My personal care routine

I shower every day, but I don’t use shampoo or conditioner. I “wash” my hair with water alone. This involves wetting my head, then scrubbing my scalp as if I were using shampoo. The scrubbing helps redistribute oils, and remove dirt and dead skin from my hair. I’ve been doing this for about two years. It works best if you have soft water. The minerals in hard water tend to bind to sebum, leaving you with sticky, white, waxy buildup.

Before that, I used baking soda in place of shampoo, which works fine. Before that, I used natural shampoo.

Bath brush. Picture from Ancient Industries. I bought mine at a cultural fair in Sweden. It was made by the Onslunda Borstmuseum (brush museum), a working museum in southern Sweden.

To wash my body, I usually just use a wetted washcloth or bath brush. Maybe twice a week, I’ll use bar soap as well. J uses Dr. Bronner’s bar soap (unscented), so I usually use that since it’s already in the shower.

I exfoliate my face once or twice a week. I make my own scrub out of granulated sugar, baking soda, and sweet almond oil (low comedogenic rating).

My shaving setup is something like this, but less artsy. Image from

I shave using a straight razor and a shaving brush. I made my shaving soap out of tallow (beef fat) I got for free from my local butcher. They normally just throw the fat away.

I moisturize my face and body using sweet almond oil. I’ve bought it in large containers in the past, to minimize packaging, but I believe Rainbow Grocery in SF offers it in bulk. Wow!

I make my own chapstick (sweet almond oil + beeswax to harden). I put it in chapstick containers saved from previous purchases and the occasional forage. It’s surprising how many dropped chapsticks you can find.

I use handkerchiefs to blow my nose. The ones I have are from my grandparents’ estate. I’m pretty sure everyone’s grandparents have some. If not, check Etsy, eBay, thrift stores, and estate sales!

That’s all I can think of now. Please see my other postĀ for tips!

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