With the fall season and winter around the corner, you may find yourself under the weather with a sore throat. Here's a quick and yummy ginger tea recipe to help ease your discomfort.
Do you have a favorite DIY sore throat remedy? If so, please share!
Do you detest the toxic chemicals of the commercial cleaners on the market? Have you switched to green cleaning products? Or perhaps you're thinking about making the switch, but you're confused and don't know where to start.
Green cleaning DIY to the rescue! It's not complicated either. All you need are a few basic ingredients for all your household cleaning to transform your cleaning supplies.
The basic supplies you need are:
• Baking Soda
• White Vinegar
• Hydrogen Peroxide
• Essential oils, like tea tree oil, lavender oil, eucalyptus oil, or lemongrass oil
• Castile Soap (like Dr. Bronner's)
• Fresh Herbs, citrus, or citrus peels
• Vegetable Oil
These are inexpensive, easy-to-use, and environmentally safe alternatives, which can safely be used in place of commercial household products. They can be used alone or in combination for a wealth of household applications.
Here's what you can do with these products.
Baking Soda - cleans, deodorizes, softens water, scours.
White Vinegar - cuts grease, removes mildew, odors, some stains and wax build-up.
Hydrogen Peroxide - removes laundry stains, whitens clothes, cleans fruits and veggies, sanitizes, de-germs.
Essential Oils - effective against most household bacteria.
Soap - unscented soap in liquid form, flakes, powders or bars is biodegradable and will clean just about anything. Avoid using soaps which contain petroleum distillates.
Fresh Herbs, Citrus, or Citrus Peels - cleans, deodorizes, effective against bacteria.
Vegetable Oil - polishes wood
Salt - abrasive
All-Purpose Cleaner: Mix 1/2 cup vinegar and 1/4 cup baking soda (or 2 teaspoons borax) into 1/2 gallon (2 liters) water. Store and keep. Use for removal of water deposit stains on shower stall panels, bathroom chrome fixtures, windows, bathroom mirrors, etc.
All-Purpose Cleaner: Mix 2 cups water, 1 cup hydrogen peroxide, and 1/4 cup lemon juice. Store and keep. You can use this cleaner for everything from streak-free mirrors to wiping out the cat litter box.
You'll find a list of simple green cleaning recipes at Earth Easy.
What's are your favorite natural cleaning alternatives?
A couple days ago while trimming trees and bushes encroaching on the driveway, I inadvertently brushed against some poison oak. Oddly enough, I'm not reactive to poison ivy, but poison oak is a different story.
If I had known the poison oak had touched my skin, I would have immediately washed the area, an effective deterrent within 15 minutes of contact. I wasn't so lucky this time, but fortunately there were only a couple spots.
Initially, I ignored them, but, of course, they itched, so I finally pulled out my simple DIY calamine lotion recipe. It worked like a charm! Instant relief and the spots healed overnight.
Silly me for waiting so long!
I snapped a quick shot of what the mixture looks like - no fancy photo here, but you'll get the idea of the proper consistency.
Now, here's the formula:
1 part sea salt
1 part baking soda
1 part bentonite clay
1 1/2% essential oils (use one or a combination of lavender, geranium, chamomile, yarrow, peppermint, and/or tea tree)
enough distilled water to make a paste
Be sure to add the water a few drops at a time or you may make it too thin and will have to increase the dry ingredients and essential oils to get the right consistency.
If you only need a tiny bit, for each part, use 1/2 teaspoon each for the dry ingredients and about 5 drops of essential oil.
Best advice . . . leaves of 3, leave them be . . . but if you do get a rash, give this recipe a try. You'll be glad you did!
Do you have a favorite calamine lotion recipe? If so, please share!
Medicated protecting powders are popular with all ages. Used for the treatment of diaper rash, to help prevent and heal chafed skin, and to help protect and heal irritated skin.
In this formula we have utilized the natural healing starch, arrowroot. The use of arrowroot powder has a long and storied past. It was used by North American Indians as a traditional medicine to treat wounds from poisoned arrows, hence its name. This natural starch is used in many culinary products, and is increasingly found in many high end and natural body and after bath powders.
Zinc oxide works as a mild astringent and has some antiseptic properties and is commonly used to prevent or to treat diaper rash by forming a protective barrier between the skin and the diaper.
Combine 2 cups of arrowroot powder with 1/4 cup of zinc oxide. That's it!
If you wish to add a few optional ingredients suitable for all ages, here are some suggestions: ground chamomile, ground lavender, ground oats, rice powder, and/or kaolin clay. These are all gentle enough for baby, but great for children and adults as well.
Ground chamomile and lavender can be used for their healing and calming properties. They have antiseptic and antibacterial components, as well as anti-inflammatory and sedative capabilities to soothe irritation.
Ground-grain oatmeal contains large amounts of silica, which benefits problem skin when used externally. Its anti-inflammatory properties helps soothe itching, dryness and irritation, such as diaper rash.
Rice powder has been used for centuries by Asian women for its healing and soothing of skin conditions. It contains anti-inflammatory and antipruritic (anti-itch) properties.
Kaolin clay will gently draw impurities from the skin without removing natural oils and helps keep sweat at bay.
Do NOT use cornstarch, as it grows yeast and can make a rash worse.
There are lots of variations that may be used, but these basics should get you started.
Do you have a favorite powder blend? If so, do share!
I've always been a fan of the “hands and knees” floor cleaning method over the dirty, messy mop and bucket. Can’t get into crooks and crannies with the mop; however, I have an 800 square-foot open laminate floor area, since moving out to the country some years ago. Getting on my hands and knees for that amount of space is a bit daunting. Thankfully most of the areas don’t get heavy traffic. Being of the DIY mindset for skin care and cleaning products, I found the perfect solution to my cleaning problem . . . and it’s SO easy! Oh, and be sure to read all the way to the end for a BIG surprise!!
Make Homemade Laminate Floor Cleaner
Here’s all you need. Use a measuring cup or jar and add equal parts:
2) White Vinegar
3) 70% Isopropyl (Rubbing) Alcohol
To this mixture, add:
4) Few drops of liquid dish detergent * (Make your own dish soap! See instructions below.)
Mix all these ingredients together and pour into a fine mist spray bottle.
a) Sweep or vacuum floors first
b) Spray floor cleaner in a fine mist over the area to be cleaned
c) Allow to set for a few minutes. Then use a microfiber mop or towel to wipe it up. (I use a Swiffer with a cloth or reusable cover.) ** (Check out the homemade Swiffer covers below.)
You'll notice immediately that this cleans easily and effectively, quickly dries and is so simple to use. NO BUCKET REQUIRED! The only step I take after this is to hand-wipe the flooring around the baseboards and to get into all the corners. Easy peasy!
When you have finished mopping, just toss the microfiber mop head or towel into the laundry until next time. Don’t use fabric softener or dryer sheets when laundering cleaning towels or else they will lose the ability to absorb liquids effectively. (Just use vinegar as your fabric softener.)
* Make Your Own Dish Soap
Instead of using commercial dish soap, make your own.
· 1 cup liquid castile soap
· 3 tablespoons water
· a few drops essential oil (optional)
Combine in a bottle of your choice, mix well, and use. (Yes, it’s that easy!) I like Dr. Bronner’s baby-mild castile soap, but any castile soap will work.
** Make Your Own Swiffer Covers
Reversible Swiffer sock instructions.
If you don't want to make your own, you can buy handcrafted readymade reusable Swiffer covers.
What’s the big surprise I promised? After testing this on my laminate flooring and loving the results, I tried it on my windows . . . whoa, it worked GREAT! Then I tried it on mirrors . . . no more streaks! It even works on stainless steel appliances, so it has become my SUPER ALL-PURPOSE CLEANER. Really, this cleaner is fantastic!
What great cleaning tips have you discovered?
Above is a video I came across on the Beauty Food Tips site for an easy wine mask. Here are the instructions:
Always start by cleaning your face using a cotton pad with your usual cleansing milk.
Mix all the ingredients together well until completely blended. The consistency will be a little jelly-like (the smell and appearance is really yummy, remember you DON’T have to eat it . Apply a thick layer to your face with your clean makeup brush, avoiding the lips and the eye area. Let it dry for 15-20 minutes. Rinse off with lukewarm water. Finish with a moisturizer.
It’s a luxurious mask for your skin with luxurious results!
The antioxidant properties of wine help in getting the toxins out of the skin and giving an instant wrinkle-free effect. Honey hydrates and tones the skin. Yoghurt, which is rich in zinc, helps clearing the skin and improves the overall skin texture, besides adding a healthy glow to your skin. Least but not last, the cocoa powder is amazing for our skin: fit helps firm and renew skin cells.
And not only: Cocoa is a mood enhancer and it helps stabilize your mood by initiating serotonin release. The lavender essential oil enhances the relaxation, making you feel rejuvenating and at peace.
A true homemade vinotherapy at the cheapest cost possible therefore what are you waiting for to show your skin some love?
Remember to always make an allergic test on a small angle of your face before applying the mask.
Enjoy! Do you have a favorite homemade mask? If so, please share!
Earth Day has come and gone . . . but has it really? Not for me, because Earth Day is everyday. We create products here at EdenSong Essentials always keeping in mind what is best for the planet and for its inhabitants, which is why we have such a strong sense of keeping our products pure. We also are conscious about our packaging and shipping materials.
This year we participated in Celebrity Earth Day Gifting through The Artisan Group - yes, even celebrities can be earth conscious and we appreciate the influence they may have.
(first row) Woody Harrelson, Ted Danson, Sting, Sheryl Crow, Rachel McAdams, P!nk, Orlando Bloom, (second row) Natalie Portman, Mark Ruffalo, Malin Akerman, Leonardo DiCaprio, Kate Bosworth, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Josh Hartnett, (third row) Jake Gyllenhaal, Hayden Panettiere, Ginnifer Goodwin, Emily VanCamp, Edward Norton, Daryl Hannah, Courteney Cox, (fourth row) Cameron Diaz, Barbra Streisand, (fifth row) Alicia Silverstone, and Adrian Grenier.
Here's what was sent to the above celebrities.
See the gift guide in front of all the goodies? Here's a link to the online booklet to view all the participants: 2013 Earth Day Celebrity Gift Guide.
On April 22nd, Earth Day, I did my usual digging in the dirt . . . planting herbs to use for cooking and for skin care products.
What does Earth Day mean to you and what did you do to commemorate the day?
You never know what kind of pesticides, insects or dirt may be lurking on the surface of your favorite fruits and vegetables. That's why it's always a good idea to thoroughly wash all your produce before eating it. Although washing with plain water can accomplish a lot, adding some natural sources of acid (namely lemon and vinegar) to the wash can provide a bit of additional, natural disinfecting power. Follow these easy steps to find out how to make a fruit and vegetable wash that is both inexpensive and completely organic.
You may choose from an selection of kitchen ingredients to make your homemade fruit and vegetable wash, including purified water, vinegar (white or apple cider vinegar), baking soda, lemon, salt, and essential oils.
You can simply fill your sink with water, add a cup of vinegar and a couple tablespoons of salt. Place the fruit and/or veggies in a colander and place in the water mixture. Allow to soak for a few minutes.
Another option is to create a spray with:
2 cups purified water
1 cup vinegar (white or apple cider vinegar)
1 Tbsp baking soda
juice of 1 lemon
10 drops lemon or orange essential oil (optional)
Put all ingredients into a spray bottle (be careful as it will foam up) shake gently to mix, then spray on produce. Allow to sit for about 2 to 5 minutes. If it's a fruit or veggie that can be gently scrubbed, use a scrub brush specified for produce washing only. Rinse thoroughly and enjoy your freshly washed and cleaned produce!
Be sure to store your wash in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks before having to make another batch. You can always cut recipe in half to make a smaller batch.
Research suggests to use the spray for hard-skinned fruits and vegetables and soaking for soft-skinned produce.
These are not hard and fast recipes, so feel free to experiment with the ingredients to find the perfect formula for you!
Why This Works
The acetic acid in vinegar cleans, kills bacteria and helps to dissolve the wax and pesticide residues. The salt draws out any little bugs, dirt, other small unwanted things and will remove some of the wax.
Why pay for the expensive wash at the store when you can make your own?
Check out the EWG's 2012 list of Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen to help know the produce that you need to buy organically and the produce that is safe to buy conventionally, but that needs to be washed thoroughly.
Click here for a free printable of the guidelines that's great to take shopping.
Do you believe it's important to wash your produce? What do you use to wash your fruits and veggies?
We're super excited to share that our Goddess Envy Moisturizer, was on the February 22, 2013 segment about Oscar Swag in The Wendy Williams Show! Our product, along with about 60 other talented artisans from The Artisan Group, were featured and gifted their products to Wendy, her staff and the audience. We are thrilled to have had such a great exposure opportunity!
Here's the huge, 69-pound, ridiculously insured shipment of swag headed out to The Wendy Williams Show, including this lovely gift bag for Wendy herself.
The exposure afforded us through The Artisan Group continues to get better and better. We are experiencing fantastic feedback from our clients and we just keep growing!
What's all the hype about matcha? What IS it? Matcha is a finely ground, powdered, high quality green tea and not the same as tea powder or green tea powder. It's 10 times more potent than regular green tea and provides a powerful arsenal of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and amino acids like no other green tea. Matcha's level of antioxidants have been reported by Tufts University to exceed blueberries and pomegranates by 20 times over. Match helps to fight-cancer, burn fat, reduce stress, heighten mental clarity, and beautify your skin. What's not to love about it?
Give it a try with these recipes!
1/2 - 1 teaspoon matcha powder
1 apple, chopped (OR 1/2 apple, 1/2 pear)
2 heaping cups of leafy greens (your choice: kale, romaine, chard, spinach, etc.)
1/4 teaspoon vanilla powder
1/2 teaspoon fresh ginger (or to taste; helps with inflammation)
juice of 1 lemon
1/2 cup coconut water, coconut milk or almond milk
Mix all ingredients together in a blender until creamy. If you prefer thinner smoothies, add more liquid.
Short on time? Try this simple recipe.
1 large banana, frozen
1 1/4 cups watermelon, frozen
3/4 -1 cup almond or coconut milk
1 tsp chia seeds (optional)
1/2 - 1 tsp matcha powder
Blend until smooth. Add extra milk for a thinner consistency. You can mix up the banana/melon blend by using 1 1/2 frozen bananas and a cup of frozen watermelon, making an even creamier shake.
Do you have a favorite way of using matcha? If so, share with us!