START A PETITION 27,000,000 members: the world's largest community for good

We Tested It: Black Tea Glass Cleaner

We Tested It: Black Tea Glass Cleaner

Do-it-yourself cleaning and cosmetics have kind of become my obsession. I think about how I used to slap down my cold hard cash for all those creepy chemicals, those toxins just sitting under my sink, with their smells that seemed to permeate my every pore. I remember the artificial aqua, the glowing neon green, such unnaturally bright colors. And Iíll never forget that cloying, eye-watering suffocation that came from cleaning a too-tiny bathroom with too many kinds of soaps and powders and pastes and bleaches. Oof.

I think back to those days and I canít help but smile. Because now, Iím spending mere pennies and my cleansers and cosmetics are good enough to eat Ė literally! And my house is just as clean as ever and my body is just as beautiful, and gosh, everything is so much more pleasant.

So itís kind of become a game for me, to find and test new ways of turning healthy wholesome food-based items into awesome and powerful multipurpose players in my cleaning and grooming adventures. Vinegar is an old favorite, an actor in everything from my countertop cleanser to†my laundry detergent to my hair conditioner. And baking soda is invaluable. It makes appearances in†my deodorant,†my toothpaste, and itís†all I use these days for shampoo.

But thatís nothing revolutionary. Any kitchen chemist worth their salt has seen these ingredients in action. What about life beyond†vinegar and†baking soda? What about that?

What about . . . tea? Super cheap and slightly acidic, tannin-rich tea just might be the next big untapped oil well in the game of†cleaning my Portland home. Itís all natural. Itís available everywhere. And best of all, itís effective!

Black tea is awesome in about a million and one ways, not the least of which is that it tastes great and keeps me going strong, but it also boasts an†impressive list of DIY prowess. For this particular project, Iíve put it to the test as a†glass and mirror cleaner.

I steeped an extra-strong glass of simple black tea (I used Earl Grey, my favorite) – 3 bags in an 8-oz glass. I let it steep and cool for an hour to really draw out all those tannins. Then I transferred the brew to a spray bottle (ex-chemical cleaner bottles, well washed of course, work well for this), and put it to work on the dirtiest window in my house.

Dog noses and kiddie fingers have pressed at this window for months. Perhaps that says something about my cleaning skills, but letís just say it was for science. On the right hand pane I used plain water and scrubbed with newspaper (newspaper leaves less streaking than rags, and can still be recycled when youíre through). On the left I used tea.


Need I say more? I think the results speak for themselves!

Economical, easy, edible, and efficient; black tea brings it on all four counts. Give it a try, and tell me what you think!

By Sayward Rebhal,†Roofing Networx

Sayward Rebhal of†Bonzai Aphrodite writes for Networx.†Get home & garden ideas†like this on Networx.

We Tested It: Cleaning the House with Toothpaste
49 Uses for Tea
Homemade Dish Soap Put to the Test

Read more: Eco-friendly tips, Green, Home, Non-Toxic Cleaning, , ,

have you shared this story yet?

go ahead, give it a little love

Selections from Networx empowers people to make educated, economical and Earth-friendly renovation and home repair choices. We are a community of homeowners, renters and contractors who are committed to sharing home improvement expertise and experience.


+ add your own
4:19PM PDT on Jul 28, 2014

I love tea. The smell is especially fine. Cleaning with Tea would mean the smell would remain longer. I like that idea.

1:22AM PDT on May 26, 2014


2:31PM PDT on May 14, 2014

Interesting, will have to remember it, forwarded

6:34AM PDT on May 13, 2014


3:38AM PDT on May 9, 2014

Thank you :)

1:09AM PDT on May 6, 2014

Good idea thanks.

5:28PM PDT on May 5, 2014


3:52AM PDT on May 5, 2014


8:19PM PDT on May 4, 2014

Thank you!

3:57AM PDT on May 4, 2014

Thanks for sharing.

add your comment

Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

people are talking

If you love your dog for his or her individuality and not for how cool it makes you feel, then you c…

I'll just repeat Natasha .S's Comment : FANTASTIC! This is the term all animal sadists shoul…

@ Darlene: You know all of that crowing you see from Anti-Vax sites like "Natural News", "Mercola", …

Gene J - you ask "why would anyone want anything other than a dog person - unconditional love, unbr…

Right now we are doing a petition to REMOVE the USDA as oversight for our nation's animals. They mus…


Select names from your address book   |   Help

We hate spam. We do not sell or share the email addresses you provide.