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Natural Beauty: Ingredients for Great Skin and Hair May Be in Your Fridge

Your Health

Lotion and potions that promise smooth skin and shiny hair often come with hefty price tags and contain synthetic chemicals that may be doing more harm than good. Luckily, many of the items you keep in your kitchen to fix healthy meals can be applied directly to the skin to help your natural beauty shine through.

Strawberries contain enzymes that work to brighten skin and remove dead cells. For a nonabrasive exfoliant, try blending a few strawberries with a spoonful of honey and massaging it into your face or any other parts of the body that need softening.

Oranges are also a great ingredient to remove rough patches. To smooth elbows, knees and feet, simply rub a cut orange half into the skin, then follow up with a mixture of olive oil and sugar and rinse off the concoction.

Blueberries contain powerful antioxidants that may penetrate the skin and help reduce damage done by ultraviolet rays. For a natural anti-aging mask, mix mashed berries with plain yogurt, apply to your face and let it sit for 15 minutes before rinsing.

If you've tried bath salts and were left with irritated skin, you are probably too sensitive for them. Instead, try pouring a gallon of whole milk into your warm bath; the lactic acid will gently exfoliate your skin. This is especially soothing for individuals with eczema or psoriasis.

Hair products that contain silicone can offer temporary shine but may also lead to dullness and buildup over time. Instead, try treating your locks to a blend of one banana and half of an avocado. Work the mixture through your hair, cover with a plastic cap and heat gently with a blow dryer to help it penetrate the hair shafts.

If your mane is damaged and weak, try blending together one egg, two tablespoons of coconut or other vegetable oil and the same amount of sesame oil. After applying this to the hair, wrap your head in a warm towel and let it soak in before shampooing it out.

Beer can do more than help you relax after a long day at work. It's also a great post-shampoo rinse. Choose a dark variety for optimal results, and avoid taking glass bottles into the shower with you.

Of course, for optimal results, it's important to also eat these healthy foods, since proper nutrition is one of the best things you can do for your body, both inside and out.

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