Keeping It Healthy… well, reasonably…


I know sugar cravings are an addiction, as are carb cravings. While I’m not yet willing to completely remove refined sugars from my diet, I’m radically cutting them down. I’ll work on the corn/wheat stuff later on. Apart from the company banquest last night (cheese tortellini in alfredo sauce, antipasto veggies, and a few things dipped in the chocolate fountain,) I’ve been doing alright, food-wise. Keeping away from commercial sweets isn’t as hard as I thought! I’ve baked a few things at home (most recently yummy graubrot) that take the edge off my cravings, but nothing egregiously awful.

Right now, though, perhaps due to the chocolate fountain/cake last night… I am really craving a Coke.

I’ve been so much better about drinking tea and water, not even keeping any diet soda at home anymore, but it’s harder at work. We have a giant cooler stocked with a variety of free beverages downstairs, none of which are hugely healthy – Tropicana OJ is the closest we get to that. It’s hard to pass up the Diet Pepsi, or the Coke in favor of flavor-free water. Ugh.

On the reducing chemicals front, the natural deodorant is working quite well. My homebrew version has a bit too much baking soda, though, and needs a remixing. In its current form, if I put too much on I get these little pills of baking soda in the crevices that act like tiny lumps of sand, grinding away my skin. However, it works! The three-ply deod works really well, too – it just takes more time to apply due to having to let the crystal salt dry. It even withstood warm temperatures in synthetic fabrics last night, something commercial deodorants seldom did for me.

Here’s the other thing I’ve been doing, strictly experimentally. After discovering fabulous handmade soap and realizing it made my skin happy, I wondered… could I use it in place of shampoo? I decided to give it a try – what could go wrong, really? Worst case scenario, I have scaly scalp and Really Bad Hair for a day, right? We’re all friends here, so I can share this. I’ve always had a case of The Dandruff, see, and have thusly been enslaved to various dandruff-solving shampoos since I was about 19. They don’t rid me of it entirely, but things are at least presentable with the good old Head & Shoulders. I could always wear a hat, if need be. Sally forth!

I lathered up, scrubbed my scalp with the lavender soap, gave a quick conditioner blitz on the long parts and just waited for The Badness to happen as it dried. Funny story – it never happened. My scalp is completely happy and only the really stubborn spots the H&S and even prescription shampoos didn’t cure have tiny flecks that crop up occasionally. I’ve been using this method for nearly a week now, and it seems to work just fine. My hair seems softer, even. It’s certainly easier (and more eco-friendly) this way, too. With the H&S, I had to wash my hair three times, no kidding. First H&S application, wait one minute, rinse. Apply second H&S dose, wait five minutes, rinse. Wash with regular shampoo to cover up atrocious H&S odor. Rinse, then condition.

That takes a ridiculous amount of time and wastes a bunch of water whilst I wait the eternal 5 minutes for the second dose of H&S.

It kind of makes me groan to think I’ve spent 20 years wasting who knows how many gallons of water, spending untold monies on prescriptions and non-prescription shampoos, all for nothing? Blargh. Well, at least I’ve discovered something else now – or so it seems. Maybe in a week or two, everything will come crumbling down around me.

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4 responses to Keeping It Healthy… well, reasonably…

  1. I have been dying to try to make homemade soap for the longest time, but I just haven’t managed to eke out the hours necessary to get it done. And one of these days, I’m going to post – in excruciating detail – about my lifelong battle with scaly scalp and in one fell swoop, disgust and alienate most of my readers (but not you, apparently! Solidarity, my flaky sister!)

  2. Elle Clark

    Ok for holidays it doesn’t feel like Christmas without making roll out cookies while listening to Elvis Christmas songs. I don’t ever remember not doing it growing up.

    Please let me know where you got your soap and brand. We have some that is great for skin homemade but not for my hair which is a dry mess. I have been using Aveda, but the kind I use is discontinued. I would love to find something! Have tried a few with no success!

  3. Barbara

    Shampoo strips off the oils in your hair and conditioners add it back to your hair. Washing your hair with a shampoo bar takes the dirt out of your hair, but not the natural oils. Rinse with a concoction of 1 c. water and 2 – 4 tbsp. of organic apple cider vinegar. Apply as much of the the mixture as you need, run your fingers through your hair, rub it into your scalp and rinse off. This removes any remaining soap residue and helps the scales on your scalp to relax back down. Our favorite shampoo bar is from :

  4. Erin

    Megan – I suspect you won’t gross many out; lots of us are afflicted with The Scales. 🙂 Years ago on livejournal, I did this shampoo-free experiment with baking soda in place of shampoo and vinegar in place of conditioner. Suffice it to say, that didn’t go well. I posted pictures and everything. 😀 There were about a dozen people who all had the same problem, too.

    Elle – I’m using One With Nature Lavender Dead Sea Salt Soap from Foods for Living. I’m not sure yet if it’s going to work long-term, we’ll see.

    Barbara – sadly, I’m just not a fan of the vinegar solution. It smells awful, stings a lot and if I don’t get it utterly, completely rinsed out (not easy with this much hair,) I smell like a salad all day. I couldn’t keep it up. I’ll look into the shampoo bar though, neat!

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