Six beauty gems found in the kitchen

NYREE MCFARLANE
Last updated 05:00 12/03/2013
beauty

STRAWBERRY FAIR: The malic acid found in these summer berries works to whiten teeth.

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ROOIBOS TEA
Meaning "red bush" in Afrikaans, the antioxidants-jammed plant that makes this caffeine-free tea can treat skin problems like acne, eczema and sunburn. Pop brewed rooibos tea in the fridge and use it as a refreshing toner to help calm irritated skin. How does it work? The tea contains flavanoids, which have known anti-inflammatory effects and also work to reduce histamine release.

EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL
While all olive oils have fabulous moisturising properties, the extra virginal stuff is the best as it's cold-pressed (not using heat conserves the nutrients and antioxidants better). There are many ways to use the stuff, but our favourite three are, firstly, as a hydrating alternative to shaving cream; secondly, as a great - vitamin E-packed and sting-free - way to remove waterproof mascara. And last but not least as a far-cheaper anti-frizz cream (a few drops rubbed between your palms and applied to the ends of hair will add shine and weight).

Oh, one more tip: pour a little olive oil into your palms and mix with baking soda for a brilliant exfoliater that has a microdermabrasion effect (so you may feel a little tingle). Ooh, and also, a touch of baking soda applied as a scrub to your scalp does wonders for dandruff.

HONEY
While the bee juice is brilliant as a 'sticky' element in natural face masques, our favourite use for it is as an anti-acne tool. Simply dot a bit of honey on a troublesome pimple before bed and pop a plaster on to avoid sticky pillows. The next morning the spot - thanks to honey's anti-microbial and antiseptic qualities - will be less inflamed, or maybe even gone.

GRAPES
These little pearlers are not only responsible for the nectar we like to call wine, but can also combat crow's feet. Red grapes in particular are packed with resveratrol - a compound that works as an antioxidant and prevents the formations of free radicals (hence why expensive skin creams often contain it). Simply mash up a few grapes and dab the juice on the fine-line prone areas around your mouth, eyes and forehead, leave for 10 minutes and then rinse (maybe with rooibos?). 

LEMONS
Are you a manicure addict? Have all those on-trend colours left your natural nails the colour of Austin Power's teeth? Not to worry, dab some lemon juice onto cotton pads and then leave them over your nails to soak (it may take one or two treatments to really work). Another great lemon trick is to use it to tone down any overzealous spray tans. Just cut one in half and rub the open part over your too-much-like-Snooki bits.

STRAWBERRIES
It seems counter-intuitive considering they're bright red, but strawberries can actually whiten teeth (because they're packed with malic-acid, a whitening agent). Simply blend one mashed-up ripe strawberry with 1/2 tsp of baking soda, spread the mixture onto your teeth with a soft toothbrush and leave for five minutes. After you've rinsed it all off, give your teeth a good brush, as there are a lot of natural sugar in strawberries. 

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