Living Life Naturally

Archive for August, 2013

Salt & Vinegar But Definitely NO Chips!!

In our house Friday is cleaning day. Not my favourite thing if I’m honest but it has to be done.

When my partner and I first got together (oh my goodness – TEN years ago!) it didn’t take me long to realise he had OCD! He is fanatical about keeping the house spotless. Me? I like the house clean but am slightly less fanatical about it. I prefer it to be lived in.

What used to worry me was all the different chemical cleaning agents he insisted on using; by the end of it my chest would be tight and I would be wheezing my socks off!

It’s taken me a while but I have finally managed to persuade him to clean MY way, with lots of natural goodies that don’t leave me gasping for breath!

One of my favourite cleaning products has to be good old vinegar; so versatile – and a whole lot cheaper than the stuff you see on the supermarket shelves.

Here are just a few ideas for using it:

  •  Freshen up the fridge. Clean the shelves and walls with a solution of half water and half vinegar.
  • Brighten coffee cups and teacups. Gently scrub stains with equal parts vinegar and salt (or baking soda).
  • Kill bathroom germs. Spray full-strength vinegar around the sink and tub. Wipe clean with a damp cloth.
  • Tidy up a toilet. Pour a cup or more of diluted white distilled vinegar into the bowl. Let sit several hours or overnight. Scrub well with a toilet brush and flush.
  • . Wipe off a dirty tap. To get rid of lime scale build up, make a paste of 1 teaspoon vinegar and 2 tablespoons salt. Apply to sink fixtures and rub with a cloth.
  • Restore shower head pressure. If your shower head gets clogged with mineral deposits, soak it for 15 minutes in a mixture of ½ cup vinegar and 1 quart water
  • I also use a vinegar/water mix to mop the floors                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     And when everywhere is sparkling clean I spray around with my home-made chemical-free air freshener!                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Job done, well, for another week anyway 🙂                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Till next time                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Lesley xxx

Process Of Elimination

Today is the first day of ………….. my very determined attempt to eliminate as many unnecessary chemicals from my lifestyle as possible.

As someone who has numerous allergies and food intolerances I am used to reading EVERY label when I shop. Drives me nuts sometimes but what else can I do?!

The last few years have been ones of major lifestyle changes for me; no more bubble baths because the SLS (Sodium Laurel Sulphate) upsets my skin, no more shampoo for my hair – just good old Bicarbonate of Soda followed by a vinegar rinse, no more fancy cleaning products – just vinegar and Bicarb again, home-made natural air fresheners without a chemical in sight.

All these changes have seen a major improvement in my health; the cleaners and air fresheners used to leave me coughing and wheezing all the time and as far as I can see the house hasn’t suffered without them!

But the biggest improvement has to be to my bank balance! Bicarbonate of Soda is pretty cheap, vinegar too, in fact my biggest expense is probably the essential oils I use for my home-made air freshener.

I have now started making my own toothpaste; Strange but this was one item I never really read the ingredients list on, just bought it and used. But a couple of  weeks ago I took a glance and was appalled to find that it also contains SLS.

Now just to explain: SLS was originally developed many years ago as an industrial cleaner!!! So why on earth should it be in my tube of toothpaste, or my bubble bath for that matter. Well, enough is enough!

Here is my recipe for home-made toothpaste. No chemicals, no fluoride and does a lovely job too. 🙂

Ingredients

2 Tbsp. coconut oil

2 Tbsp. baking soda

20 drops essential oil (I use spearmint.)

A bit of Stevia if you want sugar-free sweetness (I don’t bother with this)

After mixing the toothpaste keep it in a glass container with a lid. Then just spoon some out or dip your dry toothbrush into it. The mixture does not need to be refrigerated.

So, that’s another chemical eliminated! Onwards and upwards 🙂

 

Lesley xx

 

A Natural Progression

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So this is me………or rather it was.

Sadly I have decided that the new EU regulations for all cosmetic manufacturers have made life too difficult for small-scale producers like myself. The time now required to be spent on paperwork far outweighs any benefits, financial or otherwise. It’s not as if I have the resources that Boots, Superdrug or Lush do!

I have taken the painful decision to stop making Skin Kiss products, at least for the time being. I will however continue to blog about my passion which is to live as naturally as I can, with as little impact on our planet as possible.

Wherever I can I use natural products whether it be on my body, in my body, or around my home;

One of my pet hates is air freshener – they always smell so ‘chemical’ to me – and quite frankly if you care to check the ingredients, well, that is exactly what they are – chemical!

This is my home-made version and not a nasty ingredient in sight 🙂

You’ll need:

A clean, empty spray bottle

1 tablespoon baking soda

2 cups distilled water

10 drops essential oil (my favourites are lavender, sweet orange, geranium or rose)

Measure the baking soda into a bowl and add the essential oil on top.

Using a fork, mix the oil into the baking soda. This will help keep the oil suspended in the water.

Put the baking soda/oil mixture into the spray bottle (a funnel helps) and top off with the distilled water. Label your bottle, shake before use, and breathe happy–and more importantly – safely.

Let me know if you try this for yourself.

Till next time

Lesley xx

When Life Gives You Lemons………….

Sometimes things just don’t seem to go according to Plan A……….. or Plan B………… or even Plan C!

Since the EU came up with the brilliant idea of EVEN MORE red tape for those of us in the Cosmetics business things have been tougher than I would like. 😦

After two weeks I am STILL awaiting validation so that I can upload my SkinKiss products to the new all-singing, all-dancing Cosmetic Product Notification Portal. Now maybe that doesn’t sound like too much of a problem………… but for me it is; I cannot legally continue to sell my bath and shower products until this is done……. which means I can do no Craft Fairs, cannot sell through my Facebook shop, in fact I have no means of producing an income.

I completely understand the need for all cosmetic products to be regulated but this, surely, was what the Cosmetic Safety Assessment was intended for. All of us in this business will have paid for one of these at the very least, some people will have paid for several, depending on what they produce and where they purchased from.

This additional bureaucratic red tape has caused many to rethink remaining in business – myself included.

After a very enjoyable first year in business, during which I made many new friends who also became customers, it is disappointing to think that I may have to give up.

So for the time being there will sadly be no more new SkinKiss products, but as I cannot bear the thought of being idle I have decided to resurrect my sewing machine and produce a few bits and pieces on that instead.

Like I said – when life gives you lemons…………..

Till next time

Lesley xx