Ok folks – today in Greenville we are experiencing winter weather. Snow, sleet, rain, ice…..I am originally from Pennsylvania and LOVE winter. My husband….who is from New Jersey…..not so much. He loves the sun and heat. So all my friends up home would be laughing at the fact that these inches (under 4) of winter precipitation are keeping us in the house and paralyzed. So what a better time to write some more to help all of you!!
Let’s talk personal care items. If you read my blog on “Chemicals In Your Home” you will find a list of nasty toxins that affect us in so many different ways. So many of these chemicals are banned in many other countries. However, you can find them in our personal care items, beauty items, household cleaning items, and home fragrance items. Since I went over them in the the other article I wrote – I won’t go over them again in this writing (if you missed them hit the link a few sentences above in the name of the article and read it). I have gotten to the point that if I can’t eat it….I am not putting it on my skin. My mother was a home-economics teacher. She used to do a beauty treatment class using just things you can find in your kitchen. I would like to get back to that way of thinking.
Let me also say that I am not a girly girl. Look at my picture folks!! I don’t wear makeup – even before I went on this journey I would only wear makeup – maybe – 20 times during a year. If I did I wore Bare Minerals and have so for as long as they first came out. I wasn’t super nice to my skin….meaning I didn’t put lotion or cream on it everyday. I would wait until it itched and burned before I would apply anything. I did get my hair colored and I did wear acrylic nails for 20+ years. I always painted my toenails (especially since we moved to SC 11 years ago) – we wear a lot of open-toed shoes for a much longer period of time here – so toenails just look nicer painted. I did wear perfume almost every day until about 5 years ago when the hormones started to change some and then it burned the skin on my face when I would wear it. So all that to say – everyone is different…..but not matter how much of things or what you use…..it is important to have the knowledge about what is in what you are using.
Women are worse off than men because we use so many more personal care items. I read that a woman can actually apply 300+ toxins to her skin a day. That is why someone who eats right and is moving intentionally to take care of herself can get cancer. If you aren’t checking out the chemicals that you are putting onto your body and if you are spraying all kinds of room sprays and lighting candles in your home…..you might as well sit on the couch eating bon-bons because your body can’t take care of the toxins that is bombarding it. Granted, your body is probably better equipped in fighting because it is being fed well and strong from the intentional movement but still!! There are many harmful ingredients in our shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, mouthwash, lotions, creams, makeup, deodorant, hand soap, antibacterial hand sanitizer, lip balm and so forth. I read an article the other day that said that the ingredients in lip balm are slickery to make the user believe they are helping heal the lip skin from being chapped. When in fact the ingredients are actually drying out the lip skin so that you have to reapply and reapply!! That’s what aggravates me!
So here are some of the things that I use to replace all of these items:
I will tell you that Coconut oil is an awesome treatment for your hair. You put it in and leave it in for as long as you can…
Shampoo and Conditioner – I started off making my own shampoo and conditioner. It was OK but not great. I recently cut off about 3 inches of my hair. I have only had longer hair for the last 5 years. It used to be REALLY short. But with more hair is more of a challenge to get it to behave and not be a rats nest. So I just wasn’t thrilled with what I was creating. Young Living has some awesome shampoos and conditioners. However, I ran out once and needed a replacement that I could get locally. I did some research and found Acure Organics Shampoo and Conditioners. They don’t have any of the toxic ingredients in them and they are decently priced. There are a couple of different types and that is good for different types of hair. I Googled “natural shampoo and conditioners” and found a listing and chose one where I could buy it (run locally out and get some) and price point. I will tell you that Coconut oil is an awesome treatment for your hair. You put it in and leave it in for as long as you can (even overnight – just make sure you put a scarf or something over your hair that won’t come off or put a towel over your pillow and then an old pillow case because your pillow and case will be oil stained in the morning if the scarf falls off – trust me I am telling you this by experience) and then wash your hair and voila – really soft shiny hair.
Hair color – I have quite a bit of gray in my hair. I don’t mind it but my husband and son weren’t so keen on me being salt and pepper yet. So I was going to a great gal for about 6 years. She was a friend of a friend and when I started going to her I had really short hair. So she didn’t charge me a lot to cut and color (color, highlight and lowlight) my hair. I came regularly and tipped well. So as my hair started to grow – she didn’t increase my price. The cutting came less and less but the coloring was the same. Well when I started this journey – I decided that was too toxic for me. I went to using Henna to color my hair. I use Surya Henna. Traditional hair color penetrates the follicle. Henna coats the hair with color. You have to get used to the runniness of the henna versus regular hair dye but I put it on….wait an hour and then rinse it out. Another thing about using the henna is you wash your hair before applying the henna, you don’t wash it afterward, you have to make sure you really rinse it out or dry it because if you have long hair and let it sit on your shirt – the henna could run onto your clothes. I don’t have a problem with this because I know I am covering my gray and it isn’t toxic to me. Plus the henna makes my hair REALLY soft after I put it on. Not like when I colored my own hair with dye…..used to feel like straw afterward. This is the reason I chopped 3 inches off my hair recently. I last got my hair dyed at the salon in early April 2015 and I am trying to get all of the dyed hair off my head. I can feel a difference in the quality of my hair even though the dyed hair feels better than it did a long time ago. Also, I only use half a bottle of the Surya henna and I can put the cap on and use it a second time and it is just as good as the first. So for about $12 I color my hair twice in 8-10 weeks. Again…saving money.
Deodorant – This one was a toughy for me. I live in the south folks! First off – we all use antiperspirant. That in itself isn’t good. We are clogging the pores in our pits so we don’t sweat. We weren’t made that way. We sweat from the pits for a reason. The metals (usually aluminum) that can be found in antiperspirant is found in breast cancer cells. So I started to use my essential oils as deodorant. Bergamot. Well – that one is really photosensitive. I found out the hard way. I used it over the summer and then went swimming in my pool ….in the sun….you get the picture. It was affected for about 3 months. I had a bunch of recipes for deodorant and then I saw a post on a Facebook group that I belong to that someone used the Young Living Thieves Aromabright toothpaste as a deodorant. I was using that toothpaste. So I put a little schmeer on the index finger and slathered it around in one pit and another schmeer on the other index finger and slathered it around in the other pit. I have had people say “oh my goodness – isn’t it sticky?” no not in the pit….a little on the finger but that just washes off. See I am not as concerned about sweating as I am stinking. In the summer – even when I was using one of those “Clinical” brands of antiperspirants I had to be careful going sleeveless in the summer. So I just found some great cotton thin gauze-like blouses and long sleeve tops that I wear in the summer. It wicks the sweat away and protects my skin a little more from the sun. I have yet to have to worry about odor using the Thieves Aromabright toothpaste as my deodorant. The tube is like $10 (wholesale) and it lasts me 7 months using just as a deodorant. Love saving money!
Makeup – Now just because I don’t wear makeup much doesn’t mean I wouldn’t want to every once in awhile. I found a great site Safe Cosmetics that tells you all about all the bad ingredients that could be in your personal care and beauty items. Check it out here http://www.safecosmetics.org/get-the-facts/chemicals-of-concern/red-list/. Safe Cosmetics is also trying to change the industry to provide safer products for us to use. Young Living does make lip balms and lip gloss but not a whole line of makeup. There is a great line from Melissa Poepping that is totally natural and doesn’t leave you feeling like you want more – http://www.sweetsavvyminerals.com/pages/about-us.
Body Soap – I am a bar soap kind of gal. Just because it is easier and I don’t have enough room on the niche in my shower for everything to be in a bottle. So I haven’t tackled homemade bar soap yet……and I stress yet…..because that is coming. So again I Googled “all natural soaps” and found Nubian Heritage. It is all natural – I can find it locally – there are about 10 different types for different skin types and scents. I did find a website that I can purchase them cheaper by the bar and get free shipping if I purchase $50 or more at a time (Swanson Health and Lucky Vitamin are two where I can purchase my shampoo, conditioner, and bar soap together to make the $50 and get free shipping). Young Living does sell bar soap and body washes that are amazing!!
Toothpaste – As you heard in the deodorant section – I use Thieves Aromabright toothpaste. All natural toothpaste takes some getting used to. See we have been lead to believe that more bubbles in our soaps, dish soaps, toothpaste and other things means it is cleaner. We were conditioned to believe this and so if we don’t see or feel that foaming or bubbling then we don’t think it is working. You can also take Coconut oil and add a drop or 2 of essential oil (lemon, peppermint, spearmint, tea tree) and brush your teeth that way. The lauric acid in Coconut oil can kill bacteria, viruses. and fungi. There are some natural clay toothpastes out there as well. My son doesn’t like the taste of the Thieves so I got him some wintergreen Earthpaste made with clay.
Lip Balm. Coconut oil and a little beeswax. Add a little essential oils – whichever you would like (peppermint, lemon, lavender, Thieves) and voila…..lip balm that helps.
Lotions, Creams, Scrubs, and Serums – This is where I love, love, love to create. I am not an artistic person…..that is my husband and son. However, I love to cook and bake. I am one of those people who doesn’t exactly measure things when I am cooking. More so when I bake but not so much when I cook. So I started to make body butter. I started out with Shea Butter, Cocoa Butter and Coconut oil and adding essential oils. I called the first one “York Peppermint Patty Butter” because I chose peppermint essential oil to put in the butter. It was really pretty good!! I got my Shea Butter and Cocoa Butter from Bulk Apothecary online. My second order from BA I added some oils like Sweet Almond, Tamanu, Babassu, Meadowfoam, Hemp, Wheat Germ, Rice Bran, Argan, Emu, and Neem. I started to read up on the differences between lotions and creams and butters. I looked at the ratios between the butters and oils (solids versus liquids at room temperature) and the different applications of the oils and butters. I also looked at the essential oils that I could mix to help with boost the skin. I had some failures along the way. I have had quite a few people (Krystal, Jenn, Dee, Lauri, Dianne, Kayce, and Carol) that have been my guinea pigs. Nonetheless, I now make awesome butter……and for many different applications. I have a butter called “Baby J’s Butter” that I made for Kayce’s son. It has Shea Butter, Cocoa Butter, Tamanu oil, Emu oil, Babassu oil, Argan oil and some Coconut oil in it. I use it on my face everyday. My skin is so smooth!! I put Frankincense all over my face and Carrot Seed oil on under my eyes and on my cheeks and neck every day after I wash. First I put on just a little of “Baby J’s Butter” and then the essential oils. My skin is so soft, brighter, has more elasticity, and just looks so healthy. The essential oils reduce the appearance of pores on my nose and I am excited! The cost for my “Baby J’s Butter” is about $14 for a 4oz jar. I now put butter on everyday…..all over my body….instead of waiting until I itch and burn because it is dry. Young Living does have some awesome lotions and you can even add your essential oils to them as well.
You can make a serum for any kind of skin type using the right carrier oil and then the essential oils. Young Living does have an awesome line called the Art SkinCare System which safely and effectively cleanses, tones, and moisturizes your face to bring out your natural and inherent beauty.
I make sugar scrubs -I made Chocolate Mint Sugar Scrub for all my friends for Christmas. Everyone asked if they could eat it because it smelled so good!! I told them “yes, yes you can!” because it was just Coconut Oil, brown sugar, dark chocolate cocoa powder, and peppermint essential oil. Everything natural. The scrub exfoliates the skin and the coconut oil nourishes the skin to make it soft.
I don’t take baths but my sweet friend Kristi does…..so I give her Epsom salts that are infused with essential oils. When I finish a bottle of essential oils – I put some Epsom salts in a jar and then immerse the jar into the salts and let all the very last drop of essential oils infuse into the Epsom salts. Kristi gets the benefit by getting a detoxifying bath by using the Epsom salts and essential oils.
Lip balm – Like I said earlier – the ingredients in lip balms are bad. They make you think you are doing good for your lip skin but you are just drying it out. So I made lip balm. Coconut oil and a little beeswax. Add a little essential oils – whichever you would like (peppermint, lemon, lavender, Thieves) and voila…..lip balm that helps.
Nail Polish – The three things that you don’t want in the Polish is DBP Dibutyl phthalate, Formaldehyde, and Toluene. Google “non-toxic nail polish” and you will see a bunch of different companies. They are about the same price as a decent toxic polish so you can still enjoy colorful fingers and toes.
OK – so I think that should be enough for today. Start slow folks. One change at a time is HUGE!! You won’t believe the difference in how you feel. You have to decide what you want to do for yourself. I will say that I am more sensitive to the chemicals that others have on them. I read an article on “Second Hand Fragrance” that I will post so you can read all about it. Start getting healthier!
I hope this was helpful. If we want to “Live Normal, Live Healthy, Live Life” we have to work together. If you need any help or have any questions – please feel free to contact me. I hope you have a day that is filled with abundance, purpose, and wellness! Love ya!