One, simple idea. One bottle. One product to suggest: Castile soap, a product is made with vegetables and herbal oils. The one I use (Updated 2012: I originally used Trader Joe’s Pure Peppermint Castile Soap in liquid form, but several years ago switched to Dr. Bronner’s, which I love except for all the strange messaging printed on the bottle) adds a touch of Aloe Vera “for its soothing, healing qualities.”
It’s pure and simple, with no animal or synthetic ingredients. Most of all, castile soap is a versatile product with numerous effective applications.
This will probably horrify all Arbonne and Mary Kay representatives, but I use it as a face and body wash.
The occasional blemish that would erupt on my chin or nose from month to month? No more. Not a one. Since I’ve been using castile soap, my complexion is better than ever. I know several readers who will just shake their heads at me—they’ll warn me that I shouldn’t use, well, soap on my skin. But, hey, it’s working great. It’s cheap, my skin looks and feels great, and after I use it on my face, I can use it to clean the shower, mop the floor and wash the dishes.
Yes, this product is so flexible, I’ve used it for everything that the back of the bottle suggests, except as a shampoo. I tried that and didn’t like it, but I have long hair and I’ve heard it’s better for people with short hair (and good for dandruff).
I use it for the following (I’m typing directly from the Trader Joe’s label):
- Body: Use directly on loofa, washcloth, or sponge for an invigorating shower or bath.
- Bubble Bath/Baby Bath: Pour one capful in running water for a luxurious bath. It’s also a gentle, safe way to bathe your baby (note: as with any baby wash, be sure to keep it out of their eyes).
- Fruit Wash: A couple of washes in water cleans pesticide residues off your fruits and vegetables.
- Hand Soap: Gentle on your hands and tough on dirt.
- General Use Cleaner: Its naturally powerful cleaning ability will get your floors, counters, bathrooms, and kitchen utensils spotlessly clean.
- Travelers, Backpackers, Campers: The perfect all-in-0ne cleaner. One (biodegradable) soap does it all without fouling up the environment.
This lady has some personal observations from using the actual Dr. Bronner’s brand, and mentions that some versions are better than others for specific uses (some have a high oil content and she observed oil stains when using it for laundry). She (and many others) also dis-recommends using it as a toothpaste. My Trader Joe’s bottle didn’t even bother suggesting that application.
I love how it simplifies life. And it’s safe for the environment: the makers are careful when producing it to be environmentally friendly; and when I put it to use, no harmful fumes or residues are wafting around my home.
You could try a bottle and see what you think. It’s concentrated, so one bottle lasts a while. If you don’t like it for one thing, you can use it for a dozen other uses until it’s gone and be done with it. Or maybe, like me, you’ll find that you’re hooked.
Please visit Rocks in My Dryer for more great ideas!
My previous Works-For-Me-Wednesday Ideas:
- Post-It Annotation for Library Books
- Everyday Mom-Mobile Essentials & Travel Notebooks
- Money-Motivated Kids
- Make the Most of Internet Lag Time
- Storing Dishes: How Low Can You Go?
- Crepes? Mais, Oui!
- Containerize Kids’ Laundry
- Let It Snow, Let Us Slow (Crockpot Steel-Cut Oatmeal)
- Family LoveFest
- Joy of Lifelong Learning–For Free!
- MP3 Accompanist
- MP3 Note-taking