Over the past few years we have been discovering the benefits of natural living. You may think it would cost a fortune to switch to chemical-free products, and it can, but through a lot of trial and error we have found reasonably priced products that we feel great about using. There are definitely cheaper options out there, but we've found the cost of these products to be worth the investment for two reasons: they work and they last. When a product is effective, it's cost is offset because we don't have to reorder or replace it very frequently.
Our shift has been a slow, gradual process of not replacing the chemicals as we run out, but instead finding natural, affordable alternatives. Because we used to buy bleach, 409, toilet bowl cleaner, etc. in bulk at Sam's Club, it has taken quite some time to actually run out...hence the reason I say "Natural(ish) Living," we still have a ways to go, but we are learning. During this journey we have discovered three companies we love. Below you will find a breakdown of the products we use. We are not being compensated in any way for sharing this with you, we really do use this stuff.
What they're about: Founders Jessica Alba and Christopher Gavigan are all about safe, chemical free, "honest" products for the home and for kids. Check out their story here.
Products we love: The diaper bundle (which includes enough diapers and wipes for approx. 6 weeks, plus the diapers come in amazingly cute patterns), laundry detergent, stain remover, lotion, shampoo and conditioner, dishwasher soap, and healing balm (great for cuts as well as diaper rash). Not to mention, their support team is amazing. If you want to try it out, they have free trial packs of certain items, you just pay $5.95 for shipping. If you decide you want to purchase something, let me invite you, then we both get money off our orders (score!).
What they're about: Norwex is focused on cleaning without chemicals. They are dedicated to their mission of "improving quality of life by radically reducing chemicals in our homes."
Products we love: Norwex's Antibacterial Microfiber products allows you to clean completely using just water. Check out this chicken test, I did this at home with my own test strips just to make sure it worked, it does. These cloths are so absorbent they pick up all the germs; no chemicals needed. Plus they last forever, so they are worth the investment. We use the Microfiber Cloths for cleaning our kitchen, taking stains off of the couch (even mud from the dog), absorbing spills, and this list goes on. We also love their mop system and cleaning paste for our stovetop. Last but definitely not least, we use the Microfiber Cloth in conjunction with the Window/Polishing Cloth. Watch this demonstration and you'll understand why. If you're interested in getting more information, contact Heather at H_niklaus@hotmail.com.
What they're about: There are a lot of essential oil companies out there. We use Young Living because that is what works for us. Due to many of the restrictions around sharing personal use stories, I can't go into detail, but I am happy to talk to you in person if you want to learn more. Classes are also a great way to get introduced to the idea of essential oils, I am happy to put one together for you.
If you're curious about the quality of these oils, you can learn more about the "Seed to Seal" process here. This is the only oil company I could find with a well-documented and rigorous quality testing process, so that's what we use. If I find something that works I stick with it, so I haven't done a long series on which company is best, but there are a ton of blogs out there that have, some of them landed on Young Living and some didn't. Please do your own research and figure out what works best for your family.
Products we love: Everything. We diffuse oils, we cook with oils, we clean with oils. We are always finding new ways to use them. The more we learn how to use oils the less products we are buying elsewhere. For example, we used to purchase bathroom cleaner from The Honest Company, now we make our own. We have a passion for using oils because we've seen firsthand how effective they are.