Every woman has her own beauty regimen that she swears by, but not every trick is legit. Dr. Oz tested out some of your favorite remedies to separate what's beautiful from what's bogus.
Baking Soda and Lemon to Remove Nail Discoloration
Method: Place baking soda in a small bowl. Squeeze lemon juice into bowl and mix into an exfoliating paste.
Verdict: It works! The acidic and antimicrobial properties of lemons, when combined with the abrasive properties of baking soda, can lighten your nails and leave them looking younger and healthier. The exfoliating power of the paste on the rest of your hands is just an added bonus!
Apple Cider Vinegar to Treat Oily Hair
Method: Dilute vinegar by mixing one tablespoon into one cup of water. Apply it to hair and then rinse.
Verdict: It works! Apple cider vinegar balances pH, which will keep hair from drying out. Removing oil without drying the scalp is a key way to keep your tresses healthy.
Cucumber to Moisturize Dry Lips
Method: Take one slice of cucumber and apply directly to lips.
Verdict: It works! Cucumber is 96% water so it restores moisture in lips on its own. As the winter season approaches, keeping cucumber in your fridge will be a great way to prepare for chapped lips.
Red Wine Facial for Sagging, Blotchy Skin
Method: Combine yogurt, honey and red wine. Apply to face and let dry. Rinse clean.
Verdict: It works! Red wine contains resveratrol, which is an antioxidant. Honey helps with blemishes and redness, while yogurt moisturizes. Click here for the full recipe.
Florida Citrus Foot Bath for Dry, Calloused Feet
Method: Fill a tray with warm water and add pieces of chopped up lemon and orange. Add a few drops of lemon antiseptic oil and half a cup of sea salt. Soak feet until water cools. Remove and apply lemon-scented lotion.
Verdict: It works! The lemon oil is an antiseptic that kills bacteria and calms the skin. The sea salt exfoliates and the lotion moisturizes, leaving feet soft and smooth.
Cocoa Butter to Remove Stretch Marks
Method: Apply cocoa butter to existing stretch marks as often as possible.
Verdict: It Does Not Work! Stretch marks are caused by tears in the collagen fibers beneath the skin. Cocoa butter hydrates skin, but it does not rebuild collagen or repair marks. Instead, look for creams that contain onion juice, vitamin C, vitamin A or peptides. They promote cell turnover and regeneration, which help scars fade.
Toothpaste to Zap a Zit
Method: Apply a generous amount of toothpaste onto your pimple. Let dry and then rise with warm water.
Verdict: True Beauty! Toothpaste dries and absorbs oil, which heals zits. However, be careful about the type of toothpaste you choose; bleaching varieties have hydrogen peroxide that burn the skin and cause inflamed patches. Red pastes, gels or ones with cinnamon can also cause irritation.
Hemorrhoid Cream to Reduce Bags Under Your Eyes
Method: Apply cream underneath eyes. Let dry and then rise clean.
Verdict: True Beauty! Hemorrhoid cream contains phenylephrine, which constrict blood vessels and reduces swelling. Take care not to apply this treatment too often – your eye area is tender and this cream is not designed for your face. You also run the risk of having an allergic reaction.
Avoid Crossing Your Legs to Prevent Varicose Veins
Method: When you sit, keep your feet firmly planted on the floor to keep blood circulating and prevent varicose veins.
Verdict: It Does Not Work! The actual cause of varicose veins is standing and walking for long periods of time. Age, genetics, pregnancy, or high blood pressure also put you at risk.
Mayonnaise, Egg and Vinegar Hair Mask
Method: Beat separately 5 tablespoons of mayonnaise and 2 eggs. Whisk them together and add in 1 capful of vinegar. Apply evenly through your hair. Leave in for 20-30 minutes for youthful, shiny hair.
Verdict: Beauty potential. All of the ingredients are hydrating. They will coat the cuticle of your hair, allowing your hair to reflect light and create shine. The problem is that this could leave a very significant reside. Try working in shampoo before you add water to wash it out; this will help to remove all of the product.
Shave Your Face
Method: Shave your face to exfoliate dead skin.
Verdict: It does not work! Shaving your face can cause dry patches, eczema flares, acne-like bumps and discoloration. Try a gentler way to exfoliate.
Expresso Mask for Tighter Skin
Method: Combine equal amounts of dry expresso and honey. Mix together and apply to your face for 10-15 minutes.
Verdict: True beauty! Honey hydrates the skin and caffeine can improve circulation and creates a taut, supple look.
Olive Oil as Shaving Cream
Method: Lather legs with olive oil, and then shave your legs as usual.
Verdict: True beauty! Olive oil is a very effective moisturizer and lubricant.
Olive Oil for Healthy Hair
Method: Massage olive oil into hair and cover with a shower cap. Leave for 10 minutes and then rinse clean.
Verdict: True beauty! Olive oil conditions your hair and adds shine. The monounsaturated fatty acids help to protect your hair and make it softer and more manageable.
Coffee Grinds Scrub for Cellulite
Method: Combine 1/2 cup coffee grinds with 1/4 cup brown sugar. Place olive oil over areas of cellulite and then rub the rub mix into skin in a circular motion. Scrub for 5 minutes to exfoliate.
Verdict: True beauty! Caffeine can enhance fat metabolism, especially right beneath the skin. It's easily absorbed when applied directly on the skin. It's also a diuretic, so it gets some of the fluid out of the fat beneath your skin so that cellulite is less visible. Olive oil is a moisturizer and an emollient, which softens the skin. The brown sugar works as an exfoliant. Although this is not permanent cellulite fix, it's an effective temporary solution.
Earwax for Pimples
Method: Use a Q-tip to get ear wax from your ear, apply directly to pimples.
Verdict: It does not work. Earwax can trap dirt and debris which can clog your pores. It's not sanitary. Also, you should never put a Q-tip in your ear; it's too small and can traumatize the ear canal. Anything smaller than your pinky finger should not go into your ear.
Aspirin and Lemon Juice for Flawless Skin
Method: Take 6-12 non-coated aspirin and crush them up into a powder. Combine with fresh, real lemon juice. Let it dissolve into more of a paste for about 5-10 minutes. Lightly apply to a breakout or blemish. Remove with a cotton ball dipped in a solution of baking soda and water.
Verdict: True beauty! Aspirin contains salicylic acid, a beta-hydroxy acid which acts as a chemical peel to reduce acne and lesions. Lemon juice contains vitamin C, with acts as an antioxidant to nourish your skin if you've had some sun exposure. It also acts as an exfoliant because it's acidic, and baking soda neutralizes that acid.
Pina Colada Bath for Extra Soft Skin
Method: Add 1 can pineapple rings, 1 can coconut milk, 2 cups powdered milk and 1/2 cup soy milk to a bath of warm water.
Verdict: True Beauty! Pineapple contains bromelain, a natural anti-inflammatory to calm your skin. The soy milk has vitamin E, which prevents free-radical damage to the skin caused by the sun. Finally, the coconut is a natural antioxidant, which also reduces free-radical damage.
Beauty Bonus: Make yourself a healthy smoothie from extra ingredients. Combine the juice that remains from the pineapple rings, along with 4 tbsp of coconut milk and 1/2 cup of soy milk. Blend with ice and bring it with you into the bath to sip on!
Hair Thickening Beer Shampoo
Method: Boil 12 oz. of beer until it reduces to about 1/2 cup. Cool the beer and add to 1 (15 oz.) bottle of baby shampoo. Lather through hair thoroughly and rise.
Verdict: It does not work. Although, initially, beer may make your hair plumper, for long-term use it's not beneficial. Beer contains ethanol, which actually inhibits biotin, the basic B vitamin that serves as hair's building block.
Mango, Sweet Potato and Honey Anti-Aging Face Mask
Method: Combine the ingredients (recipe below) together and apply to your face. Rinse thoroughly.
Verdict: True beauty! The mango and honey combat free radical damage caused by the sun to help fight off wrinkles. Sweet potato is one of the best sources of natural anti-inflammatory products.
Sweet Potato & Mango Mask
1 small sweet potato
5 tbsp honey
Poke holes in the sweet potato and bake in the microwave for 10 minutes, or dice it and throw it into boiling water for 30 minutes. Cut the mango in half and scoop out the innards, mash with a fork. When the sweet potato is done cooking, cut it in half and scoop out the potato, add the mango and honey and mix. Let it cool before applying to the face or body and leave on for 10 minutes, then rinse with warm water.
Breast Milk Soap for Dry Skin
Method: This soap consists mostly of olive oil and breast milk. The bar lathers up into a rich creamy treatment for eczema and dry skin
Verdict: It works! Breast milk contains lactic acid, a form of alpha-hydroxy acid which is a natural skin exfoliatant. It also has lactoferrin, which is a good anti-inflammatory and helps to shed the outer layer of the skin and unclog pores. You can use yogurt as a substitute for the breast milk. It also contains lactic acid and is readily available. Try the recipe below and see if it works for you.
Breast Milk Soap
Makes 3 lb batch of soap.
13 oz. breastmilk or yogurt (frozen/slushy)
5.25 oz. distilled water
6.25 oz. lye (pure sodium hydroxide crystals: WARNING: can be dangerous if handled improperly)
3 oz. fragrance oil (optional - omit for unscented soap)
24 oz. olive oil
12 oz. lard
12 oz. Crisco (or double this and omit lard for vegan soap)
1 oz. castor oil
In a steel pot, combine fragrance oil, olive oil and castor oil. Cut up the lard and Crisco into smaller chunks, and add to pot. In a plastic container, (tea pitcher works well) put distilled water. Slowly sprinkle the lye over the water and stir gently to dissolve. Wear protective clothing as this is VERY hot and can burn your skin.
After the lye has been completely dissolved, slowly add the slushy breast milk to the water/lye mixture and stir carefully. It will turn bright yellow/orange. Slowly add breast milk mixture to the oils while whisking thoroughly. After all ingredients have been incorporated, use stick blender & blend in bursts until soap becomes thick.
Pour soap batter into mold and put lid on. Check on it frequently as milk soaps tend to overheat easily. If it's getting too hot and starting to separate or crack, open the lid. In 24-48 hours, carefully unmold the soap. It needs to finish curing for a few weeks before use.
Home Remedy for Dry, Cracked Hands and Feet
Method: In a large glass jar, add 2 cups of olive oil, 1 cup sea salt, 5 drops of lavender essential oil and 5 drops of lemon essential oil. Stir well. Scoop out 1/4 cup and massage well into affected area. Rinse well with cool water; pat dry.
Verdict: It works! The olive oil and lemon oil supplement the natural oil your skin produces to seal in moisture. Sea salt has a high magnesium content that helps to fight inflammation. Finally, lavender oil helps to moisturize and has anti-inflammatory properties because it contains eucalyptus, which can work to prevent eczema.
Kitty Litter Cleansing Mask
Method: Fill a cup with clay-based kitty litter and add water so it's an inch or 2 above the kitty litter. Put in microwave for about a minute. Remove from microwave and put on your face for 10 minutes.
Verdict: The jury is still out. Cat litters contain bentonite clay, which works to draw out toxins. The absorptive quality of the kitty litter sucks out a lot of the oils from the pores that could be causing acne. However, it is not made for your skin and the effects have not been tested. If you do decide to try this remedy, make sure you use an unscented brand to prevent allergies and keep it away from your eyes and lips.
Chapped Lips Home Remedy
Method: Mix a tablespoon of fine sugar, a tablespoon of baking soda and a tablespoon of water together. Dip a tooth brush into the mix and brush your lips. Rinse off with water for a smooth and exfoliated lip!
Verdict: It works! The sugar is abrasive and helps to remove dead skin that accumulates from chapping, while the baking soda helps the mixture to lather. To make this a perfect treatment, you need to bring moisture back to the lips. Try adding some olive oil to the mixture!
Egg Whites for an Instant Facelift
Method: Mix egg whites together in a small bowl; apply to your face. Let dry and wash off.
Verdict: It works! Egg whites contain proline, an amino acid that serves as a building block for collagen. Egg whites contain more proline than most foods we eat, making this facelift a winner.
Yogurt Facial Cleanser for Flawless Skin
Method: Combine plain natural yogurt with some sunflower oil and a little lemon juice. Blend well; apply to face with a clean towel. Rub it into the skin; gently wash off and pat dry.
Verdict: It works! Yogurt has lactic acid, a type of alpha hydroxy acid that functions as an effective skin exfoliant. Sunflower oil helps seal in your skin's moisture. Additionally, lemon juice is a natural whitener, and it inhibits melanin production, which causes age spots.
Homemade Glue Mixture for Preventing Wrinkles
Method: Put a bit of white school glue in your hand and rub it all over your face. Let dry and peel off. Rinse your face with warm water. Next, apply honey all over your face. Leave on for about 5 minutes; rinse with warm water. Lastly, mix some apple cider vinegar with water. Apply with a spray bottle or cotton ball.
Verdict: It does not work. Honey is a humectant and will pull moisture to the face. Apple cider vinegar does work as a natural exfoliant. However, the glue is not a wise addition. While it does remove old skin cells, it can go deeper, causing uncontrolled removal of the skin. Additionally, glues contain many allergens, including latex. The potential side effects outweigh the benefits of this mixture.