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Welcome to Little Lake County’s Green Guide to Spring Cleaning Series, where we will share our favorite green cleaning tips, ways to simplify your home, and ideas for the kids to help. Follow us room by room to transform spring cleaning from a dreaded annual chore to a healthy and productive family activity.
Eco-Friendly Personal Care
So now that your home is green and clean, what about you? Once you’ve cut back on the chemicals you use in your home, it only makes sense to take a look at what you put on your family’s bodies.
It is eye-opening when you start to look at ingredients that are commonly used in makeup and personal care products. Take a quick moment to look up those products and ingredients. The Skin Deep Cosmetics Database is a great resource. You might consider replacing some of your scarier items with more benign products you find on Skin Deep or other product safety sites.
Less is More
If you’re not ready to dump all your personal care products just yet, an easier way to green your routine is to simply use them less by showering less frequently. Less product, less water, and better hair and skin are easy trade-offs. Most hairstylists will advise that daily hair-washing is in fact harmful for your hair and scalp. If you’re feeling grimy in between washes, consider investing in a natural boar bristle brush which not only helps to distribute your hair’s own natural oils along the hair shaft but also works to clean your hair by removing dust and particles.
You can also ditch the nightly bath routine with the kids. So long as the important stuff is cleaned daily (i.e., face, hands, diaper area), they really don’t need to bathe daily. Now when puberty hits…. that’s another story…
An easy way to use less liquid soap is to switch to foaming soap dispensers. When refilling them, fill them to only ⅕ – ⅓ capacity with liquid soap. Then fill with water up to an inch from the top. Use this method on anything from hand soap to body wash.
Don’t like the price of the greener personal care brands? Make your own! And of course, we’ve got recipes for you to try:
DIY Body Lotion:
Mix (you’ll need a good stand mixer) pure Shea butter with several squirts of jojoba oil and let it mix for a good 10-15 minutes until the Shea butter is smooth. Kristy also adds coconut oil and essential oils, but the Shea/jojoba combination works wonders for skin and lips.
Face wash: Use a combination of half Castile Baby Soap and water.
Facial moisturizer: Jojoba oil – that’s it. It may defy all logic to put oil on your face but try it, and you might be surprised. Jojoba oil is the closest to your skin’s natural oils, so it has a balancing effect and doesn’t leave any greasy residue.
Exfoliant: Better on you than in you, take a tablespoon of white granulated sugar in your palm and slowly add water drop by drop until you get a paste. Massage into your face for a great DIY exfoliant. Do the same with cornmeal to use on rough spots like elbows, knees, and heels.
No ‘poo: We’re not talking laxatives here; we’re suggesting you actually ditch your shampoo and conditioner! Loralie has been working the No ‘poo method for over 4 months and is often seen around town without the aid of a ponytail or baseball cap. It’s not that she doesn’t wash her hair; she just uses her own homemade concoctions using (I’ll bet you can guess) baking soda and apple cider vinegar. Check out this Simple Mom for the why’s and how’s of No ‘poo, including “recipes.”
So there you have it! A Greener Home and A Greener You… just in time for Spring. What changes will you incorporate? Have any green cleaning tips of your own? Share in the comments below!
Find our full Spring Cleaning Series:
By Kristy K.
Kristy is the mother of two young children, who join in her quest for unique restaurants, fun places to play and a little personal sanity in the process. She does her best to teach her children healthy habits, kindness, compassion and a love of nature while also learning that sometimes we need to let go of our ideals in the name of fun.
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