Whether you’re a beauty product maven or decidedly frugal when spending on hair and skin care products, turning away from mass marketed products and towards natural beauty solutions (many of which multi-task) is an easy way to keep yourself-and your budget—looking great!
Consider this point made in the YWCA’s report “Beauty at Any Cost report:” A person who spends $50 a month on beauty products and services would have more than $9,100 saved in ten years, simply by contributing that same amount of money to a retirement account yielding the long term average market return of 8 percent.
Here are four ways to start saving your beauty– and your budget.
Skip the pricey cleanse.
Nutritional cleanses date back thousands of years as a means to detoxify the body and start anew, and while they can be beneficial in changing unhealthy eating habits and eliminating the habitual consumption of processed foods, you can reap the benefits of the practice without investing in a manufactured cleanse program.
To purify naturally for a fraction of the cost, Kimberly Snyder, celebrity nutritionist and author of The Beauty Detox Solution, suggests starting each day by sipping a steaming mug of hot water and the juice of half a lemon, which facilitates the process of detoxification, and eases bloating, constipation and indigestion.
Additionally, start your day with Snyders’ recipe for a “Glowing Green Goddess” smoothie, made by blending organic romaine lettuce, celery, spinach, apple, banana, pear, and lemon. (The full recipe is on her site).
Visit your stylist for major services only.
You don’t have to sever ties with your stylist to minimize some of your hair care costs.
For frequent coloring visits to cover grays, for example, Cathy Beegan, inventor of “Go Away Gray” claims to have the solution—in a pill. According to Beegan, our bodies produce hydrogen peroxide, which bleaches hair from the inside out, causing gray to appear.
However, Beegan says we also produce an enzyme called Catalase, which breaks down the hydrogen peroxide; her Go Away Gray pills put the Catalase back into your body, helping to break down the peroxide, and stopping the graying process.
Instead of investing in pricey hair repair treatments, macadamia oil, sold in health food stores and online, is the perfect multi-tasking natural remedy.
Simply heat a small amount and use as an overnight deep conditioner, apply to the ends of hair for a split end treatment, and use it in the days leading up to a color treatment to help color absorb, and last longer.
Skip the fat burning hype.
Stop investing in nutritional supplements that claim to help boost your metabolism and burn fat, and take advantage of foods that offer the same benefit.
For example, your body burns twice as many calories breaking down high-fiber whole grains like steel cut oats and brown rice as processed foods, and green tea contains a compound that temporarily speeds metabolism, according to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
Losing weight is about burning more calories than you intake, and building muscle mass that burns calories long after you’ve taken off your running shoes.
Incorporating just four minutes of Tabata-style high intensity interval training (HIIT) into your workout routine is a perfect way to blast major calories and boost your aerobic endurance; apply the Tabata principle to any activity, including sprints on foot or on a bike, plyometrics, core and plank work, and mountain climbers.
They’re all effective, as long as you perform the exercise with all out intensity for 20 seconds, rest for just ten seconds, and repeat the sequence eight times.
Practicing the yoga posture Upavistha Konasana (seated wide legged straddle pose) has been noted for its cellulite reducing benefits in ancient yogic text.
Eliminate pricey face creams.
Glowing, radiant complexions start from the inside of your body—not a makeup counter.
Certified health coach and founder of The Bombshell Blueprint Maria Guadagno says that dark, leafy greens like arugula are excellent sources Vitamin A and sulfur– two of the keys to gorgeous skin.
Radishes are also packed with sulfur, silicon, and Vitamin C, which create glowing skin by boosting collagen, and stimulating the circulatory system.
Sprinkling hemp and pumpkin seeds on salads is a low cost way to boost your intake of zinc, and essential fatty acids including omega 3, omega 6, and omega 9, which all contribute to vibrant skin.
Skip the face wash full of ingredients you’ve never heard of and turn to nature. Dawn Michelle, founder of Minimalist Beauty, advocates raw honey for its natural ability to heal skin ailments like acne, eczema and enlarged pores and dull skin.
She also recommends jojoba and lavender oils as face washes—even for acne prone and sensitive skin. Coconut oil is another popular alternative for face and body moisturizing.
Stephanie Taylor Christensen is a former financial services marketer based in Columbus, OH. The founder of Wellness On Less, she also writes on small business, consumer interest, wellness, career and personal finance topics.