Tag Archives: healthy living

Natural Beauty Products

How to Make Beauty Products with Kitchen Ingredients

Some people may call me crunchy, and I have to say, I truly wear that label as a badge of honor! Over the past few years I have been experimenting with natural beauty products. It started as I really began to focus on my health. I would get allergic reactions to most things with fragrances and I started to learn that external skin reactions were really a result of something much bigger happening internally. I was also diagnosed with endometriosis, and a lot of chemicals used in traditional beauty products are known to be endocrine distruptors (you can read about that stuff here or here). I started to see that I could take my personal care routine into my own hands. And all health stuff aside, it’s just pretty amazing to be able to make beauty products out of stuff I have in the kitchen! Talk about being self reliant! No more expensive drug store trips for me 🙂 Plus the natural products actually tend to work better than the traditional products! So, let’s explore!

Shampoo

There is actually a huge movement for natural shampoo – it’s actually called “no-poo”! You can’t make something like that up! Chemical and fragrance laden shampoo can actually damage your hair, and make you dependent on it (it’s kinda like the chap stick stories – after a while you start to need the chap stick to keep your lips moisturized). Anyway, I won’t get into the pros or cons of traditional shampoo, I just know that I like to know what I’m putting in my body and on my skin and I’m particularly sensitive to fragrances and dyes.

Ok, so, natural alternatives? The most popular one is a baking soda wash and apple cider vinegar rinse. I personally still use a traditional shampoo some days (without dye, fragrance, sodium lauryl sulfate, paraben and other potential endocrine distruptors), and use an apple cider vinegar or aloe rinse on other days. I used to use traditional shampoo everyday. Now I’m down to 2 to 3 times per week. Hooray! If you have dry hair, coconut oil works great! You can leave it in for an hour and then wash it out or if you have dry ends, you can just rub some on.

Dry Shampoo

Don’t want to get your hair wet? Try a dry shampoo! Arrowroot works great on its own (or cornstarch). If you have darker hair mix in some cocoa powder (not hot chocolate mix! plain unsweetened cocoa powder please).

Deodorant

I’ve been making my own deodorant for years, and selling it, too! It’s actually quite popular 🙂 And, you could eat all the ingredients! It’s just arrowroot, baking soda, coconut oil and essential oils. I also know other people who rub lemon juice under their arms instead of using deodorant. Just be careful not to use either of these options right after shaving. Ouch!

Toner

Apple cider vinegar diluted in water is a great toner. Smells a little funky, but otherwise it’s great!

Face Wash

I personally like to use the oil cleansing method. If you haven’t heard of it before, you basically use a specific blend of oils, massage your face with them, then apply a hot towel to give yourself a little steam bath and take off the oils. It’s such a great way to treat your face at the end of the day and it really works! I use a blend of either grapeseed or almond oil, castor oil and tea tree oil.

Exfoliation

I love to exfoliate with a combo of vitamin C powder and almond oil. Just mix them together, rub in gentle circles on your face and remove with a damp cloth.

Moisturizer

Coconut oil is my go to moisturizer for everything! I LOVE coconut oil. If it makes you break out, try almond oil or jojoba.

Toothpaste

I have yet to make a toothpaste that I like, but that doesn’t mean it’s not out there! The very basic combo is coconut oil and baking soda. I’ve also heard great things about activated charcoal. But do some research and play with some recipes! It’s very powerful to be able to make your own beauty and hygiene products.

Gel

A friend of mine was looking for a gel alternative and we came across a chia and flax seed gel! How cool is that!? We just soaked the seeds in hot water so they got all sticky and gel-like. From there you can use pantyhose or a cheesecloth to strain out the seeds and you’re set to go! I found the recipe online and it called for aloe and vitamin e as well. I didn’t have that stuff so I went with the bare minimum, but it worked great!

Make up

Again, I’m not big on makeup so I’m not speaking from personal experience here. That said, I’ve heard from tons of women about making their own make up with cocoa powder, coconut oil, arrowroot and mica powder (ok, mica powder probably isn’t in your kitchen). Wellness Mama is one of my favorite resources for DIY and natural products. Here’s her post all about natural DIY makeup.

Makeup Remover

I personally like coconut oil, but here are a bunch of other recipes!

I hope this post was helpful in getting you started on a new DIY journey! Let me know if you were inspired to try any of these ideas!

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Sugar is Sugar is… sugar?

Hey folks! It’s been a while since I’ve written here. Right now I’m in the middle of hosting a sugar cleanse with over 150 people! How awesome! One of the questions that keeps coming up is, can I eat fruit? So, I thought I’d share my thoughts with all of you.

Fruit is high in fiber, which keeps the sugar in it from being absorbed into your system as quickly. That means you don’t end up with that crazy sugar high and crash that I’m sure we are all familiar with. Fruit also has tons of vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants. But, that doesn’t mean all its forms are equally awesome or that fruit is good for everyone.

Dried Fruit:

Dried fruit is delicious, but it’s good to be mindful when eating dried fruit. Many dried fruits are coated with sugar. It’s always important to read your nutrition labels and ingredients, especially when buying “healthy” packaged foods. Additionally, since dried fruit is dehydrated, one cup of dried fruit will have way more sugar than one cup of the same fruit in its original form.

Fruit Juice:

Fruit juice is awesome, it’s also super sweet! And, fruit juice has very little to none of the great fiber that comes along with eating fruit (Did you know that adults should be getting at least 25 grams of fiber per day?). One serving of fruit juice often has as much sugar (or more) as soda. I’m not saying you should drink soda (really… I promise), but it’s just important to keep in mind that fruit juice does contain a ton of sugar. When buying juice, also keep in mind serving sizes. An Odwalla drink or similar type of smoothie usually contains 2 servings, with upwards of 25 grams of sugar per serving. That’s over 12 teaspoons of sugar per bottle.

So, what do you do?

There are tons of sweeteners out there to choose from, from aspartame, to maple syrup, to high fructose corn syrup. Some are “sugar free” or “calorie free”, some are unrefined, some have valuable nutrients, and some are just empty calories. So, what do you do? It really depends on what your diet looks like now and why you are looking to remove sugar from your diet.

I don’t eat sugar because all sugar feeds yeast, something I am quite susceptible to. If you’re in the same boat as me, then you might want to look at removing processed sugar, fruit, and simple carbs from your diet. I also avoid artificial sweeteners like aspartame because I try to refrain from putting chemicals of any sort or anything artificial in or on my body.

If you’re new to healthy eating (which I define as eating whole, unprocessed foods and lots of veggies), then eating fruit is likely a very important part of your process. Whenever you’re making changes, you want to do it slowly and sustainably. Otherwise you end up on another yo-yo diet and beating yourself up for not sticking to it.

So, the good news is that you get to decide. What changes are you comfortable making? And remember, you can always try something for a few weeks and see how you feel, and then make a decision if you want to keep on that path. You know your body better than anyone else, and changing things up in your diet is a great way to learn even more about your body and what makes you feel good. I’d love to hear what you’re doing and how it’s going. Feel free to post in the comments section or send me an email!

With love,

Samantha

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