in the pursuit of money, earth, and time frugality, here are some general rules of thumb that i keep:
without further ado... a list of my favorite things.
dr. bronner's liquid castille soap
since moving to skin and laundry product free or artificial dyes and perfumes, i've suffered less from allergies and breakouts. i love that this soap is safe for adults, kids, and pets. i opted for the liquid version because i can squirt a little into the disinfectant that i make with tea tree oil and castille soap and it's super easy for dog washing. i keep the big bottle in our shower and have a small bottle in the medicine cabinet for washing my face. it's fabulous - it removes dirt and oil without drying skin out, and you have no soap scum issues whatsoever. i especially love how clean you feel and smell after using it! my favorite is the peppermint, it's so energizing. a close second is the lavender, then the almond. they also make an unscented version for the super sensitive.
i kid you not - no toner or astringent has worked for me the way that witch hazel does! it's wonderful for a pre-moisturizer toner, and i use it for bug bites, small burns, blisters, and chafing. it's very healing and soothing, and it's so cheap! lots of stores sell a private label version at a few dollars per 20oz bottle. you can spend a ton of money on skin care, or keep it simple and natural for a fraction of the cost.
my belgian single-cup coffee maker
i don't use this every day, but it uses much less energy than a coffee maker when you're just making one cup at a time. you just put 2 tbsp coffee grounds into the filter basket, add the cup with small holes to drip hot water at the perfect speed, pour water just off of the boil, and set on top of your mug. presto! coffee made with very little time or effort. this isn't exactly what i have but it's very close: