We are smack in the middle of the dog days of summer. It’s August, and that means oily skin, frizzy hair, sunburns, and stanky pits. It’s almost too hot to think. What’s a savvy college student to do to simplify her beauty routine and still look gorgeous on the hottest days of the year?
Go au natural, of course. No no, I don’t mean run around naked. Although that’s certainly one way to cool off.
I’m talking about using some kitchen basics to get fresh and pretty. You might be surprised at just how easy and effective these essentials can be. They’re cheap, simple, and chances are you already use them constantly. Not to mention they’re pure enough to eat (duh), unlike most chemical-laden beauty products.
Olive oil. Olive oil is a great makeup remover. It’s noncomedogenic, meaning it won’t clog your pores, and it’s super gentle. Just pour a bit on a cotton ball and wipe off the day. You can also use it as a lotion or lip balm. However, unless you want to smell like an Italian restaurant, you might want to add a drop or two of essential oil. Try lavender for a light summer scent.
Apple cider vinegar. This stuff is the best. It’s a great foundation for a tasty salad dressing, but it also makes a fantastic toner to balance the pH of your skin. You can dilute one part vinegar to one part water for more sensitive skin, or three to one for more problematic skin. If it stings a bit, that means it’s working! Don’t worry. You can also heal a sunburn by soaking in a bath with one to two cups of apple cider vinegar.
Sea salt. Use some sea salt as a scrub to get the humidity-induced grime off your face at night. Just pour a bit in your palm and mix with water. Add more water for delicate skin, less for oily skin. Simple as that. It’s really invigorating and detoxifying.
Coconut oil. Coconut oil is comedogenic so you won’t want to use it on your face, BUT it’s great for shaving. You won’t even need lotion afterwards since the oil will leave a nice moisturizing sheen. It also makes an excellent treatment for dry hair. Comb some through wet hair, leave on overnight or during a steamy shower, rinse, and shampoo thoroughly. Follow with conditioner. Additionally, you can rub coconut oil onto dry hands and feet and leave on overnight for silky smooth skin.
Water. Say what? First, make sure you’re drinking at least half your body weight in ounces of water throughout the day (or, you know, however much you can stomach). For example, a 120 lb woman should drink 60 oz of water a day. This will give your skin a hydrated glow and even tone. You can also try simply washing your face with water. You might be surprised what a break from harsh cleansers can do. Just rinse morning and night with 10-20 refreshing splashes.
Suzannah Schneider loves cooking up gourmet vegan fare. She cannot live without good coffee and hates tiny restaurant portions.