Home made cosmetics from the larder

Can you use simple, home made cosmetics to save money? Or use items that you keep in the larder? A recent blog post about budget beauty led to a suggestion from Lizziedolittle that almond oil made a great cheap cleanser and moisturiser. On investigation it appears this is true. You can spend quite a bit on it if you buy almond oil packaged for this purpose, or you can get a small bottle for cooking much more cheaply and splash that on instead – it is just a couple of pounds in Sainsbury’s. If it’s good enough for eating then it’s good enough to use on your face, surely?

 home made cosmeticsPerusing the larder for home made cosmetics

It got me thinking about what other cosmetics you can make cheaply at home rather than splashing the cash in the shops and I have come up with the following. I haven’t tried them all, so it would be great to hear if you use any. I am thinking here about speed and simplicity.

It is possible to make all sorts of fabulous and luscious home made cosmetics such as bath bombs, soaps and body butters. I used to make beautiful soap before I started working full time, but I want to explore the quick and the cheap! Scouring the internet I found the following, some of which I have tried, some I use regularly and others are completely untested, by me anyway.

Instead of buying shoe deodoriser, sprinkle bicarbonate of soda in your footwear, leave overnight, then just tip out the excess before you wear them.

Dip your toothbrush into bicarbonate of soda and brush, or dissolve a teaspoon in a glass of water and use as a mouthwash. You can make proper toothpaste from bicarbonate of soda  too and there are lots of recipes out there.

The power of porridge

Oatmeal and water makes a quick hand scrub for when you have been gardening and it leaves your hands soft too.

Oatmeal also makes a nice face mask. Mix about quarter of a cup of instant oats with 2 teaspoons of runny honey. Leave 5-10 minutes then rinse.

Cold used teabags or cucumber slices really can reduce dark shadows under your eyes! Just leave on for 10 minutes whilst you relax then rinse and moisturise.

Lemon juice acts as a bleach. If you want a few lighter streaks in your hair try this on a sunny day. Mix a cup of lemon juice with quarter of a cup of water in an old spray bottle. Spritz you hair all over then sit in the sun for a couple of hours. Rinse off and repeat weekly. You will need to do it a few times before you notice the difference.

Hot oil treatment for dry hair: wash and towel dry your hair first. Warm some olive oil very gently in a pan. You want it warm, not hot! Rub it all over your hair from roots to ends then wrap in a warm towel. Leave for 15 minutes. Then wash your hair and dry normally. You can repeat this once a month. This would work well with almond oil too.

This is the tip of the iceberg when it comes to home made cosmetics from the larder. Now I am wondering why I buy any commercial products when they are expensive and full of chemicals! What are your top tips for making natural beauty products?

11 thoughts on “Home made cosmetics from the larder

  1. You’ve just done me a favour by pointing out that you can buy it in Sainsbury’s (other supermarkets are available….) as just “almond oil”, which I believe, after some googling, is the same as “sweet almond oil”. I’d been buying mine in Holland and Barrett – recently I got a 100ml bottle for £2 something, when I had a discount voucher, though the normal price is £3+, though even that is still dirt cheap for a brilliant moisturiser!
    As a teenager playing the violin, my teacher recommended almond oil for rubbing on my violin! In those days (1970s) I went to the chemist and bought a tiny bottle of it. Perhaps then there wasn’t such a variety of oils available in grocers/supermarkets.

    • Such a good point! I’ve seen coconut oil in H&B for £16, but in an asian supermarket near my home it was just £3. I’m pretty sure H&B charges crazy amount for fancy packaging and brand names! 😮

  2. You’ve just done me a favour by pointing out that you can buy it in Sainsbury’s (other supermarkets are available….) as just “almond oil”, which I believe, after some googling, is the same as “sweet almond oil”. I’d been buying mine in Holland and Barrett – recently I got a 100ml bottle for £2 something, when I had a discount voucher, though the normal price is £3+, though even that is still dirt cheap for a brilliant moisturiser!
    As a teenager playing the violin, my teacher recommended almond oil for rubbing on my violin! In those days (1970s) I went to the chemist and bought a tiny bottle of it. Perhaps then there wasn’t such a variety of oils available in grocers/supermarkets.

    • Such a good point! I’ve seen coconut oil in H&B for £16, but in an asian supermarket near my home it was just £3. I’m pretty sure H&B charges crazy amount for fancy packaging and brand names! 😮

  3. I read somewhere years ago that the woman who wrote the Beatrice Potter books used milk to soften her skin. At night before bed, she’d put some milk on a cotton ball and swipe it over her face. I haven’t tried that, but I have opened vitamin E capsules and used the pure vitamin E around my eyes (being careful not to get it in my eyes). It helps reduce fine lines. Instead of using conditioner on my hair after a shower, I use a few drops of essential oil (rosemary, lavender, lemon grass or patchouli, depending on my mood)… I put the drops in my palm, rub my hands together and work the oil into the ends of my damp hair. I haven’t bought conditioner for years.

  4. I read somewhere years ago that the woman who wrote the Beatrice Potter books used milk to soften her skin. At night before bed, she’d put some milk on a cotton ball and swipe it over her face. I haven’t tried that, but I have opened vitamin E capsules and used the pure vitamin E around my eyes (being careful not to get it in my eyes). It helps reduce fine lines. Instead of using conditioner on my hair after a shower, I use a few drops of essential oil (rosemary, lavender, lemon grass or patchouli, depending on my mood)… I put the drops in my palm, rub my hands together and work the oil into the ends of my damp hair. I haven’t bought conditioner for years.

  5. When I was a teenager I made all sorts of face masks with oatmeal and hair rinses with lemon juice. Can’t be bothered with the homemade or the bought versions anymore! But I can vouch for cucumber – I doesn’t take the dark under eye circles away but it does reduce puffiness.

  6. Do shoes get smelly? We’ve not had this problem … we shower daily (me often twice a day in hot weather and sometimes in winter just because it’s helpful to my ancient bones to warm my body before bed) … but being clean and having fresh socks or tights daily surely means you don’t have smelly feet in smelly shoes?
    But in agreement, we need few cleaning products. I just use bleach in the loo and down the sink to eliminate nasty whiffs, but mainly household soda and boiling water for the drains, plus a damp cloth to remove dust from surfaces which can’t be vacuumed, hot soapy water does most jobs, I find. Also, a slice of lemon helps deodorize the dishwasher (if, indeed, you use a dishwasher). Also, I find some lavender oil on a piece of cotton wool in the vacuum ‘box’ makes vacuuming smell nicer.
    Margaret

  7. Do shoes get smelly? We’ve not had this problem … we shower daily (me often twice a day in hot weather and sometimes in winter just because it’s helpful to my ancient bones to warm my body before bed) … but being clean and having fresh socks or tights daily surely means you don’t have smelly feet in smelly shoes?
    But in agreement, we need few cleaning products. I just use bleach in the loo and down the sink to eliminate nasty whiffs, but mainly household soda and boiling water for the drains, plus a damp cloth to remove dust from surfaces which can’t be vacuumed, hot soapy water does most jobs, I find. Also, a slice of lemon helps deodorize the dishwasher (if, indeed, you use a dishwasher). Also, I find some lavender oil on a piece of cotton wool in the vacuum ‘box’ makes vacuuming smell nicer.
    Margaret

  8. I agree with you aldi is great for making anything for the body my fav is the olive oil cheap for either 3 or 4 litre can. Olive is great for before the swimming pool protects my hair from the chlorine.

  9. I agree with you aldi is great for making anything for the body my fav is the olive oil cheap for either 3 or 4 litre can. Olive is great for before the swimming pool protects my hair from the chlorine.

Comments are closed.