Switching to eco-beauty and eco-cleaning products can be easy compared to finding natural options when you have a pounding headache. But fear not! Over the years I have found some really great all-natural options for various medicines and personal care items. So if you find yourself in need of something at the drugstore – here are my favorite natural remedies:
Disclaimer: I’m not a medical doctor so if you are ever in need of medical care, please go see a doctor or health care professional.
Allergy & Sinus
If you haven’t used a neti pot – you need to try it. I know it looks really intimidating and a bit scary, but it’s really not bad at all. And it’s AMAZING for allergies. I can’t remember what kind mine is, but it is a white ceramic one that looks like this one. I use this nasal cleansing salt. The 8 oz bag has lasted me forever. It doesn’t really matter which salt you use, as long it is NOT table salt with iodine. Also, be sure to not use tap water because of the very rare chance it has amoebas. I use filtered water and then bring it to boiling, just to be safe. I then let it cool until it’s warm. I use this ‘recipe': 1 cup water, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon baking soda. My doctor gave me this ratio so it’s what I use and it works for me :o)
Tea tree oil is my go-to for everything. It’s awesome for acne and for random bumps or bites. It can be used for psoriasis, just mix it with some jojoba oil and dab over areas. It can even be used on toenail fungus, cold sores, chicken pox and athlete’s foot! How is that for versatile? I love it.
If you have something that looks like an infection, please see a doctor though – just in case.
Whenever I feel a cold/flu coming on, I reach for a few things. One is Herb Pharm’s Immune Defense tonic. This stuff really works. Within 24 hours of taking this stuff, I start feeling better. I’ve tried other immune tonics before, but I have the most luck with this one. I even give to my friends when they are sick and they always come back really impressed with how well it works.
I’m also a big fan of elderberry syrup. I buy Gaia Herb’s. At the first sign of feeling sick, I start taking two teaspoons and day and I really think it helps prevent colds from coming on, or helps them go away quickly.
I’ve also done a past post on cold/flu fighters which has some other favorites of mine.
I have reviewed lots of great natural deodorants over the years of having this blog. Some great ones are Soapwalla, Schmidt’s, Bubble & Bee’s Cream Deodorant, Greenbody, Colorado Pit Stik – and I’m sure there are others I have forgotten. I recently started using Meow Meow Tweet’s deodorant and LOVE it. Like all natural deodorants, it won’t stop you from sweating. But this has worked great at keeping me from being stinky.
Natracare is my go-to brand for feminine care. I’ve tried other brands, but I like Natracare the most. I use their cotton panty liners, tampons with applicator and ultra pads – and all of them are great! If you are not using all natural feminine care – you need to! Here’s an interesting blog post that sums up all the reasons why.
Headaches are tough ones. But I have found a natural option which actually works well! Hylands Headache are homeopathic tablets that melt in your mouth. I was a little skeptical at first but after trying them for the first time, I was sold.
If you get migraines/chronic headaches, you may want to check out Butterbur. I read about it in a magazine and then a previous coworker saw a neurologist who specialized in migraines and recommended Butterbur to her. So it must really work! I haven’t personally used it because I don’t have any issues with chronic headaches, but I wanted to include it since I have heard great things. Be sure to check for interactions if you take other medications.
If muscles are more than just being sore and there is pain and/or inflammation, I use Traumeel cream. My mom twisted her knee not that long ago and was in quite a bit of pain. I lent her my Traumeel and she loved it too! It also works well for swelling. When my back was injured, I would sometimes get some inflammation in my lower back on the sides. All it took was a bit of Traumeel and the swelling went away.
UPDATE: after posting, I discovered that Traumeel re-formulated and their cream base is not nearly as natural as it used to be. The active ingredients are also slightly different. I still have an old tube, and will be hunting down any remaining Traumeel tubes I can find!
Of course, if you have a serious injury and need medical advice, please see a doctor.
And don’t forget about ice! Ice works amazingly well on muscle pain and swelling. Just don’t ever put ice directly on skin, you don’t want to add frostbite on top of muscle pain. I put ice in a bag and wrap in a towel. I’ve always been told to do 20 minutes on and 20 minutes off by healthcare professionals, so that’s what I do.
Petroleum Jelly Alternative
Petroleum jelly is a go-to for many people for a variety of reasons. If you are looking for a natural version, check out Waxelene. I use it as a lip balm, but you could use it for any reason you would use petroleum jelly.
Valerian Root is my absolute go-to when I need help sleeping. I buy Gaia Herb’s pills. I have tried it in liquid and I don’t mind it – but I have to warn you, some people hate the taste. My boyfriend could not stomach it and said it tasted like feet (really, he said feet). So pills are probably the safer bet :o)
If you haven’t tried Valerian Root before, be warned. It can really cause drowsiness so don’t take this before driving or operating heavy machinery (you know, like tractors and stuff). Also, be sure that any medicines you currently take do not interact with it.
Sore Muscles and/or Cramps
There are three products I reach for when I have sore muscles. The strongest one is Soothing Touch Narayan Gel. This little gel packs a punch, it has a nice clove smell too. It also works great for cramps! I just rub it on my abdomen and it really helps.
I was introduced to Sombra by my chiropractor. It has a sweet orange scent to it, which is a nice change from the typical eucalyptus-menthol smell. It’s not quite as strong as the Narayen Gel, but I still really like it.
Lastly, Farmaesthetics Deep Lavender Rub is a really nice rub that is great for massaging sore muscles. It has a relaxing lavender scent too.
I have tried a few natural toothpastes, but my favorite is Earthpaste. It does take some getting used to since it doesn’t have anything which makes it foam and it’s also brown-colored, but don’t let that stop you! This is one awesome toothpaste. I’ve been using it for at least a year now, and it has kept my teeth clean and gums healthy. I use the Cinnamon one, but they make other flavors too and I hear the Wintergreen is very tasty.
When my stomach isn’t feeling so well, I really like Yogi’s Stomach Ease tea. It has a nice flavor to it and the warmth of it can be really relaxing.
And while this isn’t specifically for stomachs, I swear that sometimes all my stomach needs to feel better is some bubbles! I really like flavored Perrier. They have good flavors and it doesn’t contain any sugar OR artificial sweeteners. The slim cans in Lime is my favorite, and best of all – can be found at pretty much any grocery store.
That’s it for my favorite natural remedies! Are there any products or ailments I missed? What are your favorites?
Disclaimer: I’m not a medical doctor. Please don’t take what I say as medical advice, I’m just sharing what works for me. If you have any questions on how what I say may affect your health, please talk to your medical care provider. Some of these products were provided to me to try. The choice to review is 100% my own! This post contains affiliate links.