And the reason I don't sell deodorant (yet).
I love making skincare products. It is something that feeds my need to research and learn as well as my desire to play with what I learn. In the process of making botanical skincare I get to work with some beautiful oils. Learning the different properties of all of the different plant oils so that I can create just the right mixtures for different skin types is my idea of fun.
There is, however, one big downside to working with oil all of the time. Grease stains. You know that moment when you notice a big huge spot on a shirt that still looks wet after it comes out of the dryer, and you realize it's a grease stain that is now heat set into your shirt.
Well, thanks to deodorant I now have a fantastic method for removing set in grease stains.
An all natural deodorant is a very high demand product, and I was determined to make the perfect one when I started envisioning my product lines. I eventually figured out why it's so hard to find a good, all natural deodorant that really works. Deodorant is tough to make. The most effective recipes I tried were a mixture of oil, like coconut or castor, baking soda, arrowroot starch, and essential oils. They actually worked quite well, and I still use it on myself. However, there were a few problems with these recipes that I couldn't get past.
First, the baking soda can be very irritating on the skin, and I wanted to find a more gentle alternative.
Second, some people complained that the starch made their underarms itch, this could also have been the baking soda.
Third, and most important, were the oil stains. In order to use an oil based deodorant you have to use a very small amount and rub it in completely before putting your clothes on. If you use too much, or don't let it soak in, you will get a grease stain on your shirt. I knew I wouldn't be able to make sure every customer understood this, and I hated the idea of someone ruining their favorite shirt because they weren't aware of how to properly apply it, so the recipes never made it to market.
So how did I figure out my amazing grease stain removal technique?
My brother, who graciously tests many of my new products, was using my deodorant and ended up with huge grease stains on his brand new very nice shirt that had been a birthday present. He had washed it and dried it more than once. Then he brought it me and asked if I could do anything. I felt terrible. Fortunately I had some pretty good ideas about how to cut the grease out of his shirt, and I got it clean on the first try. I also walked away from deodorant making until I could find a recipe that does not include any oil.
This method completely removed the grease stains from my brother's shirt without fading or harming the shirt at all. It is now my go-to method for any oil stain.
How to get set-in grease stains out of clothes:
*note this was in a cotton shirt*
1) soak the stain in castille soap - castille soap is a fantastic grease cutter
2) sprinkle baking soda liberally to cover the soap
3) sprinkle with just enough water to wet but not fully dissolve the baking soda
4) pat the baking soda so that it will stick, don't scrub, just work it in
5) let this sit for at least an hour
6) rinse out under the sink, you can scrub the stain lightly while you rinse it out
7) I dried the area with a cool blow dryer to make sure the stain was gone, if it's not then repeat the process
8) after the stain is gone, wash and dry the shirt like normal.
If you have a success story about using natural, at home methods to remove stubborn stains I would love to hear about them. Share your stories in the comments section below.
Using non-toxic cleaning products is one important factor in improving the overall health of your skin. Read more about how your environment affects your skin in my article 5 Simple Steps to Healthy Skin