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Episode #10: DIY Beauty Products

 Hello everyone! Welcome to Sustainable Existing. Last week’s episode was about making your beauty routine more sustainable. I also mentioned that this week was going to be beauty products and it is just that. It is always great to support brands that have eco-friendly packaging and use great products, but it is also beneficial to make your own products. All of the ingredients I used today were items I had before. The great thing about making items yourself is creating products out of multipurpose ingredients. Pretty much all of the ingredients I used today were from my kitchen. Instead of getting drugstore dupes because sustainable items cost a bit extra, try looking online because there are thousands of recipes for natural cosmetics. 

 I made all of these the day before recording so I could give a review of how they worked. Making things off of things online can make you skeptical and I wanted to make sure I was putting out reliable content and wanted to make it clear to everyone listening or reading. 

 The first beauty product I made was a sea salt texture spray for hair. I found this recipe on laurenconrad.com. For this product, you will need an empty spray bottle, 1 1/2 cups of warm water, a teaspoon of avocado coconut oil (I used coconut oil), and 2 teaspoons of sea salt. First off I filled a measuring cup up with the water from my kitchen sink, then added in the coconut oil. For the sea salt, all I had was coarse sea salt with the twist cap and it was pretty complicated to get into the teaspoon amount, so I just eyed it. I then used a funnel to pour in the mixture into an old leave-in conditioner bottle. Make sure to shake the product before every use because the coconut oil may separate from the water after some time. Also, there was a recommended period of 4 months before you should make a fresh batch. I mentioned last week that I was going to stop buying hair styling products, but since my hair is often laying flat, I figured it was worth a shot to try something I made at home rather than buying a new product. Personally, my hair doesn’t hold texture well I knew using it the normal way you would texture spray wouldn’t work out. I had just washed my hair before making it and I sprayed it in my damp hair and braided it. I slept in the braids overnight. In the morning, my hair was not only wavy from the braids, but it also had a lot more volume than it usually does when just braiding it. Another great thing was that my hair was very soft and it was not oily or greasy from the spray. Although I didn’t use it traditionally, I would recommend this to someone that may already buy a sea salt spray. It is a more affordable option and at most took me five minutes to make. 

 The second item I made was a whipped body butter. Yes, that sounds fancy, but it was very simple. All you need is coconut oil, shea butter, and essential oil of your choice for scent. I didn’t have shea butter, but my mom had this natural lotion with shea butter. Shea butter isn’t a common item, but if you get into making beauty items it’ll be something worthwhile to get because it is in a lot of different products. In a small mixing bowl, I mixed an equal amount of lotion to coconut oil with a few drops of the essential oil until it became light and fluffy. This isn’t the most sustainable since I did use another pre-existing beauty product but in making it again, I will get shea butter and also have it to make other products, but for the time being, I had to work with what I had and it was convenient that I had another body product that could be used as a substitute. The product worked surprisingly well. It does contain coconut oil so you only need to apply a very generous amount and it will melt if in warmer conditions. My skin was greasy after first applying but soaked in after a few minutes and hours later my skin still feels very moisturized. I do believe the shea butter contradicts the greasiness of the coconut oil so having to use the lotion instead added the oily appearance at first. It wouldn’t be a product I would use on my face, but after testing it on my arms and legs, I was very satisfied with the results. 

 The third product I made was an at-home sugar scrub. I mentioned this last week and how my friend made me one for my birthday, but I had made my own before she did and I thought I would share it today, especially having used it for a longer time. For this mixture, you will need granulated sugar, any type of oil (I use just plain vegetable oil), and essential oils. In a container, mix an equal amount of sugar to the oil and a few drops of essential oil of your preference. I don’t know how reliable it is to use vegetable oil, but I only use it on my legs and there hasn’t been an issue. To make a lip scrub out of this recipe, I typically switch the essential oil for vanilla extract and it has worked great for me. You can also use the mixture of vanilla extract on the rest of your body, but I keep separate containers because I will use the one with essential oils before and after shaving, but I use the lip scrub over the sink, where I can put vaseline on my lips right after. After getting out of the shower from using the scrub while shaving, I put natural lotion on, and it gets rid of any irritation. I don’t know what to call it but I get marks where the hair grows out, I know some people call it “ strawberry legs”, using the sugar scrub before and after shaving has diminished their appearance. I’m not a dermatologist, but this is what has been working for me. 

 As promised, every other week I want to update you on where I am in my sustainable journey. Two weeks ago, I made the episode on things I was hoping to buy less of, so I’m considering that whole episode an update. As I mentioned in previous episodes, I finally finished cleaning my room out. I have some clothes I may sell on Depop. I gave some clothes to my sister. I also have a full laundry basket of clothes that I love but need slight alterations which are all on my to-do list. I started on the pile by fixing a pair of my favorite jeans that were too long and that have become too big in the waist. For the bottom of the legs, I had previously just cuffed them but decided on cropping them to the appropriate length and create a raw hem. The waist was a little trickier. I wanted to do the concealed elastic belt that a lot of kids' clothes have with the buttons to adjust the waist. Unfortunately, I could not find spare elastic, but for the time being, I added a drawstring just as a pair of sweatpants might have. They came out a lot better than I thought and they will be a lot better once I can get some elastic to fix the band. I am enjoying learning more about sustainability especially now that I’m getting into the more complex aspects. As I mentioned in the first episode, I needed 80 hours to complete my Gold Award project and after this episode, I’ll officially have done 80 hours which is exciting, but in my proposal, I made it clear that the project would continue to the end of June. 

 I really enjoyed today’s episode and had I load of fun making these beauty products. I would love to hear any tips that you may have or any comments, questions, or feedback as well. My social media accounts, as well as my email, can be found at www.sustianableexisting.com as well as the written-out blog post of this episode. I hope you all try at least one of the products I made this week. Have a great week and remember to sustainably exist. 

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My mission is to create awareness and encourage others to make the switch to more sustainable items. I hope give inspiration to others seeking for a change and to build a supportive community. 

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