Monday, June 28, 2010

Embracing baking soda

No, this is not a paid product review. Just my own personal thoughts here.

I've been working toward using some more natural things in our home/life. The turn of the year brought me to the conclusion that I would switch from deodorant with aluminum to something more body friendly. I started using Tom's of Maine Lavender Deodorant.

At first, I was pretty pleased. The smell was great. It seemed to work well enough. By the end of the day I could tell that I had overrun the effectiveness, but it was winter so it didn't matter right then.

I found myself digging near my underarms.

The effectiveness was lasting for a markedly shorter period of time when the warmer weather came.

Then I noticed it. Tom's of Maine actually burnt the area encircling my underarm. My underarm was the donut center to a very red, dry and large itchy area. Oh, it did not feel good and definitely wouldn't work for bathing suit season. I switched back to Dove Deodorant to clear the mess up. I used Dove for a few months and decided that I would try an aluminum free deodorant again.

My sister suggested Arm & Hammer Essentials Natural Deodorant. She found that it worked very well for her, particularly during warm days, and was effective for about 12 hours before a need of re-application came up.

I'm happy to say that I've been using it for about a week and find that the same is true for me. A bonus? No underarm burn! At $2.99/stick, it is a bargain!

I also buy Arm & Hammer laundry detergent. I figured that it wasn't probably 100% natural by any stretch, but went on the hunt for some more answers on that. Surprisingly, Arm & Hammer is being sued for not disclosing the ingredient listing of their cleaning products. Seventh Generation and companies of the like are in compliance, but sadly Arm & Hammer (according to this report) is not. Still, the detergent feels light and fluffy like baking soda. It doesn't seem gummy like the Surf detergent I was using previously. I have no problem with it dissolving in even cold water, which again was a problem that caused me to ditch Surf. (It wasn't a problem all along, I believe that they changed formulas and Sam's Club started carrying a different scent that I was allergic to.) It cleans our clothes well, isn't overly perfumed and is a bargain at $11.86/box (145 loads.)

I was talking to my organic chicken farmer friend and she reports that she has just started using baking soda to replace cleanser and other cleaners. My question-- does it naturally disinfect? I need to go on the hunt for more information.

What about you? Do you have a love for baking soda or other natural cleaners? Do tell.

Smiles in my weekend:
- Having a few weeks worth of breathing before 3 straight weeks of summer camp starts.

Have a great day!


Rach said...

I use white vinegar all over the house for cleaning. I use baking soda to absorb odors from the carpets, to cut orders in the trash and more. I'm REALLY trying to use more natural items around the house.

Bailey's Leaf said...

I remember you saying that your house smelled like vinegar. How is the cleaning with it? What is your ratio? How long does it smell like vinegar?

Rach said...

The vinegar smell really lasts no longer than an hour at most. As for ratio? Well, uh, um, I kind of clean the way I cook. I eyeball it. I go full strength on the floors, and I guess one-to-one or two parts vinegar-to-one part water for other tasks.

And, if you don't mind vinegar, the smell can seem kind of clean even. ;o)

ChupieandJ'smama said...

I use vinegar too. I like baking soda as a mild abrasive. I use it instead of "Comet" type products. I'm trying to as "green" as I can without compromising cleanliness. I like Method, Mrs. Myers and Seventh Generation. I always wonder exactly how "green" those are, but so far so good. I've noticed a difference in J's asthma since I started using them. Less chemicals=less asthma. I used to clean with bleach. Can you imagine?? I don't think baking soda actually disinfects though. If I really need something for that I use peroxide. It kills some stuff. But soap and water usually does the trick for most things.