Why I Started Making My Own Personal Care and Cleaning Products

body products

One day I was flipping through Netflix and came across a movie called STINK.  Started watching and it changed the way I think about what I put on my body and how to clean my home. This is why I Started Making My Own Personal Care and Cleaning Products.

The movie talked about Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals, we will call them EDC’s. Please bear with me for a moment so I can explain, I can see your eyes rolling. Ha! I will keep this part short, promise! Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals mimic hormones that naturally occur in our bodies, including both female and male sex hormones, thyroid, pancreas, neurological, and immune system. According to the Natural Resources Defense Council, the endocrine system is very complex, regulating our body’s functions including growth, development, maturation, and operation of various organs. When this system is disrupted a variety of health problems can occur. I will name a few, but this list is very long: cancer, neurological problems, skin problems, diabetes, infertility, cardiovascular disease, allergies, inflammation, and obesity.

What types of EDC’s are in personal care and cleaning products?

Fragrances, triclosan which is an antibacterial and antifungal agent, parabens (preservative), pesticides, and artificial coloring. This is a short list that we can elaborate on in a future blog. So I made a few changes! Knowing that we cannot remove all EDC’s from our daily lives, I thought changing a few items that I use on a daily basis could make a difference and it did. My first adventure was to create a body wash that cleaned, smelled nice, lathered and did not dry out my skin. After trying various recipes I hit the jackpot! I had to tell everyone! As I began to spread the word and bragging to my mom and my aunt, I found out they have been making their own body wash and many other products for years! I should have just asked them first but a self-learned lesson is the best! My body wash can be customized with any scents using essential oils, moisturizing level, and amount of soap used. Here is the recipe that works for me!

Body Wash Recipe

  • ¼ cup  Aloe Vera Gel                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                
  • 2/3 cup Castile Soap                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
  • 1 tsp  Vitamin E                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
  • 1 tsp Oil of choice ( sweet almond, avocado, grapeseed, MCT)                                                                                                                                                                                                                
  • 10 to 20 drops of your favorite essential oils. I use Doterra. (optional)

Place in a bottle and shake it up.  Shake well when you are ready to use.

What you will notice with homemade body wash is that it is not thick. Why? Because EDC’s make traditional products thick! This is something that you can get used to. Also making products is extremely cheap! Even after buying all the products to make the body wash you end up with at least four bottles of the wash for the price of one popular name brand product. And without the EDC’s! I gifted all my clients a bottle of the wash for Christmas. I got positive feedback and a few requests for refills. If you would like your bottle refilled or bring me a bottle to fill, I will fill it for $3.

I also make my own face wash and I love it!

The recipe is the same as the body wash except I add ¼ cup of raw honey and 2 tsp of oil of choice. I also heat this slightly when making to blend all the ingredients. I have gotten lots of compliments on my skin lately which leads me to believe it’s working better than anything I have used. For the record, I have oily skin and pores that you can drive a truck though! AND NO CHEMICALS!

I make my own face moisturizer. I absolutely love it! This recipe will work for oily, dry or normal skin by adjusting to the type of oil you put into it. To find out which oil works best for your skin do a test. I had avocado, grapeseed, sweet almond oil, and fractionated coconut oil. I put a drop of each on my skin and waited to see which one gave me the results I wanted. Grapeseed oil works best for my skin. Much cheaper than spending $50 on a chemically laden moisturizer that does not work for your skin type. And you can cook with most of those oils! Win! Win!

Face Moisturizer

  • 3 TBSP Aloe Vera Gel                                                                                  
  • 1 TBSP Grapeseed Oil                                                                                               
  • 1 TBSP Shea or Cocoa Butter                                                                                  
  • 3 to 5 drops of essential oil of choice

In a small saucepan or double boiler melt the three ingredients and mix well. Place into a container of choice and add essential oils, mix well.

I store this in a glass 4 oz mason jar on my bathroom counter. It is best to store all your non-chemical products in glass. I prefer to use plastic in the shower area for safety.

The homemade body butter is another one of my projects. This recipe works great for me in colder weather but I may have to tweak it for summer. A larger batch of my face moisturizer would be a great warm weather product.

Body Butter

  • ¼ cup each of Shea Butter, Cocoa Butter, Coconut Oil, and ¼ cup of oil of choice. Choose from the list above.

Melt all oils in a double boiler. I use a pan of simmering water and set a glass mixing bowl on top. Melt and mix well. Set in refrigerator to cool and harden. With a hand, mixer breaks up the mix and continue to beat until it fluffs up and looks like whipped cream. Add 1 tsp vitamin E and essential oils. Store in a 12 to 16 oz glass mason jar.

I have made shampoo but I cannot seem to get it to work for my hair. Stay tuned for more on the shampoo.

Enough about how I clean my body, now what did I change to clean my home and laundry? I discovered a product called Sal Suds by Dr. Bronner’s. I love it! It is so versatile and can be used to clean most anything from laundry to dishes to bathrooms. Sal Suds is concentrated and can be diluted for many household needs. www.drbronner.com  has many ways to use this product. I take a ¼ cup and put into a 28 oz spray bottle filled with warm water. I use this to clean everything! Wiping counters, sinks, my yoga mat, and my favorite is dishes. I spray my dishes I’m hand washing with a squirt or two of this and scrub it and rinse. 

Laundry has been a fun adventure!

I have always been a Tide and Bounce girl so this was a hard change. The results will astound you! First I found Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda. Similar to baking soda but a different chemical compound. A box is very cheap and can be used for cleaning just about anything. I use ¼ cup of Super Washing Soda and two TBSP of Sal Suds. If the load needs a deodorizer I add a ¼ cup of white vinegar. I then dry my clothes with wool dryer balls instead of dryer sheets. Yes, the laundry has a little static but that can be resolved by not drying them to death! What happened? Washcloths that I have converted to cleaning rags can now be used as body washcloths again. I converted them because they no longer let the soap get lather when I took a shower. They also had this weird film on them that made them feel like slick plastic instead of a 100 percent cotton cloth. This is because my detergent and dryer sheets left a film of chemicals all over them and I was unable to use them. The same was happening with my clothes but I did not notice as much. Your clothes touch your skin, which is the largest organ of your body, any EDC’s on your clothes seep into your skin. Laundry items that need a gentler touch I have created a liquid soap that cleans and refreshes.

 Laundry Soap

  • 1 cup of Super Washing Soda                                                                                                
  • 1 cup Sal Suds   
  • 8 cups of water

Put all ingredients in an empty laundry jug and shake well.  Add water first to avoid excessive suds.

Over the last six months, I have noticed a huge difference in my skin. I used to get hives and itch constantly after a shower. Hives would pop up just because for no reason. There was a reason. EDC’s. NO MORE HIVES! I have had many health issues in the past seven years. Most unrelated to each other but quite a few were related to my endocrine system. My quest to get healthy, reduce chemicals in my home and body, and help the environment has been a wonderful adventure of learning, experimenting, and sharing! Join me on this journey as learning with others is a beautiful thing!

Have a wonderful day!


What’s New This Year – Decor, Fashion, and Things you need to know

What's New This Year

I am always interested in What’s New This Year, so I thought I would share some things with you. Can you believe how fast things change? This is good for me because I get bored easily and for that same reason this is going to be the new format for Lively Joy. I will be blogging about more subjects, you can read what you want and pass on what you don’t want to read. I hope everything is so interesting that you won’t pass on anything.  I will still post more about fashion and style and will be incorporating a lot more video and photos. Please commit below and let me know what you think and what you would like to read or watch.

So, what’s new this year? New in Home Decor?

Judging by trending searches there are lots of interesting changes that are going to be big this year.

Whats new this year in decor
Elle Decor

In home decorating, there are quite a few new trends. According to Elle, Statement ceilings are going to be big, from color to patterns. I really like this one if not overdone.  Mixing metals is big this year (I have been seeing lots of gold) if you want to see more check out one of my favorite decorating stores, Z gallery. what do you think about this trend mixing metals? Others trends are wall art, pattern plants, and spa-inspired bathrooms. I am excited about this one because I will be remolding two bathrooms this year (keep an eye out for that post). To read more go to  THE TOP 6 HOME DECOR TRENDS OF 2018, ACCORDING TO PINTEREST. 

What’s new this year in Fashion?

Whats new this year in color

PANTONE® Fashion Color Trend Report for Spring 2018 features the top 12 colors for men’s and women’s fashion. According to PANTONE, In another first, the PANTONE Fashion Color Trend report spotlights four classic colors, a family of color that transcends the seasons and provides structure to any wardrobe.

According to Harpers Bazaar, these are the trends this year and I love them all! Even though I am an over 50 fashionista I would wear all of these trends. So fun and unique.


whats new this year in fashion

Art infused prints will be big. They stand out and I would wear an art printed jacket with solid top and pants. Dark denim is on for this year. I like this trend because it is a slimming color however, I will still be wearing my light colors as well. Pink and lavender are the colors for spring and I love them! Two of my favorites from Harpers Bazaar post are plastics and work it out. The plastics I liked the best are the jackets (no surprise because I have a jacket addiction). I so want one! The workout wear this year are more like streetwear, I am getting a little tired of seeing everyone in leggins and spandex, even though I am still wearing them(:  A couple of the trends that I might not participate in as much are plaids and what they call The Virgin Suicides“.  You will have to check them out for yourself. The last but not least one is the New trench! They are all different with feathers, sheer fabrics and unique styles, I will be on the lookout for one of these. What do you think about this year fashion? What are you going to be on the lookout for?

What’s else is new? Early check-in for car rentals.

Early check-in car rental

At least for me, this was new. If you don’t know about this you are missing out. I traveled this past Holiday which is always busy. Before I left one of my clients asked me if I checked in early for my rental car. I had never heard of that! So I got on my PC to check it out. OMG, what a time saver! You can pick out your car at home, fill out the paperwork and make a payment. No need to talk to anyone.

When you get to the airport bypass the kiosk and the counter, go straight to where the cars are located and pick the car in your category. So easy. We used Alamo, they took our paperwork and showed us the choices, the guy even gave us a free upgrade without any additional paperwork, he said he was feeling good that day. Next time you travel check out this great service (most car rental companies are offering it now) and let me know what you think.

I hope you have learned something new in this post and like my new blog format. Please share your What’s New This Year.








Know Your Body Shape

Know your body type

I know everyone talks about body shape!

It really is necessary. Knowing your body shape is so important if you are going to look your best. The worse thing you can do is walk into a store and buy something just because you like it. You always have to take into consideration your body shape first.

Just like every “new trend” is not for everyone, every style is not for everyone either. Know your body shape and dress for it. There are two ways to do this, the first one is to look in the mirror, the second is to take measurements. So take off your clothes and look in the mirror or get out your measuring tape and a notepad and start measuring (it helps to have someone help you). Personally, I would just look in the mirror.

Take measurements to find your body shape

Shoulder: Start right where the shoulder drops.

Chest: Measure across the center part of your chest, the biggest part.

Waist: stand up straight and don’t suck in your belly, measure the smallest part of your waist.

Hips: measure the biggest part of your hip area across the butt. Don’t let the tape slide down the back side.

 6 different body types to choose from

Inverted Triangle – your shoulders are larger than your bust and hips.

Rectangle – You really don’t have a bust, waist, or hips. There isn’t a lot of difference between the measurements.

Triangle – You have hips that are wider than your shoulders and usually a small waist. Sometimes called pear or gonad.

Hourglass – You have close to the same measurement around your shoulders and hips with a smaller defined waist.

Rounded – Your measurements are bigger in your shoulders and bust and smaller in your hips. This type usually has skinnier legs and carries weight in the whole upper body.

Diamond – This body type carries weight in the belly but has smaller bust, hips, and legs.

Know your body shape


Did you figure it out? What body shape are you? Leave a commit below.

The next few post will be on how to dress for your body shape, what jeans you should be wearing, and what accessories look good on your body shape.                                                                                      I will also tell you what exercise you can do to change your body shape (being that I am also a personal trainer), remember you can’t spot reduce, but you can change your body shape. I did! I was a triangle and still do carry my weight in my thighs. Through weight training, I have made my back wider. I now don’t look so wide on the bottom because my back is wider and balances my upper and lower body.

This is Julie. She has been working out with us for about three years. She is a triangle body shape (or used to be), but because she has made her back wider with weight training it is harder to tell that she carries weight in her thighs and butt. I love her tiny waist! You can read Julie’s style story here, Creative and fun.

body shape back

body shape front

Make sure you follow this blog so you don’t miss out. Please share!

Beauty Secrets You Need To Know About and That Will Surprise You

Beauty secrets you need to know about

We are all looking for magic beauty secrets.

Something that will keep us young without having to go under the knife. At least, I am! Too often we think of cosmetics as the only alternative, but what else is there.  I want something natural that’s not been animal tested or something that doesn’t have chemicals in it.

Here are a few natural beauty secrets for you to try that you might not know about. Let me know what you think!

Collagen Peptides

Have you heard of collagen? It is a fibrous protein and can help your skin and nails to stay young. As we age it begins to break down. You can read all about it at Well and Good. They even have an interview with Jennifer Aniston who puts collagen in her protein drinks. More and more people including the “stars” are using it to look younger, and not it the form of botox either. I have been using it for about a year, the bad thing is I have only been drinking it in a protein drink 2 times a week. I am going to put it in other drinks every day to see if I can tell a difference. So, check it out for a couple of months and let me know what you think.

I get mine from Amazon it is grass fed and pasture raised. 

 Bentonite Healing Clay

This healing clay has been used way back before it was even packaged. Amazon has 4 1/2 stars and over 7923 reviews, I always read reviews before I buy. Pliney the elder devoted an entire chapter of his natural history” to the many uses of clay for pimples, black heads, and skin tightening. Many famous naturopaths, such as kuhn, and kneipp have contributed to the revival of the uses of clay through their natural treatments for arthritis and skin ailments.

I do use Bentonite Clay for a face mask about one time a month. I think I will use it a little more often, my neck could use some tightening.

 Niacinamide Vitamin B3 Cream Serum

I read the reviews on this one and I bought it! I will do a before and after photo of my neck so you can see if it works. It had 4 1/2 stars and 1005 reviews.

Why use Niacinamide Serum?

• Provides natural anti-aging benefits

• Reduces the appearance of hyperpigmentation

• Improves skin’s overall tone and texture

• Helps protect skin from free radical damage

• Blend of natural and organic ingredients


Burt’s Bees Products

Another product I am seeing everywhere and I’m sure you have heard of “Berts Bees”. They have been around for over 25 years. I have been seeing their product everywhere and have bought some recently. I was interested in the ingredients so I decided to do some research.

All products made by Burt’s Bees contain natural ingredients no phthalates, petrochemicals, parabens or sulfates. They are a member of the Natural Products Association, Burt’s Bees is committed to using safe ingredients derived from sustainable sources without animal testing.  They also use environmentally friendly packaging. Yah!

Above is a nice package that includes a little of everything. I bought the lipstick, at the grocery store, which has natural colors in it. I love the pink!

If you have any products you use that work we would love to hear about them. What do you think about these Beauty Secrets?

These are affiliate links. However, I did do my research on all products and the opinions are my own and honest.