Posts from the ‘Homemade beauty remedies’ Category

Lemon soap

After a long pause of no soap-making (no reason, except constantly putting it off), I finally got down to making some new soaps based on a recipe picked up in a women’s magazine.

I managed to get them done several weeks ago now, so they were “mature” (i.e. dry) in time for Christmas.

With 100% olive oil and scented with lemon zest and juice (no essential oils) this is one of the cheapest homemade soaps you could make!!!

If you’re planning to give them as a gift, wrap them in pretty tissue paper for an extra special touch.

Before you start, and if you’re new to soap-making, check out my beginner’s guide to soap-making here.

So here’s the recipe…and photos:


700g olive oil (I used organic olive oil from my local supermarket)

283.5g or 286.7g or 289.8g commercial caustic soda solution at 30% dilution (for 8%/9%/10% reduction respectively), using Aroma-Zone’s soap calculator  (it’s in French!!)

Zest and juice of 1 lemon


Make soap as per standard soap-making instructions.

When you reach trace (see photo), add the lemon zest and juice and combine.

Pour the soap mix into your moulds, cover with cling film and a tea towel/small blanket to accelerate the saponification process, and leave for 24 hours.

The next day, the soap will be solid but not set. You can remove it from your moulds (wear protective gloves!). If using a cake tin as a mould, you should cut the soap into slices using a sharp knife (don’t use this for cooking/eating after). I wrote on mine as well, though not very well!!







Leave the soap in a dry, well-ventilated place for 4-6 weeks  to “cure” i.e. dry out.

Note: Any kitchen equipment used to make soap (blender, moulds, knife etc.) should not be used to prepare food again afterwards.

I made mine in November so they were ready to give away as Christmas presents. I’ll let you know just how lemony they are, since for once they don’t have essential oils in them.

I’ve just sniffed them and can’t smell the lemon ( unlike the distinctive orange in last year’s chocolate and orange soap.)

I’m planning to make some cinnamon soap as well in the next few weeks, so watch this space!



All the classic natural beauty scrubs are here in this collection of 10 DIY body scrubs from Beauty and Tips magazine.

It’s coffee scrub time!

You’ll find sugar, salt, coffee grounds and oatmeal, all familiar cupboard store”scrub” ingredients for those of you who regularly make your own beauty products.

Lavender and salt scrub

But there are also a few less well-known combos – have you tried coconut oil and GINGER (helps fight inflammation), for example. Or how about BANANA and brown sugar (good enough to eat!)

Coconut and ginger scrub

Check them out by clicking on the link below

And here are some I published earlier on this blog:

Pumpkin and cinnamon body scrub

Honey ginger sugar scrub

Let’s scrub away

Happy scrubbing! For a softer scrub for your face, get out your crochet hooks and crochet one (or several) of these re-usable, washable “scrubbies”:

Pretty little face scrubbies

Beauty uses of coriander

I love the smell (and taste) of fresh coriander leaves and use the ground seeds regularly in cooking.

But I knew nothing of its beauty secrets until I read this article”How to have beautiful skin with coriander leaves and seeds” in The Statesman online.

With various recipes for coriander masks for radiant skin, for cooling the skin and for preventing wrinkles, there are also treatments for sunburn and skin irritations.

So whether you grow this versatile herb in your garden or get it fresh from you local supermarket, give some of these recipes a try.

Homemade beauty

I’m a big fan of making my own cosmetics (check out the section on Homemade beauty remedies), mainly face and body creams, and more recently a foray into soap-making (must get back to that, I’ve run out of my home-made supply!), so I enjoyed reading this article from the Telegraph about self-taught Alex Brennan, passionate about homemade natural products.

Yes, it’s me with cucumbers on the eyes and lettuce on the rest

The article even includes a few ideas to get you started, including an easy blusher using just three ingredients!

Just click on the link below.

Homemade facial steam

After cleansing your face, pour hot water into a large bowl, drape a towel over your head and let your skin absorb the steam for just five minutes.

It’s the  ideal thing for opening up pores to help draw out embedded dirt.

For an aromatic rejuvenating steam add some garden herbs such as rosemary, thyme, lavender or mint to the water.

Cucumber roll for eyes

Pamper your eyes with this easy beauty treatment.

Grate some cucumber and place it in a line along a piece of gauze, then roll the gauze up to get a “sushi” roll long enough to lie across both eyes.

Press firmly against the eyes and leave for 10-15 minutes.


Nail detox

Nail polish overload?

For beautifully white, stain-free, varnish-free nails this summer, rub your naked nails (on top and underneath) with half a fresh lime, then soak in some dissolved bicarbonate of soda for a few minutes.

Your nails will be like new!