Vinegar is so versatile, we use it in our cooking, as a seasoning, to wash the pesticides off fruits and vegetables, and in almost all our DIY cleaning products too! From DIY glass cleaner to fabric softener, it is such a big part of our lives, we can’t do without it anymore. In this post, I’m going to recommend the top 2 best white vinegar brands that we have found.
But before that, let us take a brief look at vinegar and its benefits.
What is vinegar?
Vinegar is essentially a ‘sour’ liquid, with a low pH, so it is very acidic. It is made from the fermentation of ethanol (alcohol), and can be from any one of the following: grapes, rice, barley, apples, corn, sugarcane, kiwi, pineapple, honey, kombucha, and lots more.
The health benefits of apple cider vinegar has been covered in this previous article. We use it in the baths for my two eczema warriors, it works amazingly well in helping them detox and flush out toxins. But for cleaning purposes, we mostly use distilled white vinegar, unless we run out, then we’d fall back on Bragg’s apple cider vinegar.
Why Vinegar for Cleaning
From the years of eczema journey with two of my kids, I have learnt not to put on the skin whatever you would not put into your mouth. Anything that comes into contact with our skin has to be food grade standard, as the skin is our largest organ, and it is permeable to many substances.
Toxic chemicals are in most commercial cleaning products, even those labeled as ‘natural’ or ‘chemical-free’. Just take a look at the ingredients and you would see for yourself. So as we walk around the house, we sit and step on floor cleaners. Sitting at tables at home exposes us to whatever cleaners we use for tables and counter tops. The clothes we wear, the bed sheets we use, expose us to chemicals in laundry detergents and fabric softeners.
Young children tend to have this queer habit of breathing out onto the glass windows to watch the condensation form, and then rub it with their fingers, sometimes with their tongue… Urgh, you know what I mean. So they are in fact licking up the harmful toxins in your commercial glass cleaner!
Hence, we embarked on the quest to look for the most natural and chemical-free cleaner there is. And it turns out that vinegar is our answer! There are so many uses for it, basically because it has such a low pH, making it so acidic, that is why it can cut grime, remove scum buildup, get rid of tough and stubborn stains like wine, any drinks, etc.
Because of this discovery, which is in fact long overdue, considering how simple a solution it actually is, our household is now green, natural and chemical-free! Just these 3 basic ingredients and we can DIY almost any cleaner that you need in the house: vinegar, baking soda, and Dr Bronner’s Castile Soap.
So now let’s take a look at our recommended white vinegar brands:
This is the best white vinegar that we have found so far. It uses sun-ripened grain, dilute in water, to obtain an acidity of 5%. This makes it suitable as an effective cleaner (with further dilution of 50-50 with water) for many surfaces including glass, ceramic tiles, laminate flooring, stainless steel sinks and kitchen ware.
We also pour it straight from the glass bottle into the fabric softener compartment of our washer, to replace commercial products.
Diluted in water, with about 1 to 4 ratio of Heinz distilled white vinegar to water, we use it to soak our fresh produce, including many fruits like apples, grapes, and berries, and some vegetables that we eat raw. This would help get rid of pesticides that are found on the surface of the produce.
I feel safe using this Heinz distilled white vinegar everywhere in the home, from cleaning to cooking, as it is an established brand. Its beginning dates back to 1869. Long-standing companies like this would have some minimum high quality in their products, for consumers to trust them enough to keep coming back to them.
Until now, Heinz keeps to the same recipe of making distilled white vinegar that it has been using for the past (almost) 150 years. Imagine the countless families and households it has worked for!
Heinz cleaning vinegar is another line of vinegar product by the same company. It uses the same ingredients of sun-ripened grain, except that it has been fermented and diluted to 6% acidity, instead of 5% like in the distilled white vinegar. Though the 1% does not seem like much, do note that it is actually a 20% increase in acidity compared to the distilled white vinegar.
Due to this extra punch in acidity, it is best suited for tougher cleaning jobs.
The only down side to this Heinz cleaning vinegar is that it is only suitable for cleaning jobs, not for cooking. So that’s a notch down compared to the Heinz Distilled White Vinegar, which can serve dual purposes.
Four Monks uses distilled white vinegar made from corn, fermented and diluted to 6% acidity. Just like Heinz, it is all natural, with no added chemicals or other additives. So it is non-toxic and labeled as food grade, and yet it can be very effective on tough stains. I wouldn’t recommend using it in your food, though. It is intended for cleaning, not cooking.
The other advantage of this product is that it comes in a spray bottle, so you can use it straight on the spots with tough stains, like kitchen counter top, bathroom shower area or bathtub, window sills, stove top, etc. Spray a bit of the cleaning vinegar, leave it to set for a minute or two, and wipe off the stains effortlessly.
Four Monks produces two different cleaning vinegar products: Aroma Controlled, and Citrus Mint Scent. It is really up to your preference, I don’t find any obvious advantage of one over the other.
Get Yours Now
Get your distilled white vinegar products now, for a green, natural and chemical-free home. Do note that vinegar is not suitable for use on hardwood floor, granite and marble, or any porous material like grout.