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By Karen Alexander, Oncology Wellness Specialist

06/22/2018

Creating your own Personal Care and Household Products

Many products in the personal care market contain ingredients that have not been regulated or tested, and there is no way to determine if chemicals used in personal care and household products are toxic or not. For more information about ingredients that you must avoid in personal care products ready this article by our guest blogger, Dr. Kalpana DePasquale of Avanti Medical Spa and St. Augustine ENT. Now that you know what to avoid, I will share some easy and creative ways you can make your personal care and household products without any potentially harmful ingredients. Always make sure to use high-quality ingredients (e.g., organic essential oils) when making your own products.

Mousse or hair gel
Hair products may contain volatile solvents and compounds such as parabens, sulfates, fragrances and other chemicals that have been linked to health concerns. Below you can find how to make your own gel/mousse that will help you go through your day looking great.

Homemade gel/mousse
8 ounces water
1 tablespoon whole flax seed (organic if possible)
Strainer
Mason jar
Directions: Put both ingredients in a pan and boil the flax seeds until the water reduces by half. Turn off the heat and remove from the stove. Strain the seeds and put the liquid into the Mason jar. Put the lid on and store in your refrigerator until the liquid thickens. For better results apply it to damp hair. It will last for about one week when kept refrigerated. Discard it and prepare another batch.

Deodorant
Deodorants have been a target of controversies for many years. The truth is that many brands still use ingredients of public health concern. An alternative is to use organic deodorants, but people state some of them aren’t very effective. (Here is a full list of organic deodorants) Today, I will share my favorite recipe to create your homemade deodorant that is very effective!

Homemade Deodorant
¼ cup coconut oil
3 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon baking soda
25-30 drops of your favorite essential oil
Mason jar
Directions: Put the coconut oil in the microwave and heat for a few seconds, just enough to liquefy. Add essential oil drops and the other two ingredients. Stir until you get a homogenous consistency. Pour the mixture into the Mason jar and let it cool, so it turns into creamy/semisolid consistency. Make sure you have clean hands every time you apply it to your underarms.

Air fresheners
Read our previous blog, where you can gain more knowledge about potentially hazardous chemicals used in air fresheners. You can make your own safe and effective air fresheners using the recipes below.

Liquid air freshener
1.5 tablespoon baking soda
25-35 drops of your favorite essential oil (You can add more if you prefer a stronger smell)
3 cups water
Funnel
Spray bottle with a fine mist
Directions: Put all of the ingredients in the spray bottle, and shake well to mix.

Dry air freshener
Small Mason jar with lid
Baking soda as needed (will depend on container size)
You favorite essential oils (the number of drops will depend on the amount of baking soda and how strong you want the air freshener).
Mason jar
Directions: Mix both ingredients in a bowl and pour into a Mason jar. Substitute the center of the lid ring for a porous fabric or a cute napkin with small holes.

Fabric softener (For fabric texture)
As we discussed in a previous blog, fabric softener may contain harmful chemicals linked to neurologic and respiratory disorders, and cancer risk. For more information about safer alternatives to fabric softeners, please visit our blog. A homemade substitution is to use white distilled vinegar (1/3 or ¼ cup) which should be enough for a regular load of laundry.

Dryer sheets (For smell)
As we discussed in the blog on fabric softeners, wool dryer balls can substitute dryer sheets. They can help with the static and cut the drying length. Just add a few drops of your favorite essential oil. They will give your clothes a great, natural scent and get rid of any static cling. 
I hope you enjoyed these few examples of tested homemade products, but you can find many ideas on the web.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Karen Alexander, BSND, MSCN.

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