lately i've been (slowly) switching from regular cosmetic/bath products to ones that don't contain nasty chemicals (which can be harmful to both me and the environment). if you want to read more, the campaign for safe cosmetics has a lot of great information about what's inside your shampoo, make-up, and perfume.
we now use a shampoo bar (no plastic packaging!) from a local soap maker; and i've pretty well stopped using conditioner (most days). our soap is DIYed from last summer's adventures in saponification. i'm playing around with a couple hair products that i've purchased from pur alternatives. and i recently purchased the burt's bees rosewater & glycerin toner which isn't perfect in terms of ingredients, but it's better than most.
but, to use that more eco-friendly toner, i've been buying disposable organic cotton cosmetic rounds. unfortunately, they just pile up in the garbage can because they can't go into our municipal compost system. i figured there had to be a better way, and decided to make my own washable cosmetic rounds.
i headed to the salvation army for inspiration, and came home with some second-hand wool sweaters - to shrink and turn into lovely soft felt. crafting in a green world has a good felting tutorial.
i found that my sweaters needed two rounds in the hot washer and two rounds in the hot dryer to get felted to my satisfaction. i felted a whole bunch of sweaters (for various crafting projects) at once, so i feel less guilty about the energy required to hot-wash and dry (usually we'd cold-wash and hang-dry our clothing). one important thing to note: your sweaters need to have a high wool content, i'd say at least 80%, and the closer to 100% wool you can get, the better the felting results.
so, once my sweater was felted, i cut it into small squares (about 6cm x 6cm each). you could stop here, and have perfectly functional make-up removal/toner pads. however, i decided to dress mine up a bit. so, i cut squares of fabric (from my scrap bin), about 7cm x 7cm, and ironed down all 4 edges on each fabric square.
i attached the fabric squares to the felted wool pieces, pinned in place, and then sewed the fabric to the felt around all 4 edges. the ones pictured are all plaid, but i've also made some baby blue and navy blue ones to mix-it-up and give as gifts. i'll be giving them in sets of 16 (enough for 2 weeks use plus a couple extra), in an assortment of fabric-scrap colours/patterns.
i'm also planning to make little mesh-bags for washing. these can go into the washer and dryer with your socks and underwear. they'd probably even air-dry pretty quickly (wool is great like that!).
and now for the fun part! i've made an extra set to give away. it's my first blog giveaway!
leave a comment telling me your favourite eco-friendly beauty product (or one you'd most like to try). i'll pick someone at random on friday april 23rd at 10:00am EST. if you don't know me personally, be sure to leave me some way to contact you. if you do know me personally, you might not win - but might get some of these as a gift for your next celebratory event :)