Noah_thumb.jpgSomething I have always wanted to try was making my own deodorant and shampoo. I spent time reading the labels on conventional shampoos and deodorants, trying to pronounce the names of the chemicals put into them. I was confident in my pronunciation skills, but that didn’t make me feel any better about putting funny-sounding ingredients in my hair or on my armpits. While they likely weren’t harmful, what sort of byproducts does producing them create? Could those be harmful to various ecosystems?

Using natural products made me feel a little better. Still, it seemed like there were too many ingredients that didn’t need to be there. So I thought: What if I made my own shampoo and deodorant. So, a trip to Fred Meyer and $35 later, I had the things I needed to be clean (and keep myself clean) simply. That evening, I sat down to put it all together.

The preparation was as simple as the list of the ingredients. For both the deodorant and the shampoo, I combined all the ingredients (three for each product). Five minutes after I started, I was done. I stored both the deodorant and the shampoo in reused containers to save the environment from one more piece of plastic. Now, just one step remained: the testing.

I will be clear: homemade body care products are not without their own shortcomings. The shampoo is a little on the liquid side, and it doesn’t have the same foaminess as the chemical-laced varieties. The deodorant doesn’t last 24 hours, like many store-bought ones claim. However, my hair is as smooth and clean as ever, and I don’t reek of body odor either.

For anyone that wonders about what they put into their hair and armpits, I would recommend giving homemade shampoo and deodorant a shot. There are many recipes out there, so if the following ones don’t work to your liking, search google for others.

Shampoo: http://instructables.com/id/Homemade-Shampoo/#step1

Deodorant: http://wellnessmama.com/1523/natural-deodorant/

In the future, I will continue to make my own body care products. In return for their small shortcomings, you get the privilege of knowing what goes into them. You also can clean yourself knowing that the ecosystems involved in their creation are healthier. Finally, you have another way to brag to your fellow eco-warriors.

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Read more about Noah and the EcoFaith Recovery Internship program here.

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Out with the Artificial, In with the Natural (EcoFaith Intern Noah Gerlach)
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