Mold and Mildew Eliminator: Vinegar with Essential Oils

I live in the humid Hudson Valley in New York, and I’ll never forget one of my first summers here when a green-like mildew grew inside of closets and over and inside of shoes. Being sensitive to mold I was very alarmed that the thick humidity would make such colonies flourish in my bedroom.

I have a number of tricks up my sleeve to kill mildew and mold, three of which are written about in 3 Ways to Kill Mold Naturally. These three are tea tree oil, vinegar, and grapefruit seed extract. Grapefruit seed extract is good for those who want no odor for the few days after spraying the mildew. I’ve used them all very successfully.

I’d like to add more about vinegar and essential oils. Studies by Heinz and others have shown that straight household white distilled vinegar kills 82 percent of mold when used straight up. (This means straight 7 percent acid solution from a bottle of vinegar that you buy in the supermarket.) This is a very good kill rate. And you can’t beat the price.

The problem is that many people write to me saying that they hate the smell of vinegar. What to do? I’ve been experimenting with adding a few drops of essential oil to straight white distilled vinegar and the results for smell are remarkable and unexpected. The essential oils seem to mellow out the bite of the smell of vinegar, leaving a vibrant essence that is mostly the smell of the essential oil with a bit of a sharp almost resinous touch, which would be the transformed vinegar.

A boon is that essential oils are very antimicrobial and will work to kill mold, too.

To try this yourself, place about 1/2 cup straight white distilled vinegar in a spray bottle. Add about 10 drops of essential oil, to start, shake, and smell. How do you like it? Do you need more essential oil? Just make sure not to add more than 15 drops of oil as it can be strong. I personally love lavender in this.

Spray this concoction directly on mold and mildew. Don’t rinse. The smell will dissipate.

Note: Make sure to avoid your eyes!

71 comments

Elena Poensgen
Elena Poensgen12 months ago

Thank you

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Elena Poensgen
Elena Poensgen12 months ago

Thank you

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Bryna Pizzo
Bryna Pizzo3 years ago

Thank you for the important news and all of the excellent comments. I'm terribly allergic to mold.

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Virginia C.
Virginia C3 years ago

You should all know that using BLEACH on mold {certain kinds of mold will create an invisible gas that will scar your lungs permanently w/o any symptoms!! } This almost killed me, after 2 years of every test known to man the Red Cross online figured it out and sent me a paper telling all about this. They say wash with a 50/50 solution {use mask and gloves} and then after dried, spray a thin layer of the vinegar on the area and let it air dry cuz the acid in the vinegar kleeps it from coming back as fast.. My entire body is infiltrated and there is no way to remove it. I had horrific headaches and could not stand, had to crawl, couldn't even stand up. Constant hospital visits to knock me out completely, could keep nothing in my stomach, not even water, lost 40 lbs in 1 month. I finally got to the point that I seriously considered ending my life as the only way to end my pain----I used BLEACH before knowing any better, almost 2 years of constant demerol, every narc known to man headaches that had me putting a gun in my mouth several times the Red Cross online contacted me, they said they care called TMJ headaches caused by this gas/mold/bleach combo.....had to get out of house permanently fast and it took 2 weeks form the headaches to stop after leaving.

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Val M.
Val M3 years ago

Sorry - I meant lavender, not calendar! Must be getting ahead of myself and thinking of New Year!

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Val M.
Val M3 years ago

I prefer the smell of vinegar to that of bleach! Good tip for including calendar though - thanks!

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Azaima A.
Azaima A4 years ago

genius

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Spencer Young
Spencer Young4 years ago

thanks for these useful tips

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Teresa Wlosowicz
Teresa W4 years ago

very interesting, thank you

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Chetna P.
Chetna P4 years ago

Thanks Lori H. I will be trying that!

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