Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Crunchier Than Thou - Save me from the stink!

First, let me preface this by saying I'm not a hippy.  Well, maybe by comparison some would say I'm pretty crunchy, and I do believe in being good to one another and tolerance, but I'm digressing here.  I'm not a hippy and those I know who consider themselves to be earth-muffins chortle at the idea of me being called a hippy.  So, with that in mind, let's get down to business.  I have recently become disillusioned by the amount of garbage in toiletries. A few months ago I started trying to only buy body products that didn't contain parabens (scary little preservatives that mimic estrogen in the body). That got me thinking about all of the other dicey shit in the things we slather our bodies with each and every day.  The problem is that products without the scary additives are kind of pricey.  That led me to make my own.  I started with deodorant.  Why? Because I don't like to stink, because aluminium is linked to Alzheimer's, and because when I'm nursing my baby and her curious hand reaches up and starts exploring my armpit I cringe to think what she's getting on her hands and what will eventually end up in her mouth. So, if I'm afraid of her ingesting even just a little bit from her fingertips, why should I be ok putting it on my body every single day? Exactly. Also, I love the self-righteous feeling I get from "stickin it to the man".
I did some research and it turns out it's easy as pie to make!  You only need three ingredients (I used four but I'll get to that later): coconut oil, arrowroot powder and baking soda.  I also threw in some Sweet Orange Essential oil to make it smell nice.  I find the recipe here. Since it was my first attempt I decided to half the recipe.  I wasn't keen to have a whole pile of the stuff if it turned out to be atrocious.
Four simple ingredients.  It doesn't get much easier than that!
I mixed it all together in a bowl with a fork until it was thick paste then transferred it to an old baby food jar.  It's summer and I wasn't sure how warm the house would be and if the whole thing would melt to a useless puddle (as coconut oil is want to do) so I popped it in the fridge.  It turned rock hard in a very short period of time so I took it out overnight in hopes of being able to use it in the morning. The substance was very pliable and I was able to rub it on my pits after my shower this morning.  I used a bit too much though and ended up with a few white clumps. They just brushed off.  I decided the deodorant might be easier to use if it was harder though so I transferred some to an empty antiperspirant container.  It was pretty simple: just dial the thing down, smoosh the paste into the container, smooth out the top and voila! Looks like a regular chemical-laden bar!  I popped it back in the fridge and will see tomorrow if it's easier to apply that way.
I started this project at a very convenient time when I happened to be at the end of my regular antiperspirant.
Now comes the true test: will I stink? Hopefully for the sake of my husband and friends this experiment will be a success!  (Oh, and just so you know, I sweat. And I've been a die-hard antiperspirant user since my teen years.  This could get interesting!) 

Update: Since dousing myself in this tasty smelling business this morning I did a bit of reading and learned that it can take up to two weeks for the pits to shed the nasty stuff that they've been absorbing from antiperspirants, and that during that time a I MAY be stinkier than normal...a clever ploy by the deodorant companies to make you think you NEED their products.  After that it should be smooth sailing.  We shall see, my friends.  We shall see. 

Next Crunchy Project: Shampoo.  (Testing is running concurrently)

No comments: