The do-it-yourself movement is experiencing a revival as men and women everywhere are cooking, sewing and building genuine items that money simply can’t buy. In Simple Gifts (Voyageur Press, 2012), author Jennifer Worick offers step-by-step instructions for creating 50 easy and inspired handmade gifts for everyone on your list. From a stylish knitted apron for the dedicated baker to a sturdy toolbox for the handyman, these gifts shine in their quality and thoughtfulness. Learn how to make your own deodorant, whether for yourself or as part of a bath-and-body gift basket, in this excerpt taken from chapter 3, “Lotions and Potions.”
You can purchase this book from the Mother Earth Living store: Simple Gifts.
Simply perfect for: Outdoorsy or environmentally minded folks
Long days or intense workouts can take their toll and leave anyone feeling less than fresh. I’ve experimented with all sorts of reputedly strong deodorants and antiperspirants, but I got to thinking that there must be a way to make my own. Here, witch hazel, along with soothing aloe vera and essential oils of rosemary and lavender (which have antifungal and antiseptic properties, respectively), make for a very effective concoction.
In giving a homemade deodorant, make sure you know the recipient well or else he or she might be offended, thinking you are trying to send them a message about hygiene. If you are concerned that your loved one will get the wrong idea, consider packaging it up with a few other products rather than making it a solo gift.
• 1/2 cup (125 ml) distilled water
• 1/4 cup (62.5 ml) witch hazel extract
• 1 tablespoon (15 ml) aloe vera gel
• 1 teaspoon (5 ml) liquid glycerin
• 15 drops rosemary essential oil
• 10 drops lavender essential oil
• Large pot
• Measuring cups
• Measuring spoons
• Metal tongs
• Cookie sheet
• 8-ounce (236 ml) spray bottle
1. Sterilize the bottle and tools in a hot-water bath.
2. Add the distilled water, witch hazel, and aloe vera to the bottle. Put the top on and shake the bottle vigorously. Before the ingredients have a chance to separate, add the glycerin and essential oils. Put the top back on, shake it up, and you are ready to use.
Shake well and spritz natural deodorant under each arm a couple of times. Wait to dry before getting dressed.
One 8-ounce (236 ml) spray bottle
This is a deodorant only. It will not help prevent any serious perspiration.
Wrap it up
Use an old hairspray spray pump—clean with hot soapy water to remove residue first—or pick up an inexpensive plastic spray bottle at the drugstore. Create an instruction label on a large tag and tie it onto the bottle with raffia. You could even stamp the recipient’s name or initials on one side for a customized but useful gift tag.
This excerpt has been reprinted with permission from Simple Gifts: 50 Little Luxuries to Craft, Sew, Cook and Knit, published by Voyageur Press, 2010. Buy this book from our store: Simple Gifts: 50 Little Luxuries to Craft, Sew, Cook and Knit.
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