#HaltonWasteChallenge Tool Kit!

Your resource to becoming Simply Waste Free

Welcome to our “Make Your Own” – Toolkit as part of our Waste Reduction Challenge. This toolkit is a collection of resources meant to help you to ‘make your own’ products ranging from self-care products to gardening tools and even how to make the most of your food in order to avoid waste.

Feel free to explore these resources and try them out for yourself. Remember to also chart your journey to becoming waste-free and share your experiences with us on your social media with #HaltonWasteChallenge. @Green_Screens @HaltonGreenScreens


-Cleaning Products

-Personal Care Products





Home & Body

Haven’t seen Toxic Trespass yet? Start there and you’ll never be caught choosing between shampoos at a drugstore.

To start making your own products, check out different sources for recipes for the products that you use everyday. Start replacing one product at a time, and give your body (and home) time to adjust. A few things to help this process:

  • Keep old bottles (sprays, lotions, makeup containers) for various products and travel sizes
  • Use metal or plastic bowls when mixing self-care products, storage of these products should be planned carefully – glass is best, however be aware that things might get slippery in the shower!
  • Stock up your pantry! You can check out this list here to get to know the basics for self-care products
  • There are so many natural ways to clean our homes, and even more natural remedies for our bodies, but everyone is different. Try out a few different recipes to suit find one that suits you & your home!


Cleaning Recipes


All Purpose Cleaner (do not use on chrome):cleaningproducts

  • ½ cup white vinegar
  • 1 – 1 ½ cups water
  • Optional: a few drops of tea tree oil
  • For a stronger cleaner, use more vinegar


For a scented all purpose cleaner, try putting vinegar in a glass jar with citrus peels, pine/spruce needles, cinnamon sticks, cloves, and/or rosemary. Leave for a few weeks then strain out the peels etc. before using the vinegar as above.


Window/Mirror Cleaner:

  • ½ cup white vinegar
  • ½ cup water
  • For a streak-free shine, clean with a rag and dry with newspaper


Drain Cleaner:

  • Pour ½ – 1 cup of baking soda then ½ – 1 cup of vinegar down the drain. Wait at least 30 minutes, then pour a full kettle of boiling water down the drain.


Laundry Detergent:

  • 2 parts Borax
  • 2 parts washing soda
  • 1 part finely-grated bar soap (Dr Bronner’s works well)

Mix all ingredients in a jar. Use ¼ cup per load.


airfreshenerAir Freshener:

To give your home a light, fresh, pleasant odour, mix complementary aromatic ingredients in a small sauce pan, cover with water, and simmer on the stove. Store in the fridge to reuse until it goes bad. Try:

  • Cinnamon, cloves, and orange slices
  • Spruce sprigs
  • Lemon and thyme



Personal care products 


Sugar Scrub:

A sugar scrub is a great way to exfoliate and moisturize, especially during the dry winter months. Store in an airtight container, and try not to let water in during use.Coconut-Sugar-Scrub-3-sm

  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¼ cup coconut or other plant oil
  • Optional: a few drops of your favourite essential oil. Some suggestions:
    • Orange, peppermint, lavender, or rosewood
    • To help prevent skin infections in the winter, try adding a few drops of tea tree oil


Coconut Oil Toothpaste:

This toothpaste does the job and reduces waste, but it doesn’t taste very good. You could try experimenting with stevia to improve the flavour.

  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp baking soda
  • Optional: a few drops of mint or citrus essential oil


Face Wash:

Clean your face by massaging oil into your skin then wiping it off with a hot, wet wash cloth. This will leave your skin feeling clean without drying it out.



Try moisturizing simply by applying your favorite vegetable oil directly to your skin or lips.


Simple Deodorant (follow directions for Heather’s Favourite Deodorant):

  • ¼ cup coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp baking soda
  • Optional: 1-25 drops lavender essential oil
  • Optional: 1-15 drops tea tree oil


Heather’s Favourite Deodorant:

  • 1 tbsp cocoa butter
  • 2 tbsp shea butter
  • 1 tbsp baking soda
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 2 tsp aloe vera
  • ~20 drops tea tree oil
  • ~25 drops lavender essential oil

Put all ingredients except essential oils into a bowl. Use a double boiler to lightly heat the ingredients till they blend together well. Turn off heat before adding essential oils. Stir in oils and pour into a small jar or a deodorant container.


oilsOintment (for minor cuts and abrasions):

  • Clean the area with soap and warm water
  • Apply shea butter or coconut oil to the area
  • Add 1 drop of tea tree oil
  • Apply a bandage if required or desired





  • 1 tbsp baking soda
  • 1 cup water

Massage into hair and rinse. Follow with Conditioning Rinse (below). If you prefer a smoother, less grainy feel, try blending the baking soda and water with 1 tbsp each of cornstarch and rolled oats. Use within 1 week.


Conditioning Rinse:

  • 1-2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • ½ cup water

Pour through hair and massage into scalp after using “No-Poo” (above). Rinse thoroughly.




Invest your time into your garden, and even if you don’t have one, it’s easy to start! Whether you are growing food in containers in your apartment, or have enough space to build raised garden beds, there are so many resources to show you how to upcycle, recycle, and be creative in your process!


If you were interested in creating a raised garden, find recycled materials such as old wooden pallets, concrete blocks, or rocks!


Look for materials that have been recycled, often found on community sites after construction or landscaping projects or restaurants and businesses that have pallets that might be up for grabs! Thrift stores are another great place to find funky planters! Check out the links below for more ideas of what you can do to your garden.Neon-Concrete-Block-Planter


Food and preparationjust-eat-it

Our food waste is astronomical. If you haven’t watched the film Just Eat It, start there to grow an appreciation for those “ugly” vegetables at the grocery store that no one will buy, or for your leftovers that aren’t as appealing as going out to grab a bite. To be waste-free with food, you need to be prepared.

To be prepared means to pack a lunch in containers that are reusable, to bring cutlery instead of using plastic, to have a bottle or mug to refill, as well as bringing bags for any shopping trips. If you still want to eat out, bring a container for leftovers just in case.healthy-school-lunch

Being prepared means planning your meals and preparing snacks instead of processed foods. Lastly, being prepared involves being creative: what can you make with all those veggies that are about to turn? You love granola bars but are sick of the plastic (not to mention the sugar)? Spend some time preparing meals and snacks at home and you’ll soon realize how much money you save, as well as how much less garbage you’ll produce.

Shop fresh, shop local, shop bulk. Stop going through the entire grocery store and focus on the produce section. Hit up the farmers markets near you! And if they aren’t open, try to source locally grown. Shop bulk and avoid packaging that is not recyclable, and bring your containers in order to reduce the need to even recycle.

imagesHere are some great recipes from the Halton Food Council:

Stay tuned for more updates to come! If you have any recipes or ideas you’d like to share, let us know on Facebook! Or catch us at our next event for more tips!