Monday, May 18, 2015

DIY Household Cleaner

My next step in the world of essential oils is to try to replace my cleaning products with nontoxic products.  It's amazing how many toxic chemicals there are in everyday cleaning products.  Thieves Household Cleaner is made of plant based ingredients rather than chemicals.  The cleaner is highly concentrated and can be diluted for any size job.  It can be used for laundry, dishes, floors, counters, carpets, upholstery, and more.   

Why make your own cleaner?
Bacteria can easily be spread from person to person by the surfaces in the home.  By keeping the surfaces clean, you are protecting your family from bacteria and illness.  Cleaning counter tops, toilets, and other surfaces with Thieves products can minimize the spread of bacteria from the bathroom to other areas of the home. 

How do you use it?
For this cleaner I went to the dollar store and got a plastic spray bottle.  I added 1 1/2 caps full of thieves household cleaner to it.  That's it!  I used it to clean clean the bathrooms today and kitchen countertops.  I even used it to clean the mirrors!  It didn't make me cough, like the usual windex and chlorox wipes combo, so I was thrilled.  

Where do you use it?
Kitchen = refrigerator, oven, dishes, countertops, cutting boards, floor
Bathroom = shower walls, toilet, curtains, floor, tub, mirrors, sink
Family Room = silk plants, live plants, carpet, room deoderizer
Bedroom = mattress, sheets, pillows
Laundry = wash cycle, dryer, spots, stains

There are dilution ratios listed on the back of the bottle, but here are some examples:

Suggested Usage Ratios 
Light Degreasing = 1 capful of Thieves cleaner to 3 1/2 cups water
Medium Degreasing = 1 capful of Thieves cleaner to 2 cups water
Heavy Degreasing = 1 capful of Thieves cleaner to 1 cup water
Hand Cleaner = 1/2 cup Thieves cleaner to 1/2 cup water
Dishwasher = 1 capful of Thieves cleaner in the bottom of the dishwasher
Pots & Pans = 1/2 capful of Thieves cleaner to 3 cups water
Floors = 1 capful of Thieves cleaner to 6 14 cups water
Walls = 1 capful Thieves cleaner to 2 cups water
Fabrics = 1 capful of Thieves cleaner to 2 cups water
Washing machine = Depending on the size of washer, use 1-2 capfuls of Thieves cleaner per load
Carpet = 1 capful of Thieves cleaner to 6 1/4 cups water
Glass & Windows = 1 capful of Thieves cleaner to 5 quarts water 

Note:  one capful of Thieves cleaner is 1/2 tablespoon

Give it a try, you will love it!

Sunday, May 17, 2015

DIY Foaming Hand Soap

This takes no time at all to make.  I recently purchased the Thieves Essential Rewards Kit and LOVED the hand soap.  As it was running low on soap I wanted to order more, but just didn't get around to it.  Here are some of the thieves products that came in the Rewards Kit I ordered.  LOVE IT ALL. 

I just ran out of soap and decided to look into making my own. There are lots of recipes, but most have the same ingredients.  I chose to use Dr. Bronner's Peppermint castile soap, thieves and lemon essential oils, and water.

It's super easy to make too!  1/3 cup of Peppermint Castile soap, essential oils of your choice, and fill the rest of the way with water!   I added 8 drops of Thieves essential oil and 4 drops of Lemon essential oil. 

Here's my soap.  I may add more oils to it if I don't think it has enough scent to it.  It's trial and error.  Go for it and use your favorite oils! 

UPDATE:  I added some vitamin E oil to as well. 

Monday, February 2, 2015

DIY Pre Shave and After Shave Oils

This is a perfect gift for any guy to keep his skin soft and clean shaven.  

I purchased the double edge razor, brush, soap dish and a variety of soaps, plus a number of different brands of razor blades for my husband as a Christmas gift.  He needs to shave frequently and really enjoys when he can get a straight razor shave from the barber.  I did some researching and found that using a double edge razor is as close as you can get to a straight shave when shaving at home.  

Why a double edge razor?   First, a double edge razor has a single blade with two sides.  The skin is protected from the blade with the "guard," so that that the skin only comes into contact with the edge of the blade, for a much closer shave. Hard to reach areas (under your nose and neck area) are easier to reach with a double edge razor.  

Why buy so many different blades?  A blade that provides a smooth and comfortable shave for one person may be harsh and uncomfortable on someone else's skin.  It was recommended to get a number of styles so that he can find the right blade for his skin and facial hair type.  For more information on the right blades for a double edge razor go to Shaving 101.  It's a great site to get a ton of information on shaving.

Why do you need a shaving brush?  A shaving brush helps to create the perfect lather that exfoliates and conditions the skin.  It softens the hair, and allows for a very close shave.  The Cigar Advisor had an article that explained that the brush absorbs hot water and shaving soap to create a thicker lather to cushion the skin.  This provides more protection.  It softens the hair and suspends whiskers into a thicker lather away from the skin.  The razor can then access and cut the hairs close to the skin with fewer passes.  This results in a closer, faster shave.

Why use a pre shave oil?  It is very important to get the skin ready for shaving.  It helps to moisturize the skin and protects it from razor burn and irritation.  If you plan to use a pre shave oil, a thinner consistency is preferred as a thicker oil can clog the razor, making it difficult to shave.

Using the pre and after shave oils.  To begin, wet your face and apply oil all over the area you want to shave.  Let it set for at least a minute.  Apply your soap or cream lather to your face and proceed to shave as normal.

I found the recipe for the pre and after shave on the One Project Closer blog.  I looked at a number of online recipes and really liked the fact that she included pre AND after shave recipes.  

Here is what you will need to make your own pre and after shave oils:

Pre Shave Oil
  • 2 oz Glass spray bottle  (I got mine here)
  • 1 oz Olive Oil
  • 4 drops Vitamin E  (I got mine here)
  • 4 drops YL Lavender Essential Oil  (order here)
Lavender essential oil can be used to soothe and cleanse common cuts, bruises, and skin irritations.  That's what makes it a good choice for a pre shave oil.  The vitamin E is added as it is an antioxidant and protects and repairs your skin.  I changed the recipe a tad, as I didn't have orange essential oil at the time.  Still smells amazing and great for the skin. 

After Shave Oil
  •  2 oz glass spray bottle
  • 1 oz Witch Hazel  (local grocery store)
  • 4 drops Vitamin E
  • 12 drops YL Valor Essential Oil  (order here)

Valor was in the original recipe on the One Project Closer blog, and I stuck with it.  I love the smell.  I think of all the oils I have it is the most "manly" smelling one.  Valor is a blend of spruce, rosewood, blue tansy  and frankincense in a base of coconut oil. Feel free to try different scents.  Always use glass bottles for your essential oils as the oils can break down plastics.

Here are some great resources if you are interested in learning more about shaving or choosing a razor:  

Friday, January 30, 2015

DIY All Purpose Cleaner

This is one of the easiest cleaners to make, and there are only three ingredients!  You will need an empty squirt bottle (I got mine at the dollar store), vinegar, and your choice of a citrus essential oil (I chose orange).

You will make a 50/50 solution of vinegar and water, then add your essential oil (I used 30 drops).  You can use lemon, lime, orange, whatever you like.  Be sure to shake the bottle before you use it each time as the oil tends to separate over time.  

I cleaned my sink and counter immediately after I made it and it looks fantastic.  

Enjoy !

I'm only a fan to clean out my kitchen sink and bathroom stuff.  I don't like the vinegar smell on my counters.  Going with the Thieves household cleaner for that.  Just wanted to update you all.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Vanilla and Lavender Sugar Scrub

These sugar scrubs make a great gift and are wonderful for the skin.  I discovered this recipe searching online, and found it included all of the elements I was looking for in an easy, but effective scrub.  And it absolutely smells devine!  I found it here:  I added lots of lavender to it too.  The vanilla and lavender together are a match made in heaven.

First you are thinking, why sugar?  Sugar is a natural humectant, which means it draws moisture from the environment into the skin.  It is also a wonderful exfoliant to get rid of dead skin cells, and reveal the glowing skin underneath.  If you have sensitive skin, small sugar granules are gentler on the skin. 

Honey is great to have in a face scrub because it is a natural anitbacterial, which is great for acne treatment and prevention.  It is also full of antioxidants, which helps to slow down aging.  It moisturizes the skin as well.

Lavender essential oil on dry or chapped skin helps to moisturize the affected area.  It helps to reduce scarring and speeds healing.  I chose to use Lavender Essential Oil from Young Living. 

Honey, sugar and lavender are all natural antibacterial agents, so they are excellent to use for a face or body scrub.  I hope you enjoy the recipe.  You can really use any essential oil you like, I just prefer the lavender. 

Vanilla and Lavender Sugar Scrub

1/2 C brown sugar
1/2 C granulated sugar
1/3 C olive oil (avocado, almond, or coconut would also work)
2 Tbs. Raw Honey
1/4 tsp PURE vanilla extract (homemade or PURE store bought)
1/2 tsp vitamin E oil 
Small mason jars (I picked mine up at Meijer)

Mix all of the ingredients together.  Fills approximately 3 4oz containers.  I got my containers at the grocery store in the canning isle.  

Use scrub in a circular motion on face and body to get rid of dry or dead skin.  Rinse with warm water, followed by a cool wash to close pores.  


Be sure to include the ingredients and directions with your gift.

Also pictured is the DIY Lip BalmJust click on the link to be directed to the blog post.  

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

DIY Lavender Epsom Salt Soak

There are a number of benefits to using Epsom Salt.  Epsom salt is made up of magnesium and sulfate.  Magnesium helps regulate more than 300 enzymes in the body.  A lack of magnesium can contribute to high blood pressure, hyperactivity, heart problems and other health issues.  

Sulfates help improve the absorption of nutrients, flush toxins and help ease migraine headaches.  They are essential for many biological processes which include forming proteins in joints and brain tissues.

When magnesium sulfate is absorbed through the skin, such as in a bath, it draws toxins from the body, sedates the nervous system, reduces swelling, relaxes muscles, is a natural exfoliant, and so much more.  Here is a great link that lists a number of things you can do with Epsom Salt and it's benefits.

I added Lavender Essential Oil to this for additional relaxation properties.  Again, you can add any oil you like.  Peace & Calming would be my second choice.  To order oils from me, see my How to Get Essential Oils Page.  I chose Young Living oils for their promise of a Seed to Seal process.  You can learn more here: if you are interested.

Lavender Bath Salt

1/2 C Epsom Salt
10-15 drops of Lavender Essential Oil (I use Young Living)

Mix Salt and oil.  Add to small mason jar. 
Soak for at least 30 minutes.

These jars make great gifts for moms, teachers, bus drivers, neighbors, anyone really.  Who wouldn't want to receive a thoughtful gift like this?  Everyone needs a few moments to relax and unwind, while providing their body with nutrients it needs and releasing unwanted toxins.

I made this jar for my mother for a bath, but you could easily use it in a foot soak, or submerge a towel to make a hot or cold compress.  

You can purchase Epsom Salt in your local grocery or online.  I got mine online from Bulk Apothecary.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Lavender Body Butter

My skin gets extremely dry in the winter, especially my hands.  I have tried many creams and lotions in the past.  Since I started using essential oils, I have started paying attention to what "scents" are in my lotions.  Most are not natural ingredients, and those that are are priced outrageously.  I don't mind spending good money on something that works, but not to try it out.  That's just throwing money away!

I looked online to find lotion recipes, searching the web and pinning on pinterest, and found LOTS of options.  Now what?   I decided to choose one or two that I already had most of the ingredients on hand.  This body butter is not going to go on like a lotion you'd buy at the store.  More like those thicker "dry skin" types, but when you use coconut oil it has a different consistency.  It will be thick and more firm in the jar, but when you scoop it into your hands it will start to melt a bit.  Your body temperature is enough to get it to melt so that you can spread it onto your body.  After applying it you may think it's too oily, or you put too much on...just give it a few minutes to absorb into your skin.  I usually put it on right out of the shower.  Then dress after I have my hair and makeup done.  That's what works for me.  If I'm in a hurry, I've gotten dressed right away and that's fine too; I just know some of it probably gets into my instead of all of it into my skin.

In this recipe I use YL Lavender Essential Oil.  This is an amazing oil that can be used for skin irritations,  as well as relaxation.  Lavender can assist the cardiovascular system, Nervous System, and the skin. It is mentioned in various essential oil resources that, "when in doubt, use lavender."  It's so true!  I don't know how I have only now discovered this oil.  

The first time I used lavender essential oil was from a straight iron burn on my ear.  My hair touching where I had been burned was very painful, in addition to the burn itself.  I put a drop of lavender on it and almost immediately the burning feeling went away.  The next morning it was like it never happened.  I have since used it in the kitchen when cooking and have burned myself or cut myself.  You can apply the lavender directly to a cut.  The quick healing properties I have experienced, makes it my "go to" for cuts and burns.  It's also wonderful for relaxation.  Put a few drops in your diffuser, or on your wrists.   I have also used it with lemon and peppermint to help my sinuses to open up so that I could breathe.  I simply added the three oils to a diffuser.  It's really an amazing oil, used alone or combined with other oils.

I tried two recipes for body butter, and this is the one I use every day.  Add more or less essential oil of your choice for a stronger or lighter scent.

Lavender Body Butter

1 C Shea Butter  
1/4 C Coconut Oil 
1/2 teaspoon Vitamin E  WHERE I BUY IT
1/4 C Fractionated Coconut oil (Almond Oil or other Oil of your choice)  WHERE I BUY IT
Lavender Essential Oil  HOW TO ORDER
Melt the shea butter and coconut oil, and mix.  Cool until slightly set (I popped it in the freezer a bit because I'm impatient).  Add Vitamin E and fractionated coconut oil or almond oil, along with essential oil of your choice.  Whip until it has a "butter like" consistency.  Place in a clean glass jar.  A little goes a long way, so try a bit at a time.

Enjoy!  Be sure and let me know what oils you try.