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Book a luxurious spa day with your kitchen pantry


eauty Products. These two words bring to mind visions of fancy containers filled with potions that promise everything from soft skin to super powers. If you’re female, you most likely have a plethora of these, but most of them have been forced into a reclusive existence in the back of your cabinet providing nothing more than framework for spider webs. I’m sure you have your reasons. My own island of misfit products has accumulated because, for me, most skin products trigger allergic reactions, and hair products seem to evaporate within minutes of application. It’s hard to throw away a product you just spent money on, so into the vault it goes. Another partially used bottle of goo to add to the collection. Give it to a friend? Sure! She’ll be glad to take it after you tell her how well it DIDN’T work for you, right? Seriously, ditch those useless products. Give ‘em the old “it’s not you, it’s me” and let’s move on. I’ve resorted to a more natural approach to beauty in recent years, and I invite you to consider conversion. Sure, some of those spendy alpha-hydra-fancy-stuff-wecan’t-pronounce-vitamin-complex things work for some, but for those with sensitivities and health conscious lifestyles, I offer you a list of some of my own tried and true favorites you will probably find in (of all places) your kitchen.

Virgin Coconut Oil Don’t use the pina colada scented slime used for tanning. Found in any health food store, raw virgin coconut oil should be white and hard when cool, and become a clear, light oil when warmed. I use it daily as an eye makeup remover. Using about a half teaspoon, I close my eyes and gently massage it over the whole eye area, including the lashes. Then I take a damp cloth and gently wipe it off. After years of doing this, not a single sign of crows feet. Just sayin’. Deep condition your hair with it, use it as a frizz serum and massage it on dry skin and cuticles.

Plain Yogurt


Beauty secrets are only as deep as one’s kitchen pantry, according to Local iQ’s newest columnist KoraLee Robinson, who suggests utilizing otherwise common ingredients, such as oatmeal, sea salt or baking soda, among others, as substitutes to otherwise spendy, yet equally effective beauty products.


The kryptonite of bad bacteria. The probiotic properties of whole or low fat plain yogurt make it the perfect remedy for all bacterial issues. Use it as a mask to treat acne, and apply it to fungal rashes. The lactic acid softens skin and reduces wrinkles. Use it to cool down a sunburn and reduce peeling. Read about using it to cure yeast issues, too.


Oatmeal You may already be aware of oatmeal’s soothing effects on chicken pox and the like. Thanks, Mom. You can also use it as a natural exfoliant. Just scoop up a handful, add a little warm water and gently buff. I love to fill a sock with about a half cup of rolled oats, cinch the opening and toss it in the tub like a tea bag. It softens my skin, and soothes irritation, but make sure to rinse off afterward, lest ye be itchy.

Sea Salt Put it on your popcorn, and in your bath water. A cup or so in the bath helps detoxify the skin. As a body exfoliant, I make my own salt scrub by gradually adding grape seed oil (one of the best emollient oils) to about a cup of sea salt till I have a gritty paste. Then I add essential oils such as lemon and peppermint, which will leave you with a refreshing tingle, or lavender to soothe and relax. The oil won’t dissolve the salt, so you can make a lot and store it in a jar. Use it on your feet, elbows, and hands to slough off dead skin and moisturize. It makes a great gift in a cute vintage jar, too!

Baking Soda The obvious benefit of baking soda is mouth care. But if you have an oily scalp or product build-up in your hair, you can mix it with your shampoo for squeakyclean locks. I like to scrub my finger and toe nails with it to whiten them, and soften my cuticles. Put a few tablespoons in smelly shoes and let it sit for a while to freshen, please and thank you. Remember, whether eating it or slathering it on your body, organic is always best. There is a wealth of online information on these and other food products with beauty value, so let this list be a starting point to a more beautiful you, inside and out. There’s a luxurious spa day sitting in your pantry. Make an appointment!

The Back to School Fashion Issue  

Three different levels of school, many new looks for the back to school set. Plus: Scooters are huge in Albuquerque. Local iQ profiles the s...

The Back to School Fashion Issue  

Three different levels of school, many new looks for the back to school set. Plus: Scooters are huge in Albuquerque. Local iQ profiles the s...