Ashley and I have long tried to limit the use of chemical filled cleaners in our home. They are expensive, each one is supposed to be better than anything else (and they tend not to fulfil that promise) and most of us are becoming more and more aware of the detrimental effects that they are having on us and our environment. I have so far managed quite well in choosing chemical free cleaning solutions for the home – you’ve seen my love of bicarbonate of soda! This along with lavender and home made citrus oil based sprays clean my house from top to bottom. I do sometimes get seduced by marketing and end up with a bottle of Flash under the kitchen sink, but this usually gets offered out to friends or family or sits there for a year or two before being binned. I use Ecover products for washing up and the dishwasher and some ‘eco balls’ that were a birthday present a while back for laundry. I’ll get to these in another post but I don’t think that these are long term products for me – Ecover products are a bit on the pricey side and the eco balls need quite a hot wash to be really effective. I have tried soap nuts and I would like to try them again with a bit more knowledge.
My thoughts turned more recently to personal cleaning products; shampoo, body wash, hand soap etc. I have had a bottle of ‘Dr Bronners Organic Liquid Castile Soap’ under the sink for quite a while now. I forget what I originally bought it for (probably something I saw on Pintrest!) but it’s nearly all gone. I had seen that people use this stuff for all sorts of things so I thought I’d give it a go. I love, love, love all things lavender scented and it has antibacterial properties (very useful around the home and bathroom!) so I bought a ltr of the lavender fragrance Dr Bronners (there are other makes out there) and couldn’t wait to get started!
I found a simple ‘recipe’ for a shampoo here at Premeditated Leftovers. It requires very little and I had everything I needed for it. I used slightly less of the coconut oil than suggested as my hair tends to be on the greasy side anyway. The measurements are in cups (as with most american recipes) and at Christmas when I was making many Pintrest inspired gifts, found this quite frustrating trying to get accurate measurements. My (sometimes!) wonderful husband gave me these sweet little measuring cups as a Christmas present. I think they were from Lakeland and I use them all the time now. Anyway, the ‘recipe’ was incredibly easy and in no time I had a jar of ‘shampoo’! I was going to put the liquid into a plastic bottle but have read that the essential oils can degrade the bottle, leaching chemicals into your chemical free product, so I have left it in the glass jar for now. I’ll do some more reading on that one. The shampoo mixture smells great and I’m looking forward to using it – I’ll update on how it worked later.
Whilst I had the soap and essential oils out, I thought I’d make a super simple handwash for the kitchen. Just a little of the castile soap (the old, unscented one I had under the sink) in a bottle topped up with water and a few drops of tea tree essential oil added. We bought one of these foaming dispensers a while back (about £12 from Lakeland I think – I’m honestly not promoting Lakeland or anything!) and it’s very good. We had bought cheap foaming dispensers for making our own handwash in the past, but they broke really quickly. This one works reliably and foams up well, I only wish that the base was more stable – it wobbles about a bit when you press the top down and if it hasn’t got proper suction on the bottom it slides about. It has a little line on the back where you’re supposed to fill up to with normal handwash and another to fill up to with water. I only filled up halfway to the handwash line with the castile soap as it is quite concentrated and so you don’t need as much.
Now to find out more ‘recipes’ for other uses! I’ll keep you updated!
Thanks for reading!