Personal Care: The Best of Natural Non-Toxic Products

I have been trying and testing the simplest non-toxic, biodegradable personal care products. Here are my picks and favourites:


SOAP

Pure Castile or glycerine soap for hands and body are the simplest options.  I don't always feel like glycerine soap get the cleanest clean though, so I use Tom's Unscented Soap. And for removing toxins from the skin I love Charcoal Soap.


FACEWASH

I wash my face using the oil cleansing method (for acne prone skin) but you could use one of the above soaps.
For cleaning up between showers you could wipe your face with a Microfiber Face Cloth.


      MOISTURISER

      For my face and body, I have used Sweet Almond Oil and Argan oil    
      (pricier than almond oil). Both almond oil and argan oil have a     
      natural very light scent. I recently tried Rose Hip Oil which is supposed to  
      be very good for preventing acne. I really liked how it made my skin look. 
     This is a very good brand. 







SHAMPOO

I use Desert Essence - Fragrance-Free or a shampoo.  Or, try the no shampoo method





   

                        

CONDITIONER

I use Desert Essence Conditioner - Fragrance Free For a detangler try these two recipes.
                        
For black hair, coconut oil can be added to conditioner, argan oil can be used after shampooing, and Jamaican Black Castor Oil can be used as a sealant. 

   


BODY SCRUB & SHAVING CREAM

Mix olive oil with brown sugar to make a simple exfoliating face or body scrub. Rinse the sugar off with water and then use the oil as a shaving "cream."

If you prefer a lathering shaving cream try this all-natural recipe or just use soap.



LIP BALM

A simple, cheap and very effective lip balm can be made with two ingredients: beeswax and almond oil. Here are the instructions My go-to ready-made made lip balm with simple ingredients that don't dry out your lips is Tom's of Maine. For a scent-free balm try this one


TOOTHPASTE

Tom's of Maine used to be the go-to natural toothpaste before it was bought by Colgate-Palmolive. Now their tooth pastes contain sodium lauryl sulfate or fluoride. Instead, I use Jason brand All Natural Whitening toothpaste, which is also pretty easy to find. If you do need mouthwash (and you probably don't), use a natural one like Jason All Natural Mouthwash.

These bamboo brushes are gorgeous.


 DEODORANT

Tom's of Maine brand deodorants work well but the really effective ones
contain zinc ricinoleate or aluminum. The point of a "natural" brand
was to get away from those toxins. The Healthy Deodorant (pictured)
comes highly recommended.

Many people have recommended just using baking soda. Wiping down
with vinegar first (and letting it dry can help kill bacteria that are making
you smelly). 


LAUNDRY

My favourites are Seventh Generation (unscented)Nature Clean (unscented) or ECOs brand Eco Nuts Soap might be an option if you can tolerate their natural scent.
                                          
There are some non-toxic options for Fabric Softener, Dryer Sheets and Chlorine-Free Bleach. Or try these cool chemical-free, reusable Dryer Balls to reduce energy bills and soften fabric.


NATURAL SUNSCREEN

Badger Sunscreen comes recommended by people who are super sensitive. It is fragrance-free and uses zinc oxide as the active ingredient.  

Get a recipe for homemade natural sunscreen here




STYLING PRODUCTS

Speciality products from small companies can be found online or in your health food store, but it's very hard to find totally scent-free styling products.

For black hair, try Shea Moisture or Naani's Naturals. For various hair types, Moroccan Method uses simple, pure ingredients and offers free shipping across Canada.
                                        
For homemade recipes try this natural orange juice hairspray; this grapeseed/jojoba, essential oil & vit E hair serum, and this jojoba & aloe hair gloss. A simple solution - Glycerin de-frizzes and is my go-to hair product. 


MAKEUP

For chemical-free makeup try The Honest Company.

Marcelle Brand can be found at most drugstores - it is scent-free and hypoallergenic but not necessarily non-toxic.





   MENSTRUAL PRODUCTS & BIRTH CONTROL

   While many companies will be willing to sell you pesticide-free and
   chlorine-free Tampons and Pads, those items are so wasteful and
   expensive compared to menstrual cups. Menstrual Cups are convenient
   and save you tonnes of money.

   Hormonal birth control can be harmful to our bodies and very harmful to
   the fish in the rivers. Safer options included non-hormonal IUDs, and
   latex-free and spermicide-free polyurethane condoms (scent-free).



HAND SANITIZER 

I use this non-toxic, scent-free hand sanitizer. It has a very faint smell which I don't feel is problematic at all. It works as well as the standard alcohol-based ones (kills 99.9% of germs).  If you don't tolerate that one I like Essante Sanitizer as well. The thing that I really liked about it was that it cured all my skin fungal infections, including athlete's foot, and it barely has a smell. (This is an MLM but I am not a member and do not make a commission).


          HAIR DYE

          To lighten my hair I use hydrogen peroxide. Just the kind you get from
          the drugstore. It does create a chemical reaction with the hair that has a
          bit of a strange smell, but it doesn't last. Then I use henna to dye my hair.
          Henna has a very earthy smell which comes from the plants that are used
          to make it. You should test it first to see if you tolerate it. I have used this 
          brand that is a very good price but doesn't come in different colours, and
          this brand which comes in a variety of colours. Both worked very well,
          and they do cover grey!


NAIL POLISH

I use Zoya which claims to be non-toxic. It has a very strong chemical smell but once it's dry (about 20 minutes) I find it to totally benign. Another non-toxic brand to try is Suncoat.






SELF TANNERS

I have looked into a lot of the natural self-tanners out there. Almost all of them contain DHA. It may be naturally derived, but this ingredient may not be safe. This one is truly safe and natural. It's expensive though!





ACNE CREAMS 
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I use this cream pictured.  The first ingredient is controversial and likely toxic. I have tolerated it well. It has a slight natural scent. It is the only thing that helps my acne. Some people have reported amazing results with rose hip oil and charcoal soap. I like those products a lot but they didn't help my acne.

13 comments:

  1. Good post! I have a nut and molasses allergy...but I bet I could do that scrub with just white sugar....Great ideas here. I'm supposed to avoid beeswax since all my siblings are anaphylactic to bee stings, but still loads of ideas here. I hadn't heard of Desert Essence. I am going to look into it! Do all smells bother you or just chemical ones?

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    1. Hi, I think white sugar would work! I don't know if it dissolves easily. I would use the lipbalm recipe that uses cocoa butter as a base. I'm not generally bothered by essential oils so I don't avoid most of them unless it's really strong. Hope you find some good solutions!

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  2. Toothbrush solution: have you ever tried a mishwak?
    http://www.amazon.com/Miswak-Stick-Al-Falah-Hygienically-Processed/dp/B001G47L24/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1371776424&sr=8-1&keywords=miswak
    They're used a lot in the middle east and actually have good scientific evidence behind them. You don't even need to use toothpaste, the compounds in the root are antimicrobial. I started using one a few months ago and really like it, no more plastic toothbrushes!

    Also, I find that just throwing some baking soda onto my armpits works remarkably well as deodorant. I had the darndest time finding something cheap that didn't give me rashes and that's what I've settled on.

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    1. you're the second person to say just use baking soda as deodorant so I'll have to try it! Yes, they used those in Ghana where I was staying, not sure if it's exactly the same tree but it is essentially the same - I should have brought back lots of them when I had the chance (super cheap).

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  3. I always use all natural sunscreen when I go outdoors. I don't like the idea of putting anything on my skin to absorb that I wouldn't ingest. It all goes in your system in one way or another, and I like to make sure I'm as healthy and natural as possible.

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  4. For deodorant, I usually use vinegar and add baking soda on it. The vinegar kills germs so you don't smell and the baking soda keeps you dry. Baking soda can be used to wash hair, too, and leaves it squeaky clean. Baking soda for teeth, too. I've read glycerin is very toxic and I can't be around essential oils. Since I've eliminated chemicals for beauty products and don't eat them, I don't get sunburns and I'm a fair-skinned red head.

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  5. Yes, I have heard from many people that baking soda is good for deodorant. Baking soda for washing hair is called the no-poo method. Glycerine is not environmentally friendly when being processed but the final product is non-toxic. A lot of people can't handle essential oils yeah.

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  6. You may also want to try Shep’s Wool Dryer Balls. They are placed in your dryer to soften clothes. Never use Chemical fabric softeners again on your laundry (and skin)!

    WoolDryerBalls.com I am sure your readers would love to hear your testimonial!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Holy cow, it's so refreshing to meet another Canary! I'm looking into building a tiny house in the future, and I love yours! I use a lot of Tropical Traditions products. I use their soap with a vinegar rinse for a shampoo/conditioner (I have a citric acid allergy so it's almost the only soap I can use). I'm so excited to have found your blog!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Corinne:
    I saw your article on fb - "Woman builds herself a gorgeous, tiny, healthy, 'chemical free' house," TreeHugger, Lloyd Alter, 2014.08.12 posted by Tiny Green Cabins. One of the terms Mr. Alter used was "other auto-immune illnesses." Actually, these

    are classified as diseases. However, I'm a diabetic; diabetes is an auto-immune disease. I posed a comment on fb, "Why cannot we build w/ this in mind for all to help prevent "diseases" pre-emptoriarly?
    I'd love to "pick-your-brain" on the 'chemical free' house subj., If I may please? Txs. (;>} dCb

    David C. Burdick
    https://www.facebook.com/david.burdick.589

    ReplyDelete
  9. Body Mint is a natural deodorant alternative dervied from natural chlorophyll that minimizes breath, underarm, foot & body odors. Works for both Men & Women. http://bodymint.com/products/body-mint/

    ReplyDelete
  10. Good read! I came to know about different natural solution for skin care from your blog post. I too use coconut oil as a natural conditioner, forskin care I always use herbal products from Cosmic Nutracos. They are 100% natural and cause no side effects on skin.

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    1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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