Easy DIY Granite Cleaner and Disinfectant

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This easy homemade granite cleaner uses rubbing alcohol, castile soap, water, and essential oils to effectively clean and disinfect your countertops. Not only is it more affordable than store-bought options, but it has zero harmful chemicals and smells amazing. You will have sparkling clean countertops in no time!

A glass spray bottle labeled with the word 'granite' surrounded with measuring spoons, an orange, tulip, and castile soap.

We’re back with another DIY cleaning product, so let's get into it!

Why Make Your Own DIY Granite Cleaner?

We've talked before about that domino effect, the one that goes like this: you read about the doom and gloom –> you toss toxic store-bought cleaners in favor of safe, non-toxic alternatives (here's a guide to my favorite natural store-bought cleaners for those who aren't into the whole DIY thing) or you start making your own cleaning products –> big brands get the message as you vote with your dollars and start demanding transparency, regulation, and safety from their products –> they change their ways and one day, we can walk into any store and trust that we’re buying products that won’t harm us.

Phew, there's a lot of dominoes that have to fall for us to reach that point, but I've always been of the mindset that even little actions can make a huge difference, especially when lots of people band together. So join me! DIY your own homemade granite cleaner–the benefits are endless.

For starters, and perhaps most importantly, it's safer, as there are no harmful chemicals and additives to wreak havoc on our homes, our bodies and our planet. Making your own cleaning products is also cheaper–this entire recipe cost me a whopping $1.27 to make. Take a look:

  • rubbing alcohol (I paid $5.84 for 16 ounces, but I only used 2 ounces = $0.73)
  • castile soap (I paid $19.99 for 32 ounces, but I only used .5 ounces = $0.31)
  • water (FREE!!!)
  • essential oils (I paid $5.85 for .5 ounces, but I only used .02 ounces = $0.23)
Total cost = $1.27

As if that weren't enough, DIYing your own cleaning products is BEYOND easy! I swear, and this is coming from a girl who is the antithesis of Etsy, the anti-crafter, the “can't I just pay someone to do that for me?” gal, who learned from my mother early on that there's a price you pay for convenience and that price is often worth it.

BUT, not in this case. It's just way too easy to make your own cleaning products! Pour it and forget it. That's the DIY Cleaning mantra.

Still not convinced?

A tablescape with linen napkins, a glass spray bottle, essential oils, ramekins, measuring spoons, and an orange.

What's in Most Granite Countertop Cleaners?

The EWG recently updated their cleaning guide and after analyzing over 2,500 household cleaning products, they found that almost half were rated “poor” and nearly 75 percent contain ingredients with worrisome respiratory health effects. Many are also known to cause developmental and endocrine harm, not to mention the negative impact they have on our environment. These chemicals are only partly removed by wastewater treatment plants, don’t readily break down, are persistent in the environment and toxic to aquatic life.

It makes sense if you think about it–we're spraying these cleaners all over our homes, inhaling whatever's in the mixture as we spray it and long after it's been applied to every surface. And then we're touching those surfaces and doing things like eating, touching our skin (and if you've got kids, you can bet their putting those contaminated hands in their mouths!).

But what about granite or countertop cleaning sprays, specifically? On top of including fragrance (which often contains phthalates that block testosterone action and have antiandrogenic effects (think reduced sperm production, undescended testes, hypospadias, decreased testosterone production, and reduced anogenital distance) not to mention links to birth defects, asthma, neurodevelopmental problems in newborns, fertility issues and obesity), many store-bought granite cleaners contain other toxic chemicals. Take a look:

  • BenzisothiazolinoneThis chemical is toxic to aquatic life and is a skin sensitizer. Even brands that are thought of to be safe, like Method, make granite cleaners with toxic chemicals in them, like benzisothiazolinone. Method's granite cleaner also includes PEG 300 MONOOCTYL ETHER…see below.
  • PEG 300 MONOOCTYL ETHER: This chemical is a real winner–it's riddled with impurities that may cause genetic defects, cancer, reproductive toxicity, skin corrosion, central nervous system impairment, asthma, liver damage and skin and respiratory irritation. So it checks all of the toxic boxes. Don't let it into your home!
  • Propylene Glycol Methyl Ether: This chemical is commonly found in granite cleaners, like Weiman Granite Cleaner & Polish Spray, and it's got a slew of negative side effects, from central nervous system impairment and skin and respiratory irritation to a link to drowsiness and dizziness and eye irritation.
  • Alcohol ethoxylates: This chemical is chockfull of impurities that cause serious eye irritation and corrosion, plus skin and respiratory irritation and liver damage. It's also a confirmed animal carcinogen with unknown relevance to humans, though it is a suspected human carcinogen. And guess what? It's found in tons countertop sprays, like Caldrea Countertop CleanserGrabGreen Countertop Cleaner (so much for being green), Better Life TAKE IT FOR GRANITE Natural Countertop Cleaner and even Mrs. Meyer's Clean Day Countertop Spray (another brand I used to think was super safe, and turned out to be the opposite…such a bummer because their products smell amazing). It also has high acute toxicity to aquatic life, to make matter worse.

So spending the 2 minutes to pour some natural ingredients into a bottle is starting to sound like a small price to pay, huh? If you do nothing else, just please, pretty please, start reading your labels and researching the effects these chemicals can have.

The EWG has a great cleaning guide–here’s a list of 24 countertop cleaners with ratings. They will likely surprise you! Like, did you know that it’s not even required by law that companies disclose their ingredients? How is that legal? If a brand won't tell you what's in their products, please run…far away and fast!

A Guide to Our Favorite Healthy Brands + Exclusive Discounts
Three essential oil bottles next to lemons, an orange, and a glass spray bottle in the background.

A Note About Homemade Granite Cleaners

And back to the good news. Great news, really! Because this DIY Natural Granite Cleaner takes just 4 safe, non-toxic ingredients to make (if it takes you much longer than 1 minute to make this, something is wrong) and it will clean and disinfect your countertops like you won't believe thanks to the alcohol. It's made without vinegar to protect natural stone, and the homemade recipe smells amazing thanks to essential oils!

Like with all cleaning products, I recommend using crisp citrus oils like sweet orange, lemon or grapefruit or refreshing green oils, like bergamot, tea tree, eucalyptus and basil, which all smell super clean and even naturally have antibacterial, antifungal, antiseptic, and germicidal properties.

For oils, I love Plant Therapy, whose oils are 100% pure, free from any additives, adulterants, or dilutions. Their facility is USDA Certified Organic, and their prices are also SUPER reasonable! Get 10% off your order of $50 or more sitewide with the coupon code ROOT10!

I also love these glass spray bottles, which are the perfect size, pretty to look at and you don't have to worry about BPA in the plastic. Happy Cleaning!

A glass spray bottle labeled with the word 'granite' surrounded with measuring spoons, an orange, tulip, and castile soap.
Print Recipe
4.43 from 7 votes

Easy DIY Granite Cleaner and Disinfectant

This easy homemade granite cleaner uses rubbing alcohol, castile soap, water, and essential oils to effectively clean and disinfect your countertops. Not only is it more affordable than store-bought options, but it has zero harmful chemicals and smells amazing. You will have sparkling clean countertops in no time!
Prep Time2 mins
Total Time2 mins
Course: DIY
Cuisine: Cleaning
Servings: 1 bottle
Author: Olivia Johnson

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup rubbing alcohol
  • 1 tablespoon castile soap
  • 2 cups water
  • 10 drops essential oils

Instructions

  • Pour all ingredients into a glass bottle fitted with a spray top. Gently swirl the bottle to mix the ingredients together.
  • Use immediately or as needed.
DIY Natural Granite Cleaner.

56 thoughts on “Easy DIY Granite Cleaner and Disinfectant”

  1. Pingback: DIY Cleaning Products with Essential Oils - Simply Natural Hacks™

  2. Hi there! Thank love lemon and orange, but I thought that over time lemon can breakdown your counter top because of its acidity? Perhaps it’s because it’s diluted? What are your thoughts?

  3. Hi! I was wondering if the granite-safe substitute could also be used as an all-purpose cleaner as well. Essentially, are these DIY’s also safe for wooden surfaces? thanks!

  4. 3 stars
    I thought this recipe worked great on my granite but I feel like it smells very alcoholic to me—almost so much, I can’t smell the oils. Suggestion? thank you!

    1. You can substitute vodka for rubbing alcohol, it works great & I prefer it. I buy a bottle of cheap vodka to make my own disinfectants.

  5. Im confused because castile soap has citric acid in it . The one in the link on amazon has it and the bottle i bought in front of me has it. I’ve read a lot that you should not use anything that contains this. Is it okay to use in the mixture because it’s a small amount?

    1. Hi, Megan: Yes, I believe because it’s such a small amount it is safe to use on natural stone surfaces and I’ve never had an issue with it. But if it makes you nervous, you could always try to find a different soap that doesn’t contain citric acid, though I don’t personally know of any. Hope that helps!

    2. I have the same issue. Yes, citric acid does damage natural stone. Marble is especially prone. I do not use castile soap for this very reason. There are some natural dish soaps that you could substitute with – I found them at my local Natural Grocer store. You could probably find it on Amazon. I would also recommend NOT using citrus scents for the oils. I think the recipe from Root + Revel is a great jumping off point 🙂

  6. Hi Kate,

    I read that rubbing alcohol isn’t good to inhale. Would it be ok to substitute the rubbing alcohol for hydrogen peroxide. ☺

    1. Hi, Elise: Hmm I haven’t heard that before, but honestly it’s such a small amount used in this recipe, I can’t imagine it being an issue. I believe that hydrogen peroxide is safe to use on granite, but I can’t speak to its cleaning abilities as I haven’t personally tried it yet. Hope that helps!

      1. No! No H.Peroxide! Are you all crazy? IT IS A BLEACH! DUH. Dump some on dark clothing and come back and you will see color removed. It literally bleaches hair blond! Never use on granite the following: clorox, h.peroxide, vinegar, citrus cleaners/oils. When in doubt call a manufacturer/installer of countertops in your town. Jeezus stop playing chemist. All you need to is wipe counters with some dish soap ( very little) and RINSE and dry every night. During day plain water unless raw meat touches counter then wash with soap&water and rinse/dry. My friends co. makes a fortune every week repairing damage uninformed people do. Seriously CALL a granite company.

      2. K.S. weighing in again. Yes, my granite co. says tough stains can sometimes be removed with a poultice of h.peroxide and baking soda, but NEVER on dark or black granite. Taking a chance on removing shiny sealant. Costly to repair. And Rinse Rinse Rinse. Again, on properly sealed granite soap&water all that’s needed to disinfect BECAUSE it is Sealed. In other words bacteria won’ t penetrate, ( like a plastic or wood cutting board). Never do anything to erode the sealant. No need to be so germ phobic.

    2. Patricia W Graham

      I use the essential oils and a squirt of Dawn and water. It is wonderful and cleans my granite great. No alcohol, the tea tree oil kills germs and then lemon gives shine and smells great..

  7. Hi Kate,

    I read that rubbing alcohol isn’t good to inhale. Would it be safe to use for cleaning since you shouldn’t inhale it? It does have a strong smell. Can you substitute the rubbing alcohol with hydrogen peroxide instead? ☺

  8. Hi, Kate:

    Love your website; glad I found it. I am renting a condo that has natural stone and marble counter tops, floors, and shower floors. Can I use this mixture on all of these surfaces?

    1. Thanks so much, Colleen. So glad to have you here! Yes, you can use this spray on any natural stone surface, like marble or granite. It’s just vinegar that can etch the stone, so this should work great. Hope you love it as much as I do 🙂

  9. Christina Montford

    5 stars
    So I tried this and I loved it! With natural cleaners, I’m sometimes worried that they won’t get the job done. But, this did exactly what I was wanting and smelled great.

  10. 5 stars
    First, let me say how very much I enjoy all if your information. I am still fairly new to the essential oil world so I am constantly researching information, with you at the too if my list. I have read, in other articles, that any acidic-based oils (lemon, orange) are not to be used on granite, marble, etc for the same reasons as vinegar-they will etch the stone. But I also read that it was safe as long as you don’t let the citrus oil dry on the surface and then wipe away any residue with a clean wet cloth So I asked an expert, Chip White with Counter Top Connections, LLC, and he sent this article to me:
    http://www.marble-institute.com/consumers/care/

  11. Can this be used on regular countertops too? Or is it best to only use on natural stone?
    I have a mixture of countertops in my house and I’d rather just have one cleaner to use on everything

    1. Hey Caroline: Yes, absolutely you could use this as an all-purpose cleaner if you’d rather just have one cleaner to use on everything. The all-purpose cleaner I use contains vinegar, so that’s why you can’t use it on granite/marble/natural stone. But this could be used on anything 🙂

      1. Catherine Forgnone

        I just made the granite cleaner and used it. I love the smell but it left a film on my granite. Is that normal?

        1. Hi, Catherine: No, that’s not normal. Did you follow the recipe exactly? You may have added too much water. Let me know and I’ll see how I can help. Thanks!

          1. The Recipe says 2 cups water and 1/4 cup rubbing alcohol. How does this fit in a 16 ounce spray bottle? Thanks for your help!

          2. Hi Susan: You’re right, this recipe wouldn’t fit into a 16-ounce bottle, but I don’t know what size bottles everyone is using. If you do have a 16-ounce bottle, I’d recommend reducing the amount of water to 1.5-1.75 cups and keeping the rest of the recipe the same. Hope that helps!

  12. Hello I live in South Africa Ive not heard about rubbing alcohol and castile soap. Can you please give an idea as to where I would be able to find it. Thank for your easy cleaning solution. I hope I would be able to find them. Many thanks Charmaine

    1. Hi, Charmaine…I’m not sure exactly what’s available to you in SA, but can you order from Amazon? That’s where I often buy rubbing alcohol and castile soap. Most drugstores carry them as well, and natural foods shops, as well. Thanks!

  13. I’ve recently decided to rekindle my “relationship” with essential oils and DIY home projects. Thank you for this recipe for a granite counter cleaner.

    1. Yay!! So glad you’re jumping on the DIY cleaner bandwagon. Expect to save lots of money and get rid of all those nasty toxins in your home! 🙂

  14. May I ask where you got your spray bottles and labels? I’ve just started making my own cleaners this past month, but have been using some older spray bottles (from EWG-approved natural cleaners I previously bought). I would like for mine to look pretty like yours! Also thanks for the recipe! I have been buying my counter cleaner from a company that is basically this exact recipe, but I can’t afford to keep paying $40 a refill bottle!!!

    1. Hi, Dallas! Of course, I linked to the spray bottles in the post, but in case you missed it, you can buy them on Amazon here: http://amzn.to/1TEJ0y1

      The labels come with the bottles 🙂 And OMG $40 per refill is INSANE! This recipe costs just $1.27 to make, so you’ll be saving TONS of money if you use it! Let me know how you like it. Thanks!

    1. Awesome!! So glad you liked it. I’d say the shelf life is about 3-6 months… I never make it that far because I usually go through a bottle faster than that. But it should last a while–just watch to make sure it doesn’t start smelling strange. Otherwise, you should be good to go 🙂

  15. Hi Kate, I noticed you said unscented castile soap in the recipe. I have tons of peppermint castile soap. Would this hurt the granite if I used it in place of unscented or do you only recommend unscented and why? I was thinking it is because of the essential oils?! Thanks in advance for your response.

    1. Hi, Sheri! Thanks for reading 🙂 You can absolutely use a scented castile soap in any other recipes, though I would recommend swapping out, or even leaving out, which essential oils you add to ensure the scents go well together. If you’ve got the peppermint scent on hand, absolutely use it here. It won’t hurt the granite, only vinegar does that as it etches away at the natural stone. Essential oils are totally safe! Good luck 🙂

  16. I really want to use essential oils for cleaning my brand new, granite countertop. But citrus oils on granite? How does vinegar protect the granite?

    1. Thanks so much for reading, Kim. So excited you want to make your own granite cleaner. This recipe does NOT use vinegar because vinegar will etch the natural stone on granite countertops. Make sure you do not put vinegar on your new granite counters. The citrus oils will be fine on it. There’s very little essential oil in this recipe, plus there’s not any citric acid in essential oils, so it won’t cause acidic damage as it’s pH neutral.

      1. Thank you Kate! I knew vinegar was not good on granite, My eyes read your recipe wrong, I thought it said vinegar Protected granite but it was NOT USING vinegar for the protection. 🙂

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Tips for a healthier home

Here are some eco-friendly home care tips for a healthy and green living:
  • Switch your cleaning products to eco-friendly options. You can find many of these in the grocery store and online.
  • Use sustainable materials for furniture, such as wood instead of plastic or metal. This will help create less waste and reduce the amount of natural resources that are used to produce them.
  • Choose lightbulbs with little or no mercury. These not only create less waste but also have an impact on climate change by using less electricity.
  • Plant trees around your property. Trees benefit the environment by providing shade, absorbing carbon dioxide, and purifying the air with their leaves. They also provide fuel for firewood during colder months and a habitat for wildlife. The benefits of planting trees go far beyond what you see right in front of you!

Green cleaning products

One way to make your home more eco-friendly is by switching over to green cleaning products. These products aren’t as harsh on the environment as traditional household cleaners and are less likely to cause allergies or other health issues. Plus, you can find a variety of green cleaning products that work for every type of surface in your home.

Switching to eco-friendly cleaning products

There are many cleaning products that you can use in your home that are environmentally friendly. One of the best ways to start is by switching to eco-friendly cleaning products. Many people don’t know that there are many types of eco-friendly cleaning products on the market today, including laundry detergent and dishwasher soap. A switch to green cleaners can be a simple way to create an environmentally friendly living environment.

Safer and more environmentally friendly ways to clean your home

If you want to make your home safer and more environmentally friendly, then you can switch from using toxic cleaning products to using eco-friendly alternatives. For example, if you want to clean your toilet, then you could use vinegar instead of bleach or other harsh chemicals. Vinegar is a natural disinfectant and deodorizer, so it will do the job without harming the environment. You can also use baking soda as a healthy alternative to many household cleaners. Baking soda is an abrasive cleaner that breaks down dirt and grime; it’s also non-toxic, so it won’t harm people or the environment. It’s also inexpensive, so you can use it liberally without worrying about running out of supply too quickly.

Sustainable living

Most people are more aware of the environment these days and want to do their part to make it a better place. Homeowners and renters alike are doing everything from switching to environmentally friendly cleaning products, to using sustainable materials for furniture. Here are some tips for living an eco-friendly lifestyle in your home:
    • Clean with white vinegar – You can use this as a natural disinfectant that is also eco-friendly. It is also inexpensive and easy on your pipes because you won’t be putting harsh chemicals down the drain.
    • Avoid aerosol cans – Aerosol cans contain harmful chemicals that will release into the air when sprayed. Try switching to an eco-friendly product or find another way to clean.
    • Use reusable napkins – Napkins, paper towels, toilet paper, even facial tissue all come wrapped in paper (or other packaging). Reusable napkins or dish towels will give you one less thing you need to throw away every day!
    • Put up a clothesline – Even if you live in an apartment or condo where putting up a clothesline isn’t possible, there are many ways you can still dry your clothes without using electricity or gas. For example, hang them outside on a sunny day or turn your oven on low heat and hang them from the top rack.

Living with less waste in your home

One of the best ways to reduce your ecological footprint is by reducing the amount of waste that your household produces. Take a look at what you’re throwing away and try to find alternatives.
For example, instead of buying disposable napkins, use cloth napkins that you can throw into the wash. If you need face wipes for removing makeup, consider making them yourself from reusable materials like cotton rounds. And if you want to stop using plastic bags, use canvas bags or have bags made from recycled material. There are many other ideas for eco-friendly alternatives in your home as well.

Sustainable materials for furniture

Did you know that the average American generates over 4 pounds of waste every day? This means that we are throwing away a lot of furniture and other items in our homes. To stop contributing to this problem, it is best to use sustainable materials for furniture. Sustainable materials are made from recycled materials which can be up-cycled into new products. Not only are these items better for the environment, but they also save money because the items will last longer.
Sustainable materials for furniture include:
      • Recycled plastic
      • MDF
      • Plywood
      • Timber reclaimed from old buildings or driftwood
      • Bamboo
      • Faux leather (made from cotton)
The pursuit of a healthy, green and sustainable home is achievable for anyone. It will require more time and effort, but the payoff will be worth it.
Start with the small things. Make a conscious effort to recycle, turn off appliances and lights when you’re not using them, and check your thermostat. It’s easy to get into a routine of living without giving it much thought, but the more you make an effort, the easier it will be to live sustainably.
After you’ve made changes in your everyday life, look for furniture that is made with sustainable materials. You can also buy an eco-friendly houseplant for your home that requires little care.
    1. Tips for a healthier home:
      • Turn off appliances and lights when you’re not using them
      • Check your thermostat
      • Make a conscious effort to recycle
    2. Green cleaning products:
      • Switching to eco-friendly cleaning products
      • Safer and more environmentally friendly ways to clean
      • Sustainable living:
      • Living with less waste in your home
      • Sustainable materials for furniture
  • Sustainable materials for furniture:
    • Consider buying furniture made with sustainable
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