A Beginning of a Crunchy Conservative’s Guidebook

Many of you following me via Facebook or Twitter have recently asked for the recipes  to different household & personal supplies that I make at home. Rather than sending 50 emails I’ve decided to come out a little bit & blog from my hippie side.

There are several reasons that I began to look into the journey towards living naturally, beyond the obvious of wanting to take care of my body for the Biblical & typical “I feel good when I eat well” reasons. To begin with, I spent most of 2007 journaling every detail of my lifestyle that could possibly contribute to chronic migraines (food, products, emotions, activities, sleep) looking for patterns or ingredients. That process helped to bring awareness to what was going into my body & the effects that those things were having on me.

That awareness & concern only increased as my health decreased. I began to do little research projects based off of strange information I was receiving or hearing about specific chemicals & ingredients & their contributions to illness, disease & “bad health”. This required very little background informational work but did require looking at labels & finding alternatives which is inconvenient. The initial ingredients that started the journey for me were High Fructose Corn Syrup, Bleached flour & sugar, “Fragrance”,Sodium Laurly Sulfate  & Aluminum.

Do your own research – those ones are easy. For the sake of the story I’ll mention that some other contributing factors to the journey were;

  • Finances it costs less to live natural & use homemade natural products
  • Chemicals – they’re in most of what we eat, put on our bodies & clean with & pretty much killing the Western world. If the rest of the globe is living without them in their health & beauty products then we have no excuse to not finding out how
  • Crisis – Should a natural disaster or some other crisis hit my house or city, I want to give my attention to important matters & not be found scrambling over details when going to the store is not an option.

That is a vague overview & introduction to my journey & about all you’ll get here 🙂 If you truly want to know more about any of those ask me in person over a cup of coffee. Below you will find the beginning of my rough compiling of  ‘recipe’s’, or a beginning of a Crunchy Conservative‘s guidebook. I welcome thoughts & suggestions!

Some ingredients that are used in the following are:

  • Pure Castille Soap. I use Dr.Bronners.
  • Baking Soda
  • Baking Powder
  • Cornstarch
  • Essential Oils
  • Stevia
  • Pure Tea Tree Oil
  • Borax
  • Washing Soda (Can be substituted with Baking Soda if no washing soda is available. You can probably find it somewhere in your city but it may take some looking)
  • Apple Cider Vinegar

When purchasing ingredients, GO ORGANIC. This will start the process of getting rid of the chemicals & other gnarly stuff that we pour into our bodies.

Homemade Toothpaste

I reference Donielle for a lot of things & this recipe comes straight from her blog (yes you can get over the shock of the name). You can click on her name, above or in my blogroll to take you to her homepage. You can find her tutorial for making toothpaste by clicking HERE.

  • Yeah it’s QUITE different from what you find in a tube.
  • But the truth is it really wasn’t that hard to adjust to.
  • I liked the feel that it left in my mouth, though it was different & I liked the way that my mouth still felt clean hours later, even after eating.
  • I wash my face after brushing my teeth simply to remove any leftover coconut oil from around my mouth. Maybe I’m paranoid because C.O is pretty much good for you in every way but I swapped my routine so that I don’t have to fear clogged pours. Thus far I’ve had no problem.
  • My adjustments to her recipe- I use 4, instead of 5 Tablespoons of Coconut Oil, for a thicker consistency.
  • I use about 8 drops of Tea Tree Oil for the sake of an anti-bacterial in the toothpaste & then probably 15 drops of any assortment of Mint essential oils. I like mint so the stronger the taste, the happier I am, & the easier it was to adjust to but you can adjust that by starting low & adding more if needed.
  • Coconut Oil has a melting point of about 73 degrees so be sure to keep your jar of toothpaste somewhere cool.

Homemade Deodorant

This recipe also comes from Donielle. You can watch her video Tutorial by clicking HERE. Kicking Aluminum & Fragrance basically ruled out 100% of the Antiperspirants & 98% of the Deodorants that you can find on the shelf in anything but a Health Food Store. If you’ve already tried this leg of the journey you’ll probably agree with me;

  • The ‘Crystal’, yeah just doesn’t work. And it’s weird.
  • Natural deodorants leave you feeling smelly
  • Natural deodorants have to be applied 4x a day and who SERIOUSLY has time for that?
  • Natural Deodorants are EXPENSIVE

I’ve been making Donielle’s  recipe for almost a year now & like it more than any other natural option I’ve tried. I like it enough that I actually haven’t looked for another option since the first time I made it! A couple of my thoughts;

  • I keep this in the fridge – again due to the melting point of Coconut Oil. That means that it is cold & hard when I first pull it out so typically I leave it on the counter for a few minutes before applying.
  • After that it is still helpful to hold it against your skin for about 3 seconds before trying to rub it on.
  • Be sure and wash your hands after rubbing it in 😉
  • She uses only Tea Tree Essential oils in her recipe. I find that too strong of a hippie smell. Again I use Tea Tree for about 1/3 of the essential oil called for, simply as an anti-bacterial, and then use Lavender or some other happy smelling essential oil for the other 2/3.

General Household Cleaner

Dr.Bronner’s is a main ingredient in most everything I make at home, simply because I could find it really cheap at a local Freight & Salvage store. Honestly anything similar to that type of Castille soap would work.

As a general cleaner for floors, kitchen, bathroom etc I fill a spray bottle full of water, add 2 squirts of Dr.B’s Tea Tree soap, a couple drops of Tea Tree Oil & gently shake. There you go – that easy & it’s done.  No chemicals, child & pet friendly & the Tea Tree makes it a good disinfectant. It does not foam but is a great cleaner.

Homemade Shampoo

This week was my first Shampoo attempt. Click HERE to go to the website I used. I’ve spent the last 3 months scouring the internet & comparing recipes, reading reviews & different people’s opinions on ingredient combination’s before settling on which one to try first. After making it once & using it twice my thoughts are;

  • The Apple Cider Vinegar has a very strong smell & no, I don’t like it but yes, I got over that & am using it. It does not seem to leave that smell in my hair which is good. Then again my hair is still pretty short so maybe I’m just not noticing it.
  • I left the spray bottle on the bathroom shelf & within a very short period of time my little apartment was permeated with that smell. I have since kept the spray bottle in the fridge stopping the smell.
  • If you go to that website you will see that there are 1o icons at the top, each taking you to a different variation of the recipe. I’m going to use all of the batch that I’ve made & circulate through each recipe, giving myself a break from the vinegar in this particular one & allowing myself the experience to determine which ones I like best & why.
  • The Castille soap seemed to curdle rather than mixing smoothly, probably due to the vinegar. Once in the fridge the whole thing turned a creamy color but did not solidify & still sprayed easy. Once in the shower it melted fully & is now smooth with no curdles. Weird but true.
  • Honestly I hated the way my hair felt the first time I used it, while still in the shower. But when I got out & dried it I completely changed my mind. I didn’t use any products & it still styled great & didn’t feel greasy the way that I thought it would.
  • I’ll give this another week of use & then form a solid opinion.

*10 day’s later… & I like it! I’ve implemented a tip from that site though & have alternated washings 1 using the homemade shampoo & the next time using the organix shampoo I was previously using. I’ll probably do that until the Organix is gone, letting my hair & scalp adjust to using the crazy stuff.*

Homemade Laundry Detergent

Clicking on THIS LINK will take you to a page with 10 different versions of easy to make laundry detergent. I have stuck with Recipe #4 ….. because…. well because 😀 If you try a different one & like it let me know & maybe I’ll give it a shot!

That’s all for now. I’ve tried a few other things this week but haven’t used them enough to suggest them or give any review. I’ll be posting another review with recipe’s next week. If this was helpful let me know & if I can make it more helpful feel free to give me suggestions. If you are interested in a topic that you think I might know about feel free to ask & I’d love to help!


6 thoughts on “A Beginning of a Crunchy Conservative’s Guidebook

    • Alas, I am not Kyle- I bathe regularly, work full-time, & wear high heels. All very non-hippieish things.
      Just helping the movement.


  1. Hey Christina! Do you know of a place here in KC that has washing soda? I’ve been looking everywhere to find it and can’t. Been wanting to make my own laundry detergent for a while and seems like my only luck is to order it through ace hardware and it takes a couple of days for them to get it in everytime.

    • Hey Doug,
      You’re best bet is probably going to be a health food store like Whole Foods, otherwise you might want to go ahead & order it online 🙂 Good luck!

  2. Hey Cstyles:

    I enjoyed this blog about ways to de-chemicalize our environment and our bodies. I have been no-poo for a couple months now, but not using the usual baking soda-vinegar route like most people. I found a great site on vinegar rinses for every type of hair (http://bit.ly/6LmLkd) and made my own concoction but left out the vinegar. I use the rinse about every other day, and don’t use any shampoo. About every week and a half, I mix up 1/4C of water, 1tsp fresh lemon juice, and 1 egg yolk (no whites!), and work it gently into my scalp. Viola! Oil gone! No smell. Clean, shiny hair. Inbetween egg rinses, I brush my hair thoroughly with a boars hair bristle brush to distribute the natural oils from my scalp through my hair strands. My hair always looks shiny and bouncy and full. A great accomplishment, considering that when I was using shampoo every other day, my hair was limp, wiry and thin. Oh, and the herbs I use have darkened my gray hair to a nice light brown color.

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