Our sustainability series continues this week with some of our favorite tips and hacks for personal care items.
I know what you're thinking, making the change to living more sustainably isn't something that happens overnight, or even within a couple weeks of sheltering in place.
The real reason we're continuing with this topic so extensively is because we know this time has been eye-opening for many.
The norm is to just hop on over to the nearest store to effortlessly get any item you could possibly need for cheap. We never realized that many basic items we need are things we can rather easily make ourselves.
Our challenge to you is to try a few of the following suggestions, or come up with your own, and feel empowered to stray from the norm! On top of that, you'll find these are changes that greatly benefit your overall health and, generally, can also help you save money.
Live Sustainably Personal Care Tips:
DIY Hair Gel
The co-owners at Texas Tallow are both curly girls and our curly hair definitely has a mind of its own! Because so many hair products contain a myriad of harmful chemicals, we went on the search for a better option. Enter: Flaxseed gel. The recipe takes minutes to make and is as simple as two ingredients- it can even be reused 2-3 times! Check out a great recipe here.
We love a product that goes a long way. This is in line with reducing your store visits and also reduces the amount of packaging/containers you have to discard as well. Move over toothpaste, we’ve got tooth chips! Not only are they super easy to travel with, (think no mess and no travel sizes needed!) these containers literally seem to last forever and come from a great local Texas company.
We would be remiss if we didn’t mention our absolute favorite personal care product: tallow. Here’s the deal - most people have a lotion or cream for every different part of their body. Tallow is versatile and safe enough to cover all of your bases. Because we don’t use essential oils, it can be used on your arms and legs as well as the delicate skin of the face. We’ve also been known to use a dab to ease fly-aways and as an emergency snack for our baby (just kidding- but check out our Instagram video if your curious) 😊
Want a great shave for a fraction of the cost and much less waste?? Try buying a reusable razor instead of a pack of disposable ones! The blades on these types of razors are often much higher quality and have options that don’t have the strips (which contain more chemicals!). You only have to replace the head every couple months. Want to be even more extreme? Buy a safety razor that comes with a pack of interchangeable blades. Pair that with tallow shave soap, and you'll be amazed at the super smooth legs (or face) you've been missing out on!
Homemade Foaming Hand Soap
With all this hand-washing, you might be having a hard time finding non-toxic soap on store shelves. This is another easy recipe with ingredients you probably already have on hand.
This one’s just for the gals, but we couldn’t skip it! The amount of menstrual care waste is huge! Replacing your pads and tampons with a menstrual cup is beneficial to more than just the earth. Tampons contain numerous harmful chemicals, including traces of glyphosate that is sprayed on cotton. Menstrual cups can be used for a year or longer without having to be replaced and are also super handy- no more bulky pads and tampons taking up room in your purse or suitcase! We also highly recommend Thinx period panties for those of you who are accustomed to pads. They even have organic cotton options!
Sorry, one more for just the ladies. This is typically one that most women hold out on replacing, but its just as important as your lotion! Makeup (especially lipstick and liquid concealers) can be loaded with unsavory ingredients. Fortunately, there are numerous non-toxic options out there that are just as effective as they are safe. Two of our favorites are: W3ll People and Everyday Minerals (another Texas brand).
We know, we know - showering daily is the cultural norm, but we are all about breaking the stereotypes. Not only does hot water dry your skin out (see below), but the constant washing of your skin doesn’t allow your natural sebum and skin microbiome to function as they should. Beautiful skin is often achieved with less, not more! This goes for bathing as well.
Chlorine greatly affects your skin health! Not only does it have a negative impact on the skin microbiome, it can potentially dry the skin out. We use the chlorine filters from Radiant Life. The filters have cartridges that do need to be replaced, but they have a relatively long life.
Last, but certainly not least, sunshine is vital to personal care. Luckily for us, its free! Get out and get some rays without sunscreen for at least 20-30 minutes a day. Research shows the first morning light has unbelievable benefits for overall health. Give it a try!