Frugal, Natural Beauty

I admit it.  I’m stuck in a rut.  But it’s a good rut.  Over the years, I’ve found a beauty routine that works, and I don’t want to change it.  It’s pretty inexpensive, and works well.

Years ago, a friend took me to two free makeover events in the mall, hosted by professional make-up artists.  (I know she was hoping to inspire me to wear a bit more makeup, but that backfired.  Maybe that’s why she took me to a second one?)  We had fun, though; wow- you should have seen my green eyeshadow!  While I was receiving my makeovers each time, the kindly lady began with a cleansing routine.  
She arrived at my chair with a tray of bottles and tubes- and a list of instructions!  I eyed the price tag on these bottles of luxury, and was stunned to see prices of $19-30 on each one.  She tried to convince me of the necessity each item had, and was disappointed at my purchase of… nothing.  I knew there had to be cheaper, better way- not to mention a more natural one!
Now, I order my cleansing products through our natural foods co-op.  One of the more frugal aspects of my routine is that I don’t use a “packaged beauty product” everyday.  Most days, a gentle scrub with a small amount of baking soda, followed by a spray of Rose Water works wonderfully.  If I haven’t worn any makeup that day, sometimes I just use the rose water to freshen up.  (A bottle of rose water usually costs around $3, and a box of baking soda is usually around $1.)  
If I feel like I need a deeper exfoliation (usually no more than once a month), I do a quick scrub with a natural Ayate Washcloth.  It is nice for an all-over body exfoliation, too, if desired.  (One $4 washcloth can last a year!)  
Occasionally, I will use Desert Essence Facial Cleansing Pads (Trader Joe’s sells the Tea Tree version), with a thorough rinse of water in the shower. Also on occasion, I will use Earth Science Aloe Facial Toner/Freshener.  (Although these products are basically “natural,” they still would be considered “higher up” on the toxicity scale than the baking soda/rosewater routine.)  Still, each product will last for months, and is usually around $5.  
Since I do not use harsh cleaners, I am not scrubbing out my skin’s natural oils on a daily basis. I don’t have to try and “re-balance” it by adding additional products.  As you may know, facial breakouts are often in response to over-cleansing our skin!  I still occasionally have the typical “hormonal-occurrence,” but a mild, natural routine has made an incredible difference in my skin.  
Also, make sure you’re not rinsing your face with old washcloths or drying with old towels. They often harbor bacteria that causes break-outs.  I’ve found that merely rinsing with clean hands in the shower, or using a bit of cotton (or wool) for toner has great effects.  Patting dry with a clean cloth (not a hand towel that’s been shared by the whole family!), also prevents the spread of bacteria.  
We keep a bottle of Apricot Kernel Oil (I’m not endorsing anything else on this linked site; just providing the oil info!), to use if additional moisturizing is needed (often mixing in some lavender essential oil.) We use Nature’s Alchemy oils (ranging from $3-$5), which last us at least a year.   
An important part of my routine is a weekly bath.  On either Friday or Saturday nights, my dear husband will pour me a bath.  (Yes, I am blessed!)  I will often add a few drops of lavender and/or tea tree essential oil, and occasionally some baking soda.  A bath is a great chance for exfoliating feet, etc.  However, this bath is not only a time of cleansing physically, but it is also a special quiet time.  I can pray and refocus; reviewing on the week’s events and looking toward the future.  I can also use the time to talk with my husband, as he will often sit nearby, reading a book.  (So much better than sitting in front of the TV together!)
Following a busy week with a toddler, this part of my routine is essential, although it’s been a habit since I was about 16.  (Yep, a rut.)  After this peaceful time, I definitely emerge a bit more “emotionally balanced,” ready for whatever the evening or weekend will bring.  Um, I’ll just link this devotional… 
Upon emerging from the bath, I will pat dry and spray Rose Water from head to toe.  I have been using Rose Water as an all-over body spray since I was about 12 years old.  (I told you I was in a rut!)  Rose Water has a wonderful toning effect, and feels lovely on freshly-shaved legs (no more razor burn!)  It is also a nice way to bless my husband- as his wife now truly “smells like roses!.”  
After a bath- especially in the winter, when dry skin is more common- a massage of lavender-scented Apricot Kernel Oil is the perfect moisturizing finish.  (If it feels too oily at the end, just rub off excess oil with a towel.)  
Then, on with a white muslin gown, and my routine is complete!  For the price of one “luxury beauty product,” I can buy months or even a year’s worth of natural products.  I can enjoy a different type of luxury that only frugal, natural beauty products can bring!  So, what’s your routine?
Once you’re finished with your cleansing routine, visit Lindsay for some makeup recommendations!  For more great Frugal Friday tips, go to Biblical Womanhood!  
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