What today falls into the niche of “DIY” (do it yourself), is in fact the longest human tradition there is. It’s funny that today we need people to teach us how to do it ourselves, that we can’t fathom making things we find essential. Do it yourself-ism is a quiet, but effective way of protesting the consumerism that has gripped us. By taking the few extra minutes to make your own shampoo, deodorant, shirt or whatever it is, you’re turning your back on big companies and bringing your health and well-being back into your own hands. It may not seem like a big deal when you do, because it isn’t, it’s what we’re made to do.
Take, for example, deodorant. Many people consider it a daily necessity (and perhaps more people should). Rather than going to the store, look for a few things in your cabinets:
- Corn starch
- Baking soda
- Coconut oil
- An empty deodorant container
These are really the only four things you need to make deodorant. Optional additives are essential oils that will make you smell nice (I re-used the oils from the shampoo I made) and Vitamin E (makes that fresh little underarm nice and soft too). Many of the essential oils also act as antimicrobials – the little bacteria are what make you stinky in the first place – particularly cinnamon, clove and thyme.
Now that you’re ready, simply combine ¼ cup of the cornstarch with ¼ cup of the baking soda. Add 2 Tablespoons of coconut oil and a few drops of whatever scent you choose. Mix these ingredients together (I used my hands, which works best but is a bit messy – some newspaper helps keep the mess in check) until they start to form a mass. Add more of dry or wet ingredients until it’s the right consistency. Then pack your empty container and apply! It’s that easy, and you’re not rubbing nasty chemicals into your hard to reach areas.
Related: (previously on altCon, 9/21/09) DIY shampoo