I started making lifestyle changes about a year and half ago now. My first goal was to make exercise a part of my lifestyle. I started this by buying bulk gym classes as well as signing up for a half marathon. This gave me a goal and motivation to aim for, while keeping the cost relatively low. I could also trial the gyms to see if I liked them and if the location fitted in with my commute. Once I found a gym that I liked, I signed up and the need to train gave me a reason to exercise regularly. I’d definitely recommend doing this at the start of the summer, as this made it more achievable and fun!
Once that aspect of my life was sorted – or at least in progress, I turned to my diet. I went on an elimination detox and gradually cut down gluten, diary, caffeine and refined sugar (I’m planning a more detailed how-to article on this soon!) This was not easy and I found that I had to read articles on the subject often to keep me focused and motivated. As I began to immerse myself in this new world of clean living, I was lead on to discover the importance of detoxing my environment and skincare regime too.
The skin is our largest organ, it breathes and is incredibly permeable (I always thought my make-up rubbed off). However, all of our lotions, potions and deodorants are absorbed through the skin into the bloodstream and actually circulate our bodies. What our skin eats, we eat. And the chemicals in these products are eventually digested by the liver and eliminated. However, if you have a diet lacking in nutrients these toxins become a heavy burden and cannot not be dealt with properly. The liver deposits them into fatty adipose tissue to protect them from harming the body. This leads to weight gain and can also explain why weight loss can be difficult at times, as the body clings to the fat cells to prevent toxic harm. Cancer cells have also been found to contain the same chemicals from these products too.
I began experimenting with recipes I found on blogs and Pinterest and made my own natural deodorant as this product concerned me most of all. There’s such a range of recipes and tips out there, that my interest grew and I began trying out all kinds product alternatives. It was really fun and creative and the added cost reduction was a bonus too! I had the idea that I wanted to use only food products and set about developing face washes, scrubs, moisturisers, face masks, even shampoo and conditioner and I’m currently using most of them successfully. For now I want to start with sharing my original and favourite product – coconut and aloe vera deodorant. I’ve worn it for over a year now – having tested it in all seasons, and can honestly say I’d never go back to the shops! So here it is:
This will make a large batch that could last more than 6 months!
5 tbs Organic extra Virgin Coconut oil (I use Lucy bee)
4 tbs Arrowroot powder (cornstarch is also fine – GMO free is recommended)
3 tbs Bicarbonate of soda (reduce if you’re sensitive)
1/8 cup of Pure Aloe Vera gel (optional)
12 drops essential oil (optional – I use tea tree as it’s also anti-bacterial)
Gently and slowly melt the coconut oil into a liquid.
Stir in the other ingredients until all lumps are gone.
It should make a smooth paste texture.
Pour into packaging and place in the fridge overnight.
Scoop out with spoon or fingers and rub underarms until smooth and rubbed in.
If hot weather melts the deodorant too much, simply pop it back into the fridge to harden.
If you find you react to the bicarb, leave it for a couple of days and then reintroduce as I found that my skin eventually got used to it after a couple of attempts. It could be that your body needs to detox properly from your previous deodorant.
Do let me know what you find in the comments below and if you have any queries or problems, I might be able to help you solve them.
*NB It may mark your clothes, but it should wash out.