With a family of four I find that I do a LOT of laundry! Since we’ve taken on cloth diapers and since our newest addition was born, I do at least a couple of loads per day. Really, I don’t mind it too much. It’s part of the routine. However, when you are doing that much laundry, you really start to consider how much you are spending on laundry detergent.
Because I had severe eczema my whole life, we found out when I was young that plain ol’ Tide was the only detergent we could use that wouldn’t break me out. I believe that my skin got used to it, not so much that it was the best solution for my sensitive skin. When I started getting into a greener lifestyle, I realized how many chemicals are in laundry detergents and thought maybe that was part of the reason that I had so much trouble with my eczema. Since my son has shown the same symptoms of eczema that I used to have, we decided to go for an all natural approach.
I made my own batch of all natural laundry detergent, which made me feel wonderful because I wasn’t putting any harsh chemicals onto our clothes to soak into our bodies. I found, however, that my messy 2 year old and newborn baby girl’s clothes were not getting as squeaky clean as Tide had done for us before, so I began looking for another natural alternative.
If I thought I was doing something right by making an “all natural detergent” before, I was wrong! While the ingredients that I used in my homemade detergent were natural and safe, I found that it didn’t have much stain fighting power. Enter Soap Nuts.
I don’t know about you, but as soon as my kids were born, all of the money that I had spent on myself previously seemed like nothing but waste. Of course we ladies still need to indulge and pamper ourselves every once in a while to keep our sanity. Pampering nowadays consists of half a bottle of wine and maybe an interrupted hour to take a nice, hot bubble bath. Spending obscene amounts of money on beauty products just didn’t make sense to me anymore. It’s easy to find affordable beauty products, but looking at the labels is a bit scary. Do I really want all that junk that I can’t even pronounce seeping into my face?! I don’t think so! I started looking for alternatives and what I found was a little shocking.
You know, what bees make. The same sticky sweetener I have in my kitchen to put in my tea. All of the research I did to find the easiest, all natural face and body wash lead me back to honey.
So…how does it work?
Have you ever seen The Bee Movie? I justify watching it as much as I do because I have a 2 year old, but let me tell you, Jerry Seinfeld knew what he was doing with that movie! Basically, it divulges into the life of worker bees and all of the work that goes into making honey. Pretty empowering stuff. Anyways, there is some merit to what I am getting at.
Bees use nectar and nectar contains over 600 different compounds. Honey contains an enzyme that produces hydrogen peroxide, which is a gentle antiseptic. Basically, when you put honey in your beauty products, it actually cleans! It also contains other antioxidants, which help eliminate free radicals and encourage growth of new tissue. That means that it heals irritated and damaged skin and also prevents scarring. Honey is a natural humectant which means that it attracts and retains moisture, leaving your skin hydrated and fresh!
What skins types does it work on?
It started with cloth diapers which quickly lead to cloth wipes. Next was making an all natural laundry detergent. From there, I began questioning the chemically filled soaps and lotions I was using on my babies’ perfect skin, which lead to what I was using on my own skin…and hair…and armpits…and even teeth. Slowly, an all natural lifestyle creeped it’s way into our home before my husband could say “coconut oil”.
After working as a manager at a major beauty store, and filling my vanity with expensive name-brand make-ups, moisturizers, hair serums, and several other different beauty products, I began to look at the labels. I’d be lucky to find one ingredient that I could pronounce, let alone have any idea of the purpose for it. Even the products I had been selling as “natural” weren’t what I had believed they were.
A quick Pinterest search lead me to many all natural alternatives. And when I say all natural, I mean ALL NATURAL. I began tossing the bottles of chemicals and replacing them with items I had kept in my kitchen! I’m talking honey…olive oil…vinegar…cocoa…plain old water…and so much more! Essential oils played a huge part in the transition, too. After much research, I found that I trusted my own concoctions more than anything I had ever bought, even compared to the higher end products.