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5 DIY Beauty Tips For A More Stunning You

5 DIY Beauty Tips For A More Stunning You

If you’re anything like me, you probably have a cabinet full of facial treatments, clay masks, cleansers, tooth whitening gels and expensive deep conditioning treatments in your bathroom, and you may have had mixed results with them. Expensive products are bought, tested a few times and then abandoned in the bottom of your drawer. Or maybe you love your moisturizing routine, but you can’t keep springing for the expensive lotion you’ve been using.

Chances are, you have some natural ingredients at home that can do the job of many of these products, or you have some hidden multi-taskers you didn’t know about. Rather than forking over tons for products that may or may not work, try some of these DIY beauty tips for a more beautiful, stunning you.

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1. Brush your teeth with baking soda

Baking soda is a natural whitener. It’s used in laundry detergent, natural shampoos, and toothpastes. Rather than purchasing a tub of toothpaste, however, consider making a home-made baking soda paste to whiten your teeth gently and naturally. Baking soda is a mild abrasive, so it gently scrapes off the plaque and food stuck to your teeth while lifting old stains, revealing a nicer, brighter color after regular use.

To make a baking soda paste to use on your teeth, mix half a teaspoon of baking soda with an ounce or two or water or lemon juice. Dip your toothbrush in the paste, then brush your teeth as usual. You should use this paste once a week; in between, use your regular toothpaste. You’ll find your teeth naturally whitening after a couple weeks of sticking to this routine.

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2. Use lemon juice to lighten your hair

People are quick to recommend using lemon juice in DIY projects on your skin, usually as part of scrubs or dark spot treatments. That’s actually a bad idea, as citrus oils can leave your skin more sensitive to sun damage and the acid can cause long-term harm. However, lemon juice can be immensely helpful for naturally lightening your hair color.

On a bright sunny day, take one cup of lemon juice, dilute it with a few tablespoons of water, spray the mixture in your hair until it’s thoroughly dampened, then spend an hour or two outside. Wash your hair and apply a moisturizing conditioner, as lemon juice is drying and your hair will be sapped of moisture. The result should be a few shades lighter than your original hair color. You can repeat the process every few days until you get the results you want. Although it won’t be as effective or as strong as bleaching, you can get natural sun-kissed highlights using this technique, particularly if you have brown to medium blonde hair, without overly damaging or drying your hair out.

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3. Use coconut oil as deep conditioner

If you suffer from dry hair, you’ve probably spent tons of money on hot oil treatments and expensive deep conditioners, but those are unnecessary. The best and easiest way to deep condition your hair is to use a natural, fatty liquid like olive oil or coconut oil. Take whatever natural oil you have around—you don’t want to use vegetable oil for this. Take two to six tablespoons of oil, depending on how much hair you have, and lather it into your hair after dampening it thoroughly in warm water. Wrap it up in a hair wrap and leave it in for at least 30 minutes, up to overnight if that suits you. Use shampoo and warm water to rinse it out. Your hair will be moisturized, shiny and soft after this treatment.

4. Shave your legs with conditioner

Shaving cream is the biggest scam of the 21st century. Most people can easily replace it with a wide variety of household items that are cheaper, more efficient and more effective. Shaving cream is messy and easy to run through quickly. The other expensive option is to get laser hair removal by experts. But rather than spending money on an unnecessary expense, use conditioner to remove your hair. It helps by softening the hair follicles and moisturizing your legs, making the razor run smoothly and without excessive clogging. Be sure to shave at the end of a hot shower, so the warm steam can open up your pores, giving you a closer shave.

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5. Use raw honey to treat your face

Raw honey can be an immensely helpful face treatment for everything from soothing irritation to clearing up acne to moisturizing. This natural anti-bacterial makes an excellent cleanser, mask, and exfoliant for your skin. Make sure to get the good stuff—raw, unpasteurized honey—as regular old honey won’t have any of the natural benefits that raw honey has.

To clear up daily grime or to exfoliate, apply a layer of raw honey all over your face and massage gently for two or three minutes into your skin. To exfoliate, leave it on for 10 to 15 minutes. Then gentle rinse it off with warm water for refreshed, moisturized plump skin.

Beauty treatments don’t have to be expensive, and they don’t have to come from a store. Natural homemade products can be just as effective at a fraction of the cost. Raid your closet, fridge and pantry for secret, effective beauty supplies.

Featured photo credit: Mario Antonio Pena Zapata via flickr.com

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Last Updated on March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

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Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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