thanks for sharing, can’t wait to try this!

    May 7, 2013
    • It was so easy to make! And it almost, just almost, made cleaning the windows today enjoyable. 🙂

      May 7, 2013

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