When you think of rubbing alcohol the first thing that comes to mind probably isn’t cleaning. You typically think of it as something you find in a first aid kit. However, rubbing alcohol has many great cleaning applications. The main reason it’s such a great cleaner is that it’s a disinfectant, so it kills bacteria on contact. It dries quickly, greatly reduces streaking, and can lift up grease and dirt. The one rule to remember is to keep it away from an open heat source or flame because it is flammable.

cleaning counter top

DIY Disinfectant

When cold and flu season rolls around, you don’t want that bacteria lingering around the house. This is when a DIY disinfectant really comes in handy. You can make one with simple rubbing alcohol and water. Just get yourself a clean spray bottle and add 1 cup of plain water and 1 cup of rubbing alcohol. If you want to up the antibacterial properties, you can add in about 20 to 30 drops of a powerful essential oil like lavender or tea tree, both have antiviral and antibacterial properties. Give the bottle a good shake then just spray it on the affected surfaces, points-of-contact, toilets, sinks, whatever it is that needs disinfecting. Let it sit for a couple of minutes, which is called dwell time, very important for killing bacteria. Then give it a wipe and you’re done.

cleaning blinds

Cleaning Blinds

If you have horizontal or vertical blinds, rubbing alcohol can help you clean them very quickly. Overtime blinds get dusty and a little bit dirty but this a simple, quick fix. Just put plain rubbing alcohol in a spray bottle or a little spritzer. Then get yourself an old sports sock, flip it inside out, stick your hand in so you make a little sock puppet. Close your blinds so they lay flat and give them a good spray with rubbing alcohol. Working section by section, about 2-3 slats at a time, take the sock, wrap it around the slat, and gently pull it to the side. The rubbing alcohol helps loosen up dirt and dust and it makes light work of cleaning.

electronics screen

Screen Cleaner

Take a good look at your cell phone screen. Is it a bit grimy and greasy? Think about it, you put it by your ear which produces wax, it’s on your face which has oils and makeup, you touch it with dirty hands and all this ends up all over your phone. So every now and then, you really do need to give it a good cleaning. This will not only get that grimy stuff off but the bacteria that like to live on there. To clean simply mix up equal parts of water and rubbing alcohol and spray it onto a flat weave microfiber cloth. Then, remove the case, if you have one, and give your phone a good wipe down. You can just do the S pattern from the top to the bottom on both sides. You can even use this to clean your phone case. It’ll help lift up any dirt or discoloration as well.

clean chrome faucet

Chrome Cleaner

What is more frustrating than trying to get your chrome fixtures shiny and clean only to end up with them being streaky?  Get yourself some rubbing alcohol and put it on a soft cloth like an all-purpose microfiber cloth and start to wipe your chrome fixtures. The rubbing alcohol will help remove any light water spots, but the best part is that it’ll polish it up beautifully. The other great thing is that it will help disinfect your fixture.

eye glasses

Eyeglasses Cleaner

Rather than paying an exorbitant amount of money for glasses cleaner, you can just make your own. Get yourself a little spray bottle and fill it 3/4 the way full with rubbing alcohol. Then fill the rest up with plain water and to that, you’re going to add a drop of dish soap (about a half a pinky nail size drop). Take the bottle and just roll it gently in your hands, that way you can disperse everything without creating bubbles. Spray your glasses on either side of the lens with the solution and wipe it off with a flat microfiber cloth, something that either came in your glasses case or a Maker’s glass and electronics cleaning cloth.

diy hand sanitizer

Hand Sanitizer

If you’re into the idea of hand sanitizer but you’re not into the idea of hand sanitizer with triclosan, you might want to consider making your own DIY hand sanitizer, which is surprisingly easy to do. Go to the drugstore and find yourself pure aloe vera gel, not the green stuff. Get yourself a clean squeeze bottle and to it add 1 part rubbing alcohol, 2 parts aloe vera gel, a tablespoon of a nourishing oil like sweet almond oil or vitamin E oil, 15 drops of your favorite essential oil so it smells nice. Give it a quick shake and you’re done. This can go in your purse, your car, your diaper bag or just about anywhere that you would normally keep your hand sanitizer.

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  1. I’m very confused. I was about to use your disinfectant spray recipe but a 50/50 dilution is too much and makes the rubbing alcohol infective! ๐Ÿ™ everything I am reading from reliable sources says you don’t want it diluted below 60% alcohol. If you’ve updated, please fix the recipes!

  2. If you add anything to 70% alcohol you just cancelled its ability to handle the viruses you should be most concerned about. If you want to add alot if aloe etc for your hand sanitizers you need to purchase 90%+ alcohol which is available but those additives the more you use bring down the alcohol %. Probably some wonder why they emphasize soap over a strong hand sanitizer? Doesn’t make sense does it,. Google it and you will be surprised with the answer.

  3. Definitely do not use rubbing alcohol on any electronic screens or glasses unless your intention is to remove the special coating the manufacturers added. Phones, for example, usually have a oleophobic coating to repel oily smudges. Glasses tend to have anti-reflective coating or whatever else you purchased them with.

  4. when you recommend rubbing alcohol, what is the percentage of the alcohol or the concentration? ie 90%, 3%, etc. Big difference when you go to mix the solution

  5. Rubbing alcohol

    Since many newer phones have a protective coating, rubbing alcohol can wear it away quicker over time, causing your phone to be more prone to scratches. Make sure to check for alcohol in product ingredients on any “safe to use” phone screen cleaners. Apple says to avoid alcohol when cleaning its devices.

  6. Hey, rubbing alcohol is the best fรผr removing stickers and labels from glass and plastic bottles or school bags or…. I love it.

  7. Melissa,

    Love, love your videos! Youโ€™ve mentioned that you make a majority of your own cleaners. What other cleaners do you still purchase and what do you use them for?


  8. When I was in college, one of the things they used to clean all the glass ware in the chemistry lab was rubbing alcohol. I took this cleaning tip to heart and have used it for years now at home. Rubbing Alcohol is my FAVORITE glass/window cleaner. It cleans well and dries almost instantly, leaving behind a streak free finish….especially great on mirrors. I also use it on my stainless appliances and faucets. Shines them so beautifully. I keep a spray bottle of it to sanitize remotes, light switches, door knobs, and will even spray it all over my toilet as a final step when I clean it to disinfect it. I’ve used it on my eye glasses and TV, PC and smartphone screens. I’ve even sprayed it directly on my hands and let air dry after cleaning up behind a sick child. I can’t say enough good things about it.

  9. Which is better….the rubbing alcohol or vinegar? I’ve seen you do videos for both and they seem to both do the same things…. ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. 1 tsp Dawn
    1 TBSP Rubbing Alcohol
    1/2 Gallon hot/warm water
    pour over walkways they won’t refreeze

    Have not tried but will be doing in the AM when I can see outside!!

    • I saw a good recipe for cleaning makeup brushes and have used this with success. Take your shampoo and olive oil and mix 2:1 in your hand , roll bristles back and forth in the mixture in your palm….keep the brush bristles down so the water doesnโ€™t go up the handle as you wash and rinse until the bristles come clean. Rinse and repeat until the water comes clean. Works like a champ. Dry on a rolled up towel with handle higher than the bristles.

    • You can use a bit of Palmolive dish soap (or Dawn- or any other mild dish soap) and lukewarm water for your brushes. Just a drop does the job. Baby shampoo works, too. โ˜บ

  11. These are some great uses for rubbing alcohol, especially the idea to use them for glasses and phones. It can be so difficult to get glass looking really clean because every smudge stands out. Rubbing alcohol is a secret weapon in the world of cleaning for sure.


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