Sunday, March 25, 2012

Bar Shampoo Soap and the Oil Cleansing Method

In my quest to eat more natural and healthy foods, I've also desired using less processed products on my person.
You can absorb just as many chemicals by rubbing it on your skin, brushing you teeth or washing your hair, as you can by eating it.
I started researching other alternatives to store bought products and came across more natural beauty choices.
A strangely popular "no-poo" method for washing hair has gotten a fairly large following; women and men who have given up shampoo and conditioner all together, and have started using baking soda, and apple cider vinegar   as replacements.
I was tempted, but call me a wuss, I wanted to ease into tossing shampoo, especially since I have naturally greasy hair, and cannot go more than a day without washing.
So, I found an alternative:
This is the "Soap Works Shampoo and Conditioner" bar. The soap works is a Canadian based company, nothing they make contain phosphates or lauryl sulphates. 
I found it at my local organic store for a mere $1.45.
 I figured if I was game enough to be tempted by just baking soda alone, surely I could try this! I've been using it for a week now, as is Jeremie and we both quite like it. It smells lovely, has a nice lather and my hair feels clean and fluffy. If I had to knit-pick one thing, I would say my hair is slightly drier. However, being a naturally greasy person, this hasn't really been a problem. 
I've been able to go three days without washing my hair, and still not get to that frighteningly-stringy greasy look. 
During my little cruise for natural beauty products, I came across this: "The Oil Cleansing Method"
I know it sounds crazy, cleaning your face with oil?? But it seemed just crazy enough to work. 

"The basic concept of this skin care and cleansing method is that the oil used to massage your skin will dissolve the oil that has hardened with impurities and found itself stuck in your pores. The steam will open your pores, allowing the oil to be easily removed. Should you need it, the smallest drop of the same oil formula patted over damp skin will provide the necessary lubrication to keep your skin from over-compensating in oil production. "

Well, okay then. I'll give it a shot.  
I already had the Olive oil at home, and after a quick jaunt found my castor oil. The little bottle I conveniently found at the dollar store. You can apparently buy little bottles and the like in their "travel-sized" section. 
Because I think I have fairly normal skin, (sometimes dry, sometimes greasy) I used a 1 to 1 ratio of castor oil and olive oil. I made only 2 tsp castor / 2 tsp. olive, as I'm still in the 'testing' stage. 
" Castor Oil has potent anti-inflammatory properties, but is also healing and cleansing, which is why we're focusing on this oil as our primary oil."  
The olive oil is simply used as a carrier oil, and can be replaced by grape seed or sunflower seed oil. I just used what I had on hand. 

The rest was very simple. Throw it in a bottle and give it a shake!
The best time to cleanse is at night, to get the day's grime off, and this cleanser is also a wonderful makeup remover too! 
Take a quarter sized amount in your hands, rub them together to warm the oil. 
Massage into your face for approximately a minute making sure to work into your problem areas. 
Take a face cloth and soak in water warm enough to steam the oil off your face - lay it on your face for another minute. 
Your face should immediately feel softer. If you're using the right ratio of oils, you shouldn't need to moisturize. If your skin feels dry, add more olive oil to your mix, if your skin feels greasy, cut back on your olive oil amount or adjust the ratio to a greater amount of castor oil.

I've just started using this, so I will update you all in a week or so when I have some real results. However, after just a few uses, my skin already feels softer and more moisturized. 
I'll also try to take a picture of my hair after 3 days of no washing, and then again after using my soap. 

So that's what I've been doing lately! 



Niki said...

It will be interesting to see how these new regimes work for you.
love ya

Celynne said...

I'm using expensive Lush soap bars, but I may have to give this wee bar of shampoo a try at that price! I was really intreagued by the oil face cleansing thing, I can't wait to hear more about this from ya :) I'm just waiting to run out of store deodorant before I try making my own home stuff with some tea tree oil and other goodies.

Margaret said...

Hello Dear Jenny, I read your blog post with absolute delight! I've have played around with different homemade personal care items off and on for years, always learning something new, amazing what can be accomplished with simple things like plain yogart, honey, herbs and oils. I've experimented with different clays also. Fascinating stuff. I have some great recipes and will one day attempt to photocopy them and pass some along to you. I have made homemade face-paint for the children when they were little and it worked wonderfully, we saved a pile of money, I wasn't concerned about what was in it and most of all they had so much fun! I applaud your efforts regarding "the INTERNET." I like to think of these things the same as any other tool, you use them when and how you need them, they are just a tool like any other, in today's world however they are an important tool whether we like it or not this is the way much of our world works now. I enjoy your blog and checking in on you and the little charmer from time to time. Thanks for the wonderful post, Blessings to you and yours, Margaret

Jenny - Small town Hippies said...

Hi Cel,
Oh how much do I love lush too!!
Right now I'm thinking I need slightly more castor oil, (or less olive) my skin feels slightly oily, so I need to tweak my recipe still - I'll let ya know how it goes.
Please, please tell me if you get/make a good organic deodorant that works! I keep trying them, and they technically 'work' but I find my underarms feel 'raw' and sore after a while..tres weird.

Hello Margaret,
Thank you for your kind words, I would LOVE some of your recipes for different products, that face-paint sounds really neat!
It's always so nice to see you've 'stopped by' :)
Have a good one!

- Jenny

Lori D. said...

I'll be interested to see how this works for you! As I age my skin seems to be less greasy and more dry. However I do live in south Florida and it is very humid in the summer.

Justine said...

Stopping by from the Frugal Days, Sustainable Ways Wednesday Blog Hop!

Blessed Mom said...

The oil cleansing method is wonderful! I love it! My skin has never looked better!

A Greenhanger said...

I just use all natural bar soap made by my step-daughter. She has great scents like orange, lavender, etc. Her prices are very reasonable as well.

Johnna said...

I have used the no poo method for years now and will not go back. Little annoyances I had when using shampoo have completely subsided immediately after I started the no poo method. Most notably little sometimes tender bumps on my scalp and itchy scalp. I too thought I had straight oily hair that "had" to be washed every day. But now I only have to clean my hair once a week unless I do something that gets it really dirty like clean out the chicken coop, work in hot garden etc. Commercial shampoos strip your hair of all oils and so your body detects that and tries to make up for it by producing more oils. That is why we have to shampoo so frequently when using shampoos.

Natural Mothers Network said...

I am delighted to have discovered your blog and would love to try this soap alternative! I wonder if this soap or something similar can be found in the UK? I would love for you to come share it at Seasonal Celebration Sunday over at Natural Mothers Network. And, I really hope that you will put Seasonal Celebration, on your list of carnivals to visit and link to each Sunday/Monday! Here’s the link:
Rebecca @ Natural Mothers Network

Anonymous said...

Was sent the link to your blog by a Lanark Eco-Village member, and am glad to know there are even more fellow small-town hippies in our small town than I thought! :)

We've been using the above soap on our hair for a couple of years now -- no more plastic shampoo bottles!

(I made a single homemade batch of shampoo with disastrous results for me -- ever notice how shampoo recipes always call for *shampoo*? Duh! -- but will try again sometime. I have extremely dry, tangly, frizzy hair that does need some form of extra conditioner, though, or I can't even get my fingers into my hair, let alone a comb...)

I think I'm signing up now, so I can't forget to come back and see what's going on with y'all!

Celynne said...

So are you still using the oil method for cleansing your face? Or have you switched to something else? How's things with your hair? Updates! :)

And I've been using this simple deodorant recipe the last week or so: I only had tea-tree oil but it seems to be working fine so far. It keeps the stank down very well, considering I get all hot and shvitzy in the restaurant. It did sting a bit when used just after I'd shaved but stick deo burns then too so eh. I quartered the recipe just to test it out but I think this is something I'll be using long-term.


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