One step forward, two steps back


Winter is on its way
It’s been a bit quiet here recently but not because I’ve given up on plastic. Since the clocks changed I seem to have entered hibernation mode saving all my energy for keeping warm. I changed the calendar over to May at the weekend (yes, 2 weeks late)  and then dreamed of sunshine and holidays that night, waking to be very confused when the alarm went off and it was dark and cold!


I’ve fallen into a pretty good routine and the day to day stuff is pretty easy at the moment. I have done a few more experiments in skin and haircare to mixed success. I’ve always suffered from seborrheic dermatitis, usually pretty mildly and a good dose of medicated shampoo generally keeps it under control. But the combination of using the Lush shampoo bar and the colder weather has really aggravated it to the point it spread to my face. The red patches are sore and the skin is flaking away.

(for the eagle eyed, this photo was from a couple of years ago when my hair was longer but symptoms are the same!) 
It’s itchy and scaly and dry, but moisturiser aggravates it, but I know from past experience if I can sort out my scalp my face will be OK. I thought about trying Ethique‘s range because everyone who uses it raves about it, but I have no idea if it would help.  One the other hand the internet suggested that baking soda is good for seborrheic dermatitis as it apple cider vinegar. Using baking soda aligns with the ‘no poo‘ idea and I thought it was worth a go.  I had read other comments that said baking soda destroys hair but since my hair is short now I decided to try. I simply mixed 3 tablespoons of baking soda with 1 of water and rubbed it into my scalp and wet hair and left it on for 15 minutes. It was a really odd sensation – like mixing sand into your hair – and I was very dubious. Anyway, after rinsing I squirted a 50-50 mix of (home made) Apple Cider Vinegar and boiled cooled water and then thoroughly rinsed that off. Much to my surprise, my hair felt really clean and soft.


Clear sea salt mix and apple cider vinegar being strained.
The bottled end product





Last year I found that washing my face with sea salt did what cortisone cream, oil free soaps and moisturisers didn’t. It really helped deal with the sores, but the process was slow (boiling water letting it cool, mixing salt etc) and my skin never felt clean so I kept forgetting to do it. Then I came across a recipe for a toner.

1 cup sea salt

3 cups water

Boil until salt is fully dissolved.

Now, after washing my face with plain soap, I apply my ‘toner’ and moisturise very lightly. This really seems to have cleared the worst of the issues.

Sadly, after three weeks I couldn’t say the same of the ‘no poo’ shampoo. Last night, the itchiness and sores on my scalp got too much for me and I bought some medicated shampoo. If I can get it back under control I will try the ‘no poo’ method again. I am still using Apple Cider Vinegar rinse in lieu of conditioner.

My other step backwards was toothpaste. I had been using the homemade paste  for 4 weeks and quite liked the salty taste, but my teeth were starting to feel sensitive.  And then on Saturday my gums started bleeding. I haven’t had bleeding gums in years and it isn’t a good sign. I went straight to the supermarket and bought some toothpaste.

So yes, in terms of plastic these have been backward steps but sensible ones I think.




8 thoughts on “One step forward, two steps back

  1. So glad you are looking after your health and not allowing the scalp and bleeding gums issues become serious problems.
    I wouldn’t call it stepping backwards, more a moving to the pavement to keep safe until the surface is safe to continue.


  2. It’s important to realise that the difference between an ideal world and doing the best you can for your health. For me that still entails using quite a lot of plastic,, but doing the best I can to reduce, reuse and recycle.


  3. Have you ever tried goat’s milk shampoo? It’s natural and very good for psoriasis, eczema and other skind conditions. It comes in bars ( no plastic? ) as well as bottles.


  4. […] making my own products and potions.   Not so much. I’ve made some things but I’m discovering I’m very time poor and sometimes the time getting the ingredients and then making the products isn’t worth it for me if I can buy the same thing plastic free. Easy simple things like apple cider vinegar are worth it. The tests that have failed for me have been toothpaste and solid shampoo and conditioners.  […]


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