Monday, August 15, 2011

A Moving Makeover

Whatever your circumstances, you may find yourself yearning for a fresh start. Our "Moving Makeover" web page is designed with you in mind. Every month you can expect easy and practical tips, how-to's, ideas, and encouragement to make a change and improve your life in your home, your health, fashion, and beauty.

Read more Moving Makeovers

August 2011

At-Home Spa Treatments: Relax Without Having To Pay The Bill

This article originally appeared on

It may sound more efficient than effective to spread something on your face that you can also pack for lunch, but there are tons of reasons why whipping up a homemade beauty recipe is smarter than splurging on a store-bought product.

What's On The Menu

A lot of what makes store-bought products so expensive is the packaging, says Janice Cox, author of Natural Beauty at Home. According to Cox, three bucks worth of ingredients from the grocery can produce a DIY treatment with the same effect as a $300 professional facial. (She told us that simple yogurt blended with fresh fruit into a facial works as well as a $34 Guinot exfoliating mask.) For more homemade beauty recipes, Helena Van Zandbergen, a celeb hairstylist who has worked everywhere from runways to reality shows, recommends Pioneer Thinking.

Why DIY Is So Appetizing

In addition to being cheap, anything you make at home (unless you're a chemist) will be 100% natural. The fact that homemade products don't include any ingredients you can't pronounce is especially good news for anyone with sensitive skin, those who want to go completely green, and those worried about animal testing. Plus, the recipes are time-tested and proven effective. Jorge Malo of the handmade beauty care line Fasanis jokes, "There's a reason Cleopatra used that mud for her face and body back in the day."

Your Shopping List

Almond Oil

1. Janice Cox's Basic Oatmeal Mask

Mix together ½ cup cooked oatmeal, one whole egg, and one tablespoon of almond oil. Spread it on your face and leave for 15 minutes. (A berry garnish is optional.)

2. Avocado As Moisturizer

Lather avocado on dry, sun-exposed skin for a rush of moisture-make sure that your avocado fruit is fully ripe. We know some people who use the inside of the avocado skin for its moisturizing oils. To do so, rub the inner layers of the avocado peel against your face, leave on for 15 minutes, and then rinse off with warm water and pat dry.

3. The Case For Vinegar

Van Zandbergen says that occasionally rinsing hair with vinegar is a great way to add shine. It's also an ideal pedicure ingredient, Cox added, since its acidity zaps dead skin.

4. Homemade Hair Conditioner

Pioneer Thinking came up with this recipe for hair conditioner: Beat an egg yolk until it's frothy, add one teaspoon of baby oil, and one cup of water. Massage through scalp and rinse.

5. Avocado-Based Hair Conditioner

Craving guacamole? Try this conditioner instead: Mix one mashed avocado with coconut milk until thick. Comb through hair, leave on for 15 minutes, and rinse.

6. Creamy Honey Conditioner

Mix honey, mayonnaise, and egg together for a nourishing hair condition...and a heck of a potato salad base.

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