Wednesday, April 17, 2013

A Chemical Free Lifestyle

It's been on my heart, lately, that it is important for Josh and I to make the switch to a completely chemical free lifestyle. It seems as though everyone is making the switch to "clean eating," which is great and I'm very happy for those who are choosing to clean up their eating habits, but one question that I keep coming back to is this:

What good is eliminating chemicals from your diet if you're still putting toxic chemicals into your body through what you clean with? 

This, for me, includes your common household cleaners and things such as shampoo, body wash, makeup, etc.

I decided that we don't need a different chemical cleaner for each individual cleaning task in the house.

For a while now, I've been making my own laundry soap, and using baking soda + vinegar as a replacement for most of our household cleaners, but there were still a few things that I wanted to replace because I just didn't feel right about them.

So, yesterday, I set about making a few changes.

{1} We have been using a "natural" dish soap for a while now, but it still had ingredients in it that I wasn't super happy with. A book I'm reading, called Green Clean, recommended grating up a bar of castile soap and mixing it with hot water in one side of the sink, then filling up the other side of the sink with a bit of vinegar + hot water for rinsing. Dr. Bronner's liquid soap has been a favorite in our household for over a year now, [[specifically the peppermint variety.]] so I already knew which brand of bar soap I would use. This process has dramatically reduced the amount of water I go through. It has also gotten me to do the dishes more regularly. Before, I would let them pile up in both sides of the sink + on the little counter space that we have, but now, because I need all of that space to wash the dishes, I can't let them pile up as much. [[Hooray for becoming a more efficient housewife!]]

UPDATE (5.14.2013): I found that adding vinegar to our rinse water actually left a really greasy film on all of our dishes. After eliminating it, our glasses were crystal clear again. So if you are trying this and see that film, try getting rid of the vinegar to see if that helps.

{2} I don't wear makeup that often, I honestly think I'm a little nervous because I have absolutely no idea what is in it. I would like to have a more regular routine, one that is simple, yet effective. Yesterday, I put together some basic foundation powder. I was pretty skeptical because I usually don't use powders. They tend to look, well, powdery. But, lo and behold, as soon as I swiped it on my skin, the redness in my cheeks was reduced and I was left with a nice, even, non-powdery looking complexion.

{3} I have been using Tom's of Maine toothpaste for a while with little to no complaints. It has a relatively low score on the Cosmetics Database and it did the job well.  But, again, it still has some ingredients that I'm not 100% comfortable with. So, I made my own toothpaste, and though it's a bit salty [[baking soda has quite the salty flavor]] it seems to do the job well. I took before pictures of my teeth and I'm going to see if there is any noticeable difference after using my homemade version for a while.

If you are interested in any of the recipes I used, feel free to email me at:

jspencer2303 {at} gmail {dot} com

Also, the Cosmetics Database is a wonderful resource where you can enter in your brand of beauty product and it tells you its safety rating. It lists the ingredients of concern and if there is anything else that you need to be watching out for. It is really eye opening and I highly recommend checking it out.

If you're looking for a pretty decent documentary on the subject of going chemical free, you can find Chemerical on Netflix. This documentary was one of the things that led me to finally go for the gold. [[By gold I mean, chemical free lifestyle.]]

Have you ever considered switching to non-toxic cleaning solutions? If not, what has kept you from switching over?

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