Friday, July 29, 2011

Change Can Be a Good Thing Part 2: Personal Products

Not too long again I did a post entitled: Change Can Be a Good Thing. It was about the changes we have been making around our home to be more green- using green cleaning products, recycling, composting, and starting our garden. We are doing this for the health of our children, and to teach them how to live a more sustainable and healthy lifestyle.
To follow up on that post I want to show you what I have been doing to change my hygiene products as well. Everyday we use so many things on our bodies- toothpaste, creams, soaps... the list is endless. And in recent years there has been a lot of information coming out about the dangers of the chemicals in products such as sunscreen, bug repellent, deodorant, and diapers. It can be really scary as a parent to think of all the dangerous chemicals my children come in contact with on a daily basis.
The problem that I have run into is finding affordable, safe alternatives for us to use. And they still have to work well. For example, we tried Nature Babycare biodegradable, chemical free diapers on our youngest daughter. They were great- as long as they were dry! As soon as they got even a little wet they started to break down- while still on the baby! That is a very bad thing, since I ended up changing not only her diaper, but her clothes several times a day.
It can take a long time, and testing several products to find the ones that are going to work for you. Here is what I have changed to so far.

Baby Items:

This was the first group of products I did a major overhaul on because I felt it was the most important. When I was still pregnant with my youngest daughter, my husband and I decided we would not use Pampers on her because of their new "drymax" in the diapers. I did not like the idea of chemicals in her diaper, in such a sensitive area. We tried several brands of diapers- Seventh Generation, Earth's Best, Nature Babycare, and Huggies Natural Care. We still go between all but the Nature Babycare. We get the Huggies when we have to go to the store for them, and get the Seventh Gen. or Earth's Best on I usually get the ones that are on special that week. As for wipes- I have tried all of them- every brand- in the past 7 years. For the past year we have stuck with the Earth's Best. I LOVE them!

As for personal baby care:

We use Babyganics hand sanitizer- she's 1 and tends to put her hands in her mouth, Calendula cream (it's lavender scented), and Weleda Calendula diaper cream- it's honestly the BEST diaper cream on the market. All of these products I get from


The most important items for me to get organic for the older kids were their bug repellent and their sunscreen. Both of these items can be pricey, but it's an expense I don't mind too much.
We use California Baby products on all the kids. You can find them online, or at Babies R Us, Target, and specialty grocery stores.
Items I still need to change for the girls are their bath soaps, toothpaste, and shampoo.

My Personal Care Items:

The biggest issue with my personal care items was the cost. Beauty products are expensive to begin with, but organic ones are even more so. Luckily, Trade Joes is affordable and, while they may not be organic, they are a lot safer than what I was using.

I love TJ's shampoo, Dr. Bronners Peppermint Castille soap, and their face wash. And the best part- they are cheaper than the other brands I was buying! Score!

A few of my other favorite items are my Toms Deodorant, Toms Toothpaste, Tea Tree oil for blemishes, and Aveda products for hair care. For 1st Aid I use Calendula Gel for mild burns, bug bites, cuts and scrapes. The Arnica gel is for bruising and swelling, sore muscles, and cramps. These items are safe and can be used on children as well.

And my most favorite beauty product:

This is similar to what they use in spa facials, but half the cost! My husband jokes that he doesn't understand why women clean their faces with dirt.:-)

I feel I have made some great progress with changing out a lot of the products we use, but I know there are more changes yet to be made. I am still researching makeup, but I don't wear a lot to begin with. That will be my next challenge.

What is one product that is most important to you to swap out for organic?


  1. I'm heading out to buy some new natural cosmetics today!

    One of my favorite homemade - sugar (or epsom salts) and then add oil - I use olive oil and then some essential oils. It's AMAZING to run onto your skin in the shower (before getting wet)... :)

    Ps. I have that Dr. Bronner stuff.. but have NO idea what to do with it???

  2. What kind of sugar do you use in the sugar scrub you make? I would love to make some:-)
    The Dr. Bronners is soap- I use it as my daily body wash and I love it! I learned about it when I was at Trader Joes one evening and 3 other customers in there were telling me about it. It's fabulous!
    What brand of natural cosmetics do you buy??