Archive for the ‘anti-plastic’ Category

Using unadulterated bicarb as a deodorant was a disaster, and resulted in me having very painful chemical burns everywhere the stuff touched. Although I’ll be looking into non-cosmetic applications later, I’ll be applying it with a pair of marigolds on, just in case.

Water saturated with bicarb worked about as well as regular spray deodorant, but without the ease of application. Which is to say – it lasted for about 6-8 hours, provided the temperature wasn’t too high and I didn’t do anything to energetic (like go for a brisk walk). In addition, it took far too long to dry to make it practical.

I’m not really temped to try the cornstarch/bicarb mix. getting the powder to stay on my (dry) skin was hard enough, and my bathroom floor was horribly gritty afterwards. Maybe there’s a trick to it, but everywhere says ‘apply to dry skin’, so I don’t really see it working. None of the other alternatives I posted up look particularly appealing or effective and I’m broke for the time being anyway, so I’m getting  experimental with whatever we have in the cupboards, which just happens to include lots of bees’ wax. This stuff sticks to your skin like no-one’s business, so I went looking for deodorants based on bees’ wax.

Crunchy Betty


Autonopedia.org – The Practical Encyclopedia for Sustainable Living


If I’m honest, looking for an effective, homemade deodorant has been a huge pain in the arse (although dwarfed by the difficulties in finding recipes that give measurements). I’ve not given up, but I’m not looking forward to doing the same thing with toothpaste.



While we’re talking of toothpaste: what’s actually in it? Is fluoride good for you, and If so, how much is too much?


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My last anti-plastic post was a bit telling of my priorities, I expect. Trying to modify my diet has left me a little obsessed. Food is great, and it may well be the primary source of plastic in my life, but it isn’t the only one. The next big hurdle is personal hygiene.

First, a disclaimer. I don’t shave my underarms, nor have sensitive skin, I’m not allergic to anything that I know of and  I’m switching from a men’s roll-on anti-perspirant/deodorant (I seem to sweat a lot, and women’s anti-perspirants don’t seem to work for me).

First, I tried Lush’s aromarant deodorant block, which was a bit pricy (but evens out when you consider how long it lasts), but smells nice and works pretty well. I had no smell and no wetness while using it. Unfortunately, I used it for a week before an allergic reaction left me with with sore, red underarms and peeling skin. (it seems I’m not alone in this: [link]). The Lush website says ‘pat on dry skin’, so I may be doing it wrong.

I went back to my normal roll-on  to give my skin a chance to recover. I ordered a box of bicarbonate of soda (also called baking soda or baking powder, depending on where you live) from the internet and bought a soft brush for when the commercial stuff ran out.

My roll-on ran out yesterday, so this morning I applied the soda (or at least, tried to apply it) directly to my underarms – straight out of the box, with no messing about. I don’t yet understand how it works and, given the quantity of grit now on my bathroom floor, I’m inclined to think it hasn’t (I’m very gad I didn’t try this while standing on carpet). I think one of my armpits might have still been a bit damp, and it’s retained some of the soda, which is kind of scratchy and unpleasant, but we’ll see how it goes.

[EDIT] Badly. Very, very badly. People on the internet who claim to put this straight onto their skin are either masochists or misanthropic sadists. I’ll be thrice-damned and blind before put this stuff straight into my armpits again.

Other things to try with bicarb:

  • Adding cornstarch or cornflour to the soda, in a 6:1 mixture [link]
  • Adding essential oils (Patchouli, Lavender, Peppermint, Spearmint, Eucalyptus, Melaleuca, Rosemary, Cinnamon and Clove) [link]
  • Mixing into a paste with with water (1/8 tsp soda dissolved in 1/4 tsp water; if water easily rinses away the “slimy” feel of sodium bicarbonate, you’ll need to use more. If water does not easily rinse it away, you’ll need less) [link]
  • Mix into a paste with 2 TB corn starch, 2 TB baking soda, 2 TB olive oil and a few drops of essential oils
  • Equal parts baking soda, cornstarch, and coconut oil

If the bicarb doesn’t work, I have a few backup plans:

  • 3 Tablespoons shea butter
    3 Tablespoons baking soda
    2 Tablespoons corn starch
    2 Tablespoons cocoa butter
    2 vitamin E oil gel caps (puncture and squeeze out the oil)
    Essential Oil (e.g.: ylang yang and orange)
  • The crystal deodorant I saw in the rocks and fossils shop. Apparently, this only works on clean, bacteria-free pits, and still contains aluminium (not sure if I’m worried about this at the moment, but it’s something to bear in mind).
  • The Aromarant seemed to work quite well, so I wouldn’t mind trying Lush’s sensitive skin deodorant Aromaco at some point.
  • Wads of sage under the arms is fairly unappealing, but misting a sage dilution into my armpits is a bit more promising.
  • Cider vinegar is right at the bottom of the list – I don’t have a lot of time in the morning to get rid of the vinegar smell.

More reading:


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