Home Apothecary V

crunch·y [kruhn-chee] adjective, crunch·i·er, crunch·i·est.

  • Crunchy granola: health-conscious and environmentally aware (“One of those crunchy gals who insists on making her own cosmetics.”)

It’s getting mighty crunchy around here. Why? Take a gander at this list of ingredients to avoid in your cosmetics. Making your own cosmetics is not only better for you, it’s simple and cost-effective. Win, win, win.


deodorant II

Coconut Oil Deodorant, Revised

I have altered this deodorant recipe many times trying to find just the right combination of ingredients, and I think I’ve finally got it! Use whatever essential oils you like. You will need fewer drops if using base note oils (earthy, woodsy, musky); the base note scents will last longer than that of top/middle notes (citrus, floral, camphorous).

  • 1 cup coconut oil
  • 2 cups arrowroot powder
  • 1/8-1/4 cup baking soda (use 1/8 c. if you have sensitive skin)
  • essential oils*

*Essential oil blends I dig:

  • 40 drops lavender + 40 drops sandalwood
  • 25 drops vetiver + 25 drops sandalwood + 20 drops sweet orange

Melt coconut oil in a small pan over very low heat. Remove from heat as soon as melted, and stir in baking soda and arrowroot powder. Let cool for a couple minutes, then stir in essential oils. (Personally, I find it wise to use a mixing boil designated for apothecary purposes when using essential oils. Should you choose to do the same, transfer the mixture to said bowl before adding essential oils.) Pour mixture into empty, clean deodorant containers or jars (apply with fingertips if using jars). Store in a cool place or in the fridge if your house is warmer than 75 degrees. Recipe makes a double-batch (I filled two 4-oz. jars and one 8-oz. jar).


bug balm

Bug Balm

This balm has the added benefit of having a bit of “sunblock” in it because coconut oil and shea butter are natural sunscreens, albeit not very strong sunscreens.

  • 2 Tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 Tbsp. shea butter
  • 15-20 drops each citronella, eucalyptus, and cajeput essential oils
  • 10 drops cedarwood essential oil

Melt the butter and oil in a double boiler over low heat. Remove from heat and cool 5 minutes, then stir in essential oils. Pour into a glass jar and cool in refrigerator until solid. Store in a cool place.


sunburn relief

Sunburn Relief Oil

Frankincense essential oil soothes burned skin and helps take the red out—amazing!

Pour a teaspoon of carrier oil (I use jojoba or sweet almond) into your palm and add a few drops of frankincense essential oil. Rub palms together and apply to sunburn.


acne solutions

Acne Solutions

Simple, chemical-free solutions from your kitchen. Nice.

Astringent: Dilute raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar 1:1 or 1:2 with water. Apply to affected area with a cotton ball. Use straight ACV on a q-tip as spot-treatment.

Scrub: 1 teaspoon gentle liquid soap + 1/4-1/2 teaspoon baking soda. Pour soap into your palm, add baking soda, rub palms together, and gently massage into skin. Rinse.

Scrub #2: 1 tsp. sugar + 1 tsp. honey. Gently massage into skin. Rinse.

Spot treatment: Tea tree oil. That’s all!

Moisturizer: Jojoba oil. That’s all! Essential oils can be added if desired.


black soap

Black Soap

I suffered from dry, itchy skin for months before realizing that maybe it was the soap I was using. I thought, “Surely, castile soap is gentle enough that it would not be causing this problem.” Then my mother-in-law suggested that the alkalinity of the castile soap was disrupting the pH of my skin, stripping away the acids and good bacteria. I believe whole-heartedly that she was right. I switched soaps, and my skin is back to normal. I still use castile soap in my foaming hand soap though.

I love Black Soap. I purchased it on a whim and will never go back; it’s perfect for my sensitive skin and inexpensive to boot. I use it as a body/face wash and use it on my kids for body wash/shampoo. It’s a little too heavy for my hair, though. Black soap, which is made from plantain skins, has a strong earthy, musky scent. I dig it, but it’s not for everyone.

Black Soap Ingredients: Water, saponified coconut, hemp & olive oils with retained glycerin, black soap concentrate, organic shea butter, fragrance, vitamin e, sea salt, citric acid, rosemary extract and caramel.


I purchase many ingredients (and more!) from iHerb; the prices are low and shipping is fast and free for orders over $20. Get $10 off your first order of $40 (or $5 off under $40) at iHerb!


2 thoughts on “Home Apothecary V

    • i feel your pain! i have trouble scalp, too, and the only thing that has helped is store-bought tea tree shampoo. i’d love to try that honey one though! let me know if it works…

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