Beauty secrets and tips from our mothers and grandmothers now seem charming and simple, in an age where we’re fed a barrage of beauty adverts and overly Photoshopped images of perfection.
I have ventured down every possible winding road that ultimately lead me nowhere, all the while pick-pocketing my hard earned dollars for empty promises of youth and beauty.
I finally decided to throw in the towel and revert to the old ways of doing things, inspired by my mother…
Mum’s Beauty Secrets
• If you have sensitive acne-prone skin, stay away from rich spicy foods, which only irritate and inflame your system.
• Sleep. Staying up too late or not getting enough sleep wreaks havoc on your skin, causing it to look dull, tired, and likely leading to breakouts.
• Use patchouli oil to quickly get rid of acne. Mix 10 drops of this strong smelling oil with 10 oz of almond oil as a nightly moisturizer and anti-wrinkle treatment. It’s got a potent smell; some people love it, others hate it, but it works like a charm.
• For smooth skin, mix 4 tablespoons almond oil, 2 tablespoons dried calendula flowers and a few drops of rose water. Warm the oil in a pan and gradually add remaining ingredients. Use this as an alternative to washing your face in the morning.
• For soft hair, massage your scalp with coconut oil once a week, working it into your hair. Leave it in there for about 3 hours prior to washing it out with shampoo. Use just a dab of conditioner at the ends.
• For shiny hair, mix a mashed up banana and apply it as a thick paste to your hair. Leave it on for 10-30 minutes, depending on your hair texture. Then, wash it out as usual and use conditioner only at the ends.
• For natural hair dye, use henna and add in a bit of lemon to the paste. Leave it in your hair for about 30 minutes to one hair for a natural reddish/auburn tint.
• Use a mixture of pure olive oil with 1/2 parts sea salt as an in-shower body scrub. This combo completely eliminates the need for lotion and is great for winter weather.
• Make sure you get in some sort of physical activity. Our mothers and grandmothers stayed in shape with simple stretches, and not grueling hours at the gym. Try reaping the benefits of yoga as a way to maintain your girlish figure.
• Washing your hair with boiled rice water is also a great alternative for shiny hair.
The results of my little experiment and in following these tips have been absolutely smashing. I never looked better and the extra savings from not having to splurge on beauty products is the fondant on the cake.
By Shireen Qudosi