To save money this summer, here are 5 summer essentials to make instead of buy, including DIY sunscreen, homemade ice pops and ice cream, DIY bug spray, and a citronella candle!
By Tiffany, Contributing Writer
When summer started, I found myself making a list of summer essentials we needed from the store: popsicles for the kids, sunscreen for the pool, and bug spray for playing outside at dusk, to name a few.
Before I knew it, my list was long and I knew right away that my total at checkout was not going to be pleasant.
So instead of buying everything on the list, I tried to make it all from scratch to save some money. And it worked!
5 Summer Essentials to Make Instead of Buy
#1. Ice Pops
Did you eat Fla-Vor-Ice popsicles as a kid? Those were my all-time favorite, and I want my kids to have the same fond memories of slurping the juice and making a mess on their clothes too, but the fact that they’re mostly made of sugar is a huge turn-off.
Homemade ice pops are SO easy to make, and because they’re 100% healthy without any added sugar, the kids can have as many as they want!
#2. Ice Cream
While the kids love ice pops, I love ice cream. My two biggest concerns though are that the lower-end ice creams generally contain harmful dairy additives, and the higher-end ice creams cost nearly $5 a pint!
My homemade vanilla bean ice cream is incredibly easy to make, tastes gourmet and costs just a fraction of the price of the expensive kind. And the best part is that you don’t even need an ice cream maker! Use this tutorial for making ice cream without a machine. Here are 6 more fun homemade ice cream recipes to try! You can also find inexpensive ice cream makers.
Money Saving Tip: Buy the vanilla beans in bulk and aim for $1 per bean. For price comparison, 4 oz is about 25 vanilla beans.
I have fair skin and I know the need for sunscreen all too well. Unfortunately, the majority of sunscreens on the market contain parabens or phthalates, or both. Parabens act like estrogen in the body, and phthalates disrupt the endocrine system too. I don’t know about you, but I don’t need any help with disrupting my hormones, nor do my two kids.
After experimenting with several recipes, I finally found one that worked and it only uses 3 ingredients! I love that I can make homemade sunscreen in less than 5 minutes – perfect for when we’re about to head to the pool and realize we’re out of sunscreen! Plus my homemade sunscreen recipe is so much more affordable!
#4. Bug Spray
Whether you go camping or just spend time outside, bug spray in the summer is a must. There is a lot of data questioning whether DEET (the main ingredient in bug spray) is healthy or not, but I’m not taking any chances.
#5. Citronella Candle
While we’re on the topic of bugs, let’s talk about citronella candles. I’ve been around many of these before, and they’re so handy to have when you’re eating dinner outside or camping with the family.
Making your own homemade citronella candles is super easy, even if you’ve never made candles before! You can save money by re-using old soup cans or cans from diced tomatoes, and you can even re-use wax from old candles too!
Instead of writing a big shopping list of your summer essentials, try making them yourself! Not only will you save money, but your family will be healthier too!