baking soda

Naturally Clean – Baking Soda

Another great alternative to harsh cleaning product is baking soda, which is a natural deodorizer and gentle abrasive. I’ve mentioned it’s beauty uses before, but here are some of its best household uses:

  • The very well known – put an open box in the refrigerator or freezer to absorb odors
  • Rub into sponges and dish rags to freshen
  • Sprinkle on carpets before vacuuming
  • If you’re a cat owner, put a layer of baking soda underneath cat litter for maximum freshness
  • Add 1/2 cup to your next load of laundry – the baking soda is a natural fabric softener that also provides added freshness AND makes both white and colored clothing brighter! (a great alternative for people with sensitive skin)

Simple & natural air fresheners!

  • White vinegar – removes odors naturally on surfaces and in the air.
  • Baking soda- absorbs odors.  Keep an open box in the refrigerator, closets, under sinks, etc.
  • Essential oils:  1. diluted in water can be used as a room spray  (try sweet orange &  lavender or lemon & cedar)   2. add to a bowl of water – adds moisture to dry, inside air during winter months   3. burn in an aromatherapy diffuser (my favorite!)
  • Soy or beeswax candles – made of natural waxes so you can enjoy the pleasant scent without harmful chemicals being released into the air.
  • Boiling spices like cinnamon in water releases its scent.

Natural Teeth Whiteners

Baking Soda - I already listed this as a key natural beauty must-have. Baking soda also naturally lightens stains on teeth! Just dip your toothbrush in some baking soda and brush like you normally would.  **Warning: Don’t do this more than once a week because you can damage your enamel with too much scrubbing.

Celery, Apples & Carrots - All three are high in cellulose so they act like natural abrasives. They cleanse teeth and remove surface stains.

Spinach, Broccoli & Lettuce – Greens like these contain mineral compounds that form a film over the teeth. This film stops pigments of other foods from staining teeth.

Some Natural Beauty Must-Haves

A few cheap and natural items that are great to always have on hand include:

1. ALOE VERA – Either directly from your own plant or one bought at a store (stay away from the green ones -aloe vera is NOT naturally flourescent green – and go for the clear ones) Aloe vera is great anytime your skin is dry, irritated, and/or sunburned. It’s also a great natural moisturizer for sensitive skin that won’t clog your pores.

2. APPLE CIDER VINEGAR – No, it doesn’t smell very delightful, but it’s great for so many things, including toning your skin. Go for a bottle that still has stuff floating around in it – those are the good ones! Apple cider vinegar is great for maintaining or restoring the natural pH balance of your skin. It also helps your skin to clear up and heal blemishes. Just put a little on a cotton ball and splash the cotton ball with water to dilute it a bit. Or if you have an extra bottle around, you could make a homemade toner of half apple cider vinegar, half distilled water. DO NOT subsitute white vinegar for apple cider vinegar. These are 2 totally different vinegars, which will give you totally different results (white vinegar will most likely burn your skin!!)

3. BAKING SODA – SO great to keep in your fridge, in your cleaning supplies, and…. in your shower! I have found baking soda to be one of the best and most gentel natural exfoliators. Just put about a tablespoon in your hand and add water. Use it just like you would any other facial exfoliator, making sure not to scrub too hard as always. Also, add a teaspoon to any shampoo to instantly create a clarifying shampoo! (add a teaspoon to the amount you usually use for 1 wash, not a teaspoon for a whole bottle – just in case that wasn’t obvious :))

4. TEA TREE ESSENTIAL OIL – One of the best natural blemish fighters. Just put a tiny bit on a q-tip and dab on the blemish.

5. LAVENDER ESSENTIAL OIL – Probably the best known scent for relaxation. You can add a few drops to a bath, to a shower gel, a shampoo, a diffuser, or you can use it like tea tree oil (on a q-tip) to promote healing of blemishes or irritated skin. (It really is such a relaxing scent and a scent that grew on me because I didn’t always enjoy it that much.)

6. TEA BAGS – More specifically, FROZEN TEA BAGS. You can use bags from either black, green, or chamomile tea. One of the most cheap, easy, and natural ways to depuff your eyes in the morning.  If you’re already a tea drinker then it’s even easier and more cost-effective. I just hold the tea bag under my eyes for a couple minutes…so easy!

So those are just some of my favorite natural beauty supplies. They’ve all worked for me…Hopefully you and your skin will enjoy them as well. Naturally, if you/your skin do not enjoy then simply discontinue use! ~All Natural Annie