I spend a good portion of my day surfing what I like to call “the general web.” This pretty much entails googling whatever ridiculous thoughts pop in my head and browsing sites like digg and reddit. Naturally, I end up learning a lot of stuff I probably shouldn’t know (along with stuff that many would consider useful of course). Late last week I came across a recipe for making your own mouthwash. As an avid mouthwasher, I obviously did some clicking and subsequent reading. Evidently an elaborated blog post was in order.
Apparently, store brought mouthwash is far too expensive for some. Also, it hurts the environment? Now, I’m not one to nit pick about what one should/shouldn’t do to save the environment; not to mention that the benefits of using a swig of mouthwash daily almost certainly outweigh its negative environmental impact, but after doing some research I found that the active ingredient in many washes is a chemical pesticide. Im telling you this not in hopes to correct you, but mostly to piss off those annoying people in our lives who can’t stand when we don’t recycle and such. Anyways, it turns out making mouthwash is pretty simple. There are actual dozens of recipes online, each with different variations on taste, alcohol content etc. Here’s a really simple one:
2oz of Filtered Water
1/4 TSP Baking Soda or Sea Salt
1 drop of Peppermint Oil
Just mix all these together and gargle with it. Googling “Make your own mouthwash” gives you far more recipes than I am comfortable with. So if this recipe (which probably tastes like shit) doesn’t work for you, there are plenty more out there.
2. Toilet Paper
Believe it or not, you can make your own toilet paper. I wouldn’t recommend it, for obvious reasons. I found two ways of doing this. A japanese company by the name of Oriental Co. (lol) has designed a machine that recycles paper by making it into toilet paper. The technology saves approximately 60 trees a year. Sounds awesome right? Wrong, the machine costs $100,000. For that amount of money you could plant far more trees than you would ever have used instead of toilet paper. In all honesty, I didn’t look that far into this company once I found out how much their product costs. There is a way to actually make your own toilet paper. It goes something like this:
For this terrible idea you’ll need some soft wood (pine), some lotion(s), and some sort of cotton that is easy to shread up. You’ll also need a blender, a screen and something heavy.
1. Start cutting up the pine into tiny pieces. Your goal should be to generate as much sawdust as possible.
2. Take the sawdust and throw it in the blender. Add the lotion and shread up the cotton and drop it in there as well.
3. Blend the mixture to a puree type of consistancy.
4. Pour the pulp onto the screen. The water will drain out. This is the part of the process where you determine how thick or thin you want your paper to be. Also, you can pour it out onto the screen to whatever shape you really want.
5. Place the screen (covered in pulp at this point) on a paper towel and place something really heavy on it to get the remaining water out.
6. Once the sheet is semi-dry, you can stack it. You should wait until its completely dry to actually use it.
After finding the recipe for home made toilet paper, Deodorant probably doesn’t drop as many jaws as it should. Interestingly enough, I came across a few interesting reasons as to why one would have a homebrew version of something that costs around $2 at the store. Apparently, many deodorants on the market contain Aluminum. Aluminum has been linked to long term issues like alzheimers disease, so many people (especially those who have loved one with alzheimers) might see the risk in long term exposure to the metal. The purpose of deodorant (looking beyond those trendy cologne type deodorants) is to keep your dry and perhaps offer up the services of an antipresperant. Baking Soda is a common drying agent found in even commercial deodorant. Unfortunately, splashing straight baking soda on your body is not good for you. It will probably dry you out too much, and lead to itching etc. The trick is to mix it with cornstarch, which acts as an antipresperant. Read up on some guy’s experience while he discovered this recipe here. Despite the tens of dollars I can potentially save, and potentially not remembering anything in 50 years, I think I’ll take my chances and splurge on some speed stick.
4. Hair Gel
I’d imagine that people who use copious amounts of hair gel aren’t reading this blog post. But then again, I live in New Jersey– where hair gel is notoriously associated with the type of people you’d find on MTV’s Jersey Shore. Regardless, making your own hair gel probably isn’t the worst idea ever. It simply involves taking a handful of flax seed and pouring it into a pot with a 1/2 cup of water. Bring the pot to a boil for about a minute. Then strain and let it cool. You should play around with the flax seed to water ratio. For thicker gel use less water and more boiling, and vice versa for thinner gel. The reason I’m not very opposed to making your own hair gel is that home made hair gel can actually help regulate the pH of your scalp. You should store the gel in your fridge for up to 4 days. Also, its important to use it cold or at room temperature, since it may cause itchiness if used warm.
Commercial toothpastes contain several uneccessary ingredients that people apparently hate. Also, depending on how much you brush your teeth you might spend up to $4 a month on toothpaste. Luck for you, there is a simple way to make your own toothpaste at home. Start by getting a bowl and throwing the following ingredients in it:
1/2 Cup of Baking Soda
1/4 Cup of Hydrogen Peroxide
4-10 (+/- a few) table spoons of Glycerine [Optional: acts as a sweetener]
1 Drop of peppermint oil
Mix everything together so you get a nice pastey consistancy. If you feel you need to add more Hydrogen Peroxide or baking soda– feel free. Make sure you use regular storebrought hydrogen peroxide (3%). Also, keep in mind the abrasive nature of baking soda. It probably won’t kill you, but if you find it too hard on your teeth considering using salt or just buying regular fucking toothpaste instead. Once your toothpaste is mixed up, store it in airtight tupperware.