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Citrus Cleaning Spray

Citrus Cleaning Spray

This citrus cleaning spray is now my go-to for all cleaning. It is particularly awesome at cleaning greasy splashbacks and getting grubby marks off my walls (why do my kids insist on touching them, climbing them, rubbing their feet all over them???).

I’ve made a little video to show you just how easy it is to make. Yes, you need to be a little organised, but, if you’re mindful to put all of your citrus peels into jars and covering them with vinegar, you’ll always have some brewing.

The complete recipe and method is available in my new book, Naturally Inspired. Click here to grab it, read about it, admire it!

Cleaning Your Shower Without The Nasties

Cleaning Your Shower Without The Nasties

It seems that you guys love to see photos of my icky toilet and shower because whenever I share before and after images on Facebook or Instagram, interaction is off the charts!

Here are photos of my shower screens before and after I used the following (very simple) method to clean them. (Note that I hadn’t actually cleaned my glass for a good 8-12 weeks – not joking! 🙈)

Not bad, right? All it took was a few ingredients, 20-30 minutes of my time and the willingness to participate in a very light workout. I am the first one to encourage muscle-power over harsh chemicals, and some of my recipes require this, but not this one, no sir. I hardly broke a sweat, scout’s honour.

Once you’ve had a go for yourself, I hope that like me, you’ll plant this recipe firmly at the top of your DIY cleaning favourites and be glad you can now achieve a sparkling shower so simply, without resorting to expensive and (quite often) toxin-laden mainstream sprays.

 

Makes: 270 g | 9.5 oz Prep time: < 5 min.

INGREDIENTS

3/4 cup | 200 g | 7.1 oz citric acid

1/4 cup | 70 g | 2.5 oz sodium bicarbonate

30 drops of essential oils

A good splash of water

My choice of essential oils…

My favourite essential oil in this recipe is clove but don’t be limited by my suggestions. Use oils that fit your budget, or those that you already have in your collection. Read here for more information.

 

METHOD
  1. Add citric acid, sodium bicarbonate and essential oils to a bowl and mix until combined.
  2. Add enough water to make a paste. The mixture will fizz so make sure your bowl is big enough to allow for this.

 

TO USE

Use a microfibre cleaning cloth to smear over shower screens and tiles, making sure all surfaces are covered. Leave for 20-30 minutes. Scrub well (with the same cleaning cloth), then rinse and dry. 

 

RECIPE NOTES
  • To avoid a sticky residue, make sure you rinse off all of the mixture completely.
  • If you have black tiles, test first in an inconspicuous area.
  • I strongly suggest you check out the blog posts under “Recommended Reading“.

This recipe can also be found in Naturally Inspired – my latest book.

Recommended Reading for DIY

I highly recommend you read the following blog posts before getting busy with DIY. This advice aims to keep you fully informed, and will help you see the most recipe success (and maintain your sanity)!

Deluxe Foaming Face Wash

Deluxe Foaming Face Wash

If you’ve been following me for a while, you’ll know that I already have a few foaming wash recipes.

One for the face, body and hands. So why introduce another face wash recipe?

Because this is AMAZING! It is delicious, divine, lush. I am officially in love with this combo, and my face is a fan too! The inclusion of rose water is a luxurious ingredient in this recipe (it helps to calm irritation, soothe and hydrate skin) however, it may be out of budget for some.

If this is the case, you can try lavender water; plain ‘ol water works too – it just won’t have the same blissful aroma in my opinion. 

Note that the video below is for my hand/face/body wash. The only difference is that you’ll use switch out the water for rose water.

 

Makes: 200 g | 7.1 oz Prep time: < 5 min.

 

INGREDIENTS

65 g | 2.3 oz liquid castile soap

15-20 drops of essential oils

135 g | 4.8 oz rose water

 

My choice of essential oils…

My favourite essential oils in this recipe are ylang ylang and frankincense, but don’t be limited by my suggestions. Use oils that fit your budget, or those that you already have in your collection. Read here for more information.

 

Special container required…

Foaming Pump Bottle

 

METHOD
  1. Add castile soap and essential oils to a bowl and mix until combined.
  2. Wait a few minutes (this gives the essential oils time to disperse within the castile soap), add rose water and mix until combined.
  3. Transfer into foaming pump bottle.

 

TO USE

Massage 1-2 pumps of foam over face and neck. Rinse with warm water.

 

RECIPE NOTES
  • You might find it easier to add ingredients directly into your soap dispenser (a foaming pump bottle must be used for this recipe.
  • I strongly suggest you check out the blog posts under “Recommended Reading

 

Natural Fabric Softener

Natural Fabric Softener

Fabric softener as we know it – the commercial stuff that is – is really not good for us. It’s not good for the environment either. It often contains some very questionable ingredients that are known to stick to clothing, irritate skin and aggravate allergies.

Companies (in Australia anyway) are not required to tell you what is in cleaning products, so we often won’t see panels on packets of softener which makes it hard to make educated decisions when out shopping. It often takes a little searching on the internet to find comprehensive lists, and even then, it is the companies choice whether they publish them or not.

Here is an example of ingredients within one popular supermarket brand of softener. From what I can see, most softeners available are similar in their contents.

Natural Fabric Softener | The Inspired Little Pot

Here’s a brief look into these ingredients:

Water – any time you see water in a product, look for preservatives. Usually, not a good sign.

Quaternized Triethanolamine Diester – I can’t find much reputable data on this but Triethanolamine is petroleum-derived and may cause contact dermatitis.

Isopropyl Alcohol – not much to worry about in a cleaning product but not something I would use on my skin.

Quaternary Ammonium Acrylate/Acrylamide – Quaternary ammonium compounds rate poorly with EWG (my go-to for chemical research and advice). Although the data covers a broad scope, there is mention of toxicity to aquatics and moderate concern for asthmatics.

Fragrance – a toxic minefield and my most hated ingredient, unless derived from essential oils! Watch out for this one. There is a list of hundreds of chemicals used for fragrance formulation, and companies don’t have to tell you what they use – it’s their trade secret. Fragrance is associated with allergies, skin irritation, asthma, headaches etc.

Preservative – interesting that they don’t tell you WHAT preservative. Some preservatives, such as Formaldehyde, are known to be carcinogenic to humans, others, salt, for example, is fine. So I’m dubious here.

You know how when you’re at the supermarket, you can smell the softener aisle a mile away (if you’ve been living a lower-toxin lifestyle for a while now, you’ll know what I mean!)? It really is something I like to avoid. I can even smell people’s washing when I take my daily walk if they’ve used softener – that’s how potent this stuff is! It sticks to your clothes, it coats your machine in slime making it hard to clean, and it’s terrible for septic systems and our waterways in general.

Have I convinced you to make the switch to natural yet?

For a long time, I have been using straight vinegar as a fabric softener. And it works well, so if this recipe seems like a little too much effort for you, then stick with that. But this recipe for natural fabric softener, ooh-la-la, it really does make my laundry nice and soft!

 

 

Makes: 1.1 lt | 37.2 fl oz Prep time: < 5 min.

 

INGREDIENTS

1 cup | 140 g | 4.9 oz fine salt

1 cup | 250 ml | 8.5 fl oz hot water (see recipe notes)

3 cup | 750 ml | 25.4 fl oz white vinegar (look for naturally fermented)

2-3 drops of essential oils (per use)

 

My choice of essential oils…

My favourite essential oils in this recipe are lemon and eucalyptus, but don’t be limited by my suggestions. Use oils that fit your budget, or those that you already have in your collection. Read here for more information.

 

METHOD
  1. Add salt and hot water to a bowl and mix until salt has dissolved.
  2. Add vinegar and stir until combined.
  3. Transfer into container of choice.

 

TO USE

Shake well, then pour approximately ½ cup of liquid and essential oils (if using) into the designated softener compartment of your washing machine.

 

RECIPE NOTES
  • Water should be distilled, purified or pre-boiled and cooled to extend shelf life.
  • If the salt doesn’t fully dissolve, don’t worry too much – it will dissolve over time.
  • If you’re concerned about your washing machine then don’t use this recipe. I personally have had no issues at all, after years of using vinegar in my washing machine, but it is ultimately up to you.
  • I strongly suggest you check out the blog posts under “Recommended Reading“.
Charcoal & Turmeric Peelable Face Mask

Charcoal & Turmeric Peelable Face Mask

I was blown away when I looked into the contents of a few mainstream charcoal peelable face masks. With such a simple concept, how on earth can one little bottle pack in so many ingredients, and how can anyone put so many questionable chemicals into a product and feel ok about it?

Ingredients such as Triethanolamine, Parabens, Ceteareths, Phenoxyethanol and Benzyl Alcohol are common offenders in some of the store-bought bottles I investigated, but the DIY versions on the net encourage the combination of activated charcoal and GLUE! What the?!!

It is mainly for this reason that I created this recipe – to give the DIY-eager peeps a healthy alternative.

But before you go and get all excited, applying a mask a week to suck out all of your blackheads and unclog your pores, please know that a mask like this is designed to be used infrequently. I recommend no more frequently than every 8-12 weeks. The reason for this is the skin on our face is covered in fine vellus hair which serves the purpose of regulating body temp and helping sweat evaporate, so we don’t want to be ripping that off. Also, the smoothing effect you feel afterwards is also enhanced because your skin’s natural oils and sebaceous filaments (mistaken for blackheads on the strip) may also be removed, compromising the skin’s barrier, which protects our skin from infection and harmful bacteria. The little sebaceous plugs will be replaced in 30 days anyway.

So with all of that in mind, use this mask occasionally IF you feel compelled. Just please don’t go using a DIY recipe that involves glue!

 
 

Makes: enough for single use Prep time: < 5 min.

 

INGREDIENTS

2 tsp gelatin powder

½ tsp activated charcoal powder

½ tsp turmeric (ground)

¼ tsp jojoba oil

4 drops of essential oils

2 tbsp hot water (see recipe notes)

 

My choice of essential oils…

My favourite essential oils in this recipe are lemon and lavender, but don’t be limited by my suggestions. Use oils that fit your budget, or those that you already have in your collection. Read here for more information.

 

METHOD
  1. Add gelatin, charcoal, turmeric, jojoba oil and essential oils to a small bowl.
  2. Add hot water and mix quickly until smooth and combined. Add a little extra hot water if required.

 

TO USE
  1. Using a make-up brush, apply a layer of mixture to face, avoiding all sensitive areas such as eyes, eyebrows, hairline and top lip – ouch! Keep brushing and dabbing mixture over face until a thick layer forms.
  2. Wait 20-30 minutes or until mask is dry and peel off carefully.
  3. Use a wet washcloth to remove any excess.

 

RECIPE NOTES
  • Water should be distilled, purified or pre-boiled and cooled to extend shelf life.
  • I like to exfoliate gently (with this) after I apply the mask, and before I moisturise (with this).
  • You might like to make up a double/triple batch without water and keep it dry in a jar, only adding a tablespoon of mix and enough water to make a paste as you need it. This is perfect if you only want to treat your nose, chin and T-zone. Also makes a super-cool gift idea!
  • If the complete mix is left too long it will set. Add a little more hot water and mix until smooth.
  • I strongly suggest you check out the blog posts under “Recommended Reading“.

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