A growing trend amongst households in New Zealand is making cleaning products and skincare. Not only does this eliminate nasty, toxic chemicals (both for humans and the environment), it can save money and reduce packaging waste. And this is not new. For hundreds of years herbs and flowers were used to produce skincare and clean houses (as well as basics like baking soda, vinegar and lemons). But, with a growing desire to live more sustainably more people are taking back control and making there own products again. Books such as New Zealander Wendyl Nissen’s Domestic Goddess on a Budget and the UK’s James Wong’s Grow your own Drugs are only a couple of great sources of recipes and ideas that are available.
Recently, Linda brought in her own homemade goodies made with essential oils so they smell divine – washing liquid, fabric softener, room sprays, spray cleaner, moisturisers and a scrub. She said it is really easy and you can make it in bulk. And if you reuse old bottles you cut down on packaging waste – which we love!
The simplicity of this way of living and the cost savings is what is attracting householders to do it. As well as the better quality product, there are environmental benefits. A great example of this is a story about Loburn resident Lesandre Paris in last week’s Northern Outlook. The story, written by Laura Melville, talks about how Ms Paris is making her own cleaning and beauty products (including toothpaste and shampoo) to save money and reduce her family’s impact on the environment. She hopes to run some classes for members of the community too. She is quoted as saying “I wanted to do this and I wanted to teach other people and to stop throwing away recyclable products…I think it is really important that lots of people are coming back to the basics”.
So, if householders can think innovatively to develop a sustainable future for New Zealand can businesses? We need everyday businesses with clever, simple ideas like this that will reduce waste to landfill and create a healthier environment for us all to live in. Householders’ attitudes are changing but what about businesses? Would love to hear any stories you might have.All photos copyright SIFT.