The Search For Clean Cloth Diapering

When my first baby was on his way in 2015, I wanted to do the absolute best for him. It was an overload of DIY organic baby purees, the complications of cloth diapers and the unfortunate discovery that toxins were in everything. The entirety of this information was so overwhelming that I changed nothing and used products that I now know are not the best for my growing family.

Live and learn.

It wasn't until my second was a year and a half old that I started really digging in and baby stepping my way into cleaner living.

The one allusive thing that's been challenging is diapering and with my 3rd baby, I'm determined to figure it out!

Granted, my boys grew up in a well known brand of diapers covered in the scent of what we're told babies should smell like. At the time, green diapers were rare and expensive. Greenwashed diapers were just coming on the scene with my second and were being endorsed by celebrities I wasn't quite sold on.

Now that we've had our third, green diapers are easier to find, but they still come with a price tag and blowouts seem to be a recurring issue. Cloth diapers are hailed for their anti-blowout design, so I figured I'd give it another go.

Here's the issue though: cloth diapers don't like plant-based laundry detergents, or so general consensus seems to say.

You can't boast about cloth diapers being a healthier alternative to chemical-laden disposable diapers when cloth diapers are being washed in chemical-laden detergents. If detergents "wash off" in the washer, then why do we have eczema approved detergents? There's always something left behind, leaving behind fun ingredients known for causing respiratory and skin irritations, endocrine disruption and even carcinogens.

Getting lost in this search led to me to believe safe cloth diapering wasn't possible and my laundry soap was highly not recommended, though no one could absolutely say why except that it was a "soap" and not a detergent.

Blowouts made me circle back.

I purchased a plant-based detergent that was recommended on multiple cloth diapering boards and blogs and was sorely disappointed.

I popped my fingers and got to work. Here's my cloth diapering routine:

Before I get started, I have a disclosure, apparently cloth diapering has a lot to do with your machine and your water hardness. I have a Whirlpool top loader and 50pp hard water. If you have a different washer, then further research is needed to understand your washing machine. I don't have answers at this time if your water hardness is different than mine.

I cloth diaper part time, so when I wash, I'm washing around 8 diapers at a time.
I use a bamboo liner to catch poop so it's less I have to clean off.
On wash day, the liners and diapers go into the washer, cold setting, heavy, deep water wash and 2 rinses. They get a squirt of laundry soap (link below) and about 1/4 cup of the laundry booster below.
When done, I check the diapers for any residual that might need to be scrubbed off. I use this toothbrush and the stain remover below for any residue.
The diapers get another round in the washer with the hottest setting, normal wash and 1 rinse. A squirt of laundry soap and 1/4-3/4 cup of laundry booster (harder water will need more booster on the second wash).
I dry on the lowest setting twice.

For the most part, I don't worry about stains. They don't cling to the diapers like they can the inserts. If they concern you, then just put them in the sun for a bit until the stain fades.


Why do I need a laundry booster? You might, you might not. If you're water isn't hard, you don't need a booster. Harder water needs some softening to it. I add some extras to mine:
1 box of Borax
1 box of Super Washing Soda
4 1/2 cups Epsom Salt
1 1/4 cup Baking Soda
30 drops Lemongrass
30 drops DiGize (FYI, this one smells funky to a lot of people, but you can't smell it after the wash, it helps break down the soil on the diapers)
I use a large KitchenAid mixer to mix this, but you can use a large bowl. Divide in half if you need to mix in smaller batches. Store in an airtight container, preferably glass. Use 1/4-3/4 cup per load.

Stain remover:
Filtered water
Cut cleansing soap into quarters, put one quarter in squirt bottle and top with filtered water. Let sit for a few days before using. This lasts FOREVER! Squirt onto stain and rub in with bamboo toothbrush before putting in the washer.

Laundry Detergent:
1 bottle of laundry soap
9 capfuls (about 3-5 tbsp) household cleaner
Warm water
Divide laundry soap and household cleaner (this is plant-based and safe to be used with laundry, it boosts the cleaning power) evenly between glass pump bottles. Swirl bottles around until mixed.
Note: I usually double this and it fits in 3 glass pump bottles.
Use 1 squirt per load (yes, that's it!)

Here's a question I'm often asked: Are essential oils safe to use with babies?
I can't answer this question. Essential oils are a personal choice for parents as are any products they use on and around their babies. All I can speak of is my personal use of essential oils. I choose these oils and their household cleaning line with their commitment to the highest standards. This means they control the process from the seeds they use to the bottling of the end product. There are no chemicals anywhere near these plants or in the distillation process. Because of this, I know that the oils I'm using are 100% plants.

If you chose to use a different different essential oils and/or cleaners, I cannot speak to their effectiveness or safety so I don't recommend using my method if you choose a different brand.

If your concern is safety, I would start by reading the labels on the products your currently using. Simply do a web search for "dangers of _____" and start searching the dangers of the ingredients to determine if there are any. If there are dangers, you have to decide if you're okay with using them.

Clean living doesn't have to be hard, but it can be overwhelming. If you want to learn more about switching out your products for clean alternatives, text CLEAN to 318.367.1746 and I'll baby step you through the process.



*This post contains affiliate links... this means I might get some money to help love on my family when you click on them or if you purchase from them! Thanks for supporting us!

3 SIMPLE WAYS TO REVEAL THE "AWESOMENESS" WITHIN YOU


You are awesome. You might not realize it yet, but it’s true.
How can we possibly know? Because we’ve seen – and experienced ourselves – the potential we all hold inside to achieve the life we dream of and deserve.
Inside of you, right now, lies all you need to fully embrace life and move forward with purpose. So why settle for the ordinary when so much more is within reach? Here are a few things you can do right now to help reveal the "awesomeness" that is within you.
  • Set aside time for yourself, away from the craziness of life, and act on it. Think about it for a moment: What would you do if you knew for sure anything was possible? Where in the 7 F's of Oola – fitness, finance, family, field, faith, friends and fun – do you need more balance and growth? Write down a goal and the steps you can take to make it happen. Put on your superhero cape and become the person God uniquely created you to be.
  • Do one thing that will bring you closer to your OolaLife. Successfully achieving a goal has a way of restoring belief in ourself and motivates us to succeed again. It’s like a domino effect. The pieces falling into place as we recognize our potential and face the doubts that kept it captive. Move forward with purpose and look back with gratitude. As Mark Victor Hansen, co-author of the “Chicken Soup for the Soul” book series, so perfectly put it, you’re living the OolaLife.
  • As you grow in your OolaLife, you’re sure to notice the unrealized potential in others around you. A few kind words, an attitude of gratitude or simply leading by example, have the power to encourage those around you to embrace positive change. Who knows what they might achieve with your inspiration? A better “you”, makes a better family, a better community, and ultimately a better world.
Source: Oola

Are you ready to live your life of awesomeness? Enroll here today!

You Sanitize Your Hands and Surfaces... But What About Your Produce??

2020 probably should be dubbed the year of sanitizer, don't you think?

In the midst of toilet paper runs and Y2K 2.0 prepping, I considered for a moment how produce is handled. If we're so diligent in washing our hands and cleaning surfaces, what about produce? 

I was raised that a simple rub under the water was all produce needed to be cleaned, but if that isn't the way we wash our hands, then why is that the way we wash our produce?

So what are you supposed to do? Using popular surface cleaners isn't a good idea (not that we keep those in our house) as they tend to have a poison control number on them. Probably shouldn't ingest that!

We use this fruit and veggie soak that uses plants to clean my plants in a way that's healthy for my family and gives us a touch of immune system boosting! It's super easy and I keep it by the sink for an easy grab when we get home with our groceries, just a capful in some cold water and soak for a minute or so. After the produce is dry, we put it in clean containers and into the fridge produce drawer for easy grabbing!

Prewashing your produce also gives you a better chance of eating your produce rather than finding your good intentions growing a new ecosystem in the bottom drawer of your fridge sometime in the future... Another tip, keep the produce you intend to snack on or put in lunches where you can see them (i.e., probably not the bottom drawer, I use that drawer for cheese and meat) to increase your chances of eating them!

Want to know more about why you should wash your produce, check out this fun and horrifying article from Mashable!



*This post contains affiliate links... this means I might get some money to help love on my family when you click on them or if you purchase from them! Thanks for supporting us! 

In The Pits... Armpits that is

A couple of years ago I made the switch from a popular deodorant commonly seen in commercials and readily available in every grocery store and pharmacy across the US to a natural, plant-based deodorant. You have to understand, this was a brand I had been loyal to since I was a teenager, yet I didn't think twice about kicking to the curb when I learned the adverse effects of what was in its ingredients and the damage they could potential cause.

With up to 95% of cancer being environmental, it makes sense that we should consider what's in our environment that could be contributing to this statistic. While we can't control everything, we can control what's in our homes and what goes on our bodies.

Detoxing our homes isn't hard... detoxing your armpits though...

Expect some uncomfortable adjustments!

I wasn't aware of this "detox period" when I made the switch and it wasn't until I was leaving a friend's house that I realized what was happening and all I could do was pray she didn't notice! Eww!

There's tons of information out there on the science, so I won't bore you. Here's the gist of it:

Bacteria resides in your armpits (as does the rest of your body and you need a lot of it, so don't go washing yourself with antibacterial soap, that's just not necessary) and it's perfectly normal and natural for it to be there. When using conventional deodorant, this bacteria doesn't work like it was designed to. When you make the switch to natural deodorant, this bacteria goes through an adjustment period as it's turned loose to go back to it's normal function.

Here's how I view it... you ever have a dog or pet that has to be kenneled or put in a room for a little while? If your pets are like my dogs, they pretty much stay quiet. Then they're released and it's like FREEDOM!!! And they go crazy all over the house! Sometime later, they get it out of their system and they're back to their mellow selves.

This is how this bacteria acts... it goes crazy and comes with a certain scent that's pretty unpleasant. This can last anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. Mine lasted about two weeks.

So how do we shorten this "detox period"? Let's face it... no one wants to stink!

Easy, bentonite clay and apple cider vinegar with the mother.
1 tbsp of benonite clay
1-3 tsp water
Mix in a glass bowl until its a smooth paste and then apply to armpits (do not mix with a metal spoon or metal bowl). Let it dry for about 5-10 minutes (your skin may feel tight) and then rinse off. Repeat once or twice a week as needed.

So here's the next question I hear that people also hesitate to ask... "I've made the switch and I don't really want to go back, but I still have some stink from time to time that I don't like. What do I do?"

That's a great question! Your body is exposed to toxins every day so you may be detoxing through your armpits (which is kind of what they were designed to do along with sweating). Here's some tips:
  • Drink lots of water (half your weight in ounces)
  • Avoid stimulant drinks like coffee (haha)
  • Take detox baths (epsom salt, baking soda and essential oils, click here for my time and time again tested favorites!)
  • Let your pits breath some air!
  • Make a 1:1 apple cider vinegar and water spray (I added lavender, tea tree and peppermint essential oils, check out why they're my fave here) to help calm the scent in there... bonus: it's great for breastfeeding moms who might be experiencing some scent issues due to breastfeeding
  • Avoid putting on deodorant immediately after shaving
Here are some other tips to limit the toxins you're exposed to:
There's lots of natural deodorants on the market these days, which is exciting because I see it as people are starting to get the picture. They're demanding better ingredients! Unfortunately, many products marketed as green or plant-based still have a lot of not so nice ingredients... this is called greenwashing and it is deceptive marketing practices to make you think you're getting a safer version than you really are. In many cases, they're actually worse! This is why I stick to one brand for all of my household and personal care products and that's why I only use this deodorant or (gasp) even this toothpaste as my deodorant! I know I can trust their products to have the highest quality ingredients, which means I don't have to spend hours researching all the different ingredients out there! I mean, really, who has time for that?!?

So how about you? Are you in to clean up those pits and maybe even more?!





*This post contains affiliate links... this means I might get some money to help love on my family when you click on them or if you purchase from them! Thanks for supporting us!