Harnessing the power of lemons

Amany Abdel-Moneim , Tuesday 4 Jun 2024

By harnessing the power of lemons, you can achieve a clean, fresh-smelling home without relying on artificial fragrances or harsh chemicals.

Harnessing the power of lemons
Harnessing the power of lemons


As households increasingly seek eco-friendly alternatives to chemical-laden cleaning products, one humble citrus fruit stands out for its versatility and cleaning ability: the lemon. Known for its fresh scent and potent cleaning properties, lemons have long been used as natural cleaning agents. 

Lemons are packed with citric acid, which makes them highly effective at breaking down dirt, grease, and grime. Additionally, they have natural antibacterial and antifungal properties, making them ideal for disinfecting surfaces. By harnessing the power of lemons, you can achieve a clean, fresh-smelling home without relying on artificial fragrances or harsh chemicals.

So, whether you’re looking to disinfect surfaces, brighten laundry, or remove stubborn stains.

Here are some tips on how to incorporate lemons into your household cleaning routine:

All-purpose cleaner:

Lemon juice can be used to create an all-purpose cleaner that’s perfect for a variety of surfaces. Simply mix equal parts of lemon juice and water in a spray bottle. This solution can be used to clean countertops, sinks, stovetops, and other surfaces. The citric acid in lemon juice helps cut through grease and grime, leaving surfaces sparkling clean.


Deodorise the fridge:

Lemons are excellent natural deodorisers. To freshen up your refrigerator, place a few lemon slices on a plate or in a small bowl and leave them in the fridge. The lemon will absorb any unpleasant odours and leave your refrigerator smelling fresh. Replace the slices every few days to maintain a consistently fresh scent.


Brighten laundry:

Lemon juice can naturally brighten white laundry and remove stains. Add a cup of lemon juice to your laundry’s rinse cycle to help whiten and brighten fabrics. For stubborn stains, apply lemon juice directly to the stain, let it sit for a few minutes, and then wash as usual. The natural bleaching properties of lemon juice can help restore the brightness of your whites without harsh chemicals.


Shine taps:

Lemon juice can effectively remove mineral deposits and water stains from taps and other metal fixtures. Cut a lemon in half and rub it directly onto the affected area. The citric acid will break down the deposits, leaving your taps clean and shiny. Rinse with water and dry with a soft cloth for a gleaming finish.


Freshen up cutting boards:

Cutting boards can harbour bacteria and odours from food residues. To clean and disinfect your cutting boards, sprinkle coarse salt over the surface, then use half a lemon to scrub the board. The combination of salt and lemon juice helps to remove stains, odours, and bacteria. Rinse thoroughly with water and let the board air dry.


Clean glass and mirrors:

For streak-free glass and mirrors, mix two tablespoons of lemon juice with one cup of water in a spray bottle. Spray the solution onto the glass or mirror and wipe with a lint-free cloth or newspaper. The lemon juice cuts through grime and leaves the glass sparkling clean without any streaks.


Remove microwave odours:

To deodorise and clean your microwave, fill a microwave-safe bowl with one cup of water and add the juice of one lemon along with its peel. Microwave on high for three minutes, then let it sit for a few more minutes to allow the steam to loosen any food residues. Wipe down the interior with a damp cloth. The lemon steam will help remove odours and make cleaning easier.


Buff furniture:

To create a chemical-free furniture polish that hides scratches and leaves a high-shine finish, mix together one part lemon juice with two parts olive oil or vegetable oil. Rub the polish into furniture surfaces using a soft cloth.


Remove rust:

To obtain a rust-free item with a fresh citrus scent, sprinkle some rock salt onto the rust, then add lemon juice. Let it sit for a while to help break down the rust. Wipe off the solution and rinse. You can mix lemon juice with a little vinegar to make the solution stronger if needed.

* A version of this article appears in print in the 6 June, 2024 edition of Al-Ahram Weekly

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