Baby butt balm

My sister is having a baby in October. I will be an auntie! Of course I have been busy crafting for my nephew. I have knit sweaters and hats, crocheted hats and booties and today I want to make something different. I have been researching Baby Butt Balm/Cream. I found some great posts about making it, what it replaces and how to use it. I know my sister and her husband feel very differently about raising children, but hopefully that one night at 3 am when the baby can’t sleep and just keeps crying because of a diaper rash my sister will find my baby butt balm and everybody will feel better and get some sleep. My son is 8 years old now, and suffered from horrible rashes all over his body for his first two years. I found that letting the rashes air out and using the least amount of creams, lotions or pastes (even prescription stuff didn’t work very well) was the best. If I would have had the knowledge that I do now when my son was born I would have made his rashes disappear in just a few days. I hope my homemade balms and creams will come in handy and my sister will find them useful.

Here is the first one I found. It is from my favorite blog, The Humblebee & Me. Her blog site is worth looking around and reading as many posts as possible.

http://www.humblebeeandme.com/baby-bum-balm/

This one is REALLY simple. I like the very basic feel to the site as well.

http://www.simplyrealmoms.com/posts/diy-baby-butt-balm-safe-for-cloth-diapers/

I love that this one gives a lot of background info on the various causes of diaper rash. There is also a list of very expensive baby products that are very simple and have no extra additives. A great balance for the do-it-yourselfers and the buy-it-I-am-lazies.

http://www.greenchildmagazine.com/caring-diaper-rash-naturally/

This one is very well done. Nice photos, well done descriptions and it’s easy to follow.

http://blog.shoporganic.com/how-to-make-organic-diaper-cream/

Awesome photos, very pretty, easy to follow directions and I love the use of mason jars! This is one you don’t want to miss.

http://www.lovelifenaturally.org/naturally-made-diy-baby-bum-paste-aka-diaper-cream/

This one is from one of my favorite crafting/DIY/how-to sites, Instructables. It has great photos, step-by-step instructions and you can comment with any questions you have on each step. The person who posted it might even have other awesome how-tos to look through.

http://www.instructables.com/id/DIY-Diaper-Rash-Cream/

Now I just need to get some squeeze bottles. I only have one right now. As I typed this I have had coconut oil steeping with chamomile. I made a small batch to see how it would turn out and I have to say I am quite impressed. Next step is to break out the mixer and whip the balm into a cream. I test every batch to make sure it works on my sensitive skin. So far I am loving this light baby balm on my knuckles and eczema patch. I bet it would be great on my cracked heels too.

Good luck and happy crafting hand-crafters!

-Bobby

Deodorant alternatives

My husband asked me to make some deodorant for him. He doesn’t like that ALL store bought men’s deodorant has aluminum in them. I have browsed Pinterest and come across a few. A google search yielded a lot of different recipes. It’s almost the same as most of the skin care products I make. There’s baking soda, arrowroot powder, beeswax, coconut oil, and vitamin E oil. The only thing I’m missing as the funny shaped tube to put the deodorant into when I make it. I don’t want to reuse an old tube, because I feel like the harmful ingredients will contaminate the home made stuff. Even washing it with hot water and soap I don’t feel like I could get all the icky goo out. That’s a technical term, “icky goo,” it refers to anything gross that is squishable.

 

After a little research I found that beeswax is great to add to a deodorant that you would use during hot weather, like Summer time. Like in lip balm adding beeswax stabilizes the deodorant. I once read about someone using a half a lime, stored in the fridge, as deodorant. You really shouldn’t have to refrigerate something that goes on a sensitive part of your body, it gives me goosebumps just thinking about smearing something freezing cold all over my pits!

 

Here are the beeswax recipes I found and liked:

http://wellnessmama.com/4901/deodorant-bar-recipe/

http://becomingpeculiar.com/homemade-summer-deodorant-that-wont-melt-in-your-cupboard/

http://www.scratchmommy.com/effective-easy-homemade-deodorant/

Personally I don’t like the way tea tree oil smells, even mixed with other oils. It smells too much like rotting leaves, mold and dirt. Tea tree oil also reminds me of a guy who got kicked out of culinary school (yes, I went to culinary school). This guy thought he could treat a gash on his leg, that needed stitches, with tea tree oil, after it got infected. He smelled like rotting flesh and mold. I did not like the idea of preparing food while the guy working next to me smelled like that. So, I avoid tea tree oil.

 

For those of you who don’t like, or don’t have, beeswax I found a few recipes without beeswax:

http://doterrablog.com/diy-deodorant-stick/

http://www.wikihow.com/Make-Stick-Deodorant

I really like that these two are so well done. Great pictures (or gifs) that are clear and make sense. A step-by-step breakdown. Clear ingredients lists. Proper use of tools. I really couldn’t do better myself. When so many great blog posts already exist I find it hard to try and out-do the 100s of recipes that are so easily found on the internet. 

 

I hope these links help anyone interested in home made deodorant. I have been meaning to try it, but just haven’t had the time, or ALL of the supplies. I still need to pick up some Shea butter or Cocoa butter and some deodorant tubes.

 

Happy crafting, and good luck

-Bobby

Manly spa products

I know a lot of manly spa products exist. Shaving cream, shaving soaps, scrubs, lip balms, and even bubble bath. I want to make some very manly scented products, even some gender neutral products. I have been talking to some people to get some ideas. Scents and flavors that are manly, but still pampering. So far sage, pine, coffee, musk, tobacco and grapefruit have been discussed. I could even make lime, lemon, orange, chocolate, or grapefruit lip balm for a very gender neutral line. I think most lip balm is pretty gender neutral. I have witnessed many men use cherry, cotton candy or even bubble gum flavored lip balm. I think the real difference is in the other spa products. Men don’t usually talk relaxing baths, and they don’t want to smell like flowers or fruit usually. I don’t believe I possess the skills to make a bar of shave soap, but I could certainly make manly scented bars of soap for body washing, salt scrubs and lotion bars. 

 

I was also considering a line of kids spa products. I LOVED cherry shampoo when I was a kid. It would be fun to make kid’s bubblegum scented bubble bath, or a grape scented salt scrub. I have used a very plain salt scrub ob my son’s body for sure, but wouldn’t it be more fun if it smelled like monkey farts? Seriously, there is a monkey farts scented oil for sale all over the internet. I think it would be easier to make spa products for kids than for men, but I really like the challenge. Some day I will make the kid’s spa line, but for now I’d like to move on to manly spa products.

 

What would the men in your life want in a Spa-in-a-box? I’m imagining lip balm, soap, lotion bar, salt scrub, black or white scrubby pad (just in a circle) and MAYBE deodorant. I have been researching deodorant making. Also, hair care products, but I’m not sure if men want hair balm and leave-in conditioner. Maybe something like pomade would be a manly hair care product? I have a lot to consider, and a long process from concept to product. 

 

My process starts with conversation. I want to talk to people I know about my idea. I ask questions, listen to input, reformulate, ask more questions then get more input. It takes a few days of conversations with a lot of people. Next comes the notebook product sketches and scent/flavor lists. Maybe even for days and days I will draw the product packaging in 20 different ways. I have a sketch book, but I never have it at my desk. All of my idea sketches happen at my desk, I spend the most time during the day at my desk. After a few days of sketching and listing I might actually have a recipe to try. A lot of my products contain beeswax, coconut oil or salt. I have boxes and boxes under my desk full of supplies. I make small test batches to make sure the recipe is going to work. If I like how the small batch turned out I might make a bigger batch and labels. If a product turns out to my liking I end up having my husband help me set up a photo shoot. From start to finish this process can take a few days to a few months. The last product I considered, before this manly spa line, took about a week for the samples to be made. I liked it enough that I want to make a larger batch and photograph the finished product. The last step is promoting and sell products. I haven’t quite got that part down yet. I send out free samples when I can and I use social media a little bit. I have read a lot about the topic, but it’s just not clicking with me so well. It’s my last heddle to get over to be successful. New products can be developed over and over but what is the good of producing products that don’t sell?! 

 

Every day is a struggle. For the small shop owners to the corporate employee trying to raise a family on a part-time salary. It helps to hope. To dream. To look forward to tomorrow. It won’t always be this way, but someday when it becomes some well oiled beautiful machine the struggle to get there will be well worth it. Someday it won’t be small batches on my desk, being inspected for flaws. Someday it might be a product lab. Someday I won’t have to tell my 8-year old that I can’t discuss the finer points of being a Pokemon trainer because I am “working” at the moment. It helps to dream, but don’t forget the process. You can’t dream about having a nice product lab to develop new products if you have no ideas for products, or supplies to test with. 

Good luck small hand crafted store owners/crafters! Enjoy your hand crafting.

-Bobby

Hair care

Sorry it’s been so long since I posted. The last two weeks of school were nuts. Lots of events going on, then it was SO nice to relax for the first week of summer vacation. We got the garden established and even had a chance to put some seeds in the ground, hopefully they sprout soon and we can nourish and love some carrot, turnip and potato plants in addition to our cucumbers, sugarsnap peas, marigolds, tomatoes, chives, bail, garlic and snap dragons planted three weeks ago. with the garden started I have been spending more time outside. My hair has lightened and gotten fizzy. Like a mop. 

At one point in my adult life I took VERY good care of my hair. Every day. I used Garnier Fructis anti-frizz serum for years. I blow dried, straightened and curled my hair. There was a lot of cutting and dying too. After I got married I didn’t dye my hair. I have only cut it once since I got married in 2012. Basically I have put it in lose bun on my head and ignored it. It’s dry at the ends, always frizzy and really only looks good bundled up in twin braids. The state of my hair got me looking into leaven-in conditioner and hair balm. Well, looking into making my own. 

My mom had a leave-in conditioner spray when I was a teenager that worked like magic. I was always in wonder when I put it in my, even dry, hair. So hard to believe that my hair could be that soft and shiny. To this day I have NEVER found anything that works as well, and the stuff my mom used has since not been manufactured. I started looking for it when I was in my early 20s with no luck. Aside from going to beauty supply stores that sell $20 bottles of shampoo I couldn’t even find leave-in conditioner at all. Target, Wal-Mart, Wallgreens, CVS and Rite-Aid didn’t carry the leave-in conditioner in a spray bottle. I doubt that I could replicate the same product I loved when I was 16, but I have read a lot about making some different hair care products. Hopefully my research will help anyone else willing to put the effort into making a natural hair care solution.

 

This lady, Marie, who writes the Humble Bee & Me blog, is amazing. Natural beauty product tutorials like crazy. Really great tutorials and recipes for a whole universe’s worth of effective beauty products. I can spend hours, or even days, going through all her posts. Beautiful bright photos, very detailed directions and usually she mentions alternatives if you can’t easily find what she uses. I highly recommend this blog for a variety of beauty d.i.y.

I haven’t tried this one yet, but I really want to try making it. It looks like a great replacement for my Garnier Fructis anti-frizz serum.

http://www.humblebeeandme.com/ultimate-homemade-hair-serum/#more-1887

 

A list of REALLY simple leave-in conditioner recipes. A lot of them are made with items you will find in most kitchens.

http://www.wikihow.com/Make-a-Leave-in-Hair-Conditioner

 

I believe this site’s target demographic isn’t married white women, but it still seems like the do it yourself leave-in conditioner would be really effective for anyone and everyone. I can’t say I like the adds all over the side of the page, but the directions are easy to read.

http://blackgirllonghair.com/2014/04/4-simple-recipes-for-homemade-leave-in-conditioners/

 

This one is complex with a long list of ingredients. Hyperlinks are helpful to identify and possibly purchase ingredients. I recommend this to the adventurous DIYer with a few extra dollar to spend. Some day I would love to try this one, but not in the next few months.

http://www.naturalbeautyworkshop.com/my_weblog/2013/09/hibiscus-silk-leave-in-conditioner.html

 

Hair balm is a very new concept to me. Lotion bars are something I discovered about 8 months ago. The idea that something I use to soothe dry cracked lips might actually help my hair is very new. Hair balm is not the same as lip balm. Hair balm doesn’t need a sweetener, but it needs a stabilizer, like wax, and oil. I find that straight coconut oil and beeswax stays a lot softer and might be better suited to something like hair balm than lip balm. I usually add coconut oil to my lip balm, but I add it with olive oil so the balm is more solid and stays in the tube a little better. 

Again, The Humble Bee & Me is my go-to and a great place to start my search for hair balm recipes:

http://www.humblebeeandme.com/make-your-own-super-nourishing-hair-balm/#more-125

 

If you want a great starting point with hair balm, though it’s not called hair balm but instead pomade, this is great. Very clear and many alternatives listed.

http://www.thehippyhomemaker.com/diy-all-natural-hair-styling-pomade-that-rocks/

 

Over the last few days I have read a lot about how great rosemary oil is for hair, but I don’t like the way rosemary smells. This is an amazing way to deal with the rosemary oil AND add a floral feminine touch to the hair balm.

http://www.freshpickedbeauty.com/2012/09/jasmine-sandalwood-hair-balm.html

 

I love how simple and straight forward this post is written. It’s not that different than the last few, but I wanted to include it because it looks so nice.

http://www.chicandgreendaily.com/2009/06/diy-thursday-natural-hair-pomade.html

 

This is a video, and I don’t normally like videos about beauty products because the ladies who they find to stand in front of the camera usually have such shrill annoying voices. I don’t know if it’s just me or if more people feel that way. This particular video isn’t that bad. It’s short and very well done.

http://www.bellasugar.com/DIY-Hair-Skin-Moisturizer-Recipe-31023726

 

Don’t by shy, do a google search, or just explore a few blogs here on WordPress. Read as much as you can about what hair care products you want to try and make. There exists more information than one person can absorb in one lifetime on the internet. Find out what hair type you have and go from there. I have thick curly hair prone to frizz and grease buildup. My scalp gets sunburnt sometimes then I have itchy dryness for a few days. That is a great starting point for me to research how these home made hair care products might effect my hair. If you have straight hair maybe you want to look up heat-less curls? The possibilities are endless, and I hope I gave a great starting point for anyone to jump from. Now it’s time for me to find an empty spray bottle and get to work. 

 

Happy DIYing crafters.

 

-Bobby

Skin absorption of titanium dioxide

I caught a terrible cold from my kiddo and husband, and last week I was unable to write anything useful. I apologize for not posting anything. I really would like to post something every week, but I just can’t do that sometimes.

 

Over the last few weeks I have been doing internet research on Titanium dioxide, and other “minerals” like mica powders. Someone I was chatting with at my kid’s school asked me, “Isn’t titanium dioxide powder dangerous when absorbed through the skin?” and it made me very curious. A lot of… well, I would have to call them hippies, get very caught up in this, “I heard it was bad for you so I avoid it at ALL costs!” idea. One person can start this chain reaction. One person can decide, “I don’t want to use it on MY skin,” so they say something to a friend, or 10 friends, who all tell 10 friends. That’s how it starts. No research, just blind faith. The mentality that you put more trust in what ONE person says to you about something they don’t know anything about really bothers me. I do research. I have been known to go to a library and look through books to find some answers. The internet isn’t always as trust worthy. You can find 10 blog posts, articles or “published scientific studies” to support or not support any idea you might have. I mean, I am writing a blog post about that right now. Speaking of research and blog posts, let’s get down to business.

How does our skin absorb something?

I assume that a lot of people just don’t understand how our skin works. Think of skin like blocks. Like Lego bricks. Each cell is next to and on top of another skin cell. Water can get in-between those blocks. So can salt, bacteria and ultraviolet rays. Anything you put on your skin that is considered a nano particle can potentially get in those areas between your skin cells. Some of those things might make it all the way through those cracks and into your blood stream. Not much and not many of them, most of the products you might use on your skin only penetrates the top layers. Moisturizer, like lotion, only really effects the top layer, maybe as deep as three layers. 

Ionization is a different way your skin can absorb what you put on it. Basically ionization disrupts the tinny building blocks of your cells, atoms. It causes the electrons and protons to separate from the neutrons. Usually the atoms come back together and continue being a regular atom other times the atom is mutated. It can also cause DNA to mutate. Sometimes ionization is what radiation does to your skin cells, like with UVA and UVB rays from the sun. Some minerals can be used and absorbed by ionization from the surface of the skin. Usually the minerals don’t cause free radicals (mutated cells) to form but the ultra violet rays can.

 

Nano particles.

How do nano particles get absorbed through the skin? I’ll tell you this-it’s not through ionization. No electrons or protons are separated from any neutrons. No mutations in skin cells will happen. Nano particles are small enough to slip through the cracks between skin cells. Eventually with enough nano particles build up in your system other cells might be effected, but no extended studies on living mammals has really been conducted. Science seems to have better things to research. I don’t blame science. I have better things to do too. Worrying about nano particles in your sunblock is like wording about your kids getting hit by a car walking to school-it only stresses YOU out. Your kids look both ways and hold hands when crossing, they are doing the best they can, if it happens they took every precaution they could and that wasn’t enough to stop it from happening. Without really knowing what nano particles of titanium dioxide really do in the human body people seem to be getting stressed out about something they can’t control. Either they can go back to school to become a scientist and do the research, or they can just chose not to use the products containing the nano particles.

 

Why use nano particles in sunblock and beauty products?

Nano particles, unlike fine mineral powders, can bend, absorb or reflect UV rays while still appearing clear. Fine powdered titanium dioxide appears white and solid. Ultrafine, or nano particle, powdered titanium dioxide appears clear or transparent. When you go to the beach and you see the surfers with the white goo or powder on their nose, that’s fine or coarse zinc oxide or titanium dioxide. The two minerals create a barrier on the skin that prevents water or UV rays to penetrate your skin cells. Your skins tends to absorb more of the nano particles when combine with a moisturizer, like sunblock. 

 

Is Titanium dioxide safe for you?

In my opinion-Yes, it is safe. Without further studies and research no one, not even the FDA, will really know for sure how titanium dioxide effects our systems. There have been few studies on lab rats and lab mice, but mostly for inhalation of the ultra fine powdered titanium dioxide consistent with an employee in a distillation and production factory of the mineral powder. That sort of information really just lets us know that we should try not to breathe in the powdered mineral, it doesn’t really help us with the skin absorption issue. Whatever damage some nano particles might do to our bodies, the damage the sun’s rays can do is much, much worse and using sunblock with nano particles isn’t that bad of an exchange for preventing skin cancer.

 

This is a site that was very helpful:

http://www.organicmakeup.ca/ca/titaniumdioxide.asp

 

This was a very technical site:

http://toxsci.oxfordjournals.org/content/123/1/264.full

 

This was a…. not very helpful blog post:

http://personalcaretruth.com/2011/01/does-titanium-dioxide-cause-free-radical-damage/

 

This was a very bias article that lacked any kind of useful information that supported their claim, mostly they just took two unrelated outdated lab studies, with no citation or credit, and manipulated the “data” to suit their bias:

http://www.mvorganics.com/blogs/mvo/5913861-how-safe-is-titanium-dioxide

 

Try a Google search about Titanium Dioxide, it may help you make up your mind. Google searched are usually how I find out about new minerals, beauty treatments, food or hygiene items I am curious about.

Good luck with your research, hope I was helpful

-Bobby

Behind the Scenes

Last weekend (not yesterday and the day before) we set up a photo light box for a product photo shoot. My husband took some photos of me while I was using his fancy camera to take product shots. It was really warm, so my arms were exposed. Normally I don’t like photos of myself, unless I am all dressed up and only from certain angles, but these photos turned out alright. I’m not going to go and make one of them my profile picture on Facebook or anything, I just don’t mind showing them here.

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As you can see we purchased a photo light box, but I have seen a few tutorials that give very detailed instructions to make them. I like having one that folds up and is ready to use in just a few minutes. The homemade ones are usually a cut up box with fabric glued or taped to it. I just didn’t have the right color fabric in my stash to pull it off, so we decided that it would be more cost effective to buy the already made light box instead of buying the fabric and other supplies. We have many empty boxes (I never let my husband toss out smaller Amazon boxes, they are just the right size for shipping my Spa products) but not big cube shaped boxes. The kind where each side is perfectly square. I really like having this fold up light box around. The lights we bought with it have been amazing. 

 

Here are some of the finished photos. We had to edit the photos slightly, balance out the whites a little. Not a whole lot was done to the raw photos.

 

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A total of three new items were listed in my Star’s Reach Etsy store over the weekend. Lip balm, salt scrub and bath salt. A lot of curious views, but very little sales so far. It has been so few sales that it’s an exciting event for me to take a package tot he post office. I hope some day it seems like more of a chore, more like working. My son is having trouble understanding that when I am typing-or mixing, melting and pouring-it IS work. My work isn’t like other parents. I don’t go to a job site and work outside the home. He will understand some day. Life is different for us here. I make Spa products and my store isn’t a physical store where a shelf is stocked and browsed. My products are made to order in small batches. The photos are very important to the digital store. High quality, bright images make for better sales. Details can be zoomed in on and viewed with confidence. I really feel like the images could sell the product better than a door-to-door salesman. No snake oil here.

 

This part of my post is where I apologize for not posting last week. The end of the school year is very quickly approaching and my son’s school is trying to fit a lot of events into the last few weeks. I happen to volunteer a lot. Field trips, fundraisers, teacher appreciation week. I do a lot so that the children get a better education. There is a lot more to Second Grade than walking my son to and from school every day. My normal amount of errands, extra volunteering, photo shoots and pets can take up a lot of my time. I feel so much more accomplished when I can get a blog post in during the week!

 

Currently I am testing a small batch of concealer, hopefully next week I can write about my hopes and goals with adding natural make-up to my Pamper ME Spa Products. The next few weeks I will be experimenting with rations, bases, oils, beeswax and pigments. I may need an excuse to dress up along with my make-up trials 😉

 

Happy Crafting everyone, until next week ❤

-Bobby 

Without failures we can’t move forward

I did some research on making make-up. My foundation is amazing, and I would love to get more of the preservatives out of my other make-up. Particularly the concealer that I put on before anything else. I want to hide the blemishes on my skin and have a nice even base. I read about making concealer on a few different blogs and supply sites and got to work on making some. After adding the powder to the beeswax and oils it was too dark. After trying a swatch on my hand it was too translucent. When I cleaned the bowls out after pouring the melted mixture in lip balm tubes I noticed the grains of beet root powder and cocoa powder. After letting it set up in the tubes I took a step back and looked at the tubes on my clean kitchen counter top. With a huge sigh I realized this was a failure. I failed. I wasn’t upset, I wasn’t disappointed. It just was what it was-not concealer. It was flavorless lip balm. I capped the tubes and put them in a bag. 

 

It wasn’t the end of the world. I reviewed the process, read the directions from the various sites I visited then looked at the various lists of ingredients. I didn’t strain the mixture before pouring it in the tubes. The color was too dark because I didn’t add colors slowly to the wet melted mixture, I added unmelted ingredients to the already mixed powder then melted it all together. I was missing a key ingredient. Titanium dioxide. An ultra fine powder that makes lip balms, lipsticks, blush, foundation and sunblock solid. Next time I hope I have ordered some titanium dioxide to add to my concealer. It would be so nice to have it for cream blush, lipstick and liquid foundation. Also, I read about ultra fine clay powders that can be added to foundation and concealer. 

 

From this failure I learned something. Too much success was starting to make me feel like I was never going to learn anything new. Like I was untouchable by the failure bug. It happens, and you never know what it will happen with. No matter how good your day goes one little thing might go wrong, and that’s okay. I hope my little reminder that every project doesn’t go smoothly helps other crafters with their struggle. 

 

Goo luck with your projects crafters. See you next week.

 

-Bobby

Tuesday Tutorial

I forgot to post a blog post yesterday. My kiddo has had a cold, and I have had an on-going migraine. Pills help take the edge off so I can function but noting has quite driven it completely away. I decided the treat of a Tuesday Tutorial was in order. 

Today I want to talk to you about make-up. MAC is great. E.L.F. is awesome. Revlon. Cover Girl. Wet’n’wild. It’s all make-up. It’s all…. full of preservatives. Artificial colorants. Talcum powder. Sure, they add Aloe, flower extracts, vitamin E oil and even coconut oil, but is it worth it? I went on a hunt to find some great natural colorants and more basic bases. What would replace minerals in a mineral power foundation? How do you finish without a finishing spray? How do you make a perfect match for your skin tone? I had a lot of questions on my hunt. Here’s what I found:

-Arrowroot powder or corn starch replaces Talcum Powder

-Beet root powder makes a great blush

-Spices like turmeric, all spice, cinnamon and ginger can color a multitude of make-up products

-Mica powders are made from minerals and are readily available to purchase online

-A little color goes a long way

-Liquid or cream foundation is easy to make

-Vitamin E oil is amazing

-Witch hazle is my new best friend

-I will never have enough containers for all the make-up I could make

 

I collected a few of my favorite tutorials from Pinterest then I collected all my materials and sat at my desk. After a few hours, and a change of shirt, I had a foundation, a bronzer, a blush and a finishing spray. The next trip I took to the local Target I picked up a pack of Diamond Daily Mini Cups with lids. The 2 ounce plastic tubs for dressing, snacks or in this case-home made make-up. I also grabbed the travel sized pump spray bottles. A trip to the grocery store and I had arrowroot powder. Then it was back to my desk with all the materials. 

I used:

-corn startch

-Cocoa powder

-cinnamon

-nutmeg

-rosewater

-witch hazel

-vitamin E oil

-a stir stick

-a 2 ounce container

I used about a table spoon of the corn starch, a teaspoon of cocoa powder and a pinch of the nutmeg and cinnamon. Just a few drops of vitamin E oil before string it all up with a stir stick. The oil may create lumps, just smash them. It’s kind of like baking. The butter has to be “cut” into the flour. After a few swatches on the back of my hand I remembered my reserve of mica powder under my desk. I have copper, pink and ruby, which made the color a perfect match. Without the mica powders I could have added some more cinnamon or nutmeg. Mica powder adds just a touch of shimmer so I was very satisfied. The blush was almost the same process. I left out the oil, cinnamon and nutmeg and I added much less cocoa powder. It just wasn’t rosy enough with only mica powder. Of course it was set aside, to be fixed at a later date… instead of being thrown across the room, an arch of powder over the living room to rain down on the carpet and couch, in frustration. Next was the finishing spray. Half witch hazel, half rosewater. Give it a good shake before each use. It smells like a musky rose bath, but on your face. 

I think I need a moment to talk about Witch Hazel. During the Colonial days, back when the United States was just a few forts protecting some small villages and the natives taught them how to survive on the land, Witch Hazel was distilled and mixed with alcohol to preserve it. The natives showed the Colonists how useful it was in healing wounds and reducing infections. Witch Hazel is an anti-inflammatory aid, mild disinfectant and mild fungicide, much like honey. Over the years the Colonies mass produced Witch Hazel and eventually events like The Civil War industrialized the mass production and it was readily available to purchase in most general stores. As we expanded the need for such natural remedies shrank and now less, and less such remedies are used or talked about. Let me tell you, Witch Hazel is the best skin care aid I have ever used. Eczema, adult acne, oily skin, dry skin, hives, rosy spots, pale spots, puffy eyes- Witch Hazel reduces all of it. I use it every day as an astringent and I saw improvement in just two days. Give it a try. Soak a cotton ball in it and rub it all over your face before bed AND when you wake up in the morning. Add a moisturizer in there too. 

After two weeks of this powder foundation and finishing spray I ordered Beet Root Powder. It made the blush perfect. After so much struggle with the stir stick I grabbed a paper plate and a fork. The powder mixed so smoothly with the fork. I only wished I had a funnel to pour it into the tiny container from the huge plate. I added a touch of the beet root powder to my foundation for a rosy glow and a dash of arrowroot powder. After mixing on the plate I realized I forgot to measure anything. Basically just add colors slowly, just a pinch at a time until a swatch matches your skin tone. Cocoa powder makes it darker, for a more medium to dark skin tone. For more of an ivory skin tone start with the corn starch or arrowroot powder and slowly add the cocoa powder and beetroot powder. Experiment. Make more than one batch. Make two shades of bronzer. Go nuts! I get my arrowroot powder from the bulk section at my local grocery store ( a small locally owned chain of health food stores) for around $.30 for two ounces. It’s $3.95 a pound in the bulk section. Also, it’s organic. I prefer the arrowroot powder, but the corn starch might be easier to purchase for most people. For those more adventurous Amazon is amazing for ordering some of these powders, so is Etsy.

 

A lot of blog posts exist out there to help direct you to the perfect natural make-up tutorial for you and your skin type and tone. Here is my list of the best ones I have found:

http://www.scratchmommy.com/smooth-finish-diy-organic-foundation-sunscreen/

http://wellnessmama.com/4948/homemade-makeup-recipes/

http://mycrazyblessedlife.com/2013/01/05/diy-face-powder/

http://www.ablossominglife.com/2013/06/diy-natural-powder-foundation.html

http://www.pure-jojoba.com/diy-all-natural-makeup/

http://beautyhigh.com/diy-beauty-products-pinterest/

http://www.yourbeautyblog.com/2013/10/diy-foundation-recipe-powder-and-liquid.html?m=1

 

Good luck crafting your make-up. Come back next week, I’ve always got something cooking.

 

-Bobby

A HUGE launch

Today I published the first Pamper ME-Sap in a jar listing to my ETSY store. This is a huge launch. This has been my dream for many years. I am making a product with my hands and it will help people enjoy life just a little bit more. I love working with my hands. I love the smell of melting beeswax, mica powder and honey. My pantry is for more than just food. I read and research new beauty products for my eczema, acne and oily skin. If it helps me with these things I’m sure it will help others maintain already healthy skin. So many normal kitchen items help keep skin looking young and beautiful for many years. No preservatives, artificial colorants, filler or over processed oils. If you wouldn’t eat it, why put it on your skin? Ionization dissolves substances on your skin causing an absorption of minerals and vitamins. If you put garbage on your skin your body will absorb it and try to use it. If you put vitamins and minerals on your skin, with nothing extra, your skin AND body will look and feel amazingly young and fresh. If I can create this beautiful, appealing product that is easy to use and readily available at a reasonable price then I can change not only my own little world, but I can make a difference in the lives of many other people in this whole wide world. I can live a dream and accomplish so many goals.

In the coming weeks I will be making small batches of the individual items found in my Spa jars and photographing them to list as more items in my Pamper ME Spa line in my ETSY store. My husband is very excited and encouraging of my new business venture and has been helping me with photography, web sit and blog design, editing for my product listing, editing photos and helping style products. I couldn’t ask for a better helper. Even my son is curious about my “work” lately. A lot of typing, photos and crafting is going on around him and he is asking some pretty great questions. It’s not always easy to balance work, family and fun, but I believe this life is worth it. Sometimes the fun in my life IS making these products. Test batches, typing and crocheting has never been boring or daunting for me. I love working with my hands, touching the beeswax pellets (ALWAYS with clean hands!), pouring the oils, measuring the mica powder, winding a ball of yarn, tying slip knots, the motion of the crochet hook, un screwing jars and mixing oils into salt and baking soda. Tactile sensations thrill me. The smooth, rough, soft, hard, warm, cold or bumpy surfaces are what I live for every day.

The photo shoot was fun and turned out some great photos. Some of these might look familiar if you visit my ETSY store, but my blog readers get the extras. News, changes and even behind the scenes photos will be featured here every week.

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Look for new posts Mondays, with the occasional Tuesday Tutorials. Hope to see you back next week, and Happy Crafting.

-Bobby

Sorry

I haven’t felt much need to post in the last (almost) year. I apologize. I didn’t mean to ignore my blog,  honest! I did craft. I helped others craft, AND I volunteered. I do a lot at my son’s school. I help organize events, work said events, teach art lessons, run the homework store with fake money and help the Science teacher. I like helping and I have free time. I have been thinking about my blog, even when I’m helping kids paint flowers. Posting is a whole different story. I abandoned my laptop. Clunky and slow. Now my husband had handed down his old work computer. The sewing machine was lovingly tired away to make room for an iMac. It wasn’t getting much use anyway. This computer is faster, easier to use and I have a better space for typing. Pictures got an upgrade too, my husband uses a DSLR camera for work and has offered to let me take photos for my ETSY store and for here. Speaking of ETSY… I have a new product launch coming. A new spa jar product, full of handmade items to pamper. The products are called “Pamper ME” and we did a photo shoot yesterday. Photos will be ready in the next few days as I have time and the listing should be up before Monday. 

 

With the launch of a new product line, and the possibility to expand and sell similar products and the impending Summer Vacation for my son, I thought now would be the perfect time to start blogging again. I’m back. I have awesome pictures, and awesome stories. Behind the scenes, bloopers, new products, volunteering, the silly things kids say, sewing, knitting, crochet, gardening, lip balm. It’s all going to be here, and much much more. 

Here’s a preview of what’s in store. The best of the product pictures from yesterday’s photo shoot. Look for the Etsy.com listing Monday afternoon.

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Come back Monday to see what happens next. Thanks for reading!

 

-Bobby