Homemade recipes can create natural beauty products

Taylor Hilsabeck

Over the years, we have been conditioned to believe that only liquids packed in vacuum-sealed, triple-walled containers with a posh logo on the label are able to properly cleanse, nourish and revitalize our skin.

We paint our eyes and lips with makeup containing lead and synthetic pigments; fragrance our bodies with phthalates; douse ourselves with lotions, shampoos and shower gels containing parabens, formaldehyde, placenta and vinyl.

Beauty doesn’t have to cost a lot to make a difference in your skin and hair condition; many ingredients to personalize your own skin care products can be found right in your kitchen cabinets.

Pamper yourself this winter, and relax, knowing your spa experience is inexpensive and also environmentally friendly. Iowa State Daily staff members Meg Grissom, Ashlee Clark, and I tested out a few organic spa treatments for a green girls’ night. We removed our eye makeup with olive oil and relaxed with a moisturizing face mask made from water, pumpkin and honey. We used a mixture of salt, sugar and Vaseline for a lip scrub, and soaked our feet in hot water, salt, lemons and apple cider vinegar. By far, our overall favorite was the Good Morning Cleansing Rub, a recipe from a book titled “The Green Beauty Recipes,” written by Julie Gabriel.

Good Morning Cleansing Rub:

1 cup traditional oatmeal

1 teaspoon olive oil

2 tablespoons milk

Combine ingredients and stir, forming a paste. Rub your face with 1 to 2 tablespoons of the mixture, leave on as a mask to dry and rinse with warm water. This rub can be stored in the refrigerator for one day. This gentle scrub exfoliates and soothes dry skin.

Try creating your own environmentally friendly, toxin-free beauty products, starting with these one-step, organic tips:

Honey, an antibacterial ingredient, can work as a soothing face mask or a cure for dandruff. Just add honey to your shampoo.

Eggs can be massaged into the hair as a nourishing conditioner, and egg whites are a traditional face-lifting remedy.

Cucumber slices placed on eye lids help relieve puffiness, and potato wedges placed directly under eyes may help lighten eye circles.

Sliced garlic can help shrink blemishes.

Witch hazel is a traditional toner for oily skin.

Vegetable oil should be your No. 1 beauty ingredient; it can be added to face cream, used as a massage oil or in body/face scrubs for moisture.