Update: DIY Cosmetics

Rose Sculpture in Mile End
In an effort to rid our cosmetics of the toxic dirty dozen, I went online and found some recipes to make my own shampoo and skin moisturizer. A month has past since I posted recipes and made my own herbal shampoo and beeswax moisturizer, and I just wanted to report back to all those who were interested in trying these recipes.

Beeswax, Almond Oil, Lavender & Ylang Ylang Essential Oils, Vitamin E
Moisturizer (original recipe click here)

I am very pleased with the beeswax and almond oil moisturizer; they are perfect ingredients for creating a balm against dry skin caused by cold winter weather. I would recommend that you cut the amount of the ingredients in half. I've used less than a quarter of a small mason jar in a month. This is great for feet, hands, legs and forearms, but it's too heavy to use on your face.

I would instead recommend the Wild Rose face cream "made with love by the Nova Scotian Sister Lotus team of belly dancing herbalists." It only took three days to ship from rural Nova Scotia to Montreal. A complete list of dirty-dozen free ingredients are given on the side of the product, which costs a third of the high-end moisturizer I once used, and unlike Sister Lotus, my previous moisturizer listed only its "active" ingredients. So what about the inactive ingredients?

Rosemary, Sage, Liquid Castile Soap, Lavender Essential Oil
Shampoo (original recipe click here)

Beats Golden Rod!
I tried this several times and was unable to get the mixture completely out of my hair, but I assumed it was because I have streaks, and colour treated-hair doesn't react well to certain shampoos. My husband said that it made his scalp too dry. Suspecting it was the castile soap, I tried a new recipe that called for a smaller quantity. I thought it was a matter of proper dosing. By week three, my daughter's hair was dry and tangled, and I was beginning to look like Pippi Longstocking. I decided that I would try some more shampoo experimenting over Christmas, but until then we needed some FREAKIN' shampoo. In the end, I found a dirty-dozen free shampoo, Oneka Elements, sold by one of the people who actually picked the ingredients and made the shampoo himself. The results were great.

A few words about liquid castile soap

People in the green movement swear by castile soap for its versatility. Believe it or not, you can use it for laundry soap and even brush your teeth with it (apparently, peppermint liquid soap is the best for toothpaste). Dr. Bronner's liquid castile soap is vegetable-based and completely biodegradable, and although it's a great body soap, the maker does not advise using it as shampoo unless you use the recommended conditioner and stay-in cream rinse. Apparently, shampoo needs some acidic ingredients, which castile soap doesn't have, and that's why other products are needed.Otherwise, your hair will be very tangled, dull and straw-like after repeated use.

But I still haven't given up. I WILL continue to make my own cosmetics. Just because it's fun! If you try recipes from the Internet, I recommend that you have a Plan B in place.

Related posts:
DIY: Moisturizer and Shampoo
Cosmetics: the Dirty Dozen
DIY: Home Spa Salt Scrub
Dirty Dozen in my Personal Care Products
Living Downstream by Sandra Steingraber
Airing our Dirty Laundry
The Mile End Buzz around Beekeeping



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