35 Responses

  1. Mika 1
    Mika Tuesday, August 20th, 2013 at 5:06 pm |

    We switched to “no poo” shampoo after my hubby kept having serious migraine clusters. One of his biggest triggers is msg. Wouldn’t you know it, it was in the Trader Joe’s herbal shampoo we thought was a healthy, all natural choice. This has led me to start making other body care and cleaning products!

  2. Tina Lemna 3
    Tina Lemna Tuesday, August 20th, 2013 at 6:48 pm |

    I’ve been using Dr Bronners Sal Suds to clean my bathroom, tile floors, I make a counter spray with it & essential oils and I use 1 T to wash my clothes. I love it but I would appreciate your thoughts on it.

  3. Kimberly P. 5
    Kimberly P. Tuesday, August 20th, 2013 at 9:44 pm |

    You posted exactly what I’ve been thinking and feeling lately. Thank you! In a world of canned, bottled and packaged “semi-homemade”, your blog is refreshing and so appreciated.

  4. Tina Lemna 7
    Tina Lemna Wednesday, August 21st, 2013 at 2:40 am |

    Sara,
    Thank you for replying! I just wanted to say that I also use Sal Suds in my dishwasher even though I was worried it would produce too many suds. One teaspoon cleans all of my dishes much better than when I was using Cascade. Give it a try and see what you think. I love your blog!

  5. Karen 9
    Karen Wednesday, August 21st, 2013 at 3:42 am |

    Many commercial cleaners irritate my very sensitive eyes. Am slowly switching over to Dr. Bronner’s, either with just water or with baking soda.
    Last year I bought a sample size of celebrity-endorsed shampoo at a chain drugstore. My scalp itched and I had bumps so bad the doctor performed a biopsy. The shampoo contained argan oil, a darling of the cosmetics industry right now. No more of any of that brand for me!

  6. Shannon 12
    Shannon Wednesday, August 21st, 2013 at 9:24 am |

    We make almost all of our cleaning products and we’re taking baby steps towards making our own personal care products (it can be overwhelming if we do it all at once!).

    You mention you’ll be making facial moisturizer. I have very dry skin, so this is a necessity for me. I’d love to hear how you make this.
    Shannon recently posted..Jazzing Up LeftoversMy Profile

  7. Mandy 17
    Mandy Wednesday, August 21st, 2013 at 10:34 am |

    I can’t wait for you to post the recipes, Sara. I will be happy to try them!

  8. Tina Lemna 19
    Tina Lemna Wednesday, August 21st, 2013 at 3:42 pm |

    Hi Sara, I use the Sal Suds straight in the dishwasher but it only takes a little bit! A teaspoon at the most. My dishes shine with the Sal Suds. I look forward to your new recipes!

  9. Cathy Kirchner 20
    Cathy Kirchner Wednesday, August 21st, 2013 at 7:40 pm |

    I had this almost written, and then bumped the wrong key! I was talking with friends recently, along the same lines, and I have a slightly different take on your topic. My parents were products of the depression. My mom’s family was from Texas, and my dad’s family was from Arkansas. Both families had to follow the crops across Texas and Oklahoma, through New Mexico, Arizona, and up California until they reached Oregon. My mom’s family was better off. Her father had butchering skills, so they were never without meat. They HAD to grow and can their own fruits and vegetables. They couldn’t afford to purchase canned and prepared items at stores. My father’s family was not as fortunate. Because of some “habits” of his father, he grew up in a family that were migrant workers, always hoping for leftovers from the fields and farms that they worked on. Both families had to follow the crops – across Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, California, and up into Oregon. My parents met when both families were in the Yuba City, CA area, and they married in 1942. My mom is now 91 years old. We never home canned fruits and veggies when I was growing up. She did make jams and jellies, and sewed some of my clothes. Not to excess. See, in the home I grew up in, if you could afford to purchase canned and prepared products from the store, you were successful – if you canned fruits and veggies at home, you were poor. And, if you had to figure out how to make your own soap ——– boy! you were really at the bottom of the barrel. Granted – it’s perception, but it was a reality in my parents lives for most of their formative years.

  10. Heidi 22
    Heidi Thursday, August 22nd, 2013 at 5:17 am |

    I agree – and I get a kick out of commercials that tell us we need a brand new product that we never needed before – they actually tell us to throw away our dishcloths in one and use only paper towels instead. Or the touchless handsoap dispenser – I still cant figure out why they think it’s bad to touch a soap pump just before you wash your hands anyway.
    Heidi recently posted..SaturdayMy Profile

    1. Cathy Kirchner 24
      Cathy Kirchner Thursday, August 22nd, 2013 at 10:03 am |

      Heidi – your comment made me smile, and almost laugh out loud! I’ve spent most of the summer at home recovering from emergency surgery, and unfortunately watched more TV than ought to be legally allowed! The marketing scheme that has me laughing and angry at the same time is a new one by Cottonelle wipes. They’re telling us all now that TP is not enough to use in the bathroom. That we need to use TP and Cottonelle for that really clean feeling. Who knew??????? All these years, and we’ve been doing it wrong.

  11. Andrea 25
    Andrea Thursday, August 22nd, 2013 at 9:59 am |

    What a great blog post – and it’s so true. My great-grandmother grew up in the depression and so I understand the whole “the poor made/canned their own products” comment. And, many people still feel that way.

    However, I’m starting to look at it from a health point-of-view now. I haven’t done much research on it, but I bet if you compare the store bought products from the 1940s to the store bought products of today, we would find that the ones from decades past were still better for us. Over the years, big companies have added more and more chemicals to things because it helps them improve the shelf life of the products (among other reasons) – which to me is bad business. While they have to think from a financial standpoint, they should also be thinking about what these added chemicals are doing to people and the health problems they are causing.

    I have also started making my own household cleaners and other products. It is cheaper, but I mainly do it because I feel like it’s better for my family’s health. Thanks for the post and I’m looking forward to the recipes you have to share! :)
    Andrea recently posted..Girls Fashion Fall 2013My Profile

  12. Annie Kip 27
    Annie Kip Thursday, August 22nd, 2013 at 11:28 am |

    Oh Sara – I love to hear you “rage against the machine!!!” You are so right! I feel like our lives have become so much more complicated with all the “conveniences” we need to choose, buy, and maintain – and then replace before we can blink. I would love to switch over to a more handmade life, but I need to do it one thing at a time. I am looking forward to seeing the results of your experiments!
    Annie Kip recently posted..Having A Plan: Baby-Steps For Starting Something NewMy Profile

  13. Andrea 29
    Andrea Friday, August 23rd, 2013 at 9:17 am |

    What a great idea with the bacon fat – I’ve never thought about freezing that. Next time we have bacon, I will save it instead of throwing it out! :)
    Andrea recently posted..Girls Fashion Fall 2013My Profile

  14. Sue Kalt 30
    Sue Kalt Saturday, August 24th, 2013 at 2:02 am |

    I learned long ago that “Natural” was a marketing hype as was, “New and Improved,” “Nature made,” etc. Remember just because something is “natural” does not mean it is good for you. Fungus is natural. Mold is natural, an Amanita muscaria is natural, but it does not mean you want to eat it or that it is good for you.

    If you really want to start thinking about where our food comes from, watch, “Food, Inc.” After I saw that I cannot go down the aisles of boxed and canned foods without thinking, “Chemicals,” “Fake Food,” “Laboratory Food.”

    I saw a documentary where they interviewed potato chip maker, Lays. They were discussing how to break into new markets to hook people onto their chips. They were trying to figure out what chemical they could add to the chips to make consumers crave more of them.

    I read labels and am astounded by the polysyllabic mouthfuls of chemical substances added to “natural” and “healthy” foods. As long as it is in a box, can, or package, it is not food.

    With that said, doing everything the way our grandparents did is not always feasible — it takes time to cook from scratch and I do not have the time nor the inclination to shop every other day for ingredients. We make choices, we are surrounded by chemicals, we breathe air full of them, we sit on them, we dress in them.

    Our ancestors did not live long and healthy lives either. Life expectancy was short back then. Please keep that in perspective as we go on our, “back to basics” movement.

  15. Carrie 32
    Carrie Saturday, August 24th, 2013 at 9:17 pm |

    This is a subject I have been thinking about a lot lately. Why are we tricked by companies selling us “all natural” ingredients or made with “vinegar”? I have also been taking baby steps towards eating organic, locally raised foods and making my own cleaners. I love Dr. Bronner’s products. I make my own cleaners and hand soap. I love it as a body wash. Shampoo is something I am working on. I think I have not found the right recipe. I make my own face wash with olive oil, caster oil, and a few drops of tea tree oil. My moisturizer is coconut oil.
    I feel we are still purchasing products, just not the excess packaging or hazardous ingredients. We are making healthier choices for us and the environment.

  16. Susan 34
    Susan Wednesday, August 28th, 2013 at 4:02 pm |

    Dinner is about to burn, so really quick…I love, love, love coconut oil as a facial moisterizer. And for the whole body, and hair conditioner, and baby rash ointment….

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