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  1. *Updated with new tips and tricks from Wise House followers*

    Like it or loathe it, we all have to do a spot of housekeeping now and again! In this second in my Eco Living series I share the steps I’ve taken towards achieving a more natural way of cleaning our home.

    In the West, its the norm to use an arsenal of cleaning products, egged on by advertisements promising the destruction of  99.9% of bacteria. Their message is misleading, as quite a lot of that bacteria is actually good for us. These days our guts are generally short on the bacteria needed to keep us healthy and the toxins found in most cleaning products are linked to an array of health issues. Michael Gove recently highlighted the problem of indoor pollution, focussing on candles, to the horror of Jo Malone and Diptique candle lovers (an issue easily solved by swapping to many of the natural candles available, like Parkminster).

    That's isn't to say we should avoid cleaning practices altogether. It just means a return to the old simpler ways of cleaning, using a few effective natural products and a healthy dose of common sense like; wash your hands before you start preparing food, don't chop raw meat and vegetables on the same chopping board and don't use the same cloth for cleaning the toilet and the kitchen sides!

  2. I read an entertaining article recently written by Lucy Holden, a journalist who attempted living without plastic 'I’ve been trying to live without plastic for a month — which writes off normal cheese from supermarkets and pretty much everything else you would fill your trolley with.' Holden finds it hard, near impossible to avoid plastic packaging (no surprises there) but she does make some permanent changes like switching to a reusable coffee cup and is definitely enlightened by the experience (evidenced by the fact that she starts assessing other people's recycling bin - I so do that!!).