Here at Amelie's Bark Shop we focus on natural products for your precious pets, so let's talk about natural products for the humans!
I get a lot of questions about this, so I decided to share some of the products I use around the shop and in my personal life. Most of these are simple switches, but if you need any advice please don't hesitate to comment below!
HOMEMADE CLEANING SPRAY
Equal parts pure distilled vinegar and water and a couple of drops of your favorite all-natural essential oils go a long way. I use this natural disinfectant spray for everything from cleaning the counters and shelves to the windows. At first it'll smell like vinegar but the smell quickly dissipates and you're left with a sparkly clean finish! I use this spray in my home too...it makes for a great kitchen, bathroom, everything else cleaner. Added bonus: it's so much more cost efficient than buying traditional cleaners.
I've swapped out traditional laundry methods for healthier and more eco-friendly options and I'll never go back. I now use Method's free+clear concentrated detergent and swapped out dryer sheets for wool dryer balls sprinkled with all-natural lavender essential oil. My laundry has never been cleaner or smelled more lovely. Added bonus: the dryer balls significantly cut down on drying time because they create space between the laundry which helps dry everything more efficiently.
I officially haven't washed my hair in a year! That's right! I've weaned myself off of traditional shampoo and have been an avid follower of the "no-poo" routine for a year now. I've tried a few different brands, but I've officially committed to Renpure's Lavender Conditioner. Renpure is free from sulfates, sodium chloride, dyes, harsh salts, parabens, gluten, and phthalates. It's basically a creamy conditioner (it doesn't foam so it takes some getting used to) that gently and naturally cleanses your hair without stripping it's natural oils. As a person who has had issues with chronically greasy hair, I can tell you that switching was tough and didn't seem to work at first, but I stuck with it and my scalp has adjusted very well. What happens when you use traditional shampoos is that you're stripping your natural oils and your scalp is forced to produce more oil to compensate. I only have to "wash" my hair twice a week now and it's never been healthier, had better texture, and stayed clean for so long. I massage it in at the beginning of my shower and let it sit throughout my shower, rinsing it out right before I get out. Trust me, give it a try!
This is a relatively new endeavor, but after researching the harmful effects of excessive fluoride I've switched to Dr. Bronner's natural peppermint toothpaste. It's a coconut oil fluoride-free formula with natural peppermint. Like the co-wash, it doesn't have any foaming agents in it, so it's taking some getting used to. But, my teeth have been feeling super clean and are looking pretty white. This is one of the only natural toothpastes I was able to find that was carrageenan-free. It contains no synthetic detergent foaming agents, is fluoride-free, vegan and cruelty-free, with no artificial colors, flavors, preservatives, or sweeteners. Made in a 100% recyclable box and tube. Sure, the text-heavy label might be a little wacky, but it means well.
My skin is very sensitive. So sensitive that I break out in red itchy rashes from anything and everything, especially soap. I couldn't be happier with the results I've had using Dr. Bronner's Pure-Castile soap. Dr. Bronner's is made with organic and certified fair trade ingredients, packaged in a 100% post-consumer recycled bottle, vegan and cruelty-free, with no artificial colors or preservatives. It's a concentrate, so I dilute it by pouring out half into a separate bottle, refilling the original bottle with water, and shaking. It leaves me feeling fresh and clean and I just love the lavender one. It's been so gentle on my skin...no more allergic soap reactions! This 18-in-1 soap is good for just about any cleaning task. Face, body, hair, food, dishes, laundry, mopping, pets...clean your house and body with no synthetic preservatives, detergents or foaming agents.
Along with chronically greasy hair I've been unlucky enough to suffer from stinky underarms as well. I've had to use clinical protection deodorant ever since I was a teenager and it seems like even those don't do the trick anymore. I haven't started this new routine yet, so I'll update this once I do, but I'm going to try a new regimen that I've done some research on. The issue more than likely lies in unbalanced pH levels. What's the cure? Apple cider vinegar apparently! After reading reviews on natural deodorants I was skeptical because of the complaints of rashes and burns, but apparently that's linked to the pH levels of your underarms and that a pre-wash with the apple cider vinegar is what does the trick. What I'm going to try is a daily swipe down of pure unfiltered apple cider vinegar followed by Schmidt's lavender+sage natural deodorant. I bought the jar version, but I found that they have a stick too. Schmidt's is free of aluminum, propylene glycol, parabens & phthalates, plant-based powders protect against wetness without the use of aluminum, certified vegan & cruelty-free. Added bonus: they have an awesome recycling program where you send in 5 empty jars and they send you 1 new jar for free!