(Counterclockwise, from top left: Deodorant, Coconut Oil Body Butter, Peppermint Toothpaste, and Shea Butter Body Cream, before it set)
I took Violet to the optometrist last week because she'd been blinking a lot, squeezing her eyes shut every time. I was worried about her eyesight. Turns out, her eyes are just dry. Not unusual at this time of year, as we heat our home with wood. My skin and hair are always dry and I'm always trying products that fail to give me that deeply moisturized feeling I crave. My elbows, feet, hands, and face are the worst. Itchy, dry skin...a sure sign of a long winter.
I had already made homemade toothpaste, thanks to Crooked Moon Mama's great posts on the subject.
With a bit of web searching, I came across this oh-so-simple recipe for coconut oil body butter. Two ingredients only! We already use coconut oil for massage, so it wasn't much of a leap to whip it up with some lemon oil for a nice sunny scent.
Now, this homemade deodorant, I absolutely love. Please note: removing chemicals from deodorant means it's NOT an anti-perspirant (I think sweating is kinda important anyway, don't you?). Your pits won't be dry. But they'll be softly-scented. I try to give my pits a wash daily whether I take a bath or not, and especially in the winter when I'm not sweating profusely, this stuff is soft, gentle, and does the trick just fine. I always feel kind of unsettled about shaving my pits then rubbing chemicals all over them...like I'm opening a door to all kinds of problems (read: breast cancer?). I just feel better using this homemade stuff, and scenting it just the way I like. It goes on beautifully, and I find myself acting like this... (watch it till the end...)
Finally, I tried this Shea Butter Body Cream. It smells divine but didn't solidify, even when the house is cold first thing in the morning when the fire's died down. Still, it quenches my skin's thirst and makes me delectably soft!
Buy a few ingredients from your local natural food store: shea butter, coconut oil, almond oil, cocoa butter, baking soda, and a few beautiful essential oils, and you can save yourself a pile of money, AND give yourself the peace of mind that comes with knowing exactly what you're putting on your (and your children's) skin.
I have to say, it was an amazing feeling to be measuring and mixing and pouring these gorgeous ingredients into clean jars, hands slippery and soft from the oils. I hope to add more to my repertoire soon: lip balm, massage bars, and so on. I'll keep you posted.
Do you make any of your body care items by hand? Which recipes/books are your favourites?