Food / Lifestyle / Research

Back to basics

Cleopatra used milk and honey in her baths, the Geisha of ancient Japan used rice for flawless skin and turmeric was often used in India. Women of ancient times didn’t have the benefit of popping into Clicks for their beauty products- they relied on the natural ingredients around them to feel pampered.

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Some of these remedies are thousands of years old, and so the saying goes, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Instead of gliding down the beauty product isle, head towards the veggie section in your supermarket and do it like Cleopatra did.

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Hidden in your supermarket’s fruit stand are skin brighteners, teeth whiteners and hair conditioners- you just have to know where to look. Avocado on toast is one of the most delicious breakfasts to wake up to, but making your grumbling stomach calm down isn’t the only thing avocado is good for. Cover your puffy eyes with a little avocado to look well-rested and the rest makes breakfast.

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It may look good enough to eat, but combining avocado, lemon juice and honey moisturises your skin, reduces sun spots and leaves your face soft and glowing. Better yet, when you’re finished with it as a face mask, you can use it in your hair for a similar effect.

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Certain spices in your food can take you to another place completely. Those same spices on your skin can make you look out of this world. Turmeric enhances the flavour of mushrooms in the kitchen, but it’s also an ancient skin toner while cinnamon the champion of chai lattes is a zit zapping superhero. Ancient Indian skin remedies often used spices in their skin regimes, along with rice for exfoliation.

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Growing your own herbs is a fun and natural way to add flavour in the kitchen, but the aromas that certain herbs give off, such as rosemary, were often used in baths as a natural detergent against body odour.

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Starting a natural beauty product regime really can be as simple as opening up the pantry and taking advantage of all the ingredients you might find in there.

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Baking soda combined with cinnamon and coconut oil makes for an amazing ointment to clear up bad skin, and smells more like that Chai latte than pimple cream.

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There are hundreds of natural ingredient recipes online for healthy skin and hair, and once you start, as my room-mate found, it’s very difficult not to get addicted.

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