6 All-Natural Beauty Fixes
Appealing Aid for Feet
If a banana peel is the foot’s sworn enemy, the contents can be its best friend. The fruit makes a superior skin softener, says Robin Jones, the spa director at the Lake Austin Spa Resort, in Austin, Texas, who developed this mask for weatherworn heels: Mash half a banana in a bowl, mix in a few drops of honey, then massage into your heels. Wrap your feet in plastic wrap and allow the mixture to soak in for at least 10 minutes. Rinse, then gently exfoliate the area with a pumice stone.
Baking Soda to Exfoliate Your Face BICARBONATO DE SODA
Fancy facial scrubs are a fun indulgence from time to time, but a much cheaper option that’s just as effective: baking soda. “The tiny granules of sodium bicarbonate buff away pore-clogging dead skin cells and are gentle enough for all skin types,” explains Janice Cox, coauthor of Eco Beauty. “Plus, like many other natural salts, baking soda also has slightly antiseptic properties that will ward off breakouts.”
Cox’s suggestion: Make a thin paste with 4 tsp baking soda and 1 Tbsp water, let it sit for 2 minutes, then apply it in small, circular motions to your moistened face (avoiding the eye area) and neck. After 3 minutes, rinse clean with warm water and then follow up with a splash of cold water to close your pores. Finish with a dollop of your regular daily moisturizer. “Dry or sensitive skin types should only use this mask every other week,” says Cox. “Those with normal to oily skin can repeat the process weekly.
Lemons to Remove Dry Patches
When life gives you lemons, turn them into a remedy for rough, scaly skin. “The citric acid removes dead skin cells to expose softer skin below,” says makeup artist Brett Freedman. Slice a lemon in half and rub the cut side over your elbows, heels or knees for a few seconds, then rinse. You’ll notice a difference immediately
Mint to Shrink a Pimple MENTA HIERBABUENA
This herb can tackle blemishes without drying skin like harsh acne meds. “Peppermint contains menthol and menthone, compounds that reduce redness and inflammation,” says Brian Bonanni, MD, a dermatologist at New York’s Gotham LASIK & Skincare. Mint also acts as an ASTRINGENTE astringent, clearing away pimple-causing oil. Dr. Bonanni recommends pulsing a small handful of leaves in a food processor with 1 tsp lemon juice. (The acidic juice temporarily changes the pH of your skin, preventing bacteria growth.) Cover the blemish for 15 minutes, then rinse. Repeat twice a day until the spot is gone.
PEREJIL Parsley to Brighten Dark Circles
Want to banish undereye circles in the blink of an eye? Pass the parsley. It’s rich in vitamin K, a nutrient that, when applied topically, reduces blood flow to the eye area—a key factor in the formation of circles, says Kansas City, Missouri—based dermatologist Audrey Kunin, MD, founder of DERMAdoctor. “Over time, the fatty layer of skin under your eyes thins out, which, in turn, makes underlying blood vessels more visible,” she explains. “Their slightly bluish color is what creates the illusion of circles underneath the eyes.” To fight back, try this recipe from Wohrle once a week:
brightening eye mask
1 small handful of fresh parsley
2 Tbsp plain yogurt
Place parsley and yogurt (which has a cooling and hydrating effect on skin) into a food processor. Pulse until a smooth paste is formed. Apply the mixture generously to your undereye area. Let sit for 20 minutes before rinsing off with lukewarm water.