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I Tried A Bunch Of DIY Beauty Products To See What Actually Works

The thought of DIY deodorant honestly gives me nightmares.

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Hi, I'm Jemima! Nice to meet you, please have a seat and let's chat beauty products.

I'm not a fan of the term "beauty products" because I don't think we need them to enhance beauty, that comes from the inside. BUT damn, do I love them. I don't care what it does, but if it looks good/smells good/has been on Instagram, I want it. Though recently I've started feeling guilty about all the plastic packaging on all these products I'm obsessed with.

I've seen a few things on Pinterest about making your own beauty products but honestly it all just seemed like too much effort.

BuzzFeed / Pinterest

Then I actually clicked the links... and it turns out I was just being lazy and it's easy as hell.

First up, dry shampoo.


Dry shampoo is my life blood. Honestly, I should buy shares in Batiste because I use that shit pretty much every day, as I'm way too lazy to wash my hair until absolutely necessary. I've tried baking soda in place of dry shampoo before but wasn't impressed.

Method: So easy. Use a pinch of cornflour or cornstarch and sprinkle it into your roots. Use your fingers or a comb to help it "soak in". You can also use an old makeup brush to apply it if you like. Do you have dark hair? Use an equal mix of cocoa powder and cornflour.

Did it work?: YES! In terms of soaking up oil it worked a treat, and it didn't make my hair feel gross like it the baking soda did. Cornflour didn't give me the same oomph and volume that comes with dry shampoo, but if you're looking for an alternative to an aerosol then this is more than suitable. You could even put 1/2 cup of cornflour in a jar and add some drops of essential oils to make it smell nice. It'd also be a lot easier than just pouring it out of the packet into your hand like I did.


Then I tried to make my own bubble face mask.

@FarahDhukai / Jemima Skelley / BuzzFeed

I seriously love a face mask, and recently I tried a bubble foaming sheet mask which made me feel so deluxe. But if I can make my own instead of dropping $8, then it'd be even better.

Method: Whisk together one egg white (no yolk) with a tablespoon of sugar, until it's stiff and pure white. Spread on your face and leave for 15 minutes. The egg white tightens skin and the sugar helps retain moisture.

Did it work?: Lmao no. Look at me. I probably needed to whisk it a lot more but after one minute of vigorous whipping my arm was too sore to keep going. Not worth it in my humble opinion. Plus I got egg white in my hair and it went all crispy but I'm too lazy to wash it out (as discussed above).

Up next: body exfoliating scrub.

Jemima Skelley / BuzzFeed

I feel like a good body scrub is essential in winter, especially because I'm a grub who gets sweaty in my gym tights and then leaves them on for the rest of the day. So I end up with a lot of clogged pores that need exfoliating, #dontjudgemeplz. But a lot of the scrubs you can buy are pretty damn pricey, and I don't exactly know what they're made of. I don't want chemicals on my skin and insoluble beads going down my drain.

Method: Combine half a cup of oil with one cup of sugar in a jar. I used olive oil, raw sugar (which has bigger granules), and an old salsa jar to make mine, and you can also add essential oils if you want it to be scented."

Did it work?: In theory, yes. It was a pretty good scrub that I feel got right up in my pores. It did leave my skin feeling a little oily though, kind of like the same thing you get with the Frank body scrubs. I'm personally not a fan of this, though I do feel like it stopped my skin from drying out which can happen to me sometimes when exfoliating. Maybe next time I'll use a sugar with smaller grains, and sub half the oil out for water.

Next I tried the recipe I was most afraid of, deodorant.


Method: Put 1/4 cup of baking soda in a jar, and add 10-20 drops of essential oils. Mix well, and pat – don't rub – into your armpits with your fingers. You can skip the essential oils if you want, and just wear perfume.

Did it work?: Sort of? I went to an exercise class, wearing regular roll-on deodorant under one arm and baking soda under the other, so I could gauge how well it worked in comparison. By the end of the class I was pretty surprised to find that I was totally dry under both arms. Win! But then when I tried wearing baking soda under both armpits for an entire day, after a couple hours I felt a little ~damp~ especially after going for a walk in the sun. I think this could be an option for less sweaty individuals, or for winter days when you don't get warm. Also please note that I had recently shaved when I did this experiment, so you might get different results if you have hair under your arms.

Then I tried my hand at some DIY eye-makeup remover.

Method: Mix two parts water to one part olive oil in a jar or bottle (yes, I used another Doritos jar. I love salsa.). If your makeup is waterproof, make it one part water to two parts olive oil.

Did it work?: Yes! Normally I use a cloth face washer and Sorbolene to take off my makeup, and this oil mixture was just as effective, if not moreso. All my makeup (including liquid liner and waterproof mascara) came off in two wipes. And my skin actually felt hydrated afterwards, not raw or dry like it sometimes can when I take off a lot of makeup. I'm not sure if it would work for all skin types, but it's worth a try because you've surely already got olive oil in your kitchen. Also, I'm realising the selfie light in my room is truly terrible and I must fix this soon.

Lastly, I made my own shampoo.

Method: Mix a tablespoon of baking soda with three tablespoons of water. If you have long hair, double the recipe. Wet your hair in the shower, then pour this mixture over your head. Massage into your roots for about a minute, then rinse. After that, rinse your hair with vinegar (I used apple cider vinegar) to neutralise it.

Did it work?: Yes! I had low hopes for this one but I've actually tried it a bunch of times and every time my hair has felt so clean and fresh and surprisingly bouncy! There was no lather like I'm used to when washing my hair in the shower, and rinsing my hair with vinegar was not a pleasant experience. But I felt like it was a really good way to get rid of product buildup and freshen up my hair. Though I must say, the lingering smell of the vinegar in my hair was... not great. But still, I 100% recommend this recipe. I know you can also buy castile soap to make your own natural shampoo but that's not technically something I already had in my kitchen so I didn't try it out this time.

Overall, it was a success! I'm not going to be throwing out my beauty product stash any time soon, but maybe I'll reach for the cornflour next time I run out of aerosol dry shampoo.

Do you have a fave DIY recipe that I missed? Let me know in the comments so I can give it a try!