Podcast Episode #36: Minimizing Products
August 7, 2018

Podcast Episode #36: Minimizing Products

Today Alyssa and Cindy of Cindy’s Suds talk about ways to minimize your bath products.  Can we get by with just one lotion?  Can we use soap as shaving gel?  Find out on today’s episode!  Listen to this complete podcast episode on iTunes or SoundCloud.


Alyssa:  Hello!  Welcome to another episode of Ask the Doulas.  I am your host, Alyssa Veneklase, co-owner and postpartum doula, and I’m talking with Cindy from Cindy’s Suds again today.  Hey, Cindy.

Cindy:  Hey, how are you?

Alyssa:  Today we’re going to talk about minimizing all the products.  So I am very much a minimalist, and it drives me crazy that when I open the drawers in my bathroom, I have ten different care products and probably three different face lotions and three or four different eye creams.  I just have so much stuff.

Cindy:  Stuff, yeah.  And they each promise something a little bit different, and so you feel like you need it.

Alyssa:  Yes, like, oh, I need to try that, or oh, this face cream has zinc oxide, and then I try it and my face turns purple, so then I don’t like it anymore.  So now I have to buy a new one, but I don’t want to throw that one away because it probably cost $20 or something.

Cindy:  Exactly, yeah.

Alyssa:  So, yeah, I have drawers and drawers and drawers of stuff, and I’ve been very intentionally trying to minimize all this extra stuff that I have.

Cindy:  It’s funny because I’ve been doing the same thing at my house, too.  We’ve had kind of a crazy year, like I’ve shared with you, and it makes me so happy to just go through a drawer and just dump it all and very carefully hand-select the five things that I use out of that drawer of fifty.  So I’m totally with you on that.

Alyssa:  I have a mom who will take anything, so she loves it when I give her stuff that I don’t use anymore.  That’s kind of what I do as my backup plan.  But I love that I’ve found you since partnering with you at Gold Coast.  I absolutely love your products.

Cindy:  Thanks.

Alyssa:  So my daughter, as you know, because of food allergies, had really bad eczema.  The healing salve and the body butter for her is amazing, and whether it’s just dry skin, whether it’s the eczema, whether it’s a sunburn, anything.  When I felt that body butter, I was like, oh my God.  I’m in love.  So now we order eight at a time online when I get online, and I love it.  You know, even for Mother’s Day, I loved the almond so much that I got it my mother and my mother-in-law, the almond body butter.  You know, just that you can have this one little thing to use as your one lotion.

Cindy:  For multiple uses, right.

Alyssa:  And then with the unscented one, I can put a very small amount on my hands and actually use it on my face.

Cindy:  Exactly, yeah.

Alyssa:  So just going through and trying to minimize.  I still need an eye cream; I still need a sunscreen for my face.  So there’s things that I need, but I don’t need three different options of each.  And we use your soap now in the shower.  For some reason, I thought I wouldn’t like having a bar of soap.

Cindy:  Were you a body wash person before that?

Alyssa:  Yeah, I used this Dr. Bronner’s that can be used for anything.  It’s super simple.  But for some reason, I like having a bar of soap.  I never thought I would.  And I use exfoliation gloves, so I just put that soap right in between there, and it gets all sudsy.

Cindy:  Yeah, so that works great for increasing the suds.  I’ve done stuff like that, too.  So I just use our bar of soap for everything, and it doesn’t matter what I’m using it for.  You can use it on your face, use it on your body.  You can shave with it.  It produces a great lather for shaving for both women with their legs and guys with their faces.

Alyssa:  I haven’t tried it for shaving yet.  Then I could get rid of my shaving cream.

Cindy:  You can get rid of your shaving cream, yeah.  It’s amazing for that.  Plus, it also, being natural soap, it’s going to moisturize your legs much better than regular bar soap would.  So use it for shaving – guys, too.

Alyssa:  And you won’t get a razor burn?

Cindy:  Heck, no.  Never.  Never, never, never.

Alyssa:  So how sudsy does it have to get?  I’m just picturing this, like – oh, razor going on my legs…

Cindy:  Tomorrow, you do it and then you tell me.  And you’ll be like, oh, I didn’t realize.  Yeah, and that’s kind of a misnomer, too.  You don’t necessarily have to have suds to shave well.  When you’re using a natural soap, there’s so many good emollients in it just with the products.

Alyssa:  And you don’t have the sodium laurel sulphate, which produces the fake suds, right?

Cindy:  No, no, no, exactly.  So it’s not going to suds up like a crazy sudsing product.  I mean, if you use your exfoliation gloves or if you use a brush, like guys use brushes to create lather, you can certainly do that and make it look more sudsy.

Alyssa:  What do you mean, a brush to create a lather?

Cindy:  You know how guys use a brush when they shave?  So the same thing with our soap.  You can use our soap with a brush to do the wet shaving that guys do, and all you do is you get that brush hot and just swirl, swirl, swirl a couple times on top of your soap, and it creates a lather with just the mechanical action.

Alyssa:  And you rub it in your legs and your armpits and whatever.

Cindy:  You can, but that’s the whole thing.  If you want to, if that makes you happy to get the suds, awesome.  Totally do it.  But you don’t need to.  You can just rub it between your hands, and whatever small amount of lather you get, just the fact that it’s a natural soap, it’s going to be great for shaving.  So just try it tomorrow and tell me how you’ll like it, and you’ll be like, ding, one more product I can get rid of; throw it into the trash.  And also too for guys – like my husband is practically bald, so he has a little bit of hair on the sides and he keeps it super short.  He just uses the soap.

Alyssa:  There’s no need for shampoo and conditioner, right?

Cindy:  No.  So you just use the soap on your head.  And guys with short hair, too – I mean, you have short hair, but I would probably still not use –

Alyssa:  I was going to ask you.  I have short hair…

Cindy:  I wouldn’t just because when I’ve tried it – I have very long hair, but you can try it.  It might feel tacky.  But for guys that literally have, like, stubble hair, it’s perfect and easy, and it’s also one less thing that you’re buying because you’re just really trying to get the oil off your scalp.  So it works great for guys who are bald to near-bald.  They don’t need any kind of special shampoo with chemicals in it to make you feel like you’re getting sudsiness on your head.  So yeah, the soap is so multipurpose.  Then the tip that I was going to give you: so when I wash my face, I just get lather in my hands, and I sprinkle a little sugar in my hands inside the lather, and then I use that on my face.

Alyssa:  Oh, for exfoliating.

Cindy:  So it’s an exfoliation, and sugar also helps to seal in moisture.

Alyssa:  What?

Cindy:  Yeah.

Alyssa:  Is that why you see sugar scrubs?

Cindy:  Right, yeah.  And we have a sugar scrub too, but for my face, I just wash with our bar soap, and I sprinkle some sugar.

Alyssa:  So do you keep a little jar of sugar in your shower?

Cindy:  Not in my shower; next to my sink, I do.  I really do.  It sounds silly, but that’s what I do when I wash my face at night.  I don’t do it in the morning.  I don’t do it twice a day.  I just do it a night.

Alyssa:  Interesting.

Cindy:  So you have the soap that you can use for multiple things: shaving; washing; if you have short hair or balding hair, you can use it for that.  Our one jar of healing salve, you can use that for so many things, like you mentioned: cuts, scrapes, burns, sunburns, poison ivy.  Use it like you would a Neosporin if you’re trying to get away from petroleum-based products and chemicals.  Try the healing stuff first.  What did I miss?  Diaper rash; regular rashes.  A lot of kids even ask for it, like, “I want boo-boo cream,” because they know it works.  They know that it feels good.

Alyssa:  And it doesn’t sting.

Cindy:  It doesn’t sting, and kids know.  You know, if something stings, that kind of is a little red flag.  Why is this stinging?  Something shouldn’t sting if you’re using it on your skin.  So yeah, so there’s another easy product to kind of hit a bunch of others right into the trash.  You don’t need to have a certain cream for rashes and a certain cream for poison ivy and a certain cream for scratches and bug bites.

Alyssa:  Which is what I had for her when we found out – you know, the dermatologist just says, well, it’s eczema; put cortisone cream on it.  So I had three different types of cortisone cream, and I had probably three different types of body lotions which were all horrible for her.  Now, literally, I have the body butter and the healing salve, and I have a tiny little bit of cortisone cream for when it get really, really, really bad.

Cindy:  For the flares, exactly.  And if you are a true eczema sufferer, that cortisone can be your saving grace when you have a flare-up of it.  So I’m not one of those that are like, “It’s all or none.  You have to just use natural.”  There is a place and a time for everything, and I would certainly hang on to your cortisone because if you need it, man, a couple days of that brings you right back to square one, and you can then continue using the healing salve and keeping that skin healthy.

Alyssa:  That’s exactly what we do.

Cindy:  Yeah, you don’t want to get rid of that because there is definitely a place to use it, but you don’t need all of those jars and ointments and blah blah blah.  So it’s all about really trying to think through what’s healthy for me; what’s good for me.  And on that level too, and I know you’re very into this, if you have too much stuff around, that makes you feel unhealthy because you just feel stressed and anxious about all the stuff.  So that not only is helping on a physical health level by choosing healthy products, but also mentally, you’re clearing some of that clutter from your mental awareness, and that, too, just allows you to breathe easier.

Alyssa:  I’m all about the clearing the clutter.

Cindy:  I know.  Right?

Alyssa:  Now I need to go back to my bathroom drawers and rethink all the clutter that I thought I got rid of, but it’s still pretty bad.

Cindy:  I know, yeah.  It’s kind of a constant process.

Alyssa:  Yeah.  Well, I think everyone needs to go and start with one drawer.  Pick one of the three drawers in the bathroom; just pick one, like on a Sunday afternoon or something.  Just start to – here’s stuff I don’t need.  Here’s maybe stuff that’s not necessarily good for me, and what am I going to replace it with?

Cindy:  The other thing that I’ll say real quick is that if something is a year old or older, pitch it.

Alyssa:  Really?

Cindy:  You really shouldn’t hang on to things.

Alyssa:  Because of bacteria growth?

Cindy:  Bacteria growth, yeah.  Even if it’s store-bought.  And a caveat to that: if it’s a strictly oil-based product, like our healing salve, an oil-based product that is nothing else.  Anything with water in it really should be used up within a year.  But if it’s an oil-based product, no water added, those are good for two to three years.  But if you’re looking at anything that you’ve bought conventionally and you look on the ingredients, if there is water in it, it’s going to have to have a preservative, and in that situation, you really should pitch it if it’s been a year.  Makeup, too.  Makeup can get nasty bacteria, too, after a year.

Alyssa:  Yeah, I’ve thrown out makeup before.  And I wash my brushes a lot, too, because I think that’s probably – that grosses me out too.

Cindy:  Yep, super smart.  Yeah.

Alyssa:  A little bit of germaphobe in me, as well.

Cindy:  You know, that’s probably why you’re so healthy.

Alyssa:  All sorts of issues.  Well, cool.  Thanks for coming again.  Tell people where to find you.  They probably already know, but let’s tell them again.

Cindy:  Okay.  You can find us at www.cindyssuds.com, and you can find us locally at Harvest Health, Kingma’s, Hopscotch, Bridge Street Baby, and there’s several other vendors in the Grand Rapids area that carry us in smaller amounts, as well.

Alyssa:  Cool.  Check them out.  And as always, you can find us at www.goldcoastdoulas.com.  Email us at info@goldcoastdoulas.  And you can find us on Facebook, Instagram, SoundCloud, and iTunes.  Thanks!