These six money-saving tips are part of a lovely, environmentally gentle and culturally sensitive cycle that will improve your health and save you money!
1. Use old clothes as rags.
You don't need to buy Swiffer covers or special Handi-Wipes or anything.
2. Use white cotton rags instead of Band-Aids.
Got a little cut or owie? Grab a strip of those old clothes (that you have sterilized by boiling) and tie it around your finger, or wherever your owie is. Stops the bleeding and keeps the wound clean to heal quickly. No more money spent on Band-Aids!
3. Use cloth diapers instead of disposable.
Whether for babies or anybody with bladder control issues, save money by not buying disposable diapers. You save at the checkout stand, and you save in the long run by not polluting with yet more garbage, or supporting plastics industries that by their very nature pollute. Your air will be cleaner, the climate will bit by bit stabilize, you will be healthier. When I was a little girl I remember that the babysitter washed cloth diapers by first soaking them in the toilet bowl to remove the solid matter.
(Guys, if you get grossed out by the thought of feminine bodily fluids, you might want to stop reading here.)
4. Cut up old cotton clothes into strips and use instead of sanitary napkins or tampons
That's right. Save money. Don't buy any more tampons or sanitary napkins! That's what I'm doing. Actually I got the idea from my step-mom, who grew up on a farm in the Midwest. She said that is what they used. Plus, you are protecting the environment by not adding more garbage to the world.
5. Sell your washing machine at a garage sale.
Save money on your electric bill. Don't throw those bloody strips of cloth into the washer machine. Wash them by hand. At first it kind of grossed me out. But I got over it. Wash all your clothes by hand! That's what most of us do, here in the Andes.
The rag I spread out on the drainboard next to the sink. I use a block of soap that is made locally. No colorants or deodorants. Just lard and lye and ... well, I don't know if there are any other ingredients. It is the beige color of animal fat, and has a bit of that earthy aroma. With the soap I use a scrub brush, like I saw my neighbor using. I rub the brush over the bar of soap then dip it in water (cold, or warmed in the sun — save yet more money on gas and electric bills!) and scrub away. I scrub in the direction of the sink, so the spatters mainly end up there, ready to get rinsed down the drain.