Nowadays it’s pretty hard to stroll down the beauty aisle and find a product with ingredients that you can actually pronounce. Because of my paranoia concerning chemicals, I took it upon myself to create some natural alternatives for common beauty concerns. Here are a few of the things I came up with.
Pore War Facial Scrub
Thanks to my amazing genetics, I am blessed with what you might call large pores. I have come to accept my tragic fate, but I’ll be damned if I don’t do everything in my power to keep those babies as clean and inconspicuous as possible. I put together this facial scrub using ingredients that are sure to leave any size pores clean and happy.
- 1/4 cup baking soda
- 5 – 10 drops tea tree oil
- Enough Witch Hazel to create a manageable paste.
You can just mix these things together and store them in a little airtight container. Now keep in mind that baking soda can be harsh on your skin if you are scrubbing too vigorously. You are not trying to get burnt grease off your stove-top here, so try to keep things gentle. I use this a couple times a week in the shower because the steam opens up my pores and lowers their defenses. Massage a quarter sized amount on your face and then rinse thoroughly.
Aloe Facial Moisturizer
I have tried all types of facial lotion and cannot stand how they always feel so greasy and heavy on my skin. I was at a friend’s BBQ during the summer and managed to get a wicked sunburn in her backyard. She snapped a leaf off one of her numerous Aloe Vera plants and told me to rub the gel all over the burn. After I put it on my face I thought, “Eureka! Not only is this plant soothing my lobster face, but it is also moisturizing without leaving nasty greasiness behind!” I got a few plants and now use them for basic facial hydration. You can’t get any more natural than that!
- Directions: Slice off an Aloe Vera leaf and squeeze out enough gel to coat your face.
These plants are pretty hard to kill, so if you don’t have a green thumb you can still care for them easily. If you would rather just get the store-bought gel, make sure it is free of dyes or other unnatural ingredients.
Coconut Oil Deep Conditioner
Another beauty woe of mine is my constant hair frizzies. I have naturally wavy hair that I am attempting to grow down to my hips, so keeping it in check is a full time job. I can either straighten it (which is not very good for it) or condition the heck out of it so I don’t look like I jammed a fork in a light socket. Instead of spending wads of cash on fancy deep conditioning treatments, I use plain coconut oil that I find at the grocery store.
- Directions: What I usually do is take one day a week to work it through my dry hair and pin everything up with a claw clip. After a couple of hours I shampoo it out and enjoy my luxuriously hydrated tresses.
Bonus: You can also use coconut oil as body moisturizer and for chapped lips.
Blondie Hair Lightener
Being fair-haired, I get my share of hilarious blonde jokes. What I don’t find funny though, is dingy dishwater colored locks. In the summer time I combat this by using a homemade hair lightener mist when I know I will be outside.
- Mister Bottle (you can get these really cheap at the drug store)
- 1 tablespoon of Lemon Juice
- 1 fresh brewed cup of Chamomile Tea
After the tea cools off, dump everything in the bottle, shake it up, and mist liberally all over your hair. The heat from the sun helps these ingredients work their lightening magic, so you can use it while you get your tan on, while you garden, when you mow your lawn, etc.
Hydrogen Peroxide Teeth Whitener
After checking out those ridiculously expensive whitening strips at the store and realizing that I would have to take out a loan just to purchase one kit, I started reading the label and discovered that the basic whitening ingredient was Hydrogen Peroxide (for the price, I assumed it was magical fairy dust). I glanced down the aisle and spotted a bottle of Hydrogen Peroxide hanging out on the shelf with a price tag of $1.99. Well, that was an easy choice.
- 3% Hydrogen Peroxide
I just dip my toothbrush in the bottle of hydrogen peroxide and gently scrub my teeth for a few minutes daily. I must add that this should not be swallowed, so make sure you spit it out and rinse. Since I started doing this a few months ago, I have noticed a gradual brightening of my chompers. I am pleased with the results and the simplicity of this method.