By Kay Newton, author and the Midlife Strategist
How to use DIY natural cleaning products instead of chemical-heavy ones
Imagine your house is empty of food, not even a can of baked beans or few frozen peas at the bottom of the freezer, would you turn to your cleaning and personal hygiene products and start eating them? If the answer is no, read on.
Over the years we may have become aware of the importance of checking food labels for E numbers, sugars and other ingredients that may cause harm.
We are constantly told that the best foods are natural, closest to the soil or sea is best, yet many people fail to do the same for their home or personal hygiene products.
As more and more people begin to suffer from allergies, strange rashes, hormonal imbalances and asthma, it is time to widen our understanding of chemical safety around the home.
The biggest organ of the body is our skin, when we place cosmetic, hygiene or even cleaning products (if you fail to wear gloves) on the skin surface it is important to think ‘can I eat this?’
If you are unsure, check the label, any long convoluting words probably mean avoid at all costs (this is just a rule of thumb as some weird sounding words are actually edible). Type the word into a Google search and then decide whether it is safe to proceed.
As your awareness increases, and you begin to realize not all supermarket shelf products are safe, you start searching for alternatives and you will be surprised to see how many great natural home and personal products are out there.
This does not mean you have to sign up to a monthly club or buy expensive items, the simpler you go the better.
For example, coconut oil and bicarbonate of soda mixed together will make a fab deodorant. Teeth can be cleaned with bicarb as well (add a drop of mint essence if you want the fresh taste).
For a natural face/hand creams turn to ingredients such as olive oil, honey, bee pollen, or royal jelly. If it was good enough for the Pharaohs of Egypt who believed such ingredients came from the fountain of youth, they will be good enough for you too.
So what do you use instead of harsh chemicals? Hot water and good old fashioned Castile soap – simples. Originating from the Castile region of Spain, this soap has a traditional base of pure olive oil, although now it can have other oil bases such as coconut.
Soap destroys the fatty layer around the coronavirus and will not harm you or your environment. You can use this soap often and yes you can ingest it, although not recommended, yet a drop on your toothbrush will clean your teeth!
Going the whole hog and making your own products using simple edible ingredients will not only save you a huge amount of money, but you also will not need to shop as often, nor buy products in plastic containers, therefore, helping the environment further. There will be no need to pour chemicals into the sewage system and into the sea, saving space in landfills (or is that the sea?)
You can store your homemade goodies in wooden tubs or glass jars which you can continually replenish and use for years to come. A small amount of bicarb and other ingredients go a long way, you will be surprised how little you actually need to make a difference.
Experimenting with natural edibles is safe and easy. For example – perfume can be a drop of essential oil applied to the underside of a shirt collar, clothes can be washed in salt and vinegar, (yes not just for eating with fish and chips!) mashed avocado used as a face mask, lemon juice applied to stains on a wooden chopping board.
It is the same within the home. Covid19 may have made you paranoid about cleaning yet if you have been using bleach and strong detergents constantly you have probably not only damaged your home, you will have caused harm to your lungs.
When a virus attacks your body it invariably affects your lungs, therefore it makes sense to prioritize their health and stay away from toxic fumes.
As you begin to simplify your life, not only will you begin to feel better, you will have even more space and time to think about how you impact your environment.
Everything we do on planet earth will impact the next seven generations, yes SEVEN generations. Continually asking ‘how can I do this better?’ is not only practical it is ethical.
As you lead the way, taking care of yourself first, by example, others will follow. This Sensibly Selfish system is simplicity in itself.
When you follow the rule ‘can I eat it?’ magic appears, you will literally glow both inside and out.
Expect others to notice and when they do, let them know how simple it is to follow suit. Give it a go and let us know how you get on.
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Kay Newton is the Midlife Strategist and lives a simple lifestyle by the beach in Mallorca, Spain. In her 20s, Kay owned a guardianage business looking after the holiday homes of the rich and famous and used toxic cleaning products daily which led her to partially destroy her lungs. Kay now lives in a chemical-free environment, owns one lipstick and no perfume. She’s a speaker and author who’s written three books (How to Clean Your Home Organically: De-stress Your Surroundings | The Art of Midlife Stress Busting: Seven Steps to Declutter Your Mind Without Pills or Potions | Tips and Tricks for Stress-Free Downsizing: A Step by Step Guide to Moving On) and she helps women over 50 get their mojo back. Find out for more about Kay at www.kaynewton.com and on her Facebook Page.