No-Streak Homemade Window Cleaner

The information provided in this post is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as medical advice.
It is not a substitute for your doctor's care plan or advice.

Homemade Window Cleaner

Our environment is filled with toxins and one of the biggest offenders in the toxin department is household cleaners.  So I've been working for awhile to get and keep as many toxins as possible out of our home.

I make and use homemade foaming soap, a natural dishwasher rinse aid, homemade “soft scrub” and even soap nuts instead of laundry detergent.

Today I am going to share with you one of my most favorite non toxic Home Care Products – Homemade Glass Cleaner.

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.

In fact, most of them are lickety-split.

So even uber busy folk can do this and not drive themselves crazy.

This Homemade Glass Cleaner Recipe is a case in point.  It's simple.

Chemical Sensitivity

Since my childhood, I have been plagued with chemical sensitivities.

Truthfully, I've always been sensitive to a lot of things, but some chemical smells (think “off-gassing”) and artificial fragrances are one of the worst.

For as long as I can remember, I would get light-headed and feel “woozy” just walking down the detergent and house cleaner aisles at the grocery store, or walking through the perfume section in a department store.

Even walking outside when people are running their dryers bothers me.  The smell of the VOCs in the dryer sheets is just terrible (and terrible for you).

So–for a long time now, I have shunned the use of commercial home care products.

But mainly I was trying to get by with only vinegar and water.  But sometimes you need something more.

Anyway, even if these chemicals don't make you feel bad, there is a lot of evidence that they aren't healthy, so it's a good idea to do what you can to remove them from your environment as much as possible.

Either way, making your own DIY Glass Cleaner is a breeze.

Benefits of Making Your Own Homemade Glass Cleaner:

1.  Get toxins out of your home and your life

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

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

2.  Save Money

You can make your own cleaner for way less money than you would spend on a commercial cleaner.  Even if not, I would still prefer to make my own for the other benefits.  See the end of this post to see how much you can save.

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.  Let's do what ever we can, within reason, to help clean things up for us and for future generations.  Every time you can use a toxin free product over a toxin laden one, you help the environment.

Now, 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 would put some plain vinegar on a piece of newspaper and wipe it all over the mirror.

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

But in a pinch, it works well.

This cleaner, however, is great.  I found it on a number of sites all over the internet and I must say, it is a real winner.
My son likes to take our spray bottle all over the house and clean all the windows and mirrors –it helps to have a bottle with a blue top (his favorite color!)

This cleaner does contain isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol, which some people may wish to avoid, but I don't have a problem with.  I'd love to hear your thoughts on that….and I did find another promising recipe that costs quite a bit more money to make and has no isopropyl alcohol.  Maybe I'll give it a whirl!

By the way, I discovered this recipe on several sites, but I suspect that the originator of the recipe is Crunchy Betty. She's got some pretty cool DIY stuff on her blog besides just glass cleaners :).

By the way, any of the following links may be affiliate links. If you click on them and make a purchase, I might make a commission. Your support is much appreciated and helps keep this free resource up and running.

Homemade Window Cleaner

What Does the Cornstarch Do?

You're wondering that too, aren't you?

I sure was.

Well, this update is just in today (Sept. 13, 2013) from a reader who is “in the know.”  Here is her answer:

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!

How much can you save using homemade window cleaner?

A ton.

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

Rubbing Alcohol:  Based on current Rite Aid pricing (I called :-)!) $.25 for 1/4 cup

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

Cost of a popular brand on the market? $3.43 on Amazon.  I had to do some fancy math to get the cost per ounce, but this is what it costs for 2 1/2 cups (20 oz).  So you save over 90%!

How Can You Use Homemade Window Cleaner?

Glass Appliances
Stainless Steel
Marble (thanks to a reader, I've found out that you shouldn't use vinegar on marble as it can cause it to corrode.)

I hope this gets you motivated to:

– Save Money

Reduce Toxins

– Improve Your Family's Health

– Clean Your Windows :-)!

Let me know what you think of this homemade window cleaner recipe!

More DIY Recipes for You and Your Home from this site:

Natural Dishwasher Rinse Aid
Homemade Foaming Soap
DIY Shower Cleaner
Best DIY Fruit Fly Trap
Easiest DIY Weed Killer

And for a whole boatload of DIY Cleaning Recipes, Heather from Mommypotamus has this great book:

DY Cleaning Book - Mommypotamus

What do you use to clean your mirrors and windows?

These comments do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Whole New Mom, LLC.


    Speak Your Mind


  1. Works great!. I can’t believe it. I’m on my 2nd bottle now. I omitted the fragrance. Essential oil is expensive. Since this is the only use I have for them,” they are not essential for me. I don’t mind the vinegar odor.

  2. Please, can I sell this produt in the market after producing it?

  3. Tina Karima says:

    I tried it too, but I used etanol instead of the isopropyl. It worked perfectly!

  4. jale darian says:

    hi.I am jale from iran.I made your formula to clean windows glass-doors-walls……and result was perfect.thank you very much.

  5. Vinegar may react unpleasantly over time with aluminum unless its sealed with something, also everclear may be used in place of Isopropyl, but unfortunately its about $20 for 750ml. This is worth a glance before you go atomizing Isopropyl around your face.

  6. Love it when a posting promises everything and turns out to be true. Thank you for sharing. Now to see what else you have posted.

  7. I’ve tried other recipes and they’ve all streaked 🙁 I just made yours and it works great, no streaks!! Thank you!

  8. Ran out of commercial glass cleaner, googled homemade window cleaner and this came up. Gave it a shot, used lemongrass oil. At first it’s just a smeary mess all over the window, but it dries quickly. After it dries it leaves a cloudy mess on the windows. I might eliminate the cornstarch and try again. After the glass I used it on window sills, appliance faces, and door frames. Worked nicely for those, I was impressed.

  9. For the non-technicals, saving over 90% means you’re paying almost 9 times the price for the store bought!! thanks for sharing i’m excited to try this

  10. can this be used as an all purpose cleaner?
    where isn’t it safe to use (ex; wood, granite, appliances)?
    thank you

    • I haven’t looked at the components to see about their safety on these other surfaces. Do you have access to that info?

    • I’ve been using it around the kitchen, stainless appliances, Corian counter, synthetic cabinets, instead of the vinegar/water mixture I’ve used for years, which left streaks. It works great and I’m amazed at how shiny the glass vases & windows are. I wouldn’t use any of this on wood so i can’t recommend that.

  11. I just made this and used it… Love It!!!! and the lesson on why to use cornstarch…..
    Thank you Whole New Mom, LLC.

  12. cornstarch gives it the shine without the streaks.. shabking it before use is the key!

  13. Melinda Kirkpatrick says:

    I make mine with 1/4 cup of vinegar, 1/4 cup of alcohol and a tablespoon of Dawn dish liquid. Nice streak free mirrors and windows! I also use 3 cups of warm vinegar 1/2 cup of Dawn 1/2 cup of water as a multipurpose cleaner. Try 2 cups of Dawn and 3 cups of vinegar, spray in showers and tubs, leave for 20 minutes, wipe with the rough side of the sponge and rinse with warm water….. Soap scum is gone!

  14. I have used vodka in place of rubbing alcohol to clean glass and in other DIY recipes to help with evaporation and as a germ killer. I am not drinking it; so I buy the super cheap stuff. It works great.

  15. Hi, instead of vinegar, can I use lemon rather? If so, how much should I add? Thanks

  16. Hi, I just did a trial without the cornstarch or oils and my mirrors are clean again…thanks so much. I’ll empty my bottle of blue stuff and make a batch in the spray bottle.

  17. This worked great. I had to whisk the corn starch really well into the liquids to get rid of the lumps! I have used other home-made glass cleaners and found they became smelly if they weren’t used up quickly. I’m hoping this will stay nice and fresh for several months as I’m not one to do a lot of cleaning. I used a micro-fibre cloth and newspaper. I found the newspaper did the job much more quickly than the micro-fibre cloth.

  18. The comment about not using vinegar on marble reminded me to share this: Don’t use any chlorine product on stainless steel. It stains the SS irreparably. In the Operating Room we are surrounded by stainless steel……but no chlorine cleaning products. Believe this.

  19. Is this safe for tinted windows?

  20. Hi! Can we use corn flour replace with corn starch? I live in Australia and cannot find corn ‘starch’ in anywhere, I know that corn flour can be used as substitute for corn starch for cooking, but not sure for cleaning.. Thanks!!

    • I think that if it’s more than just the starch it wouldn’t be a good idea. Can you try another starch? Thanks!

    • Corn starch and cornflour are the same thing…

      • I actually do not think so. Corn meal is coarsely ground corn and corn flour is finely ground corn. Thanks!

        • I didn’t say corn MEAL..I said corn STARCH and corn FLOUR are the same thing. Which is what the lady from Aussie was asking..The Americans say corn starch and the Brits say corn flour, hence her confusion.

          • I know that you didn’t say that. I just added it to the mix. In my dictionary corn flour is one thing and corn starch is another. I can see the issue for those in the UK. I have an Irish heritage but didn’t remember or know about that. Sorry for the confusion. I guess when we’re communicating across borders such things are expected to happen.

        • I’ve made this recipe with corn flour as corn starch is not available in Egypt and it just was awesome
          Go ahead and use corn flour koko and you won’t regret it
          Thanks a lot dear Adrienne for all the amazing recipes you are sharing