I’m a big fan of homemade alternatives to conventional products. Most often, these homemade versions have fewer toxins, are less expensive and usually work better.

My DIY recipes seem most popular on Pinterest, and these were the most visited DIY posts of 2013:

1. Homemade Bug Spray Recipes That Work

These DIY bug spray recipes use essential oils in place of harmful chemicals and readers have tested them around the world with success. Ingredients:

Essential oils: choose from Citronella, Clove, Lemongrass, Rosemary, Tea Tree, Cajeput, Eucalyptus, Cedar, Catnip, Lavender, Mint
Natural Witch Hazel
Distilled or boiled Water
Vegetable glycerin (optional)

2. Homemade Lotion Recipe

This lotion is much more nourishing than traditional lotions since it doesn’t contain any liquid, only oils. This means that it has a really long shelf life, doesn’t need any chemical preservatives and is great for skin. How to Make Lotion:

Combine ingredients in a pint sized or larger glass jar. I have a mason jar that I keep just for making lotions and lotion bars, or you can even reuse a glass jar from pickles, olives or other foods.
Fill a medium saucepan with a couple inches of water and place over medium heat.
Put a lid on the jar loosely and place in the pan with the water.
As the water heats, the ingredients in the jar will start to melt. Shake or stir occasionally to incorporate. When all ingredients are completely melted, pour into whatever jar or tin you will use for storage. Small mason jars (8 ounce) are great for this. It will not pump well in a lotion pump!
Use as you would regular lotion. This has a longer shelf life than some homemade lotion recipes since all ingredients are already shelf stable and not water is added. Use within 6 months for best moisturizing benefits.

3. Beating the B.O. With Natural Deo – Recipe

Most deodorants contain aluminum, chemicals and harmful ingredients. In fact, there is now some evidence linking some of these chemicals to breast cancer. In my opinion, they aren’t worth the risk- especially since homemade options work better!


4. How to Make Lotion Bars

Lotion bars are the best of both worlds. They are used on dry skin like lotion but in the convenience of a bar that spreads on to skin easily. There are many variations, but this original recipe is still my most popular:

How to Make Lotion Bars

5. How to Make Magnesium Oil

I always keep magnesium oil around the house. It helps kids sleep when rubbed on their feet before bedtime. It helped me avoid morning sickness in my last pregnancy and it is necessary for hundreds of reactions in the body. It is also much less expensive to make your own:

How to Make Magnesium Oil

6. Homemade Remineralizing Toothpaste Recipe

This is the toothpaste I use daily. Ever since I reversed cavities with diet and this toothpaste, it is part of my daily routine along with oil pulling. It is pretty simple to make and once you invest in the ingredients, it is less expensive than most natural toothpastes.

How to Make Homemade Remineralizing Toothpaste

7. Natural Sunscreen Recipe

We don’t use sunscreen often (here’s why) but when we do, I avoid the ones with chemicals and ingredients that have been linked to cancer (kinda defeats the purpose…). This homemade version is the most natural option I’ve found and it works really well.

How to Make Natural Sunscreen

8. Best Way to Whiten Teeth Naturally

This post gets the award for most rude commenters on Pinterest. Apparently, some people get really offended by the sight of dirty teeth or something. Anyway, this is also part of my oral care routine and it has whitened my teeth significantly (and made one calcification spot on my front tooth not visible at all anymore. It only takes one ingredient and couldn’t be simpler.


9. DIY Beach Waves Spray

I have a lot of hair, but it is baby fine and gets oily easily. For this reason, most commercial hair sprays and hair products weigh down my hair or make it look dirty. This texturizing spray is the solution for me. It costs a few pennies to make, is completely natural and leaves hair full and volumized (I think I just invented that word) without chemicals. The name comes from the fact that it contains natural salts like the beach and it gives your hair that naturally wavy just-been-to-the-beach look.

Here is the link: DIY Beach Waves Hair Spray

10. Homemade Makeup Recipes

In my opinion, a healthy diet is the best way to have beautiful skin but these homemade make up options work like regular makeup and use ingredients that promote healthy skin.

Homemade Makeup Recipes.

What was your favorite DIY of 2013? Please share!