Wednesday, February 6, 2013

My Personal Hygiene Regimen Right Now

I'm "detoxing from mass-produced body care products," so to speak, in an effort to distance myself as much as possible from animal testing, sketchy ingredients, and consumerism while not shelling out money for specialty products advertised to the eco-chic... so for today's blog entry I'll give you some rough recipes for things I use.  I'm not a very precise measurer... so don't worry if it's not exactly the same.

Shampoo Or Lack Thereof

I've decided to go "No 'Poo" again.   I'm not seriously that afraid of shampoo (you'd think it was worse than cocaine the way some people talk about it), but I do know from past experience that my hair just loves being without shampoo, and that using shampoo--even the "natural" stuff--forces me to wash my hair with more shampoo every single day.

I use a baking soda and vinegar method.  I filled a jar with baking soda and then wet the baking soda until it was kind of a "cream."  I also filled an old water bottle with a couple tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and the rest with tap water.

First I take the baking soda cream and move it throughout my wet hair.  Let it sit for a minute, then rinse.  Pour some of the vinegar mixture through it and also let that sit a while.  Rinse that.  Done.

Some people go through a period where their hair doesn't look as clean as they wish it did... personally, as a guy with short hair, it looks fine right away.

Eventually you will need to do this less and less, as your scalp will "learn" to regulate how much oil it pumps out.

Toothpaste

Whether or not your toothpaste has fluoride is less important than whether or not your diet is full of excess sugar and how regularly you brush your teeth.  I'm not an anti-fluoride conspiracy theorist... I can see why they put it in toothpaste (although I oppose having it in my water).  But I've found that it works just as well for me to use homemade toothpaste.

Mix coconut oil and baking soda until you get a good consistency.  Add to this a few drops of mint oil (I used spearmint) or cinnamon oil... or some other foodsafe oil you like.  Finish with a few drops of stevia extract, which will keep it from tasting bitter as well as add some good tooth-friendly properties to the toothpaste.

It'll feel really awkward to use this stuff at first because it doesn't foam.  Use a soft-bristle (yes, soft!) toothbrush and scrub your teeth with the toothpaste... it'll melt, but keep scrubbing, it's still there.

Oil Pulling, Flossing, and Tongue Scraping

Oil pulling, to be honest, doesn't do what many of its proponents say it does.  It absolutely does not yank toxins from your body through your mouth.  However, it does do some good for your oral health, so squishing a tablespoon of coconut or sesame oil between your teeth daily is not a bad idea.

In addition, you should floss.  Flossing is very important.  Tongue scrapers are also great... if you struggle with bad breath, getting rid of the scum layer on the back of your tongue will help.

Deodorant

I've seen people use a lot of alternatives to storebought anti-perspirant, from just putting some scented oil under the arms to just making sure to wash regularly.  I make deodorant, though.  So far it's worked relatively well.

My mix is about one part each baking soda, coconut oil, and arrowroot powder (I use this as my go-to substitute for cornstarch, so if you have no arrowroot cornstarch is just fine).  To that I mix some of my favorite scented oils, in my case rosewood, cedarwood, and sage oils.  Since the coconut already has a scent, tropical-smelling scents like lime go well with it.

Let it cool in a jar and you can apply with your fingers.  You can also put this in an empty deodorant tube, although depending on your climate it may be necessary to refrigerate it.