26 August, 2010

thoughtful thursday: baking soda

After posting last night I walked into our bathroom and realised that not only did I have a project for 'working wednesday' but I had documented it as well! Oh well, it fits just as well into 'thoughtful thursday' so it will have to do.One of the ways I've cut down on toxic chemical usage (and poisoning incidents) in our house is by the obsessive and pervasive use of baking soda. Vinegar serves a major roll in there too, but today baking soda is the star. Back in, oh, maybe January, if not earlier, I decided to try out baking soda in self-care items. I had read about making tooth powder last summer and had come across mentions of homemade deodorant several times, and with both running low I decided, hey, " 'no 'poo' has worked for me, why not these as well?" So I mixed up a batch of deoderant and a batch of tooth powder, put them in some leftover jam jars and have been using them ever since. They both work beautifully; thedeoderant is certainly not an antiperspirant, although it does seem to help a bit with wetness, and it smells fantastic. Since using the tooth powder my teeth have been whiter and gums healthier and my sensitivity has diminished, although only slightly on that last point. Sugar and cold drinks still cause me a lot of pain!
This past week our baby tooth gel (Jason) ran out, and while Milt was in the store puzzling over the dizzying array of all-natural, fluoride-free toothpastes (we love Staff of Life!) I decided that it would be fun for Asher and I to make some custom toothpaste, just for him! I got together the ingredients and supplies:

coconut oil
baking soda
sea salt
clean baby food jar
small mixing bowl

smushed, in a messy kitchen

I measured out enough baking soda to almost fill the jar and put it in the bowl, then mashed in coconut oil until it reached a smooth paste consistency and was completely mixed. Then I had Asher smell the various extracts (peppermint, orange, almond, vanilla) and choose his favorite. He chose almond and dumped it in before I could stop him; luckily the bottle was almost empty so it wasn't too much, but that is some very almond toothpaste! I mixed in a pinch of salt, although next time I will leave it out, scooped it into his jar and we labeled it. Custom toothpaste! It's nontoxic, and good for the skin, so I'm not worried or annoyed with him sneaking gobs of it to sample or smear all over himself. Which he has done. Repeatedly.

I mix it!

My toothpowder is slightly different; it is just baking soda, some sea salt, and peppermint extract, added a few drops at a time until the mixture was slightly crumbly but not sticking together or wet.

The deodorant is equal parts baking soda and coconut oil; there are many, many good recipes out there that include more ingredients and I will probably play around with the ingredients next time I make a batch but this suits my needs just fine.

I love these because they cut down on cost, I can buy the ingredients without buying more plastic, and I am keeping chemicals off of and out of my body and out of the environment. All while smelling nice! :)

Now then, Milt has arranged to have the next 10 days off, so it is time to relax! Oooh, and we may be going to a Bar Mitzvah this weekend. Exciting!


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