We all know there are things that just need a good scrubbing or scouring sometimes. This is an alternative to the harsh scouring powders that contain bleach (Comet, Ajax, etc.). It's simply blue Dawn dish soap and baking soda. Honestly, there aren't too many things that I haven't used Dawn and baking soda to clean. There will be more of those in later posts, but for now, we'll start with this.
In order to make your own scouring alternative, using a damp sponge or soft cloth. Squirt a little Dawn on the sponge or cloth, then sprinkle with baking soda and scrub the surface. Scrub as you would with a scouring powder, then rinse thoroughly with water.
This works great for things like the bath tub, shower tiles, kitchen sink, counter tops, and I have even used it as cleaner to get bug splats off the front of my car without scratching the paint. I have been told that it is also acceptable for cleaning flat-topped stoves, though I have not tried it myself, so use at your own risk.
While it will not necessarily bleach stains, it will remove any substances that are stuck on and does a great job of dissolving oils and soap scum left behind in showers. I like to use it on my stovetop to get the tough, baked-on spills left after cooking.
It leaves a fresh, clean scent. It is nontoxic. It's "green." It won't hurt septic systems. It's readily available whenever you need it, and it's economical. It also cleans great, and is nowhere near as expensive as other scouring powders!