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DIY Kitchen Cleaners

Get your kitchen sparkly with these natural DIY cleaners from healthy living expert Jen Eden.

DIY Kitchen Cleaners

Your partner does all sorts of things to help your pregnancy along -- he rubs your city-tired feet, he gets redressed at 12 a.m. in order to hunt down Phish Food, he sings Twinkle Twinkle Little Star straight into your belly button. But how often does he clean the kitchen? Sweet as the guy is, it's likely that during your pregnancy it's you who's wincing at dirty countertops, staring down clogged drains and casting an evil eye at sticky oven stains. Unfortunately, if you're tackling the mess with conventional cleaning products, you're likely exposing yourself -- and your fetus -- to hazardous chemicals that may pose both acute and long-term health problems.

Pregnant women are particularly susceptible to the negative effects of the unregulated chemical ingredients that appear -- and don't appear (trade secrets!!) -- on the labels of cleaners. Gals with baby bumps are more likely to experience eye and lung irritation, are prone to uncomfortable skin reactions, and are more apt to swoon with nausea at the smells of those chartreuse liquids.

On a more worrisome note (and in keeping with the not-so-secret Poison/Danger/Harmful if Swallowed warnings), those same chemicals can have ill effects on a developing fetus. Solvents in many products are known to be harmful to a fetus's growing lungs, regular exposure to aerosol cleaning products can cause brain damage in an unborn child, and certain heavy-duty cleaners contain chemicals linked to birth defects. Not to mention the effects of the combos of many chemicals.

But take solace ladies! There are some very simple, effective and inexpensive ways to clean your kitchen that involve just a few ingredients and some spray bottles (no hubbies required). Not the DIY type? Well, heck, neither was I -- until I realized how easy and awesome these concoctions are. And once your baby is born, there will be every reason to continue DIY-ing.

Here are four DIY recipes you'll keep going back to:

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Rarely is a woman more concerned with what her body needs than when she's pregnant. We start to question and research everything, right? From swearing off turkey sandwiches to diving down the rabbit hole of prenatal supplements that make up what we lack, the stress of overthinking is real, mama.

One of the main reasons we launched the Motherly Shop is to help take some of that stress away. We've tracked down the best brands and products developed by people (and in many cases, women!) that truly work to serve the needs of real mamas, especially throughout the overwhelming transition into motherhood.

That's why we knew we had to introduce mamas-to-be to the science-backed and expertly-formulated protein collagen for pregnancy from Needed. And as one of our bestsellers, it's clear you've been looking for it, too.

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Every week, we stock the Motherly Shop with innovative and fresh products from brands we feel good about. We want to be certain you don't miss anything, so to keep you in the loop, we're providing a cheat sheet.

So, what's new this week?

Earth Mama: Effective, natural herbal care for mamas and babies

Founded and grown in her own garage in 2002, Earth Mama started as an operation of one, creating salves, tinctures, teas and soaps with homegrown herbs. With a deep desire to bring the healing powers of nature that have been relied on for thousands of years to as many mamas as possible, Melinda Olson's formulas quickly grew into Earth Mama Organics. Since then, the brand has remained committed to manufacturing clean, safe and effective herbal solutions for the entire journey of motherhood, including pregnancy, breastfeeding and baby care, and even the loss of a baby.

Bravado Designs: Soothing sounds for a good night's sleep

With 28 years of serving pregnant and postpartum mamas under their belt, Bravado Designs is a true authority on the needs of changing bodies. It's true that we have them to thank for rescuing us from the uncomfortable and frumpy designs our own moms had to live with. Launched in Canada by two young mamas, they designed the first prototypes with extra leopard print fabric certain that a better bra was possible. Throughout the years they've maintained their commitment to ethical manufacturing while creating long-lasting products that truly work.

The Sill: Instagram-ready potted plants

We've long admired this female-founded brand and the brilliant mind behind it, Eliza Blank. (She even joined Motherly co-founder Liz Tenety on and episode of The Motherly Podcast!) The mission behind the business was simple: To make the process of bringing plants into your home as easy as possible, and as wonderful as the plant themselves. With their in-house, exclusively designed minimalist planters, the end result makes plant parenthood just a few clicks away.

Not sure where to start? Here's what we're adding to our cart:

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Talking to kids can come so easily. They have thoughts about everything and stories for miles. They see the world in a completely different light, and could ask enough questions to fill an afternoon.

But sometimes finding the right words for talking to kids can be really, really challenging. When choosing how to respond to the marker on the wall, or the seemingly unending why-can't-I battle, or in simply keeping healthy communication open with kids who don't want to talk, the words don't seem to come so easily.

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