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Posts Tagged ‘personal care’

Here at Chiot’s Run we’ve been traveling down the road to REAL clean for quite a while. Along the way we’ve tried all sorts of products trying to find what’s just right for us. Along with searching for non-toxic products I also search for products in glass containers or products with packaging that can be composted in my own garden. Today I figured I’d share some of our favorite personal care products, some of you may find that you like them as well. Shaving is a tough area to detox as well, I’ll cover that in a dedicated post later this month. As for my REAL clean housekeeping products, I’ll talk more about those next week. Here are some of the things we have found that work well for us and why we like them:

Disposable paper products can be a HUGE area where you spend lots of money and produce a lot of waste. Most products come in plastic and are not cheap to keep in stock in your pantry. One of the easiest ways to get off the disposable paper bandwagon is to purchase or make some rags. We have some Terry Rags we got a long time ago (Target sells them in large packs in the car washing area for a decent price). We’ve been using mostly rags in our home for cleaning for many years. We go through maybe one or two rolls of paper towels per year (usually used to clean up cat puke or something we don’t want to wash out of a rag). You can also make your own rags from old towel, simply cut into squares the size you want. We do use tissues, a box a month or so. I’ve been wanting to make some handkerchiefs so we can quit buying them as well, looks like it will have to wait until this coming winter. We put any paper product we produce (besides toilet paper) in the compost bin, tissues, paper towels, etc. It makes me feel a little better knowing they’re not going into the land fill.

Toilet paper is probably the most used disposable paper product. I’ve read of people to use rags and wash them, but that’s not really something I’m going to do unless it’s the end of the world and I have to. I think my friends/family would have me committed if I tried it anyways. 5-6 years ago we started purchasing Seventh Generation Bathroom Tissue in cases of 48. I purchase them from Amazon and have it set up so that every 6 months they deliver a box to my house, which is nice. The toilet paper is not as soft as most, but of good quality and strength. We’re not plush TP people so we actually prefer it to something super soft like Charmin. One of the reasons I really like it is that it comes in a big box and each roll is wrapped individually in paper. I use these paper wrappers as a liners in my compost bin, which then keeps my compost bin cleaner, makes it easier to empty and it’s a great use for these wrappers.

Our search for the perfect face wash and lotion was the hardest. I tried all different kinds of products and none of them worked quite right. I have really dry sensitive skin that flares up with the slightest irritation. I tried Burt’s Bees, Kiss My Face, and a whole host of other products. Some of them were OK, some of them were a HUGE disaster. Besides the skin irritation, the product packaging was of huge concern for me, even with “organic, non-toxic” products. They all seem to come in my tiny plastic containers that don’t last very long. Many of these natural products still contain ingredients that I couldn’t pronounce and wasn’t sure I wanted to be slathering in my face!

Then I found Mountain Rose Herbs. I tried a few of their products and finally settled on their Cleansing Grains and Wild Rose Facial Oil. At first it was a bit weird because the face wash contains no soap, but now soap feels weird and drying on my skin. Mr Chiots noticed how nice my skin was and actually asked if he could start using the Cleansing Grains as well, now he loved them as well. The ingredients are: french Green Clay, organic ground Almonds, organic Oat Bran and a blend of skin toning essential oils. I can pronounce everything and most of it I would actually eat.

After using the Cleansing Grains we use a little of the Wild Rose Facial Oil for moisturizing. It may seem a little weird at first to use oil on your face, but after using it for a while you won’t be able to use regular face lotion because it will feel waxy and heavy. The ingredients in the Facial Oil are: Organic Calendula oil, organic Wild Rosehip Seed oil, organic Jojoba oil, Vitamin E oil and essential oils of organic Lavender, Carrot seed and Helichrysum. I haven’t tried any of their facial washes because I liked the clay based cleaner so much. I’m guessing however they’re as great as every product I’ve received from them. I also love that the face oil comes in glass bottles (with a pump, I add the glass dropper myself). I also love their Hair Oil, I put a few drops in my hair when my hair is still wet when I get out of the shower.

As far as toothpaste goes, we’ve been making our own for a while and love it. I generally make a dry powder of baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Sometimes I make different flavors like this Vanilla Meyer Lemon Toothpowder I made in February. Recently I’ve been experimenting with using activated charcoal and so far I’m very happy with it, my teeth have never felt cleaner and my sensitivity to cold seems to be lessening. I simply keep a small bowl of it by the sink and dip my wet toothbrush in it. It’s kind of scary to do for the first time because it turns you teeth black while you’re brushing (any of you that have seen Lord of the Rings it’s just like Grima Wormtongue). It rinses away clean, you can swish with water and swallow the charcoal as it’s good to help you detox internally as well.

Have you found any great products you like you’d like to share?

I can also be found at Chiot’s Run where I blog daily about gardening, cooking, local eating, maple sugaring, and all kinds of stuff. You can also find me at Ethel Gloves, Simple, Green, Frugal, Co-op, and you can follow me on Twitter.

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Since the REAL Food Challenge was such a success and we had a lot of interest in other areas of REAL, we decided that each month we’d spend some time focusing on one area. This month we’ll all be talking about REAL clean. Healthy, natural, non-toxic, or homemade alternatives to the things you use to clean your house, your pets, your kids and yourselves.

Here at Chiot’s Run we started detoxing our cleaning products many years ago and our personal care products a few years ago. For cleaning I’ve always used vinegar, baking soda, Dr. Bronner – Sal-Suds and some of my own cleaners.

I started thinking about the ingredients in personal care products when I was on a patch medication. I would apply a tiny patch to my hip once a week and enough medication would be absorbed through my skin throughout the week so I didn’t have to take a pill every day. That got me thinking about all the soaps and lotions that we slathered on our skin each day and how we absorb all those chemicals through our skin! I read The Green Beauty Guide: Your Essential Resource to Organic and Natural Skin Care, Hair Care, Makeup, and Fragrances and was appalled by the things I learned about all of the ingredients in personal care products. We threw away all of the products we were using and started to search out products made from organic non-toxic ingredients. If I won’t eat it, I wouldn’t put it on my skin! This area is kind of a minefield though as there aren’t really any regulations to govern the labels. You’ll find things labeled “organic”,”non-toxic” or “all-natural” that really aren’t. Some “all-natural” ingredients like mineral oil are anything but safe!

After trying all kinds of products we’ve finally settled on a few that we love. I’ll be talking about my favorite personal care products next week and I’ll do a post about my homemade cleaning products later this month as well. We’ll be doing a giveaway for some Tropical Traditions Lotion and Deodorant as part of our REAL clean month as well, so check back for those.

What are some thing you’d like to hear about during the REAL clean challenge?

Resources for the REAL Clean Challenge: I’ll be adding more links throughout the month for specific products and links with great information & recipes.
Books with Recipes for Homemade Personal Care Products:

This is my favorite little home cleaning book:

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