Make your own Orange Oil

November 21, 2015 , In: Cleaning Products, DIY , With: No Comments
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2015-10-23 13.07.23In the search for recipes for home cleaners, I find that most have a lot of vinegar, and I REALLY don’t like the smell of vinegar. And I want something more grease-busting for a cleaner, and love using orange oil.

For the science-inclined, orange peels contain Limonene, which is a solvent which breaks down oils, and is an effective cleaning agent. However, because it breaks down oils, it can also be a mild skin irritant, so make sure you wash it off. So, how do you make this yourself?

Step 1: Get orange peels

Scoop out the flesh of a bunch of oranges (or you could, you know, eat it), and cut the peels into pieces. I used about 3-4 oranges for this. Put the peels into the handy dandy food processor, and blend them down to a fine pulp.

Step 2: Put them in a jar

The colour after 1 day of shaking

The colour after 1 day of shaking

Scoop the orange peel pulp into a mason jar, and cover the pulp with grain alcohol, or rubbing alcohol (some recipes call for vodka, but do you really want to waste 2 CUPS of vodka on this? Yeah, me neither). Put on the lid and shake the crap out of it. Then put it away somewhere safe, and give it a really good shaking every day. After 1-2 weeks the liquid will be really really orange.

Step 3: Remove the pulp

The colour after 2 weeks

The colour after 2 weeks

Strain off the pulp, and keep the liquid. Leave the liquid in the jar with no lid, and let the alcohol evaporate off. Once about 1/3-1/2 of the liquid has evaporated, the oil will be pretty concentrated, and ready to use.

Because it’s mostly alcohol and solvent, it should keep for a pretty long time, and you can use it in all sorts of cleaning products, and you will have a great orange smell to your house!

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