Inexpensive beauty treatments


Collectively, women spend more than $426 billion on beauty products each year. Besides the cost, making appointments to get professional help can be a hassle. Keep reading if you want some cheaper alternatives to help you look and smell your best.

To whiten stained teeth, crush a few fresh strawberries and mix with a pinch of baking soda and enough water to make a paste. Apply it to a toothbrush and polish for a few minutes once every three or four months. The astringent malic acid in strawberries buffs away tough stains, even coffee and red wine.

A trick to sweeten bad breath is using lemon juice. Gargle with a small cup of acidic lemon juice to kill odor-causing bacteria. Then eat a bit of plain unsweetened yogurt, which contains beneficial lactobacillus bacteria. These so-called probiotics compete with and replace the reeking bacteria. The lemon-yogurt combo instantly neutralizes odor and lasts 12 to 24 hours.

Try black tea to revive puffy, tired eyes. It's full of tannins that can help deflate and tighten the bags under your eyes. Dip the tea bag in hot water to activate the tannins, cool in the fridge, and then apply the damp bag as a compress to the closed eye for 10 minutes.

Black tea also stops foot odor. Take a daily foot bath in strong black tea for 30 minutes. The tannins kill bacteria and close the pores in your feet, keeping them dryer, longer. You'll smell the results in about a week.