In our quest to become one with nature, today, we explore ritha/reetha which is a very common word for us. They are naturally hypo-allergenic, odourless and do no damage to surfaces or fabrics. But not many of us know how increasingly popular it is becoming these days for nature-loving people. Few days back, a friend of mine told me that she has started using reetha/soapnut in her washing machine. I was quite surprised. The procedure she told me was very simple. Take 6-7 wildly grown deseeded soapnut in a small cotton or muslin pouch (with strings). Boil this in 1litre water for 7-10 minutes. Put the water inside the washing machine along with the pouch of soapnut with your clothes. Wash as suitable at any degree upto 90. It keeps your laundry fresh, clean and the fabric lasts for a longer period. Since it is chemical-free the washed water can be re-used for watering your plants also. This is even ideal for washing baby clothes.
Soapnuts are very effective and very gentle. The water can be used to clean your hair everyday without any harm to your scalp. You can also add a little bit of pure essential oil for aroma or lemon juice to remove the dandruff. One can add amla, shikakai and reetha in equal quantity. Soak it overnight and boil it next day. Wash your hair everyday with this mixture. This will help make your hair beautiful, prevent premature greying, hair fall and dandruff, stimulate hair growth and reduce hair loss.
This liquid is also better than your body soap. Only, remember to moisturize your skin after using reetha as it may make your skin dry. This can be used as a mouthwash if added with a drop of peppermint oil. Mix it with water in your spray bottle and clean your glass windows. Or add natural vinegar to clean kitchen counters or dishes and keep them bacteria-free.
Pests don’t like the taste of this fruit. Soak them overnight, crush the berries properly the next day and strain. Mix 1/6 portion of genuine neem oil (or you can boil neem leaves and reetha together and strain them) and spray it on vegetable plants. This will ensure that the pests vanish without any harmful pesticides being used. This mixture is safe for animals also. But keep it away from eyes and wounds as it may sting, even when you are using as shampoo for yourself. Soak your jewelry in undiluted liquid solution, and then scrub clean with an old toothbrush.