Goodbye Styrofoam, Hello Clamshell

re-usable take-out containers
Styrofoam and paper boxes have always been a staple of my college dining hall. When exam rained down or the dining hall was a bit too crowded, to-go boxes have provided the best option. But unfortunately, they produce a large amount of non-biodegradable waste that ends up in the garbage can all across campus.

Luckily the Student Environmental Alliance (SEA) has started a new campaign to say goodbye to the Styrofoam and hello to reusable take-out containers.
Much like reusing other plastic food containers, made-for-reuse containers like the “Eco Clamshell” by G.E.T Enterprises help keep waste at a minimum. The Clamshell is a dishwasher safe, break-resistant food container ideal for college campuses such as my own, as well as corporate cafeterias or meetings. Surprisingly sturdy, the boxes are also stackable just like regular take-out trays, utilizing three separate sections and an attached lid.
The plastic is polypropylene, a recyclable plastic resin also used in packaging and various automobile components. While

There are a few inconveniences to the re-usable containers, such as the initial four dollar deposit in order to use a box. The system is set up so that an initial four-dollar purchase will allow you to use a container and bring it back at the next meal, clean or dirty. If it is clean it can be reused immediately. If it is dirty it can be exchanged for a clean container at no charge. At the end of the year, the container can also be returned for a complete four-dollar refund.

In addition to this, the dining hall no longer offers the option of any kind of cardboard to Styrofoam container, instead of forcing students who may otherwise decline the option due to minor inconveniences to either purchase a re-usable container or bring their own.

Other complaints center around the inconvenience of carrying the container constantly in case you might have to eat on the run. But it is a small inconvenience in comparison to the large portion of campus daily waste being reduced to zero.
For four dollars I have already gladly invested in my teal container, not only for the purpose of carrying food, but it’s a great way to store leftovers without the eventual disintegration of the cardboard container. On the whole, it’s well worth the money and the effort.


Homemade Deodorant To the Rescue!

So far we have seen how to make both eco-friendly toothpaste and mouthwash, which are two obviously useful items. Another useful item that comes to mind when thinking about our “Hygiene Health Week”. Not only is deodorant a great item to learn to make but it is also something that we use every day, which makes it an extremely useful item. If you are interested in learning how to make your own deodorant please keep reading…

Follow the following recipes to learn how to make your own deodorant:

Basic Recipe

2 tsp. zinc-oxide powder
2/3 cup witch-hazel extract
2 tbsp. aloe-vera juice
30-40 drops essential oil(s)

In a small bowl, stir the zinc-oxide powder into the witch-hazel extract, and add the aloe-vera juice and essential oil(s). Fill an 8-oz. dark-glass spray bottle with the fluid.

For Daily Use

Basic Recipe
30 drops rose-geranium essential oil

The rose geranium oil is high in terpene alcohol, which inhibits the proliferation of odor-causing bacteria.

For Sensitive Skin

Basic Recipe
30 drops calendula extract
10 drops lavender essential oil

Calendula and lavender oils are mild yet potent fighters of bacteria and odor.

For Excessive Sweating

Basic Recipe
30 drops sage essential oil

Sage oil inhibits sweat-gland activity by as much as 50 percent. It also is antiseptic and astringent and gently constricts pore size.

These recipes are by Natural Beauty. Please visit their website for the full article on these recipes along with other ideas.

Herbal Stick Deodorant

1 1/2 tbspn beeswax (yellow is best)
1/2 tbspn cocoa butter
1 tablespoon coconut oil
15 drops white thyme essential oil
15 drops rosemary essential oil
25 drops lavender essential oil
3 drops castor oil

Melt beeswax in a glass jar standing in hot water, add the cocoa butter,
and when it has melted, add the oils. Stir to mix thoroughly, then pour
into a clean, discarded deodorant stick case and leave to cool and set

This herbal stick deodorant recipe is by Snow Drift Farms.



How To Make Your Own Eco-Friendly Mouthwash

So, we’ve already taken a look at making your own homemade eco-friendly toothpaste so we will have a look at homemade eco-friendly mouthwash now, which not only helps to fight bad breath but is also great for promoting really good mouth and gum health. There are many great mouthwash recipes out there, so I hope that the ones you find here work out great for you.

Follow the following recipes in order to learn how to make your own eco-friendly homemade mouthwash:

Homemade Rosemary-Mint Mouthwash

2 1/2 cups distilled or mineral water
1 tsp fresh mint leaves
1tsp rosemary leaves
1 tsp anise seeds

Boil the water, add herbs and seeds, infuse for 20 minutes. Cool, strain and use as a gargle/mouthwash. If you wish to make up a larger quantity, double or triple the recipe then add 1 tsp of tincture of myrrh as a natural preservative.

Homemade Spearmint Mouthwash

6 ounces water
2 ounces vodka
4 teaspoons liquid glycerine
1 teaspoon aloe vera gel
10-15 drops Spearmint essential oil

Boil water and vodka, add glycerine and aloe vera gel. Remove from the heat, let cool slightly. Add spearmint oil, shake well. Pour into bottle, cap tightly.

Baking Soda Mouthwash

Mix 2 ounces of Water, 1/4 Teaspoon of baking soda or Sea Salt, 1 drop of Pure Peppermint Oil, and 1 drop of Tea Tree oil. This Homemade mouthwash recipe leaves a great refreshing minty taste in your mouth and helps prevent bad breathe.

These recipes can be found at Ultimate-Cosmetics.

Minty Mouthwash

16 floz/450ml water
1 tablespoon fresh or dried parsley
2 teaspoons whole cloves
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons peppermint extract

Boil the water in a small saucepan and then remove it from the heat. Add the remaining ingredients and leave them to infuse in the water for 5-10 minutes. Strain off the liquid and keep it tightly covered and refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.

This recipe is by Make Your Own.



Homemade Baby Lotion

homemade lotion

As this week comes to an end it is time to wrap up our eco-friendly baby week. In the ending of this eco-friendly baby week we are going to close things off with eco-friendly baby lotion. The two homemade lotions, which you learn to make yourself, featured in this article are both good to soothe your baby’s irritated skin. Not to mention, of course, you will be able to find out where to purchase eco-friendly baby lotion online if you prefer to buy it rather than make it.

To start figuring out how to make your own homemade baby lotion please follow the following recipes:

The Honey Milk Baby Lotion
For a lotion that you can refrigerate and use for up to a week, you will need ½ cup of honey and ½ cup of cream or milk (with the former being a better option). Pour the honey into the milk in a saucepan over medium heat and stir until the two are completely blended. Allow the mixture to stand for five minutes before placing in a glass jar with a lid and refrigerating. When completely cool, it will be ready to use!

The Lavender Baby Lotion
Mix 225g of petroleum jelly with nine teaspoons of olive oil, thirty drops of lavender oil and the same amount of chamomile. You do not have to heat this at all, but simply mix it in a bowl. You may want to use a fork to mix because it does take some blending but always needs mixing by hand to ensure all ingredients are thoroughly blended. Again, refrigerate for a few hours and then use on your child. It will keep for up to two weeks so be sure to store it properly in the fridge.

These recipes are by babies online. Please visit their website for the full article on baby lotions, and also for more information on babies, pregnancy, etc.

For those of you who wish to purchase eco-friendly baby lotion instead try Aura Cacia Calming Baby Lotion and All Natural Moisturizing Solid Lotion Bar. I’m sure that a lot of you will find that eco-friendly baby lotion is quite rewarding.

Wash Your Hands With Homemade Liquid Soap

So, we’ve figured out how to go about making homemade eco-friendly laundry detergent, but what about homemade eco-friendly liquid hand soap? Liquid hand soap is something that some people may or may not take into consideration when it comes to greening their cleaning supplies and or personal care products. Just like laundry detergent liquid hand soap does in fact typically have ingredients in it that are not good for the environment whatsoever. Well, guess what? You are about to learn how to make your own homemade eco-friendly hand soap!

Follow the following recipes to learn how to make your own homemade eco-friendly hand soap. Don’t forget to get creative when it comes to making your own soap. Try adding a few drops of your favorite smelling essential oil to the mix.

Homemade Organic Liquid Hand Soap

Organic Bar Soap
Distilled Water

Chop the soap up super small or grate. Boil the water (start with 3-4 cups) and once hot, add the soap. Mix, let it sit on a low boil, and if needed add more soap and or water, let low boil, mix. Once it appears to be the right thickness, do a massive final mix, it needs to be completely blended or little soap hardened pieces will show up, which of course will clog your pump. After the final mix, run a test. Your test is to let it sit out overnight. If you come back and it’s too thick, heat and add more water.
Getting the thickness right is the hard part. It depends on the soap. If you add 3 oz of soap or so, start with 3-4 cups H2o and go from there. It will turn out different depending your soap, so this is a project you need to watch, at least the first time you do it. You can add a few drops of organic essential oils too.

This recipe is by Jennifer. Check out this recipe in her article online.

Homemade Organic Liquid Hand Soap

1 cup distilled or filtered water
3 tablespoon liquid castile soap
1 teaspoon vegetable glycerin
Drops of lemon or orange essential oils-or your choice
Tea tree oil is antibacterial and antifungal, add some drops of that too

Combine all ingredients, I used a blender stick. Funnel into a reused pump bottle. It cost a lot less than buying organic hand soap. I tried Kiss my Face , then realized it has parabens (methyl-, propyl-, butyl-, ethyl-, isobutyl-).

This recipe is by Chari. You can view her recipe in her article online.



Eco-Friendly Laundry Detergent

Anyone and everyone has to at some point in time buy laundry detergent. If it wasn’t for laundry detergent these days very few of us would have super clean clothes. The one thing that we must ponder, though, about store about laundry detergent is how safe it is for the environment. Ever took a good look at the ingredients on various laundry detergent bottles and or boxes? The answer to whether or not laundry detergent is safe for the environment is easily answered with a plain and simple, straight forward, “no”. There are too many chemicals, etc. in laundry detergents that aren’t environmentally friendly, which makes it hard on the water. Luckily, there is way around it. Ever thought about making your own eco-friendly laundry detergent? If so, or even if you are simply curious up to this point, then continue reading from here on out…

The following recipes are recipes that you can easily make at home in order to make eco-friendly laundry detergents.

Eco-Friendly Powdered Laundry Detergent

1 bar of soap (not antibacterial)
1/2 cup of borax
1/2 cup of baking soda
Resealable container

1. Grate bar of soap into container.
2. Pour in borax and baking soda.
3. Mix well.
4. Use 1 tbsp. for small or lightly soiled loads and 2 tbsp. for large or heavily soiled loads.

This recipe is by “GreenKnitter”. You can view this recipe in their article online.

Eco-Friendly Laundry Detergent

5 ounces of pure soap (can be deodorant soap)- preferably cruelty-free soap. I use pure glycerin soap. If you can find Zote Soap, that’s great.
Water (faucet is fine)
large pot (3-4 quart size)
Soda Ash (Sodium Carbonate) – a.k.a Washing Soda – can be found at grocery, photography, and pool supply stores.

1. Grate the 5 ounces of soap into the pot and just cover with water.
2. Heat until soap is dissolved. Heat on low to medium heat, stirring continually.
3. After heating and dissolving, fill pot the rest of the way with more water. Stir in ONE cup full of soda ash/washing soda.
4. Stir mixture until soda ash is dissolved. I usually heat mine on low and stir to dissolve the soda ash completely. Let mixture cool.
5. Funnel into a large recycled container, such as a recycled juice bottle, a cola bottle, or anything else you can find. Use 1/4 cup per full load of laundry.

This recipe is by “themissiah”. This recipe can be viewed in their article online.


The Days of Eco-Friendly Bubble Baths Are Here!

illustration of a woman having a bubble bath

The majority of women love to take bubble baths. Bubble baths can be very soothing and comforting, especially when the lights are turned off and or are turned down low, along with having a candlelit. While regular bubble baths are great, what about an eco-friendly bubble bath? Eco-friendly bubble bath soap can be homemade or even bought already made, just like with regular bubble bath soap. So, the question is now, how would one go about making homemade eco-friendly bubble bath soap? Keep reading to find out!

Follow this recipe for great ideas on how to make your own eco-friendly bubble bath soap:

Homemade Bubble Bath


Eco-Friendly Liquid Soap

3/4 cup Water

1/2 – 1 tsp. Glycerin
Essential Oils (optional)

Combine 1 cup baby shampoo or eco-friendly liquid soap with ¾ cup water, and ½ to 1 teaspoon glycerin in a reusable plastic bottle. Add a few drops to running water at bath time for a fun, bubbly, nourishing bath. As an added perk, add a few drops of essential oil such as lavender, orange, or chamomile directly to the bathwater.

This recipe is by Jenn. Please visit The Green Parent to view her complete article with this recipe in it.

Take a look at these bubble bath soaps that you can purchase online:

Bubble Bath with Grapefruit Seed Extract
This bubble bath put out by Nutribiotic is a very gentle bubble bath and hypoallergenic. It is moisturizing, natural, oil-free, and tear-free.

Bubble Bath Vanilla 
Bubble Bath vanilla is put out by Rainbow Research. Their bubbles are very long-lasting, and also is safe for kids.

Bubble Bath, Rose Geranium & Citrus –
This bubble bath is put out by EO. Their bubble bath is gentle and is made with essential oils.

Organic Bubble Bath with Lavender, Lemon & Tea Tree –
Organic Bubble with Lavender, Lemon & Tea Tree is put out by Little Twig. Their bubble bath is gentle and works really well with sensitive skin. It contains vitamin E, aloe vera, and jojoba oil, which soothes sensitive skin.

Quick Tip: Replace your regular candle during bubble bath time with a soy or beeswax-based candle for an environmentally friendly touch.