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DIY OH Baby! Natural baby wipes for great baby skin

babies

Baby B, little Lorin & Sarah and soon after we rocked Lorin’s world by bringing home her little brother.

Today, I am posting this DIY baby wipe post in honor of three of my favorite girls (Casey, Jenni and I can’t name the third because it’s still a secret. shhhh) who are having babies late in 2015, or very early 2016!  It feels like it’s been such a long time since mine were babies, and the fact that there will be babies that I will totally be able to get my hands on to squish and love on is just plain exciting!

Did you know that commercially made baby wipes contain ingredients that carry hazard ratings? if you are really curious, head on over to the Cosmetics Database and check out their complete list of different brands of baby wipes and the hazard rating. It still makes me slightly crazy that it’s “allowable”, and yes – I am aware that many babies handle the use of these wipes “just fine”. Although, I have met many infants with chronic runny noses, colic and more – with an unknown etiology – and I have to wonder – if their toxic load was lightened- would their little systems do better? I think we all have been guilty of thinking that a product is fine – if there is no rash, or no visible sign of a problem. Now that we are reading more and more information about the gut being our second brain and the center of most disease, perhaps we’ll see some improvement in what is allowed in commercially sold products.  Click here to go to the database. Once you get there, click the little arrow to the right of the word “Score” to list them in reverse order. This means the wipes with the most hazardous ingredients will be listed first.

Before we get to the recipe – I’d like to point out that manufacturers are also picking up on the natural world’s “key words” – therefore words like “goat’s milk’, “green tea”  and “Chamomile” are in the names of the wipes. If a product name contains these words, they have to be good right? Wrong. Those three ingredients are in the names of the top 3 worst brands on the market today. These wipes have a hazard rating of 7 and ingredients found in these wipes have been linked to allergies, high toxic loads, developmental delays, organ dysfunction, endocrine disruption – and cancer.  Read your labels – and better yet, make your baby wipes at home. Save some money, remove all doubt.

When I started my journey for healthier living, I was sort-of forced into it. I had rapidly declining health – at the old age of 26. Modern medicine just wasn’t working and I didn’t have time to waste with a newborn on my hands. As I looked around for healthier alternatives, I found some – but man, were they expensive! So, I searched blogsites and other resources to find that many of the recipes that existed suggested the use of baby oil (or mineral oil) and baby lotion. Eeek! If you want to be frightened – check out those ingredients on the database linked above.

You can imagine how the rest of the story goes – trial and error – mostly error. Finally, I had the ingredients down in a way that would allow the wipes to work -with no skin irritation!  It is simply a bonus that if you purchase the needed items in bulk, I estimate that you can save approximately $135 per year per kid with DIY wipes. Who wouldn’t cheer for healthier and less expensive? If you are just starting out your family, gather a group of Mom’s and Dad’s and co-op the batches together.

Let’s gather a list of what you need.

1. 1 roll of heavy duty paper towels. I use Bounty for making baby wipes. Recall my trial and error? Cheaper paper towels just do not work.

2. 1.5 cups of boiled distilled water. (Allow to cool, but you’ll want to use it still warm – not room temperature). Note: you can use regular water as well, if you use wipes quickly and will use in under a week or so. If you are doing a larger batch, use distilled water – so they will last longer).

3. 1 tablespoon of pure witch hazel extract. To purchase the one I use, click here

4. 1 tablespoon of pure aloe vera gel. Which I purchase, here

5. 1 tablespoon of liquid Castile Soap. I use Dr, Bronner’s Organic Pure Castile Liquid Soap, Baby mild. Click here.

6. 1 teaspoon of Grapeseed oil. I use Epicurean Olive Oil’s brand (click here), which is available at Epicurean Olive Oil Company, located at The Avenue, 2615 Medical Center Parkway #2070 in Murfreesboro, TN 37129. Their 12.7 fl oz bottle is regularly priced at $16.95. (You can save 10% by bringing your clean empty bottle back into the store). About Face also carries a sampler size of Epicurean’s Grape Seed Oil, 2 ounces, for $6.00.

7. 1/4 teaspoon vitamin e. I use JASON vitamin E, 5,000 IU – available here.

8. Essential Oils of your own choice. I use 5 drops of two oils per batch as described above. I commonly use 5 drops of Lavender and then either 5 drops of Melaleuca (tea tree) or 5 drops of wild orange. You can get your essential oils here, or by contacting me directly, mentioning this blog post and saving 15%.

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Grab a container…

Okay, now that you have all of your ingredients, you’ll need a container to store them in. You can ask a friend to save you one of their discarded old baby wipe containers, or you can locate a BPA free rubbermaid container that is approximately the same size as a roll of paper towels cut in half. Typically, you’ll be looking for a container that will hold approximately 10 cups. The Rubbermaid #6 container works the best.  This is the one I used. (Click here). Here’s the lid for that container. (Click here). If you want your wipes to be able to be pulled out through the top, the container has to be round and tall enough. Simply look for BPA free and select the right size. Cut a criss-crossed slit in the lid and you are all set.

Cutting the roll of Bounty paper towels…

Back to trial and error….without removing the paper towel wrapper, use your electric knife to cut the paper towel roll in half – into two shorter rolls. An electric knife is the gadget that you may have gotten two of at your wedding, but rarely use. Yes, it will work to use a regular knife, but it must be sharp and you must be really patient. I can sometimes lack patience with things of this sort and I was seriously contemplating using my table saw (but couldn’t decide how to sanitize the blade) when I thought I should try my electric kitchen knife first! Viola. a clean cut – and everyone keeps their phalanges.  It may take up to two minutes to completely cut through the paper towel and the cardboard tube inside with your electric knife.

Making the wipe solution…

  1. In bowl mix the water, witch hazel, aioe vera gel, castile soap,Vitamin E and grapeseed oil and stir.
  2. Add essential oils if using, and mix again.
  3. Pour the mixture over the paper towel roll as it is standing up in your container and allow to absorb. This takes about 5 minutes or so.
  4. Put the lid on and flip the container over to make sure wipes get soaked through.
  5. At this point, (If you’re using the Rubbermaid container), pull the cardboard roll out from the inside. As you pull the cardboard roll out, the innermost wipe should start to come out too. This will start them for you. Pull the end of this through the slit you have made in the Rubbermaid lid.

A few notes about my trial and error. Until I knew what bounty paper towel I was using, I had to add a little more water to get the recipe above. Depending on what size roll and the strength of absorbency, you may find that you need more liquid to fully saturate your wipes. I typically pre-mix a few batches of the liquid and simply store it in a mason jar until needed.

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If you are like me and are wayyyy past the baby wipe need stageyou could use this recipe and be the kindest baby shower guest you’ve ever seen! If no one you know, never has a baby again -you can also use a similar method to make DIY cleaning wipes.

Here’s how:

(Same container, same method – less ingredients!)

General Cleaning Recipe:

  • 1 1/2 cups white vinegar
  • 1 1/2 cups distilled water
  • 5 drops tea tree essential oil, 5 drops Lemon essential oil, or 5 drops OnGuard Essential oil. Click here to purchase EO’s, or contact me directly and receive 15% off by mentioning this blogpost.

Mix all ingredients and pour over a cut in half roll of bounty and use to clean any surface in your home!

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Dry brushing and DIY Cellulite Cream

drybrush

 

Dry brushing. Everyone does this right? I’ve been dry brushing my skin for several years, and I simply was not aware that not every woman on the planet was aware of this simple, extremely effective DIY body basic!

It is customary for blog posts to be created as a direct result of conversations inside the treatment room. Last week we were busy discussing laser hair removal and somehow the softness of the skin was brought up.  After 14 years of treating with medical lasers, it doesn’t take a stretch of the imagination that I have had hair removal – well, everywhere. We were discussing my arms specifically (which used to be really hairy with a light blonde-light brown hair mix). The client wanted to know if there was a need to treat in the future, or if there were any skin disruptions, was it soft, etc. The client asked if the softness of my skin was due to laser hair removal. Although, hair-free skin is indeed softer, my hair removal was over 10 years ago. As the conversation progressed I found myself repeating my daily routine for my own skin (body, not face). I realized that in addition to the DIY body butter I use (click here for recipe) as posted on the lovely Rachel Holder’s blog at holderingherown.com, that I only use the body butter if not treating for cellulite. As I tend to do, I was on to the next laser treatment and in a post-note sort of thought-out-loud statement added “in addition to dry skin brushing”.

body

In the world of holistic beauty treatments, dry brushing is kind of the genesis of all body skincare — it’s the one thing that people with glowy effortlessly gorgeous skin do – everyday. When I heard about this years ago, it seemed like something that I would definitely not enjoy. They wanted me to take a dry scratchy brush with no product and brush it over my already sensitive red skin? Yes, that’s correct. They insisted it would make it softer. “Right” I thought and discarded that almost as soon as I heard it. On his very next visit, the skin care professional that I trained under for over a decade asked how often I replaced my dry brush? I’m sorry, my what? My attention was then captured. Admittedly, the first few times I tried dry brushing, I didn’t spend much time on it because initially it felt a little torture-esq. However, with a recent considerable amount of weight loss and a sluggish lymphatic system I was dedicated to dry brushing daily for 30 days. I measured various body areas and took photos (scary photos!).

BENEFITS OF DRY BRUSHING

1. Removal of dry skin. Let’s face it – we spend a great deal of time on the appearance of our face, but largely ignore the skin on our body. Dry brushing is fantastic for whole body exfoliation. The good news is, that’s not all it’s good for.

2. Say good-bye to cellulite! Of course it’s easy to think that cellulite is a problem reserved for individuals who are over-weight. This couldn’t be farther from the truth. The truth is – cellulite is experienced by those with a sluggish lymphatic system. The lymphatic system is responsible for eliminating (cellular) waste products.  Hundreds of miles of lymphatic tubules transport cellular waste to your blood for elimination, (this is called lymphatic drainage). In addition to the aesthetic presentation of cellulite, if your lymphatic system is not working properly, waste and toxins will build up and can make you sick. Lymphatic congestion is a major factor leading to inflammation and disease. By stimulating your lymphatic system and helping it release toxins, dry skin brushing is a powerful detoxification aid. If you have the body type that is characterized by sluggish lymphatics, dry brushing will wake up the lymphatic system and get the lymph flowing freely. (If you are not sure of your primary body type, ask during your next visit, these body types have been studied specifically for the treatment of your skin – there are 4 primary body morphologies: Sanguine, Lymphatic, Nervous & Bilious).

3.  When you dry brush your skin, it increases circulation to your skin, which encourages the elimination of metabolic waste. If this waste is not properly eliminated, cellulite (or fatty deposits under the skin). Dry brushing will help eliminate toxins as well as more evenly distribute any fat cells.

dry-brushing-benefits

DRY BRUSHING 101

1. Purchase a natural bristled brush (like the one pictured above).  These should not cost more than $10. It is better to have one with a handle for hard to reach spots (mine has a detachable long handle).

2. Brush your skin once a day, preferably in the morning before you shower.

3. Start at your feet and use long upward strokes  always towards your heart.

4. Be sure to go over the armpit area really well – there are many lymph nodes here.

5.  Brush over an area several times – just remember the point of dry brushing is stimulation, not irritation. It is normal for the skin to be slightly red immediately after brushing.

6. When you get above your heart, brush downwards towards your heart.

7. Dry brush at least once per day before you shower or bathe. After you shower, apply the DIY body butter from above. For an added punch – make this DIY Cellulite cream and apply after towelling dry.

DIY Cellulite Cream

What you’ll need:&

  • 3/4 cup Coconut Oil
  • 2 tablespoons of shaved Beeswax
  • 3 tablespoons of Witch Hazel
  • 10 drops Juniper oil
  • 10 drops Rosemary oil
  • 30 drops Grapefruit or peppermint oil
  • 30 drops Cypress oil

How to:

  • Mix together all of the essential oils and the witch hazel. Stir until well blended.
  • Over low heat and using a double broiler, melt the beeswax & coconut oil together. (This gives you a creamy base).
  • Once the beeswax has melted, add the oil mixture to the beeswax & coconut oil blend.
  • Pour into a resealable jar and store in a cool place. *Preferably glass. I use a wide mouth mason jar).

This homemade cellulite cream packs a powerful punch, thanks to the amazing essential oils!  Why? Well, Juniper is a diuretic and purifier while also being a great circulation stimulator. Rosemary is essential for increasing blood flow throughout the body which significantly reduces the appearance of cellulite over time and it is also great for flushing out your lymphatic system and getting rid of water retention. Cyprus and grapefruit essential oils are both effective towards increasing circulation, relieving fluid retention and flushing toxins from your skin. Witch hazel is a crucial ingredient, as it helps refine and tighten your skin.  Having a more even-toned surface will deflect some of the visual effects of cellulite.

*It is not recommended to use this DIY cellulite cream while pregnant. If you have varicose veins (not spider veins) that are rope like, do not dry brush nor use this Cellulite cream.

Treatments 

As part of Summer Skin Camp we’ve been providing cellulite treatments in the treatment room as well. Slightly different from being at home. First, we start with cleansing and exfoliation of the area to be treated as we teach you to dry brush. Next we apply the slimming solution to the body area being treated. We then wrap the area in plastic wrap and add a thermal blanket that activates the slimming treatment. After this solution is hot toweled off, our Cellulite Treatment cream is applied and clients take home a jar of their own. This service is now a part of our regular menu offering for $175. This includes any laser service for your face during the wrap (might as well not let this time go to waste!). From today through Saturday, June 28th we are offering the cellulite body wrap service (along with any laser service for the face) with take home treatment cream and dry skin brush for $125!  (This service can not be combined with other offers).

goodbye cellulite

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