I used to enjoy owning many beauty products — all the pretty bottles and tubes! But as you start learning what goes in your food, body care products, cleaning supplies, as you start reading those lengthy ingredient labels you discover that majority of the ingredients in commercial products (doesn’t matter cheap or expensive brands) are chemicals that are known carcinogens , hormone disrupters, affect reproductive system, nervous system and so on and so forth. You can see details on EWG.ORG website.
The next sad discovery was that even ‘natural’ products most often contain at least a couple of these harmful chemicals. The ever presence of these chemicals seemed daunting. Yet I thought, people had lived for thousands of years keeping their hair clean and skin radiant before the invention of cosmetic products as we know them today. And surely enough when I started looking there are many truly natural, as in nature-based, solutions for anything we need to keep ourselves clean without damaging our health and environment. 🙂
So, here is my list — pure, eco-friendly, short, but it does it all!
On the picture: Organic soap nuts powder – best hair ‘shampoo’!
After many trial and errors I discovered soap nuts which have been absolutely great for my hair! My hair is not only just as clean as from any commercial product, but less flat, more shiny and I was able to extend my between-washes period from every day to 3-4 days! Many people follow soap nuts with various rinses instead of a conditioner. I do that occasionally and the one that works best for me is black tea rinse. Do not use soap nuts on children and pets as it really burns if gets in the eyes. By the way, I find it most fascinating that while I have never used any product on Ale’s hair in the 2 years of his life yet his hair is always clean and silky!
I would highly recommend joining this FB group and reading all the articles under the ‘Files’ there as it has a tremendous wealth of information on all things natural hair care — natural ways to wash hair, hair rinses, hair masks, dies, etc.
Few months ago we came across this liquid soap that impressed with the ingredients, I loved the smell and to be honest…the bottle as well. 🙂 This soap turned out to be rather magical! It doesn’t dry our skin when used even frequently. We live in Colorado, where 10% humidity is a sort of norm. The skin here is parched! So, having a soap that doesn’t worsen this and even moisturizers the skin is incredible. Mom even found that she can use small amount of it instead of moisturizer and it helps to protect her skin from drying if applied prior to working in the garden! Sounds strange, but I tried it and it really works! Note, we use the ‘Gardener’s Citrus Scrub’ scent, but didn’t have as good result with Lavender one.
Btw, soap nuts are also really great at cleaning skin as well as giving it a good scrub.
Dry skin has been a bane for all of us since we moved to Colorado. But I found that regular organic Olive Oil works amazingly well for my skin, except my hands strangely! The trick is to use just a little bit of it and let it absorb fully so you don’t stain your clothes or leave oily marks on your upholstery. But considering how well it works for my skin – the inconvenience really worth it! And sometimes instead I use Shea or Mango Seed butters, which seem to absorb a bit faster for me.
Olive oil hands down! Although Argan oil was also very good. Another great thing about Olive Oil is that apparently it is packed with anti-aging antioxidants and other great ingredients that help keep skin hydrated and lush.
I quite like Shea or Mango Seed butters as hand lotion. See my note on Mango Seed butter below.
Earlier I had a little post on my chemical-free dental care, but here they are again. Mineral tooth powder and dental floss.
I also like using Green French Clay as a facial mask, that is when I find time and desire to deal with that 🙂
And I also really like this feet scrubber by Tweezerman. It has a rough side and a smooth side. I’ve had it for few years and it really does work really well, plus has that German quality that I came to appreciate so much.
* The only thing I found tricky with Mango Seed butter is as it solidifies it gets grainy and becomes very inconvenient to use. So when it gets to that stage I usually melt it in a warm water bath and it is good for few days after that. It is a bit of a hassle, but it does do a really good job of rescuing my hands skin from being parched.
Lastly, another great thing about most of these products is that they come with minimal or none at all plastic packaging.
All of these beauty products I use work really well for me. However, some may or may not work as well for you. For example, many people swear by coconut oil which didn’t do anything to keep my skin well hydrated, plus I couldn’t stand the smell. Also, as I learned from the FB group even with hair different rinses and washes work or doesn’t based on hair type, water and other factors. So these don’t prove to be as good for you as they did for me, do try out different options to find the ones working the best for you. They are out there and they really worth it! 🙂