Simple And Natural Self-Care Products
Minimizing and simplifying my self care products/beauty routine has been one of the best things I've done so far when it comes to simplifying my life. I used to think it was cool to have tons and tons of makeup and lotions and nail polish and what not. I never used all of it, it was full of toxic chemicals, and created excessive clutter. Now, the products I use are all natural, versatile, and keep my routine quick and simple.
Part of simple living to me is making sure that what I eat and the products that I use are minimal and contain the least amount of ingredients possible. As it only takes 26 seconds for a chemical applied on you skin to soak into your blood stream, I make conscious choices and purchases when it comes to body products, and try to make whatever I can myself!
Everything mentioned in this post is pretty much all of the products that I use on a daily basis aside from my makeup. Occasionally I will wear a non-toxic nail polish or include a homemade face mask in my routine, but that isn't very often as I try to keep it simple. I did not include my makeup in this post because I've already written a blog post and made a youtube video about my non-toxic and simple makeup routine :)
For my face and my body I use Dr. Bronner's bar soap. It comes in a paper wrapper which is recyclable and the ingredients are organic and pure. I also use Dr. Bronner's liquid castille soap diluted with water as hand soap.
As for moisturizing, I keep it pretty simple. I used to be a Bath and Body Works fanatic, but now I can't even smell synthetic fragrance without getting a headache. I also used to have disgustingly dry skin in the winter so I would lather on Cetaphil as a facial moisturizer which for some reason (the chemicals) only made my face even more dry. The parts of my face that weren't peeling and dry were abnormally greasy. Basically, my skin was just all out of wack. Ever since switching to all natural products about 2 years ago, I haven't had any issues with dry or greasy skin.
As for facial moisturizer, I will use either organic rosehip oil or jojoba oil. It sounds wrong, putting oil on your face, because wouldn't that make it greasy? But ever since I started using oil as moisturizer my face has evened out a lot and became less greasy and more moisturized.
Different oils may work differently for each person. Rosehip and jojoba work wonders for my face but coconut oil seems to irritate me. I highly recommend ditching the lotion moisturizers and finding a pure oil that works with your face. You will see your skin transform!
I use coconut oil and raw shea butter as body moisturizer and vegan lotion bars as a convenient hand lotion (recipe coming soon!)
For my lips I don't do much other than an occasional lip scrub made from sugar and coconut oil, and vegan chapstick. I'm currently using this brand but I think when I run out next I'm going to make my own.
When my lips need a little extra moisture in the winter months, I'll put either coconut oil or raw shea butter on them before I go to bed.
Did you know that the plastic toothbrushes we throw away will be around even after we are long gone? They can take up to 1,000 years to decompose, if they even do. I use vegan biodegradable bamboo toothbrushes from Brush with Bamboo. (Some bamboo toothbrushes bristle's are made of boar hair which we obviously don't want) and throw them in the compost instead of the trash. The packaging is also zero-waste!
I make my own toothpaste (recipe here) and store it in a glass jar. My oral hygiene is doing pretty well in the less-waste department!
As for floss, I purchased biodegradable silk floss (which is not vegan because of the silk) before I went vegan. Although the floss is biodegradable, it came in a non-recyclable plastic dispenser, which I feel is counterproductive. I've been using that up before I purchase more, but I think I will be buying this kind next. It's vegan and doesn't come in plastic packaging that can't be recycled. Natural floss is an important purchase because just like toothpaste, Crest and Colgate floss is full of tons of chemicals that you don't want in your mouth.
As I'm sure you can guess, I keep it pretty simple with my hair too. I don't use any hair sprays or leave-in products because I prefer the au naturelle feel. I tried using a shampoo bar for a while but even after the transition period my hair still looked flat and nappy. I'm not opposed to trying a shampoo bar again, I just need to find a better brand! I currently use 100% Pure's Shampoo that is all natural and has super clean ingredients!
For conditioner I use my DIY apple cider vinegar hair rinse instead (recipe here) and brush my hair with a wooden hair brush!
6. Feminine Hygiene Products
Things like tampons and pads are one of the most important things to purchase organic and all natural. I talked about why in this post. To reduce excess waste, I use a menstrual cup. It's reusable and a one time purchase so it's good for my wallet and my health. They seem super scary at first but I got used to mine so fast and honestly I never want to go back! I hate wearing pads so I love that you can sleep in menstrual cups.
For deodorant I'm currently using Schmidt's Naturals in a glass jar! It's the best non-toxic deodorant I've ever used after years and years of searching for one that lasts more than an hour. I talk more about the importance of natural deodorant in this post.
That's pretty much the gist of products I use! If you're wanting to simplify your life, I definitely recommend starting with your beauty products. Along with your closet, I think self care products are one of the most important things to simplify because it will create so much space in your life (physical and metaphorical) for simplicity.
By using fewer products, it creates less clutter in my home and it's better for my health because I use simple things with organic ingredients, as well as making my own products at home.