Well let me tell you, you’re lucky. Stinky, gross carpets are no fun, but cleaning them with toxic chemicals is no fun either. You can easily whip that carpet back into shape with this DIY carpet powder.
When we moved into our first apartment it was a rickety old thing out of a horror movie. After climbing a long set of ancient looking stairs, you reached the smoke stained hallway outside our door. The door was practically in shambles and had been patched over with some scrap plywood…but it did have a brand new, large lock on it.
After 2 months of renovations, it was finally move in ready. After giving the carpets a good clean with the vacuum, they still smelled of stale smoke. Baking soda is a magician at absorbing unwanted odors, so I created a carpet powder to freshen and get the last lingering odors out of the carpet.
Since then I’ve come up with this recipe to freshen, clean, deodorize, AND disinfect nasty (or even slightly nasty) carpet. The baking soda not only absorbs bad odors, but it helps to loosen and lift dirt from the carpet fibers.
And of course I had to add some herbs to the mix. I add organic powdered lavender because of its fresh scent and antibacterial properties. Lavender literally means “to wash” in Latin, so of course I had to include it in a carpet cleaning powder. I grind my own lavender in a coffee grinder, but you can also buy already powdered organic lavender to make things easier.
Lemon peel is the next addition to the mix. This citrus fruit has disinfectant, antiseptic, and antibacterial properties. It also works as a degreaser. I love the fresh and invigorating smell of lemon and it naturally works well with cleaners.
I also include grapefruit peel, for its naturally antiseptic and purifying properties. You can dry grapefruit peels as you eat them and then grind them in a coffee grinder yourself, or grab already ground organic grapefruit peel powder.
- 2 cups baking soda
- 1 Tbsp lavender flowers (organic lavender flowers) or 1 ½ tsps organic lavender powder
- 1 Tbsp lemon peel (buy organic lemon peel or save your own) or 2 tsps organic powdered lemon peel
- 1 Tbsp grapefruit peel or 2 tsps organic powdered grapefruit peel
- 10 drops grapefruit essential oil (organic grapefruit essential oil)
- 10 drops lemon essential oil (organic lemon essential oil)
- If you’re using whole herbs, combine them with a few tablespoons of baking soda and the essential oils and process in the coffee grinder until very finely ground. Leave the lid on the grinder for a few minutes to let the powder settle before removing. Trust me, snorting fruit peel powder will burn! A mask is also a good idea here.
- If your herbs are already powdered, then put about ¼ cup of the herbs in the coffee grinder with the essential oils and give it a few pulses to combine. You can also drip the oils into ¼ cup of the baking soda and mash them in with a fork if you don’t have a coffee grinder.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the rest of the baking soda and the ground herbs until thoroughly combined. Store your creation in a glass jar.
- To use, sprinkle liberally on DRY carpet and leave on overnight. I use a repurposed parmesan cheese container for easy and even sprinkling. Do not use baking soda on wet carpets or you’ll have a rock hard paste that will not vacuum up. You can also use your hands to move the powder deeper into the carpet fibers. Vacuum the powder up after 12-48 hours. You’ll need to leave it on longer for stinkier carpets.
Looking for more cleaning ideas? You got it!
Resources: The Essential Life