• Hannah Hippe

All Natural Summer Essentials

Updated: Dec 28, 2020

Summertime is finally here! With summer typically comes the use of seasonal products like sunscreen, bug spray, etc. While some of these things are meant to protect us or are fun to use, in reality they are filled with a harmful ingredient list that may keep the bugs and sun away, but will ultimately damage your health over time.

So, what can you do about it? You can make easy, small swaps for natural versions of these products. Nowadays there are many companies out there that make clean and affordable options.

Sometimes it's easier to buy a quality product that a company made and other times, I enjoy making my own recipes of things like bug spray. There are definitely all natural pre-made bug sprays out there if that works better for you.

Aloe Vera

Aloe is a no brainer go-to in the summer for sunburns, cuts, scrapes, face masks, and much more. I have a baby pup right now but I have frozen larger aloe leaves as well as a natural Aloe Vera gel that is super handy. All I do is cut a bit of the leaf to get some gel and rub it onto the effected area, and BAM. Instant soothing.

Non Toxic Sunscreen

Natural sunscreen (like this Badger company) means no Oxybenzone, Parabans, Phthalates (endocrine disruptors), Octonoxate (caused endocrine disruption and reproductive toxicity in animal studies), or any other icky chemicals. Thanks to @justingredients on Instagram, I learned about those harmful chemicals in traditional sunscreen! You can also make your own, which I'm hoping to do next summer.

Essential Oils

I use Bug Away from Rocky Mountain Oils to make an all natural bug spray that I know has no harmful chemicals like Deet in it. It’s made up of a variety of oils that bugs and ticks don’t like including citronella, cedarwood, lavender, lemongrass, and tyhme. Using this means I can spray it on my skin, hair, clothes, and face without a worry. I don’t have to smell like a bug bomb or think about the aftermath from Deet like possible headaches, skin irritation, and a slew of other health issues when harsh chemicals are used frequently and incorrectly. My all natural recipe smells amazing, too! I'll be sharing how I make it on here as well as the P&S Instagram (@pureandsimpleblog), so keep an eye out.

BONUS: Lavender essential oil is my favorite calming oil for bug bites. I use a drop and put it on any areas that are bothering me. Recently I just used some after I was pulling weeds and noticed a rash starting on my thigh. After putting lavender on, the irritation stopped. Since I'm extra sensitive to mosquito bites, doing this also helps with the itching!

Witch Hazel

Witch Hazel comes from a shrub native to North America and is great to have on hand, as many recipes like my face mist, room spray, and bug spray include it. I also use it as a toner on a cotton pad to remove dirt and makeup before bed.

Witch hazel is known to soothe skin, reduce redness, and combat acne. This one is by Thayers (I got mine at Target), and has rose in it so it has a gentle, calming effect on my skin. Using witch hazel instead of makeup wipes is a great way to swap to a more natural, paraben free option of cleaning your face when you can't be bothered to wash it properly.

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is one of my essentials all year round, but in the summer I love it for making my skin glow! While I don't use it on my face because I have acne prone skin (although I know some people who do and it works for them), I prefer to use it on my legs, stretch marks, and other scars on my body. Coconut oil can help reduce the appearance of scars while moisturizing your skin.

To get the real benefits of coconut oil, make sure you purchase organic virgin unrefined coconut oil. There's many coconut oils out there that have synthetic ingredients included and have minimal true coconut oil in it. The one I use most frequently is pictured above from Costco.

I typically use it after a shower when I know I'm not going anywhere so I can let the oil sink in and work its magic. Be careful though-it will get on your clothes! I recommend using a towel or robe you don't care about after you put it on.

BONUS: Coconut oil makes a great eye makeup remover (perfect for waterproof mascara) in a pinch. Grab a small amount and rub it gently on your eye area and tissue off. I also use coconut oil as a hair mask once every other week for healthy locks! Just leave it in up to an hour before you shower and shampoo thoroughly.

What are some of your summer favorites?