Natural and Organic Personal Lubricants

NOTE: Updated in 2015

Mamas – if you don’t already have a personal lubricant in your cupboard – you will someday.  Pregnancy, nursing, contraceptives, menopause and some medications can make it a necessity.  I had no idea how many natural lubricants there are out there at all price points so you have no excuse not to have a safe one 🙂

Like all personal care products, make sure you pick one up that doesn’t contain the yucky stuff – in this case, estrogen-mimicking parabens, glycerin (can cause yeast infections particularly in women prone to them), phenoxyethanol, and propylene glycol (causes irritation).  Also remember that just because a product markets itself as ‘natural’ doesn’t mean it is so always check the ingredients!

Paraben and Irritant Free:

A few to avoid as they may say ‘natural’ but they contain parabens:

  • Astroglide All Natural
  • K-Y Natural Feeling

Have a favorite?  Feel free to share!

 

 

 

 

The No Shampoo Method

Several months ago, I came across a group of women (online) talking about NOT using shampoo.  They had various reasons from saving money to using less chemicals on their body to healthier hair.  Of course, I thought that was ridiculous and couldn’t imagine my hair without it. Well, like so many times – I was wrong. I haven’t used shampoo in months and my hair has never been easier to manage.

Let me start by saying that I have curly hair – somewhere between wavy and ringlets. Curly hair can be dry and frizzy and a little unruly. I haven’t always loved my curly hair – I’d say we’ve had a love-hate relationship. I’d love it when it looked great and hate it when it didn’t. I went through a phase where I cut it short and straightened it all the time. But, now that I have a daughter with curly hair, I’ve decided to embrace it and make it look great. I hope that she will come to love her naturally curly hair a lot earlier in life than I did.

On the advice of some of the women in the group I mentioned above, I picked up a book called ‘Curly Girl’. Using the steps outlined, I gave up shampoo and use conditioner only. I rinse my hair thoroughly with water and then use a little conditioner to scrub my scalp, loosening dirt and sweat. I’ve found the easiest way to do this is by bending over and massaging my head with my fingertips. I rinse again and then put about a quarter size of conditioner all over my hair. I then rinse my hair, leaving some of the conditioner in. Once I get out of the shower, I style as usual – with a combination of gel (for frizz) and cream (for hold). Then I blow dry with a diffuser.

I’m really happy with this new routine as I’m loving my defined curls – they seem to have more volume and they perk up easily with a little water. I can go 2 days without washing my hair and the curls aren’t as frizzy as they used to be. I also can put my hair in a ponytail and let it dry naturally without any styling products. Before, it would dry kinky and frizzy.  I workout several times a week and my hair doesn’t feel greasy or dirty – even without using shampoo.

I’m also happy to get one more beauty product out of the house – particularly one with lots of chemicals I can’t pronounce.  Conventional shampoos have ingredients like parabens, sodium lauryl sulfatemethylisothiazolinone, or fragrance (check the ingredients in YOUR shampoo).

I also use this method on my daughter’s curly hair.  I’ve found her hair to be less frizzy as well.  After conditioning, I spray my favorite natural curl detangler in her hair.

While I’ve used this method successfully for curly hair, I’ve read accounts of women using it for straight hair as well.  If you want to try out a No Shampoo routine, here are some tips I’ve found that work:

1. Use more conditioner the first week or two. Particularly for scrubbing. You’ll find as you go along, you need less and less.

2. Stick with it. It took a couple weeks for me to notice anything different about my hair.

3. If you feel like you have a build-up of conditioner or styling products on your hair, mix a little baking soda with water and “wash” your hair with it. It will get rid of the build-up. Then go through the conditioning routine.

Let me know how it works for you!

 

Kid’s Natural Hair Detanglers

choosing-hairstyles-for-kidsLucky or not, my daughter inherited her curly hair from both her father and I.  On bad days, I (internally) swear about her unruly curly hair and dream of days with hair that is straight, shiny and easy to comb.  On the good days, I gush over her sweet curls that totally match her fun and charming personality. If  you have a curly headed child, you can probably empathize with me.

I’ve tried three different children’s detanglers and finally found one that is chemical-free AND works.   My first go was with Noodle and Boo Conditioning Hair Polish.  It worked okay as a detangler but was not heavy enough to hold any curl through out the day.  When I found out that the parabens in it weren’t safe, I tossed it in the garbage.

p94729bMy second go around was with Kiss My Face Kid’s Detangler.  Kiss My Face is a great line of natural body care products for both adults and children.  While the detangler worked to loosen the knots in my daughter’s hair, it has a bold orange smell that lasts ALL day that I just couldn’t get over.  It also left her hair fairly greasy with more than one day’s use.

Finally, I picked up Tru Kid’s Dancing Detangler and TA-DA.  Not only does it detangle but it adds just enough hold to curls to last the day without any greasy left over.  I LOVE this product!  Since then, I’ve used other Tru Kid products including their shampoo, conditioner and bubble bath and have been happy with their entire line.  You can find Tru Kid products online or at your local natural foods store.

 

Amon Maternity Post Pregnancy Body Shaper

amon

A couple weeks before I had my baby in November, I was looking at all of my options for a post pregnancy belly wrap.  At the same time, Amon Maternity asked if I was interested in testing out any of their products and I gave them a resounding YES! 

I have worn the Body Shaper almost every day since I had my son.  It’s stretchy so it has a lot of give as your belly shrinks after having the baby.  I was between sizes but found that the smaller size fit from the beginning.  The microfiber material is great because it’s thin and doesn’t show through your clothing.  It’s also lightweight so you aren’t sweating from having the extra material on your body.

Personally, I found that I could fit back into my pre-pregnancy jeans much quicker than with my first baby.  In full disclosure, I did gain less weight this time so I’m not sure if the weight and/or the Body Shaper was the bigger influence.  I do know that I feel much more comfortable (and confident!) wearing fitted clothing with the Body Shaper on.  It keeps any ‘mummy tummy’ and ‘muffin top’ in check and makes my figure smooth and shapely.  I plan on wearing it for weeks to come!  Compared to similar products, the Body Shaper is a great value at $25.

Amon Maternity has other maternity support products like maternity underwear and a belly band.  I wish I’d had the belly band while I was pregnant.  I had to wear a maternity support belt for the belly stretching pain I was having and it always bunched up under my clothing.  The Amon Maternity Belly Band is microfiber and looks smooth under clothing.

If you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant or recently had a baby, I highly recommend that you check out the Amon Maternity products.  Now is a great time to purchase because Amon Maternity is having a fantastic SALE where everything is 50% OFF THRU JAN 15!   Make sure to use code: SUPERSALE

 They are also generously giving away a $50 shopping spree to 1 lucky Mommy Goes Green reader.  Check out the details below!

CONTEST CLOSED

FREE STUFF: 1 lucky winner will get a $50 shopping spree at Amon Maternity!   You can enter to win in any of the following ways:

  • Leave a comment telling us what your favorite part of pregnancy is!
  • Follow us on twitter @mommygoesgreen.
  • Retweet this contest.
  • Follow Amon Maternity on twitter.
  • Become a Facebook fan of Amon Maternity.

Leave your comment by Wednesday, January 20, 2010 at 11:59pm PST. Contest open to all U.S. and Canadian residents, ages 18+. We will choose 1 winner, at random, and notify them by email. Privacy Policy.

Congratulations to SARAH C for winning!

 

Safe Bath Toys – PVC Free, Phthalate Free, BPA Free

baby-bath-toys-710661

This post was updated here in the 2014 Guide to Safer Bath Toys.

I was recently at Babies ‘R Us looking through the bath toys for a last minute addition to a baby shower gift.  I looked through everything they had but couldn’t find even one bath toy that wasn’t plastic or at least plastic and labeled ‘PVC Free’ so I skipped on the baby toy and found something else.  Now I’m on a mission to find bath toys – that you can find locally at some of the big box stores – that are safe so you can avoid the same experience!

Boon Odd Duck

Boon Odd Duck

BOON –  Finally, a PVC free rubber duckie!  You can be confident buying ANY of the BOON bath toys because they are all PVC, BPA and phthalate FREE!  In addition to their rubber duckies, they have several other bath toys for all ages.  Locally, you can find Boon products at Babies R Us, babyGap, buybuyBaby, Baby Depot and Target.

Summer Infant Digital Temperature Tester

Summer Infant Digital Temperature Tester

Summer Infant– The 3 bath toys that the company confirmed were PVC, phthalate and BPA free are the digital temperature tester, tub time bubble maker, and tub time light up stacker.

199-Item

Sassy Tubby Tumblers

Sassy – Although the packaging isn’t labeled, all of the bath toys currently listed on the Sassy website are PVC, phthalate and BPA free.  Sassy did say that 3 toys DO have BPA and may still be in stores, so stay away from these: rubber duckie with temperature gauge, Gator Boat, and Sassy Car Wash.

Infantino– I inquired and the response from Infantino was that their toys “conform with the safety regulations and have the allowable amounts of PVC and phthalates.”  So I would stay away from Infantino.

Although I’ve only included some of the major manufacturers here, you can also find many other brands of bath toys that are safe at local baby boutiques.

If there are any particular brands you are curious about, let us know!  We’ll find out how safe they are.