If you are a big cleaning enthusiast like me and always looking for new ways to use household products or cleaning agents to find the perfect solution for maximum effects, then you may have come across Borax.
The question is – can you buy Borax in the UK? Now this seems to be a bit of a taboo subject due to the chemicals that make up Borax – and the answer is, that no – you are not able to buy Borax in the UK. So, in this article we will take a look at what Borax is, what it can do, and any alternatives that we can use instead.
What is Borax?
Borax was first used in the late 19th Century. It is a salt mineral that is a natural derivative of boric acid. It can dissolve in water to make a solution and has a number of uses including being used for household laundry and cleaning products, as a pesticide, a water softening agent, plus many more.
It has a high pH level which is one of the reasons it makes a good cleaning resource.
Can you buy Borax?
If you were hoping to use this as a cleaning agent, then you will be disappointed because you cannot buy Borax in the UK. In 2010 the chemicals it contains were reclassified as hazardous for people’s health. Therefore, it was taken off the shelves of supermarkets and DIY stores and those who once enjoyed the cleaning benefits of it, had to find an alternative.
Luckily there are alternatives, and we will go into greater depths of these, but first let’s tell you just a few of the benefits that these products can give.
- Can help tackle mildew and mould
- Softens water
- Gets rid of limescale
- Eradicate foul smells in sinks and drains
- Insect repellent
- Can clean clothes alongside non-bio powders
- Tough on stains
- When mixed with water, lemon juice or white vinegar it becomes a multi-purpose cleaner
Alternatives to Borax
DriPak Borax Substitute
Number of packs: 1
This product is exactly what it says it is – a Borax substitute. It has all the benefits of Borax but without the harmful chemicals.
In fact, it is part of the clean and natural range which is full of natural cleansing agents.
Now, I love to be able to have one cleaning product that does a multitude of jobs – and this is definitely one of those. There’s nothing worse than scrambling past all the cans and bottles in your cupboard to find what you need – that can be a chore in itself!
Let’s talk a little about what this substitute can do – it can do a lot!
If you’d like to use it as part of your laundry routine, then you’re in luck. You can add a couple of teaspoons to your washing machine drawer and it will give your clothes a boost – removing stains and keeping your whites bright.
It can also be mixed with warm water, giving you the option of using it as a pre-wash soak. This will loosen any stubborn stains on your clothing while still being gentle on the fabric.
Alternatively, for heavier soiled stains you can make a paste by mixing the Borax Substitute with a little water. It can then be applied directly to the stain before you begin your normal washing cycle.
As we mentioned earlier, if you mix together Borax Substitute with water, lemon juice, water, or white vinegar you will be able to use the solution as a multipurpose cleaner – wiping down your kitchen surfaces, freshening up the bathroom and even tackling mould.
Other uses include cleaning and freshening up carpets, cleaning toilets, deodorising bins, dishwashers, and sinks.
Blue Bay Aquatics TATA CREX Borax Substitute
Brand: Blue Bay
Number of packs: 1
This substitute by Blue Bay is slightly higher in price than our first offering, but you do get a larger quantity. Both products do pretty much the same job too.
Because it is a granule, you can mix it to your preferred consistency depending on what you are cleaning.
Again, you can easily mix this powder with water to create a paste that will give you a cleaner for an array of jobs around the house – cleaning surfaces, taps and plugholes, removing unsightly rust stains – the list goes on.
Pop it into your washing machine to help soften the water. This is ideal if you live in hard water areas. The ingredients are safe enough that it won’t damage your clothing and the granules make it easy to dissolve, leaving no residue.
The ease of using this Borax substitute and the simple methods, yet effective results are exactly what you would want from a cleaning product. We don’t want to be bombarded by countless different cleaning bottles – just one solution that can help make the household chores a little more tolerable.
If you’re anything like me, once you start using a new cleaning product and you see the results, you’ll want to find more things to clean – or maybe that is just me!
Either way you’ll love the results you get from using either one of these products and with it being free from any nasty chemicals that have been marked as hazardous, you will be able to use it safely.
So, while you can’t buy Borax as you once could years ago, we have given you two alternatives that will work just as well without the risk of harm to your health or household. So let the substitutes work their magic and you will be enjoying clean surfaces and sparkling taps in no time at all!
Meet our reviewer – Michelle Vernon
Michelle is one of the lead writers at Washing Check and also holds an editor role. She is a busy parent who understands the needs of daily domestic life and the challenges it can bring.
She genuinely loves cleaning products and equipment, which although is quite strange to many, is a blessing to us here at Washing Check.