No-Streak Homemade Window Cleaner

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This No Streak Homemade Window Cleaner (known on the internet as Alis super easy to make, is much safer than a lot of the store-bought options, and leaves your windows and mirrors streak-free.

Plus it costs almost nothing to make, so it’s easy on the budget too.

homemade window cleaner in spray bottle in kitchen

I personally think that it is so important to get Home Care and Personal Care products that are toxin-free so that we, our families, and our world can be a lot more healthy.

Plus, you can save a TON of money by making these things yourself.

And it doesn’t have to take a TON of time.

making homemade window cleaner
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Benefits of Making Your Own Homemade Glass Cleaner:

1.  Reduce Toxins In Your Home

Do you really want these things in your home?

propylene glycol
2 Hexoxyethanol
Ammonium Hydroxide
Mirapol Surf S-210
Viden EGM
Sodium C14-17 Sec-Alkyl Sulfonat
Fragrance Palette (all kind of stuff in there….artificial fragrances are not healthy)
Liquitint Sky Blue Dye

Ick.

Yes, that’s what is in one of the more popular glass cleaners on the market.

Even if those chemicals don’t make you feel bad, there’s a lot of evidence that they aren’t healthy, so it’s a good idea to do what you can to remove toxins from your environment as much as possible.

2.  Save Money

You can make your own cleaner for way less money than you’d spend on a commercial cleaner.  Even if it’s not cheaper, I’d still prefer to make my own for the other benefits.

3.  Clean Up the Environment

Do you really want to add these toxins to our already toxically overloaded environment?  I am convinced that one of the main problems regarding the onslaught of autism, auto-immune disorders and cancer is the prevalence of toxins in our world. Every time you can use a toxin-free product over a toxin laden one, you help the environment.

I used to use just plain vinegar to clean our mirrors and glass.  Truth be told, we didn’t really clean our windows often.  Just didn’t really think about it.

We’d put some plain vinegar on a piece of newspaper and wipe it all over the mirror.

It worked OK, but it did leave some streaks that were a little hard to get off.

This cleaner, however, is great.  I found it on a number of sites all over the internet (not sure who created it, but it’s called Alvin Corn) and I must say, it’s a real winner.

This cleaner does contain isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol, which some people may wish to avoid, but you can use vodka instead. It’ll just cost more that way.

What’s the Purpose of the Cornstarch?

One of the things you’ll notice in this formula, is that it has cornstarch in it.

Wondering what it’s doing in there? Me too…

Here’s what one reader shared with me:

On a microscopic level, glass is not perfectly smooth. When you spray water on it, the water molecules get caught in the pits on the glass surface. Water also clings to itself through hydrogen bonding – the hydrogen atoms from two molecules cling together. Water stuck in the glass + water stuck to more water = streaking. Cornstarch (or dish soap or oil-even a couple drops of essential oil) disrupts the hydrogen bonding, thus preventing streaks!

Cool beans! A DIY house cleaning recipe and science lesson in one!

cleaning window with homemade glass cleaner

How Much Can You Save?

A ton.

Vinegar: costs about $.59 for 32 ounces at Aldi. So even if we double the price, let’s say it costs $.04

Rubbing Alcohol:  Based on current Rite Aid pricing –  $.25 for 1/4 cup

Cornstarch:  A local Midwest grocery chain has it for $1.39 right now.  If the tablespoon per pound info I got is correct, then the cost for 1 tablespoon is about $.04.

Water:  I am just going to call this $0.00.  The current approximate cost per gallon in my city is $.002 per gallon :-).

So – it costs a total of $.33 to make 2 1/2 cups of Glass Cleaner.

How To Use

Windows
Mirrors
Glass Appliances
Stainless Steel
Chrome
Aluminum
Ceramic
Plastic
Do NOT use this on marble or coated eyeglasses, however!

homemade window cleaner on kitchen counter

Recipe Notes

– Shake well before using since the cornstarch might clog up your spray nozzle otherwise.

– Allergic to corn?  I’m sure other starches like tapioca or arrowroot will work as well.

What Cloth to Use? You can use microfiber cloths or rags to wipe your surfaces clean.  I prefer these options or newspaper to paper towels since paper towels leave lint and are more wasteful.
(Note – microfiber is plastic so I’m not really a complete fan, though it does tend to clean pretty well. A helpful reader commented that rags work pretty well as long as you don’t use fabric softener on them (which, by the way, typically has lots of toxins in it like artificial fragrance, so here’s another reason not to use it!)

Label your bottle so as you make more and more non-toxic home cleaners you will know what is what :-). This handy dandy Chalkboard Contact Paper is great for label making.

Color It: Add natural food coloring to the bottle so kids will know it’s not water.  Beet juice (from canned beets) is one inexpensive natural color or you could drop a bit of powdered beet juice in as well.

Prevent Streaking: Some readers have had streaking issues. It’s possible this is from impure essential oils or hard water. If you have streaking issues, please do share in the comments what brand of essential oils you used and if you have hard water. I recommend only using pure essential oils even for house cleaning because even though it’s “just” for cleaning, you still are breathing in oils (and whatever “else” might be in the oils. Another option is to leave out the cornstarch and see how that works.

– Use Two Cloths

To avoid streaking, use two cloths–one to wash and one very dry cloth to dry.

– Eyeglass Warning: You can use this Homemade Glass Cleaner on your eyeglasses, but only if they are plain glass. If they are coated, avoid using this since alcohol will cause crazing (small surface cracks) in polycarbonate plastic. It can also cause the lens coating to deteriorate, resulting in less durable glasses that are easily scratched.

Avoid Marble: Do not use this cleaner on marble as it might damage it.

homemade window cleaner on kitchen countertop
homemade window cleaner in spray bottle in kitchen

Homemade Window Cleaner

4.94 from 16 votes
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Ingredients

Instructions

  • Combine everything in a spray bottle. (You can reuse the container you already have from your store bought glass cleaner.  I had to buy one at a dollar store since we haven't used glass cleaner in years :-)!)
  • Shake well to mix and shake well again before each use.
  • Spray onto glass surface and wipe clean.

Notes

– Shake well before using since the cornstarch might clog up your spray nozzle otherwise.
– Allergic to corn?  I’m sure other starches like tapioca or arrowroot will work as well.
What Cloth to Use? You can use microfiber cloths or rags to wipe your surfaces clean.  I prefer these options or newspaper to paper towels since paper towels leave lint and are more wasteful.
(Note – microfiber is plastic so I’m not really a complete fan, though it does tend to clean pretty well. A helpful reader commented that rags work pretty well as long as you don’t use fabric softener on them (which, by the way, typically has lots of toxins in it like artificial fragrance, so here’s another reason not to use it!)
Label your bottle so as you make more and more non-toxic home cleaners you will know what is what :-). This handy dandy Chalkboard Contact Paper is great for label making.
Color It: Add natural food coloring to the bottle so kids will know it’s not water.  Beet juice (from canned beets) is one inexpensive natural color or you could drop a bit of powdered beet juice in as well.
Prevent Streaking: Some readers have had streaking issues. It’s possible this is from impure essential oils or hard water. If you have streaking issues, please do share in the comments what brand of essential oils you used and if you have hard water. I recommend only using pure essential oils even for house cleaning because even though it’s “just” for cleaning, you still are breathing in oils (and whatever “else” might be in the oils. Another option is to leave out the cornstarch and see how that works.
– Use Two Cloths
To avoid streaking, use two cloths–one to wash and one very dry cloth to dry.
– Eyeglass Warning: You can use this Homemade Glass Cleaner on your eyeglasses, but only if they are plain glass. If they are coated, avoid using this since alcohol will cause crazing (small surface cracks) in polycarbonate plastic. It can also cause the lens coating to deteriorate, resulting in less durable glasses that are easily scratched.
Avoid Marble: Do not use this cleaner on marble as it might damage it.
Tried this recipe?Mention @wholenewmom or tag #wholenewmom!

More DIY Healthy Home Recipes:

Are you an avid frugal DIYer like me? Here are some more ideas of simple things you can make for your home to reduce your exposure to toxins and save money while you’re at it!

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Homemade Laundry Detergent

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The images in this post were updated in Jan 2020. For reference, here is a copy of one of the original images.

Trying to make your own home care products to save money and get the toxins out of your home? This No-Streak Homemade Window Cleaner works great and costs pennies to make. I love not using that blue-dyed stuff - better for you and better for the earth - better for your pocketbook.

What do you use to clean your mirrors and windows?

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525 Comments

  1. Great recipe although the corn starch does clog the sprayer. What do you use to clean bathroom floors?

    1. Hi Bernadette! I’m so glad you liked it. Did you shake the mixture well before using it? That should help with the clogging. That’s mentioned in the post but perhaps you missed it?

      What type of things are you trying to address in your bathroom and is it tile? Thanks for reading!