Tag Archives: compostablebeauty

don’t scrap your scraps — compost ‘em! here’s how.

When I first started googling how to compost, for whatever reason I got super confused.

Some people said you should compost this, or do that, or put it here, or blah blah blah.

Don’t get overwhelmed with composting –– it’s super easy and simple!

I’ve gotten my info from personal experience, research andddd a lot of help from a dear friend of mine who is a farmer/gardener. (s/o to Dave!)

Here are a few steps in order to successfully compost from your kitchen! (even if you live in an apartment!):

GET A BUCKET AND A LID

There are loads of composting containers online and in stores that’ll use trendy marketing ploys to try and convince you to purchase their containers.

Don’t fall for it, fam! (I did, so if you did, you aren’t alone lol).

In the photo attached to this post, I have my trendy stainless steel composting bin I purchased from Target.

It was $20 and I thought it would look super cute on my counter. It had a charcoal filter on the lid that was supposed to prevent odor. There are holes in the lid that are covered by a charcoal filter.

And at first I loved it! It was pretty, easy to throw lettuce into and I really felt like I found the best bin around.

Buuttt then one day I noticed there were lots of flies near my bin. I didn’t think much about it.

I went away for a couple days and came back to find MAGGOTS IN MY COMPOST AND THE CHARCOAL LID.

Flies got through the holes / charcoal filter in the lid!

Bugs don’t typically bother me. But having maggots chill on my kitchen counter wasn’t really up my alley.

So we switched things up. We tried out a bucket instead.

We bought a 5 gallon bucket and lid (you can get these from The Home Depot, Lowe’s, or some other store where you can buy paint). Or honestly, ya might even have a bucket and lid in your garage!

Mike and I kept ours under our sink and every time it got filled with food waste, we’d drop it off at our friend’s house because he has a compost bin (another s/o to Dave!).

It’s a great route to go! But we noticed we still occasionally got gnats around our bin and the smell was a little rough sometimes.

Our new method? Remember that cute stainless steel bucket I talked about?

Now, we’re opting to toss our food scraps in there, but keep the bucket in our freezer!

You don’t need a cute bucket. In fact, you can just use a big bowl! Keep your container in the freezer and toss your banana peels and apple cores and egg shells in there!

You get zero smell — because it’s frozen!

WHAT GOES IN MY BIN?

Basically anything that would grow naturally…

Like fruits and veggies, egg shells and paper products.

Here’s a list of items you CAN compost:

  • Fruits and vegetables
  • Eggshells
  • Coffee grounds and (most) filters
  • (Some) tea bags (not all… many tea bags actually contain plastic. Best to opt for loose-leaf tea!)
  • Nut shells
  • Shredded newspaper
  • Cardboard
  • Paper
  • Yard trimmings
  • Grass clippings
  • Houseplants
  • Hay and straw
  • Leaves
  • Sawdust
  • Wood chips
  • Cotton and wool rags
  • Dryer and vacuum cleaner lint
  • Hair and fur
  • Fireplace ashes

Here are things you shouldn’t compost:

  • Black walnut tree leaves or twigs
  • Coal or charcoal ash
  • Dairy products (like butter, milk, sour cream, yogurt…) and eggs
  • Diseased or insect-ridden plants
  • Fats, grease, lard, or oils
  • Meat or fish bones/scraps
  • Pet wastes, such as feces and litter
  • Yard trimmings treated with chemical pesticides

For an even larger list, check out this post here. Also this post just gives some super helpful info in general!

WHAT IF MY BIN GETS MOLDY?

It’s most likely going to grow a little bit mold. And that’s fine!

Don’t be alarmed when you see some green fuzzy stuff growing in your compost bin. That’s totally normal.

A way to help avoid that, though, is to add more paper products — like newspapers — into your bin. If you put a bunch of crinkled up newspapers as the bottom layer in your compost bin, the compost won’t become as wet, which won’t produce as much mold.

WHAT DO I DO WHEN MY COMPOST BIN IS FULL?

So, technically your bin isn’t compost. It’s basically like a holding cell until you can transfer your food scraps to become real soil.

Ask around to see if anyone you know has a compost pile. If not, contact a few farms — I’d almost guarantee they have a compost pile. Go to a farmer’s market and see if they’ll let you drop off your compost with them.

If none of that works, consider creating your own compost area somewhere outside. You can purchase a large container to hold your compost, or you can essentially dig a hole in the ground to keep your compost in. It’s called the trench method and it’s simple and easy to do. But for people who live in apartments — like Mike and me! — that’s probably not the best option. There’s a great article about composting / different options here. Also, Happy DIY Home recently wrote an article about composting. It’s super helpful, check it out here.

I don’t have a lot of experience with having a real compost pile myself… but I’d be happy to do further research if you’re interested in trying it yourself!

Another way to compost on your own is to buy red wigglers — you can typically find those wormies at a local bait shop. I haven’t tried using worms, but I’ve heard great things! Wormies are amazing at creating compost!

HAPPY COMPOSTING! 🙂

Resources

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

say goodbye to ChapStick brand chapstick

My husband is a huge chapstick person. I mean HUGE.

He always has a tube on him and he puts it on throughout the day.

But chapstick tubes are a bit tough to recycle. Depending on what plastics your local recycling company takes, chapstick tubes might not be recyclable in your area.

So I thought I’d try making my own chapstick! I bought compostable paper tubes and aluminum reusable tins.

I decided to make two different versions — one with beeswax and the other with Candelilla wax (a vegan wax substitute).

The process was super easy and it only took a few minutes to make. Here’s what you’ll need:

BEESWAX OR CANDELILLA WAX
SHEA BUTTER
COCONUT OIL
ESSENTIAL OILS
ALUMINUM CONTAINERS OR COMPOSTABLE TUBES
PIPETTE OR EYE DROPPER

Personally, I like the application of a compostable tube better when I’m applying chapstick, but it can get a bit messy transferring the liquid into the tube containers. Plus, oily wax dripping on the sides of a paper tube doesn’t look that great 😉 aluminum containers are much easier to use for this recipe and they are easy to clean off if you make a mess (like I did!).

Here’s the process for making the chapstick/lip balm.

1. Use a double boiler (or put a glass bowl over a sauce pan with boiling water) on low heat and mix:

3 TABLESPOONS OF WAX
2 TABLESPOONS OF SHEA BUTTER
2 TABLESPOONS OF COCONUT OIL

2. Once liquified, take it off the burner and let cool for just a moment (don’t let it wait too long or it will harden!).

3. Mix in 15-20 drops of essential oil (most people use peppermint, but I used a vanilla mint blend from Young Living called Stress Away and it’s EXCELLENT!).

4. Use an eye dropper to transfer the liquid into the tubes or containers. I already had my containers on a cutting board so it was easy to transfer the board into the fridge.

NOTE: WHEN THE CHAPSTICK IS HARDENING, IT WILL NOT BE AS FULL. LEAVE SOME EXTRA LIQUID TO TOP OFF THE CHAPSTICK WHEN YOU NOTICE IT’S NOT AS FULL.

5. Put the chapsticks in the fridge over night (or a minimum of 5-6 hours).

These measurements should make around 6 chapstick tubes worth. If you don’t want to purchase new chapstick tubes off Amazon, repurpose ones you already have!

Some recipes call for honey and others call for oils like vitamin e oil. Try out some concoctions and let me know how it goes! My next recipe might include beet root power for a little pop of color. But we’ll see! 🤞🏻😊

deo for your B.O. — fight the stank zero waste style

Finding a natural deodorant isn’t hard — it’s all the rage these days. I can’t watch a YouTube video without a commercial for some aluminum-free deodorant popping up. But finding a zero waste deodorant? That’s a bit different.

I’m all about reading reviews and doing a lot of research before purchasing something. And for deodorant, that was even more-so the case.

I’ve got sensitive skin. REALLY sensitive skin. So when I heard some zero wasters say they were just throwing some baking soda on their pits, or making their own concoctions, I got nervous.

I was a Dove deodorant girl for years. I swore by their sensitive skin option — same with my mom, aunt and sister. But I slowly started to notice I started smelling kind of weird. It was almost like a deodorant and b.o. mixture. Lemme tell ya, it wasn’t pleasant.

So I did my research and tested a few out. And — no kidding — I found two brands that I love more than traditional deodorants.

I concluded that the two best brands (for me and Mike) are Meow Meow Tweet (yes, that’s literally the brand’s name) and Schmidt’s.

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There are certain things I love about both brands. They both apply differently and their companies are set up a bit different. Here’s what you need to know:

YOU CAN’T SWITCH OVERNIGHT

Here’s why.

For years you’ve been bathing your pits in antiperspirant garbage. Your underarms have grown accustomed to what you’ve been lathering under there. You’ve gotta give your pits some breathing room. They’ve gotta detox.

People detox in several different ways. PureAndRadiant.org has an incredible explanation of why and how to detox your pits. Check out the blog post here.

Buuutttt, I didn’t do it their way. They tell you to make a spray (using essential oils *check out why I choose Young Living here* + apple cider vinegar) that you spritz on your armpits morning and night.

What did I do? I simply didn’t wear deodorant for a few days.

Yeah…. I know… I’m foul. But I’m telling you, it worked well for me.

I didn’t wear deodorant for about a week and during that time, I would really exfoliate my underarms while I was in the shower (just using gentle, natural soap, like Dr. Bronner’s Castile soap, and a wash cloth).

Now that it’s getting chillier outside, it’s the perfect opportunity to detox this way.

Typically within a week — though it can take shorter or longer depending on how your body feels — you’ll be able to use your natural deodorant.

That’s a big issue people run into with natural deodorants — they either get rashes or irritation or they think they just simply don’t work because they never gave their pits some time to breathe.

SCHMIDT’S VS. MEOW MEOW TWEET

Here are the dirty deets about both brands. I love them equally but in different ways, so this is meant to be as unbiased as possible.

SCHMIDT’S

Schmidt’s is a pioneer of natural and zero waste deodorant. The original formula comes in a glass jar with a plastic lid and little metal shovel.

Here’s what I LOVE…

The ingredients are top-notch — no aluminum, phthalates or parabens.

Here are the ingredients for the lavender + sage scent:

Butyrospermum Parkii (shea butter), Maranta Arundinacea (arrowroot) Powder, Sodium Bicarbonate (baking soda), Theobroma Cacao (cocoa) Seed Butter, Lavandula Angustifolia (lavender) Oil, Salvia Sclarea (clary) Oil, Tocopherol (vitamin E; sunflower-derived).

Perhaps my favorite thing about Schmidt’s is that they have a recycling program where you can earn a free deodorant. If you send back five empty jars, they’ll send you a free one. That’s a pretty good deal! And it’s better for the environment because they recycle/reuse the empty jars. It’s a great system!

Also, this brand keeps my arms smelling nice. It doesn’t have a strong scent, but it definitely covers my B.O. PERFECTLY.

And Schmidt’s can be found in a lot of stores like Target. Sometimes it’s harder to find the jar version though! Often I’ve found that the plastic stick version is more easily accessible — but the brand Schmidt’s is common and well-known. A 2 ounce jar runs for about $8.99.

A few things to know…

My husband Mike likes the smell of Schmidt’s (he uses cedarwood + juniper) but he doesn’t like the application — and I’ve heard that from other people as well.

Some people don’t like the idea of rubbing the deodorant in with their fingers. It sounded weird to me at first, too, but you seriously get used to it and I don’t even think twice about it anymore.

Mike doesn’t like that he has to rub it in with his fingers and he also thinks the formula is a bit hard to get on your fingers/rub in. I personally don’t feel that way, but I can see how he would.

Also, I believe all of their formulas contain baking soda — which irritates some people’s skin.

MEOW MEOW TWEET

Meow Meow Tweet is the first zero waste deodorant I tried and I fell in love.

Here’s what I LOVE….

It comes in a compostable tube. (You can also get it in a jar form, but I prefer the deodorant stick). The tube/stick is easy to apply — you apply it like you would any other deodorant. It’s really smooth when it goes on, too.

The brand comes in a baking soda free version, which is excellent for people with sensitive pits. I started with the sensitive skin one and it worked wonderfully. I eventually tried one with baking soda and my skin reacted fine to it, so I’ve started buying ones with baking soda.

Also the ingredients are BOMB (and some are even fair trade!). Here are the ingredients for the baking soda-free version in Grapefruit:

*+cocos nucifera (coconut) oil, *maranta esculenta (arrowroot) powder, magnesium hydroxide, *+theobroma cacao (cocoa) seed butter, *+butyrospermum parkii (shea) fruit butter, helianthus annuus (sunflower) seed wax, *citrus sinensis (sweet orange) peel oil, *citrus paradisi (grapefruit) peel oil, *citrus limon (lemon) peel oil

(*certified organic / +fair trade)

And this brand keeps my stink away for HOURS. Like, all day. It’s awesome!

Not to mention, the brand is super down to earth and all about doing their part. They support tons of local charities and organizations like San Francisco Women Against Rape, The Ocean Cleanup, Orangutan Foundation International and Coalition For Healthy School Food, to name a few.

Meow Meow Tweet has other cool products too. I’ve tried their shampoo bar and I liked it — though I’m not a big shampoo bar user. And their charcoal face wash bar was nice, too. I’m looking to try their face oil perhaps next. Also their underarm primer looks DOPE and I’ve heard it’s wonderful! That’s definitely on my list.

A few things to know…

The deodorant is a bit more expensive — a 3 ounce tube runs for $20 and a 1.8 ounce tube is $14. Jars are 2.4 ounces and are $14.

And they’re harder to come by. I’ve seen recently online that more Targets are selling their stuff! But Targets in the western Pennsylvania area haven’t gotten on board yet — but I’m sure they will soon!

TO RECAP

SCHMIDT’S (jar)

✓ Quality ingredients
✓ No b.o.
✓ Recycling program
✓ Inexpensive/runs deals (aka — return 5 jars get 1 free)
✓ Available in-store
✗ Baking soda-free version
✗ Super easy application (I find it easy, but not as easy as a tube/stick version)

MEOW MEOW TWEET (tube)

✓ Quality ingredients
✓ Fair trade
✓ No b.o.
✓ Compostable
✓ Good company
✓ Baking soda-free version
✗ Available in-store (not in my area but in other states — yes!)
✗ Inexpensive/runs deals

MY CONCLUSION

 

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Meow Meow Tweet

Although you can’t lose because both brands are wonderful, I guess overall I’d choose Meow Meow Tweet.

Currently, I’m using Schmidt’s because I ran out of my Meow Meow Tweet and I wanted to try out Schmidt’s.

My husband likes Meow Meow Tweet’s formula and application better than Schmidt’s. I like Schmidt’s recycling program.

Overall, I’ll probably go back to using my Meow Meow Tweet formula — especially since Mike likes it best and applying deodorant in a tube is quicker on the go. But Schmidt’s is an awesome brand and I’d still buy their products anytime.