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Make your own!

Save money by substituting some common store bought items with your own homemade versions. Here are some really easy ways to get started!

Save money and make your own! Substitute some common store bought items with your own homemade versions!! Try our recipes for everything from body butter to bug spray!

Room freshener

I haven’t used room sprays or the plug-in things in years. My daughter’s serious sensitivity to all things artificial prompted me to finally omit the fresheners from my shopping list. I never really liked them anyway.  I always felt that it was the equivalent of puttin’ perfume on a fish.
The stink doesn’t go away, but the perfume is so strong you don’t notice the fish smell quite as much. Although there are lots of organic options out there, the sometimes exorbitant cost of those alternatives hindered me from going that route. Recently I started using baking soda! So simple, so cheap! Just add about a quarter cup of baking soda to a container (bowl, jar, bottle) and add 4 or 5 drops of a yummy smelling essential oil (lavender, peppermint, lime or lemon are great for this). Place the container in the room you want to freshen up. Shake or stir the mixture every couple of weeks to renew the scent. You can use a pretty little container that you have sitting unused in a cabinet or dress up a boring container by covering the top with a pretty scrap of material and tying it with a cute little ribbon.


I’m not sure if this should be called potpourri or not, but that’s the name I use. Simply pour some ground cinnamon into a pot of water. Stir and bring to boil. Reduce the heat and let it simmer. Your house will smell wonderful! Word to the wise – set a timer to remind you to periodically check that the water isn’t getting too low. You don’t want to burn the bottom of your pan. I may or may not be speaking from experience.

Carpet deodorizer

Combine ½ cup of Borax and ½ cup of baking soda. Add 7-10 drops of lemon essential oil (you can also use peppermint or lavender, but lemon’s my favorite). Sprinkle over your carpets and then vacuum. I’ve also used this recipe without Borax when I was out so feel free to try that as well.


This may not be cost-effective if you’re already buying the 87 cent tubes that you can get at the local discount store, but if you’re like me and you want toothpaste without all the extra chemicals it can get pretty expensive, pretty fast. Here’s the recipe I use: Combine equal parts coconut oil and baking soda with a few drops of peppermint essential oil. That’s it. Seriously simple. I make up a good sized batch and divvy it up into individual 4 oz. canning jars and use a sharpie to write everyone’s initials on the lid of their jar. Note: The coconut oil and baking soda mix much easier if you soften the coconut oil a bit by placing the jar in warm water before starting.

Bath salts

Instead of buying the expensive, chemical laden concoctions at the mall just add some Epsom salt (maybe 1/2 a cup) and  4-5 drops (a little goes a long way!) of an essential oil to a warm bath. Lavender works great for relaxing, peppermint for energizing, ginger for sore muscles. If you’ve not tried a particular oil or you have sensitive skin you might want to “patch test” it first. You can do this by adding 1 drop of the oil to 1 tsp. of a carrier oil (olive, sunflower, almond, etc.) and place a small amount of the mixed oil on your wrist or elbow for about 24 hours. Don’t wash this area during that time. If you don’t experience any redness, swelling, or itching you should be fine. Just for the record, I’ve never done a patch test and I’ve never had any problems, but it never hurts to practice caution!

Check out these other super easy, make-at-home ideas:

Body Butter

Brown Sugar Body Scrub

Exfoliating Scrub (only 2 ingredients!)

Laundry Detergent

Toilet Cleaner

Shower Cleaner

Bug Spray

Vapor Rub (not quite as easy, but oh, so worth the effort!)

What are YOUR favorite natural recipes?


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Candy is a southern girl who enjoys the simple things in life. Dirt road drivin’, Sunday afternoon nappin’, back yard swingin’, and sunset watchin’ are a few of the things that make her smile. She’s been married to her best friend and the love of her life for almost 25 years and is navigating motherhood with her 4 children, aged 23, 19, 14, & 11. Homeschooling for over 18 years now, she is also a bit of a word-nerd (ok, maybe more than a “bit” – she actually considers making lists of homophones to be entertaining), a lover of books and chocolate, a survivor of cancer, an author, and a hula hoop maker.

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3 Responses to Make your own!

  1. Melanie Peavey November 4, 2013 at 7:30 pm #

    Love these! When I make bath salts, I mix sea salt and Epsom salt, but of course that’s a matter of preference. I need to try the toothpaste, I think I spend about $6 per tube.

  2. Virginia August 12, 2013 at 9:27 pm #

    Love this post! Shared it on my facebook!

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