Why I Wash my Everything with Soap

11:42 AM

Guest Blogger: Alexis Chadwick
I have been neglecting a visit to the dentist, mostly because last time I was there the dental hygienist scoffed at my career choice (after telling her I was satisfied with my humble position) and recommended I go back to school so I could make more money, like her. I guess she couldn’t tell that I’m a bit of a granola and would rather spend the day rolling in a field of flowers than rolling in money. I was both offended and annoyed and, being the brash decision maker that I am, decided to boycott not only my dentist, but the entire dental industry. In my search for alternative tooth-care, which included a consultation with a retired dentist who spoke out against the use of fluoride on teeth, I came to the conclusion that bar soap is not just for hands, but is good for washing out mouths, too.

I have two favourite parts of brushing my teeth with bar soap:
1. The “just-from-the-dentist-chair” clean feeling I have as I run my tongue over my teeth and,
2. The funny faces I make in the mirror because soap tastes less than fantastic

The kick in the teeth about toothpaste, for me, was learning that glycerin, contained in most toothpastes (including fluoride free ones that you can find in health stores, etc), stays on the teeth after rinsing. Once teeth are coated with glycerin, they cannot re-enamelize. Teeth naturally like to do so when they are clean and bar soap effectively cleans the teeth so they can. Soap washes off the surface by rinsing and once this happens the enamel, over time, can become thick, which makes teeth less sensitive to hot and cold.

So, then I was talking to a hair-dresser friend who was saying that hair is made up of the same scientific sounding something as fingernails and teeth, and that what you can use on your hands you should be able to use on your hair, (chemical-free, let that be the default perspective). Naturally, I took the bar to my hair. I can only speak from my own experience, but I now wash my hair less often as it does not become as oily as quickly, and soap provides me with a fantastic lather that I love. I appreciate knowing what goes into my soap, whereas shampoos are often a mysterious myriad of unpronounceable words. Making my own soap is my next endeavour.

I feel that knowledge has been taken away from us, that the recipes of old, the wise sayings, and the warnings have been packed up and lost in the move from generation to generation. I want that autonomy back. I want to know that I don’t have to rely on corporations to deliver my foods and fancies… that I can do it myself. There’s a freedom that comes with that ancient education that I dream of reclaiming. Soaps with scents and herbs, for disinfecting, cleaning, and healing are a small way for me to start unlearning my corporate reliance.

Alexis Chadwick is a wordsmith, an indie music lover and the most proficient woman in old-world skills that you will have the pleasure of meeting this century. Her vintage clothes make thousands of people jealous daily and if you ask her, she will share with you. Ten times out of ten.

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