What are some good personal care products and brands?
These are all modern convinicences, so closer to natural suggestions are also appreciated.
Has anyone tried warm olive or coconut oil as a shaving cream?
African Black Soap is awesome. You can use it as shampoo, no conditioner needed. Also good as body soap & shaving foam. The good stuff is made in Ghana from coconut oil, palm oil, shea butter, agow tree bark and plantain ash. About as natural and an all in one cleanser can get. (Can hand wash cloths with it when travelling too).
Pure shea butter makes a great lip balm, heal balm, hot oil treatment for your hair. Pure jojoba oil or Rosehip oil makes great face & body moisturiser. Plant Essentials makes a great range of moisturisers etc with very simply natural ingredients, made instore by store staff (no factories).
I think sunscreen is the hardest item to find if you want to minimize your exposure to harmful substances. I used to never use sunscreen, but now I have to (rosacea). I did a lot of research and I eventually ended up buying Devita Solar Protective Moisturizer (SPF 30). It is paraben-free. The ingredients are: zinc oxide, aloe vera gel, purified water, capric triglyercides (from coconut oil), hyaluronic acid, glyceryl stearate, stearic acid, lechithin phospholipid, vitamin E, allantoin, and grapeseed extract. I know it's not strictly paleo but I think these ingredients are pretty harmless. The sun triggers an immune response from my skin so it's either wear sunscreen or only go outside at night.
I don't use shampoo, conditioner, mouthwash or shaving cream. I like shea butter as a body moisturizer.
I use baking soda and apple cider vinegar as shampoo and conditioner. I have been doing this for probably a couple of months now and am down to having to wash my hair maybe twice a week, though I can do once a week. I try to brush my hair for a while every day with a bristle brush to help clean it out and spread natural oils around.
I use olive oil to wash my face. My skin looks WAY better since doing this (about 3 months now). You can also use other oils to wash your face (like coconut oil) but I read somewhere that olive is a good choice for not clogging pores and stuff.
I like coconut oil as a moisturizer. I put it on my face once or twice a week before I go to bed and also use it all over when feel like it.
I have used aloe vera for shaving, olive oil and stuff like that works too but would probably get expensive. I still use natural soap and usually just use that for shaving because it is cheaper and lasts longer. I find that the aloe vera rinses really quickly and I end up using a lot of it to shave areas that take more (like my legs).
I use Tom's fluoride free variety of toothpastes. I tried just baking soda and it grosses me out way too much and I also read somewhere that baking soda alone can cause some problems (can't remember what or where I read it, might be able to google it) but it's pretty darn gross anyway.
I am interested in some natural sunblock options so would love to see some suggestions for that. As far as actual store bought brands, I know that certain supermarkets in my area carry a lot of brands with natural ingredients, etc. (usually big amongst the vegan crowd, I bought lots of stuff in this section when I was a vegan). I buy my natural soap in that section as well as lip balms but there are also deoderants, shampoos, toothpastes, lotions, etc. in that section.
I think that using items that you would put IN your body (stuff you would eat or cook with) is the best way to go for items that you would put ON your body. It all ends up IN your body anyway.
I like to use avocado, bananas and coconut oil as a hair conditioner, occasionally. The rest of the time, I use apple cider vinegar and water.
I'm trying to do the baking soda and water hair rinse, but I need to get a hairband, for the initial oiliness. I've also heard people use castille soap, to wash their hair, instead of shampoo, but I have yet to try this. For now I am simply trying to use less shampoo, less often.
For my face, I use a combination of raw, unfiltered, local honey and lemon juice. Sometimes I add baking soda, or asprin, to exfoliate. I have oily and dry skin, and it helps immensely, and makes my skin soft. Sometimes I use 10% greek yogurt on my face, too.
I also use honey, baking soda, and sugar as a body wash, sometimes with avocado or blueberries and coconut oil thrown in.
I use baking soda on my teeth (but after reading Sabretoothandclaw's comment I might reconsider that), and do coconut oil pulls.
I'm thinking of trying baking soda and coconut oil for deodorant, but I haven't done this yet.
And I don't use lube, or sunscreen, or anything to shave with. But I have read, from people here, that coconut oil can be used for lube and sunscreen, though if you're using it as a lubricant you should check to be sure whatever condom you're using works with an oil-based lube.
I second Sabretoothandclaw's ending statement, that if you wouldn't put something in your body, you shouldn't put it on your body. So I do need to work on my shampoo and deodorant usage, and reconsider my teeth-cleaning choice.
Here are some personal care items I've liked - I don't like all their products from these companies but you have to test.
Gluten-free Savonnerie products founded by a celiac are FREE FROM fragrances, casein, gluten, corn, soy, dyes, and peanuts. They use ingredients like coconut oil, olive oil, jojoba oil, and shea butter. They have bar soaps, liquid soap, shaving foam, shampoo, conditioner, moisturizer, massage oil, lip balm, and deodorant body powder.
Tropical Traditions has ingredients from coconut, palm oil, essential oils, and other pure ingredients - liquid pump soap, bar soap, massage oil, teeth cleaner, lip balm, liquid soap, moisturizers, hair oil, shampoo bar, insect repellent, and roll on deodorant.
Tom's of Maine has some fluoride-free toothpaste, mouthwash, and natural deodorants. Some of their products have more controversial or sketchy ingredients so you have to read carefully. http://www.tomsofmaine.com/products
Mercola has some personal care products that might of interest. I'm not sure how makes gluten-free wheat bran in some products?!! but the labels say so. I get annoyed with all the marketing but some products are good. http://products.mercola.com/
Wilderness Family Naturals uses coconut oil, palm oil, and essential oils in their products such as in: herbal salve, bar soap, bath salt, body butter, deodorant, and lip balm. http://www.wildernessfamilynaturals.com/category/body-and-skin-care.php
I use coconut oil instead of sunscreen. It keeps my skin soft and protects it. I just started using Primal Life Organics skin care. It is amazing!!!! They also make a deodorant that is the best natural one I have tried. I use Tropical Traditions tooth cleaner and lotion.
There are a few more answers here: http://paleohacks.com/questions/106491/beyond-using-soap#axzz1vRcpltrY and here are my responses to your list:
Check out this site and products - all very, very, clean and crafted by hand, in individual batches with loving care by an ancestral living woman.
For almost thirty years, I have used baking soda and cornstarch as deodorant. I used to make a paste, but now I just dab some baking soda, and then some cornstarch. (the paste was sort of harsh on the tender skin) I have two small round tupperware containers (orange for baking soda, yellow for cornstarch). I think I replaced the containers once. It's cheap, it's easy, it's biodegradable, and edible. It does tend to collect in the corners of the floor though. :) Sometimes I step back into the tub to put it on, so the excess falls into the tub.
I am tempted now, by the Lush powder and coconut oil. :)
And I use Kiss My Face olive oil soap, for body soap.
For a natural brand of skin care, dr Alkaitis is amazing. All ingredients are wildcrafted organic and the products are edible because nothing synthetic goes in.
It's expensive, but you can get the travel pack to try it for $50 and it lasts me almost 2 months, contains day and night moisturizers, cleanser, toner, face/body oil, eye cream, soothing gel and a mask. I've been using this line for 8 months now and my skin is amazing- always moisturized and clear.
You can find this and other 'better choice' closer to natural products at saffronrouge.com - my go-to for body products and cosmetics. They research their products and have great return policis and fast, reasonable shipping too.