Seven years ago, on New Year's day, I made a resolution that would later become a huge part of my life. I decided to replace every commercial beauty product in my bathroom with something natural, and whenever possible, handmade. If this sounds like a massive underataking, well, you're right. It was, but I didn't do it overnight. I spent the entire year of 2007 replacing products one by one. By the time 2008 came around, I had gone all-natural from head to toe.
It was that very same year that I started writing The Natural Beauty Workshop. I had been working for From Nature With Love for more than two years, first in their warehouse, keeping daily operations ship-shape with the help of the company's founder, Kibby. Later, I moved to bulk sales where I worked alongside the company's president, Jay.
Though I loved working for Jay and Kibby, and I had plenty of interest in natural skin care, I knew in my heart that I needed to be doing something more creative. As I was gathering up steam to move on from the job, they offered me a new opportunity, a full-time position as the company's blogger, social media coordinator, and recipe developer.
I started working from home, where I spent every day either writing, working in the kitchen on new recipes, or photographing my creations. I'd been a casual blogger for years, but when I was given the chance to do it full-time, I fell in love with it. It's really amazing how the simple act of setting a goal can put your whole life in motion.
As I created recipes for The Natural Beauty Workshop I was able to accomplish my goal for resetting my beauty routine too. By replacing products with simpler, healthier recipes, I took a huge step toward leading a healthier happier life. To celebrate the new year, I'd like to share my experience here on The Natural Beauty Workshop, and show you that you can enjoy a natural and healthy skin care routine without commercially produced products.
Cleansing the Bathroom Cabinet
The very first step to going all-natural is to take a close look at your current routine. Open up your bathroom cabinets and take some time to really scrutinize the products you find there. Ask yourself which products you really love, and which you use the most. Set these aside, then comb through the rest. Look for expired or rancid products and toss them. Figure out which products you hang on to, but don't really use, and consider passing them on to a friend, or simply letting them go. When you've narrowed down your favorites, make a list of the products that you need to replace. You can work on replacing them one by one.
Use and Replace
Make a check list of products to replace, and then start working on them as the store-bought products run out. This makes the reset process less wasteful, and helps you prioritize which products to replace first. I'll share some recipes and methods for replacing the most common products in this post. If you get stuck, or need more ideas, send me an email or try asking our readers by posting your question on our Facebook Page or in our G+ Community.
Recipes, Methods, and Alternative Products
Cleansers: Everyday cleansers can be made from simple ingredients like Adzuki Bean Powder, Kaolin Clay, or even plain Yogurt. Natural facial bars are a great choice for replacing commercial beauty bars like Dove or Olay bars. Whip up a batch of Cold Process soap, or purchase some natural facial soap from a small-batch artisan. If you'd like to try something totally new like the Oil Cleansing Method.
Facial Cleanser Recipes:
- Chamomile Facial Wash
- Creamy Rice & Coconut Scrub
- Creating Everyday Facial Cleansers From Natural Ingredients
- Kyoto Scrub
- Natural Facial Cleansers
Toners: Natural Hydrosols make wonderful All Natural Facial Toners, and can be used as-is! How easy is that?
Masks: Every now and then it's nice to treat your skin to a special treatment. Masks can be used to deep clean, condition, or brighten your skin. Fresh-made masks are so much better for your face than pre-made commercial concoctions, and most recipes are very easy to make.
- Apple Granola Face Mask
- Basic Facial Masks for Men
- Clarifying Honey Sage Facial
- Crafting With Kids: Fun & Fruity Facial Masks
- Deep Cleansing Mud Masque
- Detoxifying January Facial Mask
- Energizing Facial Mask
- Fresh Fruit Smoothie Facial
- Garden Spa: Fresh Herb Facials
- Milk & Honey Facial
- Queen Bee Facial Mask
- Red Raspberry Facial Mask
- Refreshing Rice and Cilantro Mask
Cleansers: I'll admit it was hard to give up my favorite pouf and shower gel combo. I loved the rich, fluffy lather of commercial shower gels, but as fun as they were, these sudsy, scented gels were stripping my skin with harsh detergents and irritating fragrances. Your skin will love a switch to something more natural, like Liquid Castile or a natural bar of Cold Process soap. If making handmade soap is a bigger project than you'd like to take on, don't worry. Natural soap can be found in abundance from small-batch artisans.
Scrubs: Who doesn't love a good salt or sugar scrub? I'm sure I spent a small fortune on scrubs before I started making them myself. When I did get started making my own scrubs, I found the process to be surprisingly simple, fun, and easy. You can make a basic scrub by mixing 1/2 cup of fine salt or sugar with 1/4 - 1/2 cup of your favorite Carrier Oil like Virgin Olive Oil, Sweet Almond Oil, or Fractionated Coconut Oil.
- How to Make Salt Scrubs
- Cafe Almond Sugar Scrub
- Candy Cane Sugar Scrub
- Candy Shop Solid Sugar Scrubs
- Chocolate Truffle Scrub
- Coconut Sugar Scrub
- Coffee Bean Solid Sugar Scrubs
- Cranberry Pumpkin Salt Scrub
- Creamy Rice & Coconut Scrub
- Dill pickle Salt Scrub
- DIY Summer Scrubs
- Fresh Cucumber Mojito Salt Scrub
- Garden Glory Salt Scrub
- Getting Scrubby: A Guide to Using Natural Exfoliants
- Ginger Crush Salt Scrub
- Goddess Salt Scrub
- Kiwi Salt Scrub
- Kyoto Scrub
- Jojoba Salt Scrubs
- Lavender Lover's Body Polish
- Lemongrass Salt Scrub
- Lemon Walnut Foot Scrub
- Mango Lassi Skin Smoothing Scrub
- Margarita Salt Scrub
- Melon Cooler Salt Scrub
- Monoi De Tahiti Summer Salt Scrub
- Neopolatin Ice Cream Scrub
- Papaya Smoothie Sugar Scrub
- Patchouli Cupcake Body Polish
- Patchouli Mojo Scrub
- Red Apple Scrub
- Sugar Cookie Scrub
- Sunrise Salt Scrub
- Super Scrub Hand Wash
- Trick or Treat Mini Scrubs
- Tropical Dream Foot Scrub
- Vanilla Bean Ice Cream Scrub
- Watermelon Sherbet Scrub
- Yuzu Garden Salt Scrub
Moisturizers: Recipes for DIY body moisturizers range from easy to advanced, but no matter how you approach conditioning your skin naturally, you are bound to see a major improvement from ditching commercial lotions and body butters. Instead of slathering your skin in alcohol, pretrolatum, and yucky fillers, you can nourish it with rich plant-based butters and oils. Light Carrier Oils, like Peach Kernel Oil or Watermelon Seed Oil can be used as-is as body oils. Balms and Whipped Butters are super easy to make, and can be created from your favorite ingredients, like Shea Butter, Cocoa Butter, and Avocado Oil. If you are feeling adventurous, try making a batch of homemade cream or lotion!
Body Moisturizer Recipes:
- Blissful Body Mousse
- How to Make Cocoa Almond Whipped Body Butter (Video)
- Raspberry Truffle Lotion Bars
- Cooling Cucumber & Mint Body Oil
- Organic Body Oil
- Emulsion, The Magic Trick of Creams & Lotions
- Fresh Margarita Body Cream
- Blossom Body Cream
- Rainforest Flower Body Cream
- Bayberry Heel Butter
- Lemon Tea Tree & Honey Foot Mask
- Lemon Walnut Foot Scrub
- Natural Pedicure Treatments
- Peppermint Tea Tree Foot Soak
- Tropical Dream Foot Scrub
- Whipped Pedi-Butter
Shampoos and Natural Cleansers: Replacing your hair care products is probably the most challenging part of switching to an all natural routine. While you could try shopping for an all-natural shampoo from a small-batch artisan, it might be worth revamping the way that you care for your hair completely. Check out this article on Natural Shampoo Alternatives for some ideas on how to care for your hair with shampoo bars, no-poo methods, and more.
Hair Cleanser Recipes:
- Ayurvedic Hair Rinse
- Herbal Hair Rinse
- Rosemary Walnut Shampoo & Vinegar Rinse
- Shampoo Bar Ingredients
Conditioners & Rinses: Again, finding an all-natural conditioner can be challenging, but most alternative hair care methods make use of natural rinses and hair oils instead. If you are determined to stick to a classic shampoo and conditioner routine, try shopping from small-batch artisans or hitting up your local health food store.
Hair Conditioners & Rinse Recipes:
- Ayurvedic Hair Cream
- Fruit & Vegetable Hair Oil
- Herbal Scalp Massage Bars
- Jasmine & Acai Berry Hair Oil
- Rosemary Hair Whip
- Rosemary & Honey Conditioning Hair Spray
Masks, Treatments, and Styling Products: Products, potions, sprays, and serums aren't always easy to come by in a truly natural form, but with a little creativity, you can recreate most of your favorite styling products using natural ingredients. Keep an eye out on natural hair care communities and social media sites like Pinterest or Reddit for the latest and greatest DIY recipes. Looking for something specific? Try asking our readers by posting your question on our Facebook Page or in our G+ Community.
Hair Product Recipes:
Toothpaste and Mouth Wash: While there are recipes out there for handmade toothpaste, and even toothpaste alternatives, like oil-pulling and tooth soap, I prefer to stick to commercially made natural toothpastes. I've tried homemade toothpastes, tooth soaps, and even oil pulling, but my personal preference pushes me toward making a small concession in this department. If you'd like to explore homemade oral care products, check out the following articles I've collected from other blogs.
Homemade Tooth Soap and Toothpaste Recipes | MommyPotamus
Homemade Tooth Soap Recipe | Homestead Wannabes
Oil Pulling for Oral Health | Wellness Mama
DIY Mouthwash - Three Tasty Recipes | Mary Crimmins
Lip Balm: Homemade lip balm is one of the projects that many natural beauty enthusiasts start off with. Making lip balm is very easy, and even a small batch yields numerous tubes, making it a very rewarding project. We have plenty of awesome lip balm recipes to share, but you can also find natural lip balms from small-batch artisans in abundance.
If this will be your first time making lip balm, check out our Lip Balm Kits at From Nature With Love:
- Basic Lip Balm Ingredient Kit
- Basic Vegan Lip Balm Ingredient Kit
- Vegan Vanilla Pear Lip Balm Kit (includes tubes and instructions)
- Jelly Bean Lip Balm Kit (includes tubes and instructions)
Lip Balm Recipes:
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