There’s no doubt that many women are slaves to beauty products. And who can resist them? The cute packaging, the promise of younger and more radiant skin…no wonder our boudoirs are cluttered with them!
Maybe it’s time we cut down on all our beauty purchases. A study done by a UK company found that thanks to all the makeup, perfumes, lotions and creams we use, the average woman applies up to 515 chemicals on her face every day!
Time we turned back to nature and explore more natural ways to make us beautiful – sans the harmful chemicals! How about starting with these natural beauty tips?
• Got dark spots? Get a lemon wedge and rub it on the spot. The natural acids in the citrus fruit naturally lightens age spots. Do this twice a day. You can also rub lemon wedges on your darkened elbows!
• Get rid of puffy eyes by freezing tea bags and applying them on your peepers for 10 minutes. Tea contains anti-oxidants that help reduce swelling and inflammation. No tea at home? No problem. Grate a peeled (uncooked!) potato as fine as possible and wrap the pulp in two clean cloths. Tie these like tea bags and place on your eyelids for 15 minutes. The starch in the ‘tater acts as an anti-inflammatory agent.
• Condition you hair. The next time you’re out of conditioner, head for the fridge and reach for that bottle of mayo. The egg and oil mixture in mayonnaise is great for your hair because it adds not only protein but shine as well! Heat up half a cup in the microwave for about 30 seconds and apply to your hair. Wrap hair up in a shower cap and wait 15 minutes before rinsing.
• Need a quick ‘glow’? Lemongrass is known to enhance blood circulation so why not steam your face with a lemongrass solution? Add two to three tablespoons of lemongrass to about half a cup of water and bring to a boil. Put the solution in a pot or basin and lean over the pot with a towel on your head (almost like building a ‘tent). Steam your face for five minutes and rinse with cold water.
• Homemade toner. Since many skin toners contain harsh drying chemicals, why not try making your own? Try making this cucumber-honey toner – cucumber tightens the skin and helps maintain its elasticity while honey is nature’s best moisturiser! Bring out your blender or food processor and toss in one medium peeled and grated cucumber along with two teaspoons of honey. Blend and pass the mixture through a sieve, keeping the mixture in a bottle. Bonus: this can be kept in the refrigerator giving you that refreshing feeling every time you tone your skin!
• Remove makeup while moisturising your face at the same time? It’s possible! Pour a small amount of almond or virgin coconut oil on a cotton ball and apply it on your face using upward strokes. You can even remove waterproof mascara with it!
• Whiten teeth. Try dipping your toothbrush into mashed strawberries mixed with a little baking soda and brushing your teeth with it. Strawberries contain malic acid, which when combined with the cleaning power of baking soda kills the bacteria that cause plaque build-up. Plus it reduces the acids that break down the enamel in your teeth!
• Silky smooth skin. Make like Cleopatra and run a honey and milk bath! As we said earlier, honey is one of nature’s best moisturisers while milk contains proteins that help improve your skin’s structure and texture. Not to mention milk contains lactic acid, which acts as a gentle cleanser for the skin! To make an inexpensive milk bath, pour a cup or more of powdered milk under running water as you fill your tub. Add half a cup of honey and get in!