Monday, February 28, 2011

Luck of the Green Beer (CP tutorial)

St. Patrick's Day is just around the corner and I have been looking for some fun soap making projects for this lucky holiday. But I have been searching high and low for some fun project that would be festive for this special day. By the luck of the Irish I came across this cold process soap tutorial Luck of the Green Beer soap from Anne-Marie (aka The Soap Queen) who has kindly posted on her blog Soap and the Finer Things in Life. According to Anne-Marie, if you never made cold process soap before you may want to practice with a simpliar recipe before trying this recipe. She says that adding beer to a cold process recipe is definately advanced technique.

Whether you are Irish or not, you may want to celebrate St. Patrick's Day by making this Green Beer soap. Now remember that the recipe calls for beer and it is not meant for drinking.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Solid Sugar Cube Scrub Recipe

Have you recently received a gift of solid sugar cube scrubs and just loved it? How would you love to recreate that special experience? Well, there are a couple of recipes floating around on the web, but I found a recipe on Aroma Web that you can make for yourself or to give out as gifts.

Never heard of solid sugar cube scrubs? According to Aroma Web, natural sugar scrubs are a wonderful alternative to the more synthetic and abrasive products on the market. They gently polish and exfoliate the skin, are luxurious and smell naturally delicious. Most natural sugar scrubs have the consistency of a thick, grainy liquid. The ingredients often separate over time, and though they have so many wonderful advantages, sometimes it can become a nuisance to work with them. Additionally, fluid sugar scrubs can harbor bacteria rather quickly.

So have I piqued your interest? Then I suggest you try making your own Solid Sugar Cube Scrub Recipe and let know how it turns out.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

MakeScents February 2011 Issue

Today I purchased the February 2011 issue of MakeScents from Barnes and Noble. I know that it sounds odd that a February issue of a magazine is on the shelf on the last weekend of the month of issue but since it is an international magazine, it is always going to be stocked on the shelves an issue behind.

It is a nice issue devoted to making products for Valentine's Day which included bath bombs with flowers and detox bath salts. Other products included in this issue are aches and pains massage bars, fresh mint soaps (with heart embedded shapes), potpourri, rose water shower jelly, winter facial detox products and special hand cream. What was really interesting about the hand cream/lotion recipe ingredients included were beeswax, paraffin wax, borax, oil and potato water. Yes, I said potato water. Also missing was a preservative. For all of you cold process soapmakers, this issue included a cold process soapmaking project by Sonja Porter. Oh Yes! I have to say that the editor missed or made a faux paux. On page 50 the headline for the project is Rose Petal Body Scub. It should be Rose Petal Body Scrub.

Now at the end of March will be the new issue of this magazine. Some of the topics covered will be making a chocolate body bar for Easter, making gifts for Mother's Day, making scents - solid perfumes and sugar cubes and other surprises. One big surprise is the fact that starting next month the magazine will be called Naturally Beautiful. The magazine will be going under a radical makeover but will still have the same great content with projects and recipes for making your natural beauty products; but according to the outgoing editor there will be much more for us to read and enjoy. I have to say that only after purchasing two issues I really prefer the current name of the magazine - MakeScents. I think it is clever but maybe the publisher (or someone at the top) decided that the magazine needed to have a more general name since the magazine covered more that scents.

So I will have to say that the jury will be out until the new issue comes out in March. And will have to see if the publication will have more than 65 pages to an issue or if the the price of an issue will go up. But one thing that I found hysterical when I purchase the magazine was that the clerk behind the counter did not know that they sold this magazine. I said to her that I only found out about this magazine earlier this month when the January issue was available. It is the only magazine that is dedicated to a variety of bath and body products - not just soap. I hope this magazine will succeed and prosper for years to come.

Gradual Gradations in Cold Process Soap

In a recent newsletter from Brambleberry, there was a recipe for a Gradual Graduation Soap Bar. When I saw the picture, I just had to share it with you. I thought the technique was way cool. And what is so cool about it is that the lab colors dyes that Brambleberry used bleeded to make this unique coloration to the bar of soap. This is an easy techinque that gives dramatic results. So if you ware looking for something different to color your soaps, then you should try this. This is so cool and that I am eager to try it.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Strawberry Body Butter Stick

Do you love body butter but you are having trouble finding it in a travel version? How about trying this recipe for this Strawberry Body Butter Stick from Craftbits? If you love strawberries you will love this one, but if you don't then you can subsitute the strawberry fragrance oil with something more to your liking. If you are thinking what type of container to put this in, I would suggest getting the deodorant stick tubes from one of the online supplies like Wholesale Supplies Plus and then making a really cute label for it. But make sure that the container you purchase can accomodate this recipe. If it doesn't, then you will have to adjust the recipe.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Chunky Bar Soaps

Normally when I make melt and pour soaps, I usually use the clear glycerin soap and use the opaque white soap for the embedded shapes I place in the bar of soap.

Here is a project for Chunky Bar Soaps from that does the opposite. Why not try this project and try something new for your melt and pour soapmaking projects. I do not know why but these soaps remind me of those Brach nougat candies that you would buy in bulk at Safeway. So I would say that this soap project brings back a happy memory of my childhood. May I should try and make these soaps soon.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Sugar Scrub Recipe

If you have made a salt scrub in the past but are looking for a similiar recipe using sugar, I have found this recipe for a sugar scrub on

The ingredients in this recipe include white sugar, brown sugar, espsom salt, sea salt, olive oil, vegetable glycerin, and essential or fragrance oil.

Now to be honest, I have never made a sugar scrub this way but I have heard that sugar dissolves easier in the oil than salt does. I have heard that some will combine both salt and sugar because of that. So if anyone has made a sugar scrub in the fashion, let us know what your experience.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Lavender Orange Hand Cream

Lavender seems to be one of the top fragrances that I found that people like in their body products. In in hand cream recipe combines lavender and orange into an unique blend. If you would like to try and take a stab at blending lavender and orange, then you should try this easy recipe makes a rich hand cream from Aromatherapy at Home.

The ingredients you need for this recipe are 3 tablespoons jojoba oil, 1 tablespoon mango butter,1 tablespoon grated beeswax, 1/4 cup rosewater (or filtered water), 10 drops lavender essential oil and 5 drops sweet orange essential oil.

To make this recipe you will need to warm jojoba oil, mango butter and beeswax gently over low heat until beeswax melts. Remove this mixture from heat. Warm rosewater over low heat. Remove from heat. When both mixtures are lukewarm, slowly pour liquid into oil, beating steadily with a wire whisk or an electric beater set on the lowest speed until cool, thick and smooth. Stir in essential oils. Spoon cream into a clean jar and let cool before covering.


Monday, February 21, 2011

Peppermint Foot Spray

Treat your feet to this tingly foot spray. The peppermint smells great and will revive tired feet in no time.


1 cup distilled water
1/4 cup vodka
1/4 tsp. Essential Oil of Peppermint
1/4 tsp. Tee Tree Oil


Combine all ingredients and pour into a spray bottle.


Sunday, February 20, 2011

Love Inspired Body Care Recipes

How would you like some love inpired bath products ideas? In a recent article from The Mountain Rose Herb Blog has some true Love Inspired Body Care Recipes. The recipes include Brown Sugar and Vanilla Sugar Scrub, Lovers Delight Massage Oil, Sweet Lavender Bath Salts and Rose Geranium Bath Bombs (which are pictured). I would say that my favorite recipe would be the bath bombs since roses are my favorite flower.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Homemade Lip Balm Recipe from Martha Stewart and Whole Living

Learn to make your own all-natural red lip balm with this easy recipe from in-house crafter Kristin St. Clair. Her Homemade Lip Balm recipe appears on Martha's Whole Living website. What I really like is the decorative paper wrapping the lip balm tubes. I am wondering if the scrapbook paper that I have been collecting over the years will work for this. I do not think that it is too thick. I will have to try it out to see. Any suggestions?

The ingredients you will need for this project are 2 teaspoons grated beeswax, 5 teaspoons carrier oil (such as castor, sunflower, or jojoba), 1 teaspoon vitamin E oil, 1 teaspoon carmine (natural red) coloring oil, 6 or 7 drops essential oil (such as vanilla). All of the lip balm ingredients available from TKB Trading. Lip balm tubes, pots, tins, and pouring trays available from sks-bottle. Essential oils and vitamin E oil available from Whole Body or other drug stores.

The tools and materials you will need for this project are a Double boiler, Mixing stick or spoon, Lip balm tubes, pots, or tins, Pouring tray with plastic scraper (optional), Decorative paper and 2-inch-wide clear packing tape.

Making your own lip balm is very easy. Just follow the step by step instructions and your lip balm will come out just perfect.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Springtime Rainbow Soaps Tutorial from SoapyLove

Ever since I took my first melt and pour soap making class back in 2002, I am always looking for different ways to create unique soaps. I have always admired Debbie Chialtas's (aka SoapyLove) soap creations and now she has a new tutorial for Springtime Rainbow Soaps which appears on her blog SoapyLove Daily Ditties.

What really attracted me to this project is for a couple of reason. First of all, my favorite time of the year is spring with all of the beautiful burst of color from the flowers. Second, in my younger days I really loved the rainbows and this really brings back happy memories. And now as an adult I am into hearts. So this project would really marry those two favorites into one. Lastly, just looking at the picture of the final product makes me happy.

So why not bring in spring alittle early and create these adorable soaps? If you are interested in more of Debbie's projects then check out her blog. She has a wonderful book out titled, "Soapylove: Squeaky-Clean Projects Using Melt-and-Pour Soap" which has alot of great melt and pour projects. I have the book and I think it is one of the best melt and pour soapmaking books out there for unqiue advanced projects. If you would like to take a class with Debbie and you are in the San Francisco Bay Area, she often teaches through The Nova Studio in Point Richmond. So check out The Nova Studio to see when her next class is offered.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Herbal Massage Oil Recipe

I recently found this website titled that publishes some great recipes. In a recent post, shared a really nice recipe for a Herbal Massage Oil that is more a recipe for a infused massage oil than a typical massage oil that you may have seen before. So if you are looking for a massage oil that is devired from a infused oil then give this recipe a try. And make sure to check out's other recipes and informational posts.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Exfoliating Kisser Scrub Recipe

Valentine's Day maybe over, but is exfoliating your lips may have to be exfoliated more than one time a year. You never heard of a lip scrub before? To put it simply, a lip scrub is similiar to a body scrub but created for your lips. It helps with exfoliating the dead skin off of your chapped lips. So are you interested in creating your own lip scrub? Here is Exfoliating Kisser Scrub recipe that appears on the blog Soap and the Finer Things in Life. Give it a try to more smoother lips.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Homemade Whipped Sugar Body Scrubs Recipe

Are you tired of paying for the high price of whipped sugar scrubs in the retail establishment? Do you know that it is quite simple to create it at home? This Whipped Sugar Body Scrubs recipe by eHow Contributor, Maggie Hira can show you how to make with a few key ingredients and an electric blender or mixer. When combined, the ingredients create a wonderful moisterizing and exfloliating scrub that you can use for yourself or share it and give it out to your friends as gifts.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Castile Soap and Other Recipes

I recently found a new site that has alot of great recipes to try. was created by Gregory White who shares his passion for making bath and body products. He has alot of great recipes including this one for Castile Soap. If you like this recipe then you should check out his recipe for Coffee Soap, Rose Clay Spa Soap , Chamomile Face Soap, Calendula Soap and Hippy Girl Patchouli Soap. I look forward to see more fantastic recipes from this site. I will be check back often to see what is new.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

How to Make Candles in Tins

Do you have decorative tins and you do not know what to do with them? Instead of storing odds and ends, why not create a candle? Check out these instructions on How to Make Candles in Tins from Country Living Magazine. These would definately enhance your decor or would make great gifts.

This project originally appeared in the book Country Living Homemade Candles.

For this project you will need the following supplies: Four 6-inch-length wire-core wicks, primed 4 wick holders 4 tin cans (approximately 4 inches deep and 2 inches wide), 2.5 ounces stearin, 1 disk wax dye (if desired ) and 1.5 pounds paraffin wax.

If you want to be eco-friendly then I would purchase soy wax (container blend) would be the best. I have not tried subsituting one wax for another so I do not know if the melted soy wax would make the same as melted paraffin wax. If anyone knows, please let us know.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Aromatherapy Home Recipes

Are you looking for some aromatherapy recipes for your home? Well I found some recipes that could help all year round or for this time of the year when the house is all closed up for the winter. Aromatherapy At Home is a site that has some recipes that you may want to try. On their page for Aromatherapy Home Recipes they include recipes for Herb Soap Concentrate, Citrus Scrubber, Fragrant Wood Polish, Disinfectant Air Freshener, Stinky Sneaker Sachet Blend, and Minty Fresh Sachet Blend.

Do you have any sites that have really good aromatherapy recipes for the home or housecleaning products that you would like to share? I would really appreciate it since I recently started getting interested in making my own eco-friendly housecleaning products.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Crafting Your Own Balm

In a recent newsletter posting from Mountain Rose Herbs website, they included some lip balm recipes that I would like to try. In their article on Crafting Your Own Balm, they have include the following lip balm recipes that you may want to try: Mandarian Nutmeg, Peppermint Cocoa, and Lime Coconut. All of the sound really good. But I would say that the Lime Coconut somehow brought up images in my mind of Key Lime Pie and Florida. So I will have to try and make that lip balm recipe and send it off to my friend who lives in Pinellas Park, FL.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

MakeScents Magazine

Yesterday, I went to Barnes & Noble in Redwood City to pass the time. I first went to the craft section of magazine rack to look what was new. I picked up a couple of green crafting magazines and then I saw a new magazine titled MakeScents. It is a wonderful magazine from the UK which is soley devoted to making handmade bath and beauty products.

In this issue (January 2011) it had 7 new product instructions on how to make deodorant, fizzy rockey bath melts, lip balm, and more. Also included were articles on blending oils, a beginner's guide to melt and pour soap and a recipe for making your own natural oven cleaner. What was really great to see was the article on Debbie Chiltas of SoapyLove fame about her book The Art of Soap which included the best stories and photos from her new soap making bible. What I found really funny was a review of a lip balm product from Creativity for Kids. On the cover of the magazine has a headline "Craft with Kids...Making natural lip balms with your little ones". But the author of the article mentions a strange smell when making the lip balms in this kit. She mentions the ingredients in the kit are paraffiinum liquidum, polybutene, ethylhexl pamitate, canddlillia cera, cera microscristallina, propylparaben, methylparaben, bht, and tocopheral acetate. And thought it these ingredients were not very appealing to putting the final on her/his lips. In the final verdict, the author had reservations about this product and how pure the ingredients used. Like hello? Anyone who knows that these ingredients are not pure and natural unless you used beeswax, shea butter, etc in your recipes.

I was really hestiant to purchase this magazine because of the price. A single issue costs $9.50 plus tax. One can get a subscription. For version in print it will cost 60 pounts for ROW and a digital vesion is 25 pounts. But I was really interested in alot of the articles, so it was worth it. What is great about this magazine that it covers a wide range of subjects on making your own homemade bath and body products. But you must realize that most of the advertisers in this magazine are from the UK. Now this magazine should not be confused with another magazine called MakingScents which is strictly devoted to aromatherapy.

For right now, I will be visiting Barnes and Noble each month to see what the magazine has to offer and then determine if I am going to buy it. Maybe in the future when I have discretionary income I will decide to get a full subsription. The next issue of MakeScents, the magaine will cover Dry Shampoo, cold base moisterizing recipe, bath salts, Valentine's soaps and the latest news, reviews and products. Now I will giving you fair warning on this magazine - since it is coming from the UK that it may be delayed in the stores. For example, the February 2011 was supposed to be out on January 27, 2011. It is now way past that so I would call prior to driving down to your location Barnes and Noble.

Overall, I am happy with this type of magazine because of the variety of topics covered. Plus there are not too many magazines devoted to this subjet. Sure there is Saponfier which is dedicated to soap, but that is all. I hope to be a future reader of this magazine and I hope you will find this magazine useful to you.

If you would like to subscribed, then I suggest going to the following link -

Valentines Day's Soaps

If you are looking for a creative soap project to give your Valentine's for Valentine's Day, then here is the project for you. The fun of melt and pour soap is that it's ready to use right after you unmold it! Be sure to check out the Valentines Soap Project Gallery for more photos of the different variations the author/crafter has made.

(1) Valentines Day Layered Melt and Pour Soaps

(2)What You Need to Make Layered Valentines Soaps

(3) Melt the Soap

(4) Lay in the Letters and/or First Layer

(5) Prepare the Rest of the Bar

(6) Pour the "Bottom" Layer of Soap

(7) Unmold the Soaps

To go directly to the instructons, click on this link:

If you would like to add some pizazz to your soaps, you can vary the look of your soap with:

* different color letters and/or bars

* using white and/or clear soap base

* using glitter

* using many different colors and layers - I could have laid in several different colors in the larger heart molds I used. Just melt a few ounces of each color, get a few pipettes, and paint away! You'll be amazed at how easy it is - and how beautiful your final soaps are. Almost too pretty to wash with!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Moisturizing Body Scrub Tutorial from Handmade Philly

Body Scrubs are one of those products that have a hefty price in a retail establishhment, but you can make your own from some simple ingredients from the grocery store.

If you would like to make this recipe from Handmade Philly on how to make your own moisterizing body scrub you can purhcase the following ingredients and watch the video below:


1 large, wide-mouthed jar, preferably 8 oz or 16 oz volume
1-2 cups fine-medium ground salt OR sugar (including brown or white sugar)
4 oz neutral, vegetable oil (sesame, grapeseed, jojoba, etc)
10-20 drops essential oil or essential oil blend (lavender, sweet orange, peppermint, etc)
10-20 drops Vitamin E (if possible) ~ antioxidant to protect the oils

Video from You Tube


Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Garden Glory Salt Scrub and Exfoliating Cream Soap Recipes

Here are two new recipes that you may want to try - Garden Glory Salt Scrub and Exfoliating Cream Soap from The Natural Beauty Workshop. The Garden Glory Salt Scrub is very easy to make. And once you make the salt scrub it becomes one of the ingredeints for the Exfoliating Cream Soap. Give it a try.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Valentines Solid Bubble Bath Bars

Here is another fun and cute Valentine's day Bath Project that can be made for your sweetie. This recipe for Valentines Solid Bubble Bath Bars from Lovin' Soap is very interesting. First of all it uses arrowroot powder instead of baking powder. I have never used arrowroot powder so I do not know how well it works in a bath fizzy recipe. Second of all, the recipe asks for a SLSa and a liquid surfactant. I have not used these either but SLS is a Sodium Lauryl Sulfate but I do know what the a after it is? Anyone know?

If you like to create these bath treats and would like to see how they are made, then you may want to watch the instruction clip that Lovin' Soap includes with the instructions.

Blending Labcolors - A Primer

The Soap Queen recently received a photo inquirying why her purple lab color did not go purple. She suggested diluting the lab color rather using it straight from the container may do the trick. If you are having problems and would like to learn how to dilute your labcolors, then read The Soap Queen's article which appears on her blog Soap and the Finer Things in Life.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Valentine's Day Soap Project

Looking for a simple, yet unique gift for Valentine's Day?
Well you can whip up this quick and simple melt and pour soap to get you in the mind to "Think Pink" and get ready for the romance. This Valentine Soap Project from Anne Marie appears on her blog Soap and the Finer Things in Life and would be the answer to your needs.

If you do not know how to create soap by the melt and pour technique, Anne Marie has provided a link to the melt and pour soap tutorial. It is also a great refresher for those who those who forgotten how.

If you need any supplies for this project, you can purchase whatever you need through Brambleberry.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Valentine's Day Bath Tub Tea

Drop a heart shaped tea bag into your bath to add a little love to your tub. Bath tea is a favorite bath treat of peole who love to soak in the tub. Why not make these adorable Heart Shaped Tub Teas for Valentine's Day? This adorable project appeared on the sute The Natural Beauty Workshop and would be something different from the normal box of candy one would give as a gift on this romantic holiday.

You can pack a lot of goodness into one little tea bag. Herbs, milk powders, and salts are just a few of the many things you can stuff inside these single serving bath treats. Best of all, the herbs will be safely contained inside the bag, keeping your tub (and plumbing) safe from a messy situation. Fusible tea bags can be used as-is or cut into fun shapes. In honor of Valentine's Day, The Natural Beauty Workshop made up a batch of heart shaped bags and filled them with an especially romantic recipe.

The Natural Beauty Workshop makes the following suggestions:

This recipe can be easily customized or altered to suit your tastes. Try changing the essential oil blend, or selecting different herbs. Milk powders, Clays, Water Soluble Extracts, or Grain Products can also be added to bath teas. Like salt, they will dissolve into the water when added to the bath.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Valentine's Day Heart Embed Candles

Need a gift to make for this Valentine's Day? Then create this twist on chunk candles is perfect for Valentine's Day! from Peak Candle Supply. This adorable candle will be a great accent to your party. So check out the instructions Valentine's Day Heart Embed Candles project and get started on your project today!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Valentine Hugs and Kisses Soap Recipe by Soap Queen

Valentine's Day is just around the corner. Need a gift to give out? Why not create these adorable soaps? This Valentine Hugs and Kisses Soap Recipe appears on the blog Soap and the Finer Things in Life in January 2009.

These soaps are simple enough to create. If you are unable to find the supplies you need at your local craft store, you can purchase all the supplies you need from Brambleberry.

Face Scrubs Recipe

Do you use a facial scrub? How would you like to create your own? In this article from provides two different recipes for facial scrubs. One is a general face scrub and the other one is for those who have dry skin. I guess for those like me who have oily skin we can use the general face scrub on our skin. According to the author, oily skin care take using face scrubs more often than dry skin, which seems to be the total opposite of logic. But, dry skin is more fragile than oily skin. Oily skin needs the pores cleaned more frequently. If one has blemished and oily skin, such as acne, they should choose a facial scrub that is free of or low in carrier oils and high in fibers and clays – however, honey is acceptable.

What I really found interesting in this article was that there a few ingredients you can add to your facial scrub to enhance the effects. For example, apple cider vinegar helps the skin maintain its natural acidity while yogurt helps to balance the PH of the skin. I never thought of adding those ingredients to a facial scrubs.

So if you would like a facial scrub to exfoliate the skin on your face, you may want to try the recipes in this article. If you have a recipe that yo would like to share, please let me know I will share it with my readers.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Valentine's Soap Balls and Bubble Bath

Place soap balls and bubble bath together in a basket and wrap them to give away as a Valentine's Day present. This idea came from Parents Village.

• 4 cups of soap flakes• 1 cup water, divided in two• 1/2 tsp. food coloring• Mixing bowl• Measuring cups and spoons• Large spoon• Cookie sheet• Foil• 6 tsp. baby oil• 1/2 cup shampoo

1. Measure the soap flakes and put them in the mixing bowl.
2. Add food coloring to the soap.
3. Add small amounts of water at a time from 1/2 cup of water. Stir until the soap pulls away from the sides of the bowl. It will form a ball. The mixture should be thick, not sticky.
4. Roll small amounts of the soap mixture into balls. Use your hands to do this.
5. Place the finished soap balls on a foil-covered cookie sheet.
6. Allow the soap balls to dry for a week.
7. Combine 6 teaspoons of baby oil, 1/2 cup shampoo, and 1/2 cup water in a container.
8. Put a lid on the container and shake it.
9. Write directions on a note to go with the bubble bath. It should read "Add a few tablespoons of bubble bath to warm bath water."
10. Put the bubble bath together with some soap balls in a Valentine's Day gift basket.


Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products Class @ The Nova Studio

In my everyday life, I try to be green and eco-friendly as I can. I lived through the energy crisis of the 1970’s so I always turned off the lights after I left the room. And I was taught to turn off the water while brushing my teeth and taking short showers. This came handy during the 1976 and 1977 drought years in California. Then when Menlo Park started there recycling program in the late 80’s, I was diligent about recycling newspapers, aluminum cans, etc. And of course, I save the plastic bags from the grocery store and recycle them properly. Then in 2011, Menlo Park finally graduated to composting paper products and food scraps with the garden clippings. But one thing lagged and that was using eco-friendly cleaning products.

Now some of the eco-friendly cleaning products had been on the market for some time and I had not been using or gave much attention to them. My reasoning behind that was one the cost and two I was unfamiliar with these products. It was only until recently, I started using Planet dishwashing soap for washing my dishes and I felt that it was time to learn more. But I did not know where to go. I know that The Nova Studio in Point Richmond, CA had offered a class in eco-friendly cleaning products class in a boot camp but it was not offered as an individual class until now.

For the first time in January 2011, Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products was offered as a separate class and I was really excited. To tell you the truth, I did not know what to expect because this class was out of my element of bath and body products classes that I have taken over the years through The Nova Studio.

In this class taught by Melanie Monteverde was a very informative class on how to make your own window and mirror cleaner, bathroom cleaner and powder scrub. I was a little nervous on how complicated it would be to make these products but after the class I found that it was not all that difficult. What make the making of each product go smoothly was Melanie’s helper Nancy setting up stations with the different ingredients plus having a post it note at each telling each student how much of the ingredient was needed. This was most helpful because we did not have to carry our handouts to each station and read the recipe.

Another idea I liked about the recipes that most of the ingredients could be found at your local supermarket, which means I can save a lot of money by not having to pay shipping and handling charges if I had to purchase the supplies online. What is also great about the recipes is that one can make small batches at time which means that I am more likely to make my own cleaners. Some might find small batches to be a nuisance, but you figure that you make have a three month expiration period and if you may make a large batch and do not use it all then you are wasting valuable products and ingredients in addition throwing out money. Just think that if you make small batches you can change the fragrance each time you make a batch. For my class products, I used mostly eucalyptus and mint but I am thinking of orange and clove for my next batch.

And finally, I learned that making my own cleaning products was extremely easier than I thought. That was the most important factor. Because if it is too difficult to create then I will lose interest and never recreate what I learned in class. I would say that from now on I will be making these household cleaners to use on a regular basis. For the products that I find too difficult to make such as dishwashing soap or detergent, I will be purchasing those from my local supermarket or discount store.

So are you looking to become more environmentally friendly and want to start out slow? Or would you like to take a gander at making your own cleaning products instead of purchasing them? Well, I highly recommend taking Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products at The Nova Studio. To see when the next class is offered, check the studio’s website for the next available class. You will not regret taking this class.

Sweet Treats Mini Soap Chocolates Tutorial

Here is a really cute idea for Valentine's Day or any other occasion from Erin Pikor of Naiad Soap Arts. Learn to make these Sweet Treats Mini Soap Chocolates and give them to your sweetie for Valentine's Day. If you package these in a candy box, you should put a warning that these are not met for eating. They do look good enough to eat!

I will have to give this a try since I already have the mold which I purchased a long time ago but was not planning to use for making edible treats.