Fighting Plastic Pollution - Save the Planet with Homemade Remedies

Various islands are just the perfect spot for a relaxing holiday spent lying on sandy beaches and drinking cocktails under a palm tree. However, that is not always the case. One specific island in the northern Pacific Ocean covers an estimated surface area of 1.6 million square kilometres. Being three times the size of France, this island seems gigantic, and you now probably begin to think, why you have never heard of this island before… Well, it is technically not an island and is officially called Great Pacific Garbage Patch. As the name states, this artificial island is made out of millions of tons of plastic and other marine debris floating at the water's surface, harming aquatic fauna and flora. 

Plastic packaging makes up most plastic waste found all around the world; however, most of the packaging can only be used once, so after having their job done, they go straight to the trash bin. This situation may seem fine considering how many people recycle their trash, yet the problem here is that sometimes it is just not possible to recycle some plastic waste. This group includes dirty plastic rubbish, various containers, and here the largest is played by personal and house care products. Bottled shampoos, conditioners, shower gels, washing liquids and other products are only needed as long as there is still some product left in the bottle. After that, we throw away the bottle and replace the product with the new one continuing this process for our entire lives. Thanks to each of us, millions of tonnes of non-biodegradable plastic rubbish end up in landfills and water during those decades.

This consumer habit is being tackled in various ways, and we have seen quite a few zero waste stores opening recently (we talked about zero waste several weeks ago). Still, they alone do not solve the problem. It is our responsibility to change habits – that is why today we invite you to make your own cosmetics, personal and home care products which fight plastic pollution! Made by one’s own hands, these products are all-natural, so they are much safer to use every day – you will not need to worry about products damaging your skin and flaring up allergies. Let’s roll up our sleeves and make natural products for a healthier tomorrow and cleaner future!

Face Mask Heaven - Cucumber and Lemon

Various face masks play a necessary part in our everyday skincare routine. However, the more product we are willing to use and buy, the more plastic trash we accumulate. Therefore, making your organic detoxicating mask at home once a week is a great way to help yourself by helping the planet in the first place.

Peel and crush one decent size cucumber into a puree, add five drops of lemon juice, and stir in one tablespoon of natural honey. Lastly, add several drops of essential oil of your choice (we prefer lavender) and mix until liquified. After preparation, pour the substance into a jar and store it in the fridge. Use within 4-5 days and mix well before each application! Apply the mask onto a clean face avoiding the eye area, leave the mask on for 15-20 minutes and gently remove it using a wet cloth.

While it is a relatively easy homemade skincare recipe to make, mask’s ingredients have many powerful properties, all of which we can pack into one excellent organic and natural product. While cucumbers reduce swelling, puffiness and soothe irritation, lemon juice contains Vitamin C, which may reduce skin damage and has high pH levels, known to decrease skin’s oiliness. Honey is an excellent moisturizer and exfoliator, so all of those ingredients together make a mask we all swear by!

Gorgeous Hair Secret – Shea Butter and Coconut Oil

Shiny and long hair is possibly everyone’s dream to have, yet it is complicated and requires a lot of time to maintain that salon look. Besides, one has to buy a handful of different products to ensure their hair look fabulously, and this, of course, adds up to plenty of plastic waste. Due to this reason, there is no better way to tackle plastic waste than making a nice hair strengthening cream yourself!

Put a cup of shea butter into a bowl, add a little bit of coconut oil, hemp seed oil, and castor oil to the bowl so these three ingredients would make 1/8 of a cup. Carefully blend everything and pour the mixture into a jar and wait a bit for it to solidify. As you can use this amazing cream to both your hair and body, it may not long very last, so do not worry when the cream jar empties.

Quickly being one of our favourites, this cream gorgeously takes care of the hair by strengthening it and adding moisture. Shea butter is known for its non-greasy qualities, while coconut oil helps slow down the hair loss process. Hemp oil is perfect at its job of stimulating hair growth, and castor oil nourish the dry scalp. Mixing up all of these ingredients together, you can create a powerful hair-loving product right in your kitchen!

Breathtaking Smile Magic – Sage, Baking Soda, and Salt

Our smile is often considered our business card or nicest jewellery one can have, but sometimes it feels like a blinding white smile if something only the Hollywood elite can afford. Well, trips to the dentist are often led by huge bills, therefore, stopping people from taking care of their teeth. On the other hand, quality teeth care usually depends on our lifestyle and the products we use. However, the latter adds up to much unnecessary plastic waste, which we can also minimize using homemade teeth care products – toothpaste and mouthwash.

Mix a handful of sage leaves with a teaspoon of salt in around 100 ml of boiling water. Wait for the mixture to cool off and swish it in your mouth as you would usually do with regular, store-bought mouthwash. Another recipe everyone should try is grinding one teaspoon of salt, two teaspoons of baking soda, one tablespoon of powdered orange peel, and two teaspoons of dried sage together. You can, of course, add a little bit of peppermint essential oil to achieve that pleasant fresh smell usual toothpaste has, but bear in mind that you will need to add a few drops of water to the mixture to achieve the same or similar texture.

While homemade toothpaste and mouthwash are remarkable for their eco-friendliness, there are several other upsides to making these products on your own. First of all, one can control the ingredients and customize the texture, flavour, and abrasiveness. Still, most importantly, one majorly reduces their plastic consumption and cut costs on the shopping bills. However, we advise you to check with your dentist before making and using homemade teeth care products as some recipes may not fit your needs. 

Sparkling Clean Shine – Vinegar and Rosemary

One’s home is one’s castle, which needs to be defended from wrongdoers and various germs and bacteria. Wanting to keep our house clean and smelling fresh, we use many chemical products, which, while doing their job, are far from being natural and sometimes are the complete opposite of a pleasant smell. Besides, most chemicals come in plastic packaging, which cannot be recycled due to the products’ nature. To kill those germs and also fight plastic pollution, we invite you to make an all-natural, all-purpose cleaner spray, which would soon become your favourite!

Combine one part of white vinegar with one part water into a spray bottle, add several lemon rinds and rosemary springs. Once you are done with the preparation process, let the mixture infuse for at least a week before using it for the first time to clean your home. 

This cleaner will quickly solve many different problems around the house and clean those nasty water stains, various smudges, and much more – you will be thankful for our advice! However, do not use this acidic cleaner around granite surfaces as the cleaner may etch the natural stone – you’ve been warned!

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Making organic homemade remedies and cosmetics has never been easier; besides, by caring for yourself, you also take care of the planet by reducing plastic pollution and eliminating single-use plastics from the market. On the other hand, we know how difficult it is sometimes to spare some time to make those natural products in the first place. In this case, of course, you will continue buying shampoos, conditioners, creams and other products in various shops or online. 

Due to this reason, you should consider doing a little research before making a decision and choosing sellers or brands which take care of the planet for you. Look for natural products, have not been tested on animals and are vegan; choose products whose packaging states using recycled materials. We also care for the planet and advocate for organic, eco-friendly cosmetics – try out our Rich Cream, Silk Balm or Cooling Gel and feel nature’s powers!

That’s Too Sweet! or How Bad is Bad Sugar?

Each of us is sometimes visited by the desire to taste something delicious. Even though the understanding of deliciousness may differ from person to person, most of the time this feeling involves chocolate, ice cream, candy or lollypops – anything that’s sweet! However, we must control ourselves when eating sweet and sugary products as they are harmful to our bodies. Trust us – it is not a myth created by cheeky parents to steal sweets from their kids and eat them alone while the little ones are fast asleep. As we believe you have tons of sweets left in your pantry after Halloween that wait their moment to be eaten, be careful about the sugar you are likely to consume in no time… You understood correctly – we dedicated this blog to draw the line between bad and good sugar!

Sugar Does Not Grow on Trees, or Does It?

Sugar nowadays has become a somewhat usual ingredient in every meal or snack that we eat. However, we do not use the same sugar throughout all of the dishes or drinks. As the sugar name may differ, the methods of their production process are different as well, but as white sugar is the most popular, we invite you to get to know its production from a much closer perspective. White refined sugar gets extracted from two types of plants – sugarcanes and sugar beets.

The first of two is grown in mostly warm climate zones as sugarcane plants cannot survive the frost. Besides, large amounts of water are necessary to grow as much sugarcanes as would produce enough sugar to meet the demand. Once sugarcane crops are harvested, the plants are chopped and milled to extract their juices, which are later heated to produce thick syrup. Despite the already lengthy process, the manufacturers still need to evaporate the excess water from the syrup to achieve sugar crystals. However, the sugar journey does not end here as brown-coloured sugar crystals still need to be bleached with chemical compounds to produce a well-known white product.

Regarding the sugar extraction from sugar beets, this process is less complicated than the previously explained one. Sugar beets are usually harvested in autumn and then transported to the sugar production factories. After sugar beet's roots are washed (they are grown in fertile soil, so this step is not to be missed) and sliced, they are mixed with several chemical solutions and go through the process of evaporation, which creates white sugar crystals – no further refining process is needed.

How We Consume Sugar?

The sugar we consume every day mostly is what is called added sugar; however, the real difference lies in where this sugar is added to and by whom. It is quite clear how much sugar we consume by adding it to our morning coffee or tea, but things get more trickier when we drink soft drinks or store-bought sweets and snacks. If we decide to look closely at the food labels, we will see sugar listed as carbohydrates. It is a correct statement; however, we are much more likely to consume high fructose corn syrup, which is made from corn starch and not the usual sugar. This sugar-like sweetener is one of the most popular ingredients that manufacturers use even though it is not far from being banned in the EU and other countries. As for today, high fructose corn syrup’s production is subject to strict quotas and restriction documents, but it does not change the fact that we are still consuming it without really knowing when exactly.

How Harmful Sugar Really Is?

Excessive sugar intake can result in poor skin health and high blood pressure. However, as we tend not to know when we consume it, we often attribute these features to other life issues and not our diets. The scale of the problem gets revealed when we look more closely at food portion sizes, their nutritional value, and take into account the opinion of professionals. Medical researchers and dietitians agree that adults should have no more than 30 grams of sugar a day – same as seven sugar cubes; for kids and toddlers, these numbers must be several times smaller to maintain healthy life. Despite the righteousness of medical suggestions, they are very hard to live by as almost every store-bought product is packed to the brim with bad sugar. Bad sugar has no nutritional value, causes tiredness and constant hungriness, weight gain, and excess belly fat, which could turn into severe obesity. Besides, limitless sugar consumption is the straightest way to diabetes and heart diseases, and sadly these sicknesses are increasingly diagnosed with younger people and kids.

Are We Doomed, or Are There Any Alternatives to Bad Sugar?

The question above is quite silly as the very name ‘bad sugar’ suggests that there is another side of a coin – good or natural sugars. There are a bunch of natural sweeteners, which are far from processed and can sometimes be obtained straight from the plant. Natural sugars come in the shape of vegetables, fruits, and dairy products, but what they have in common is providing essential nutrients, which keep us healthy and strong. Stevia is one of the best-known plant-based sweeteners, which, despite being sweet, is also linked to lowering blood pressure and insulin levels; however, one still has to refine it to turn it into a more usable form.

Besides stevia, there are several other natural sweeteners used worldwide, which are less harmful to our organisms when compared to actual white refined sugar. Molasses are made from the same sugarcane plants and sugar beets as regular sugar but are not refined and has a syrup-like thick consistency. Maple syrup is also one of nature’s best natural sweeteners. Even if this product is quite expensive in stores, one can easily make it at home as the process of making it is simple – one has to boil the sap of maple trees until it thickens. Next comes coconut sugar, which is very similar to regular white sugar everyone usually uses as it is high in calories.

Now it’s time for the best natural sweetener of all times – good old honey! Even though it is still sugar, organic honey is far safer and healthier to use than table sugar. Full of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, honey is also that one product that is completely safe to use after its expiration date. The only thing that helps people separate natural honey from the fake one is its consistency, which crystalises after some time, but does not lose any healthy features.

Recipes with Natural Sugars

Keeping only natural sugars in your pantry does not mean you cannot pamper yourself with some casual yet super healthy sweets. However, most of the time, such natural sweets require to prepare in advance. Pick them, mix them, bake them, cut them, and only after that EAT THEM – we can guarantee that these recipes will be as sweet and healthy as they can be! Besides, we decided to turn the healthiness of our favourite treats up by a few notches and share only vegan-friendly recipe ideas. You can thank us later!

Granola. Mix oats, nuts, and seeds with some coconut oil and honey or maple syrup, and add your favourite dried fruits. Pour the mixture into a large cooking pan and spread evenly, bake until golden. Let the granola cool completely and cut into pieces and enjoy!

Green cocktails. Grab every vegetable and fruit that you can find nearby and put everything into a food processor. Add in some honey or maple syrup, add few drops of CBD Oil for that extra healthiness and let it mix!

Nature’s candy. Pick your favourite berries or cut fruits into bite-size pieces, place them evenly into a food dehydrator machine or onto a cooking pan, and use it accordingly. Dried fruits and berries are a great alternative to bad sugars themselves!

Ice Cream. Mix coconut milk, maple syrup, and tahini – sesame paste – in a food processor, blend them well and pour the mixture into an ice cream maker or spread evenly on a freezer-safe dish. Don’t forget to put some berries or fruits as toppings!

Gummy Candies. Blend apple juice, a little bit of agave or maple syrup and Agar-agar powder together, strain the mixture and bring it to simmer in a small saucepan. Let it cool for a bit, add few drops of CBD oil for that extra healthy kick and pour into gummy moulds. Freeze it, remove it and enjoy!

Here at Biomedicanna believe that we should live as healthy as possible, and this journey starts with cutting bad sugars out of our diets. Natural sugars and recipes are a great alternative to regular chocolate, candies, and other sugary bombs that we consume without even knowing that. Trust us - it is not that hard to feel energetic, strong, and healthy without using refined and processed sugar every day – you will not miss it!


The Organic side of Mask

We all wear masks. On many different occasions, for various situations and while talking to plenty of different people. We wear masks always and so often it almost feels natural and invisible even for ourselves.

You might be wondering why this week’s blog is named ‘The Organic side of a Mask’ as it is funny how ironic can sound such phrase. No matter the unreliable and cheeky part, - what we will share with you today is a proof that even a mask can be organic

My mother always says:

“You cannot put on your skin something that you wouldn’t eat!’’ 

 And she’s right... There are hundreds of ways we use face masks: in a sheet form; as a splash; even as a clay, and most of them are not that helpful for our skin, keeping in mind that in multiple cosmetic products we can find most ‘interesting’ ingredients that can be eventually harmful for us (if you’d like to get more knowledge about it, check up our previous Blog post).   

 Here we have the best 12 collected ‘recipes’ of purely organic face masks, suitable for all types of skin. Some of them might be surprising by their ingredients, but believe us, - it makes wonders. The best part is that these masks don’t have more than 4 ingredients in it, (including the CBD Oil itself among them); it is organic, enormously healthy, and you can simply make them at home without much of an endeavour and expenses. You only need to look as far as your kitchen! 

 

Banana facial mask 

Bananas are fully packed with vitamins that become great reason for getting a perfect skin: vitamin A helps to fade dark spots and blemishes; vitamin B, softens skin and helps to reduce dryness; vitamin E reduces the appearance of wrinkles, and potassium fully moisturized and hydrates our skin to the maximum. This full-pack of Vitamins makes banana fruit a skin God!   

The recipe:  

Mash up a medium-sized ripe banana into a smooth paste, then gently apply it to your face and neck. Let it set for 10 to 20 minutes, then rinse it off with cold water. 

 For variety, mix 1/4 cup plain yoghurt, add 2 tablespoons honey (a natural acne remedy), 5-6 drops of CBD Oil, and one medium banana.   

Oatmeal facial mask 

If you're looking for a quick pick-me-up that will leave you feeling and looking better, give yourself an oatmeal facial treatment! 

Combine 1/2 cup hot water and 1/3 cup oatmeal. After the water and oatmeal have settled for two or three minutes, mix in 2 tablespoons plain yogurt, 2 tablespoons of honey, and one small egg white.  

Apply a thin layer of the mask to your face, and let it sit for 10 to 15 minutes. Then rinse with warm water.  

Mayonnaise facial mask 

“Well, that’s the weird one!” you might think. But think twice and give it a chance! Why to spend money on expensive creams when you can treat yourself with a soothing whole-egg mayonnaise mask? Gently spread the mayonnaise over your face and leave it on for about 20 minutes. Then wipe it off and rinse with cool water.  

As you can imagine, this mask is the best for someone with a really dry skin! Believe us, your face will feel smooth and cleaner than ever! Don’t forget to add couple of CBD drops for a variety, if you’d like! 

Lemon facial mask 

Lemons contain AHAs and BHAs, two types of hydroxy acid that remove dead skin cells and help clear up blackheads, acne, and discoloration.  

Create a homemade face mask by mixing the juice from one lemon with 1/4 cup olive oil or sweet almond oil, and 6-8 CBD Oil drops. Or mix the juice of 1/2 lemon with a tablespoon of honey. Apply to your face, wait 15 minutes, and rinse off with warm water.  

Egg facial mask 

For a little pampering, head to the refrigerator and grab an egg. If you have dry skin that needs moisturizing, separate the egg and beat the yolk. Oily skin takes the egg white, to which a bit of lemon or honey can be added.  

For normal skin, use the entire egg! Apply the mixed egg, relax and wait 30 minutes, then rinse. 

Avocado facial mask 

The benefits of topical application and consumption of green and yellow vegetables and fruits have been established by now. Avocado is rich in antioxidants like B-carotene, lecithin, and linoleic acid that nourish dehydrated, flaky, and chapped skin. Avocado is enriched with vitamin A, fatty acids, and antioxidants that make your skin soft and smooth and repair the damage caused by free radicals and pollution.  Honey is known for imparting a natural glow to your skin and reducing the effect of dark spots, scars, and pigmentation. So, while one ingredient smoothens your skin, the other brightens it and adds radiance. 

Scoop out the avocado into a bowl, mash it into a smooth paste and add 2 tablespoons of honey to this paste; add 5-6 drops of CBD Oil to give it even more smooth, lighter texture and a better result for your skin. Then mix it all very well.  

Apply this mixture to your face and leave it on for 20 minutes or until it dries up completely. Rinse your face with cold water and pat it dry with a towel. 

Honey facial mask 

Honey makes one of the best DIY face masks to combat acne because it’s a natural hydroscopic, which means it helps draw moisture out from the environments where bacteria can accumulate. It can also help tighten your pores and keep them clean! 

For this homemade face mask, start with: 

 2/3 cup of instant oats and heat them in 1/2 cup of hot water for about five minutes until the mixture thickens.  

While you're waiting, toss half a cored apple into a blender with 2 tablespoons of yoghurt, 2 tablespoons of honey, and one egg white. Blend it for 45 seconds, then add the heated oatmeal mixture. Blend it for another 20 seconds. Apply the mixture to your face and let it sit for 15 minutes for maximum nourishment. 

Here it is! All the easiest yet organic and extremely healthy recipes to make at home. Please do choose any of the most ‘delicious’ sounding like and try it at home! Remember, every recipe can be slightly varied, - don’t be afraid to use your imagination and improvise, if needed!  

Yours, 

Biomedicanna Team  

If You have any question, contact us!