Sometimes the family budget doesn’t quite stretch far enough for little indulgences like facials and expensive skin care. But don’t despair – there are plenty of ways you can achieve great results at a fraction of the cost of retail treatments. No more paying a small fortune for harsh, chemical-based products - check out these fantastic beauty tips!
Cleansing is one of the most important aspects of any beauty regime and is the first step in your DIY facial. Start by gently massaging a little coconut oil onto your skin for about 30 seconds then remove with a washcloth.
Next cleanse with a lush, natural foaming cleanser – just add ¾ teaspoon of olive oil and 8 drops of your favourite essential oil to ¼ cup of liquid castile soap (you can pick this up online, in health stores and at David Jones for $8 - $15 a bottle). Mix together then add ¼ cup of cooled organic chamomile tea. This cleanser will keep for several weeks and you can extend its shelf life by adding a few drops of vitamin E oil or keep it in the fridge.
Exfoliating your skin makes it look and feel great but you don’t have to spend up big to achieve amazing results. Baking soda makes a really good exfoliator – just add half a teaspoon to your cleanser and you’re on your way to beautiful skin.
A peel is really just deep-penetrating exfoliation that you leave on your skin for a short time while it works its magic.
Try mashing together quarter of a cup of fresh strawberries with the same amount of sour cream or yoghurt, then spread on clear skin and leave for 15 minutes before rinsing off. The salicylic acid in the strawberries penetrates deep to exfoliate the pores into your skin.
Another fantastic DIY peel combines apple cider vinegar with apples to produce a dose of gentle, natural acids that clear away dead skin cells. Just mix one teaspoon of unfiltered cider vinegar with one tablespoon of organic apple sauce and then apply to the face, avoiding the eye area. Leave for 10 – 15 minutes then remove.
Mash half a banana or avocado and spread onto clean skin as a moisturising mask. Leave for 15 minutes then rinse well.
While your peel or mask is on, give your eyes a little treat with the humble potato – a slice of raw potato on your eyelids will reduce puffiness and have you looking great again in no time.
For an all-natural and low cost toner, simply wipe some cooled green tea over your skin with a cotton wool ball or spritz using a spray bottle.
Anti-aging serums often sit at the top end of the price range – which is crazy because generally the ingredients are not expensive. Well, to be fair, this serum is based on essential oils which can be a little costly - but once you have them they will last for ages because you only use a few drops each time you make your serum.
Into a glass dropper bottle, place 2tbsp jojoba oil, 1.5 tbsp rose hip seed oil and ¼ tsp of vitamin E. Next add 2 drops each of Frankincense, Myrrh and Patchouli essential oils and 3 drops of Lavender essential oil. Gently roll the bottle to mix and use a few drops on your face and neck to preserve, smooth and protect your skin.
Two words – coconut oil. You really don’t need anything else and you don’t need to use much – just pour around half a teaspoon into your palm, rub your hands together and then pat over your face and neck. The oil will quickly absorb into your skin, leaving it soft and supple.
You know those expensive lip plumpers that are supposed to help you get the perfect pout? The secret ingredient in most of them is cinnamon – and you can buy cinnamon oil in many natural food stores for a fraction of the cost.
And while we’re on the subject of lips, if you’ve got a few old lipsticks lying around, just cut off the stubs and melt them in the microwave for a few seconds. Mix together to create your own brand new colour and pour into a little tin then rub it on like lip balm or use a lip pencil.
Exfoliate your body with a revitalising sugar scrub – just mix brown sugar and honey to form a paste then buff your body smooth.
An extra boost
There are loads of amazing ideas to make your dollar stretch a little further without compromising your beauty regime, and we hope you’ll try out some of ours. If you’ve been DIY’ing for a while though and you just want to get away to give your skin some extra boost, why not try out a health retreat or day spa where you can indulge yourself. Can’t afford it? Check out our flexible mini loans that are simple, easy and quick. We’ll help you to get your pampering off to a great start!