A natural and very effective DIY glass and mirror cleaner recipe with just 3 ingredients. Save your health from toxic chemicals and enjoy a streak-free shine!
I just love simplicity and you can see that if you look at my arsenal of cleaning products. I use two homemade cleaners regularly. Yup, that's it!
I love DIY all-purpose cleaner with lemon essential oil to clean almost everything from my bathroom counters to my fridge, to doorknobs, to wastebins. It's a great recipe.
There's one type of surface that the multi-purpose cleaner doesn't work well for, and (you guessed it!) that's glass and mirrors. No problem, enter this homemade glass cleaner that works amazingly on all glass surfaces!
Just like I prefer my collection of cleaning products to be simple, I also prefer simple ingredients in my cleaning products. You really don't need (or want, for that matter) a million chemicals smeared all over your household surfaces every time you clean!
So whip up this easy, natural recipe in no time and you'll enjoy naturally sparkling mirrors and clean windows! Don't be afraid to make your own cleaners, it's so worth it.
Do DIY Cleaners Really Work?
Store-bought cleaners do the job, but so do many DIY cleaner recipes! I'll admit, there are some that don't work very well, so you may need to try a few before you find what you love. But it is worth saving your health and will be great on your wallet as well! And I promise you, the best thing about this great glass cleaner is that it really works!
Some websites I've seen add rubbing alcohol to their cleaner for an even better clean. I never have that on hand and I've found this mixture to be super effective on it's own. However, if you have areas or spots on your mirrors or windows that don't seem to come clean, add ⅛ cup rubbing alcohol to this recipe and it should get those stubborn spots!
Is DIY Glass and Mirror Cleaner Natural and Healthy?
This recipe is made from 3 simple, natural ingredients:
Distilled water - Simply water that has been boiled, evaporated and been condensed into liquid again. This process removes any contaminants and impurities. Using distilled water in homemade products extends their shelf life, since essentially there is no bacteria present to spoil the other ingredients.
White vinegar - In my DIY all-purpose cleaner I mentioned how I really don't like the vinegar smell in cleaners, but I've made an exception with this recipe. Why? It really works and is necessary for the recipe. White vinegar is made by fermenting grain alcohol, and in the end, it's composed of water and acetic acid, both natural, non-toxic ingredients.
Cornstarch - I know... you're thinking, "Whaaaaat... cornstarch in a glass cleaner?" Please believe me- it's the secret ingredient that will leave you with a streak-free mirror or a streak-free window! It is a powder extracted from corn kernels. The starch is found in the endosperm which is in the center of the corn kernel.
Why Use Ammonia Free Glass Cleaner?
Many commercial glass cleaners contain ammonia since it evaporates quickly, leaving no residue on the surface. However, ammonia is known to be irritating to humans. In low concentrations it can cause coughing and shortness of breath, as well as irritation to the nose and throat. In higher concentrations it can lead to burning of the eyes, nose, throat and lungs, possibly resulting in blindness, damage to the lungs or even death.
Using traditional glass cleaners responsibly won't have these severe consequences, but I'd rather have peace of mind by making my own DIY recipes that don't involve anything as harsh as this.
Is DIY Glass Cleaner Safe on Tinted Windows?
Yes! Yet another reason not to use cleaners with ammonia is that they can cause peeling and fading of the window tint. The vinegar in this homemade window cleaner is tough enough to clean the window, yet gentle enough to keep the tinting in tact! If you are concerned, you can always test a small area with the cleaner first, to ensure no damage occurs.
Why Are There No Essential Oils?
Essential oils are amazing and can add cleaning power and a natural scent to DIY cleaning products. They just don't go well on glass and mirrors, in my experience. Imagine getting some olive oil onto a mirror and trying to clean it off- it will just spread around! Not ideal, so I leave essential oils out of this recipe.
What Kind of Spray Bottle Should I Use?
A glass bottle or container is ideal when making DIY products at home. They last the longest and don't leach chemicals into your products as plastic containers would. Glass spray bottles are more of an investment up front, but will last much longer and are of higher quality.
Cost of DIY Glass and Mirror Cleaner
Distilled Water - I use President’s Choice Distilled Water 4L - $1.88 (at Real Canadian Superstore). I use 1½ cups or 0.35 L in this simple recipe. 4L ÷ 0.35L = 11.43. So I use 1/11.43 of the 4L jug. $1.88 ÷ 11.43 = $0.16
White vinegar - So cheap. 1L - $1.89 (on Amazon.ca). I use 3 tablespoon or 0.04 L in this recipe. 1L ÷ 0.04 L = 25. So I use 1/25 of the 1L jug. $1.89 ÷ 25 = $0.08
Cornstarch - 510 grams - $4.79 (on Amazon.ca). I use 2¼ teaspoon or 5.9 grams. 510g ÷ 5.9g = 86. So I use 1/86 of the package. $4.70 ÷ 86 = $0.06
$0.16 + $0.08 + $0.06
TOTAL $0.31 CAN = $0.25 USD
This is the cost for a bottle a little under 2 cups!
Compare that to the $4.00 bottle of Windex which contains a little over 3 cups! Insane, right?
Tools You May Need
DIY Glass and Mirror Cleaner Ingredients
1½ cups distilled water
3 tablespoon white vinegar
2¼ teaspoon cornstarch
How to Make Glass and Mirror Cleaner
First thing, fill your 16 oz glass spray bottle, using the funnel (or a very steady hand, which I do not have!), with water. Then add white vinegar and cornstarch.
Shake well. Yes, it's that easy!
How to Use DIY Glass and Mirror Cleaner
Shake well before each use, as the cornstarch will settle to the bottom. Make sure the cornstarch is well mixed with the water and vinegar or it may clog your spray nozzle! Spray onto mirror, window or any glass surface and wipe with paper towels or a cloth in a circular motion (apparently, a flat-weave microfiber cloth is one of your best options, although I haven't tried it. I use regular microfiber or paper towels).
It will look streaky at first, but KEEP WIPING.
After about a minute you'll be left with only the sparkly surface of your bathroom mirror. It's magic.
How Long Does DIY Glass Cleaner Last?
All the ingredients in this recipe have a very long shelf life. As long as they aren't contaminated, this cleaner would last for at least a year. But, trust me, you'll use it up before then. You'll become addicted to that streak-free shine without any water spots or toothpaste bits, you'll clean glass and mirrors more than you ever did before.
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- 1½ cups distilled water
- 3 tablespoon white vinegar
- 2¼ teaspoon cornstarch
- 16 oz glass spray bottle
- Pour your water into a 16 oz (2 cups) glass spray bottle, using the funnel or a steady hand. Then add white vinegar and cornstarch.
- Shake well before each use, as the cornstarch will settle to the bottom. Spray onto mirror, window or any glass surface and wipe with paper towels or a cloth until the surface is streak-free and sparkling!
This cleaner has a shelf life of at least 1 year.