Beauty Tips, Part 2: Five Cheap DIY Beauty Projects
CEE Standard: Saving
Shopping trips to Sephora to buy fun beauty products are not always an option for students who are on a tight budget. Have them try these fun DIY ideas to save money and use the conversation to explore other ways your students can get the very best deals on things they need and want!
There’s a frugal hack for everything. In my recent quest to de-frump myself, I searched for the best beauty hacks I could find to do so, and I found quite a few DIY tricks that save me a bundle.
The best part about beauty hacks is that almost any beauty procedure can be done on the cheap and in the comfort of your own home. Well… maybe not laser hair removal!
If you’ve fallen into a little bit of a frump-hole yourself (and there’s no judgment here — some days I don’t get out of my sweatpants), I’ve got your frugal beauty to-do list right here. And all these DIY tips cost less than $10! If you can beat that, I’ll hand my frugal crown over to you.
Doing your own nails at home is a great beauty DIY. With a little upfront spending (you can get a good bottle of nail polish for under $10), you’ll be able to get your money’s worth for months to come. You can get 147 coats out of a single bottle!
2. Body Scrubs
I love making body scrubs at home. They’re easy, they’re cheap, and they make me feel like a beauty queen. Those bananas and that brown sugar? Mash them together for a body scrub that’ll leave you smelling like a goddess.
You can make body scrubs out of so many things: sugar, salt, oatmeal, fruit… This list has a very nice roundup of cheap and effective body scrubs for those who want to venture into that wide world. Depending on which recipe you use, your costs will vary a little bit, but overall, DIY body scrubs are some of the cheapest beauty hacks out there. Plus, exfoliating is one of the easiest ways to improve your skin in a flash.
My favorite scrub is super simple to make and smells delicious. When I made this recently, my boyfriend tried to eat it. I suppose you could eat it — all it has in it is brown sugar, coconut oil, and vanilla extract. But I wasn’t wasting my exfoliator on his stomach.
Mix together one-half cup coconut oil, one-half cup brown sugar, and one-half teaspoon vanilla extract. Apply in the shower, rinse thoroughly, and bask in your smooth skin and sweet scent.
You can get all these ingredients at your local grocery store. I paid $3.99 for the coconut oil, $1.58 for a two-pound bag of brown sugar, and $2.50 for vanilla extract. Total cost of ingredients: $8.07 — and you can make a ton of the scrub from it. I’ll be using the brown sugar for some cookies soon, too. Just another reason I love these DIY scrubs: The ingredients serve multiple purposes!
3. Makeup Remover
Remember that coconut oil I just used? I also use that as a makeup remover when I use foundation or concealer on my skin.
Coconut oil works great to remove makeup and is particularly good for dry-skinned folks — though those with oily skin might want to look elsewhere for a remover. It adds a level of moisturizing that most store-bought makeup removers can’t. You will have to work at removing heavy black eyeliner a bit, but I promise — it will come off!
You’ll need to pick up some cotton balls or pads to use (I got a bag of cotton balls at my grocery store for $1.15). Pour some coconut oil into your hands and hold it for a minute or two to warm it. Slather it on your face and use the cotton pads to remove.
4. Teeth Whitening
As much as I cherish my morning ritual of a hot cup of black coffee and Twitter, that java isn’t doing my teeth any favors.
By mixing one tablespoon of baking soda with three drops of hydrogen peroxide and then brushing my teeth with it, I’ve made a DIY teeth whitener. I tried commercial whitening strips a few years ago, but I felt like they ripped a layer off my teeth that never came back.
This is also the cheapest hack on the list. The baking soda cost 57 cents, and the hydrogen peroxide cost 88 cents. The total cost was less than $2. You just can’t beat that for a beauty hack! Of course, such at-home remedies should be used with caution, especially as they may irritate your gums or make your teeth more sensitive.
A few weeks ago, I changed my birth control. A common side effect of this new method [OR medication] is acne. I had terrible skin growing up, and I have no desire to return to those days. I scoured the internet for a frugal way to fight the oncoming zits. I found one that will last all year for a mere $3.68. It’s apple cider vinegar, y’all. Don’t let the smell put you off — it works.
Your skin is naturally a little acidic, so using vinegar on it helps balance the pH levels. If you need proof of its effectiveness, know that Scarlett Johansson uses it to wash her face at night. Her skin is good enough for me!
Mix one part apple cider vinegar with two parts water. If your skin is sensitive, use four parts water until your skin adjusts. If you really can’t stand the smell, add a few drops of your favorite essential oil.
I’ve tried all of these DIY hacks myself, and I’ve been pleased with the outcomes. It definitely feels nice to walk around with exfoliated, acne-free skin and on-point nails. My wallet loves the price tag, too. You don’t have to spend like a movie star to look like one!