I’ve written about ways to save money by gardening but here’s the real dirt on how to cut household costs by using herbs and produce that grow in your garden instead of spending money on store bought products.
Rosemary – Not only can you use rosemary to season your Thanksgiving turkey but you can also use it on your locks. Rosemary is known to stimulate hair growth, naturally darken it and battle dandruff. Simply pour one cup of boiling water over dried rosemary and steep overnight. Strain the tea and use it in the shower as a final rinse. Rosemary along with other fragrant herbs like lavender and thyme makes natural potpourris or sachets.
Parsley and Mint – Next time you’ve got garlic breath don’t reach for a mint candy, but instead chew on parsley or fresh mint. These herbs are great bad breath fighters.
Apples – If for some reason you do not have your toothbrush and toothpaste handy, chew on an apple or any food that requires a lot of chewing like celery and carrots. These can help keep teeth clean and whiten teeth naturally.
Tomatoes – They’re delicious in salads and sandwiches and combat bad sunburns. Sliced tomato can be directly placed on areas of the body that have been burned and not only will they help with the pain but they will also turn the redness to a moderate tan color.
Cucumbers – Have under eye circles? Don’t fret. Place freshly sliced cucumbers around your eyes to reduce puffiness and refresh the skin.
Avocados – The richness of avocados is not only good for your health but your skin as well. If you have dry skin, a facial mask of mashed avocados will moisturize.
Strawberries – I read that actress Catherine Zeta Jones uses strawberries to keep her pearly whites white, but haven’t tried this myself. This apparently effective whitening method will not only save you money, but will also keep harsh chemicals away from your mouth. Strawberries help remove surface discoloration from stains from wine, coffee, teas and dark sodas.
Lemons – If life gives you lemons, make lemonade or use them to clean your home. Lemon juice is a natural alternative to harsh chemical cleaners. Lemon juice can be used with baking soda to create pastes to scrub surfaces and stains. That’s not all lemons can do. My favorite use for lemon is to spritz the juice on my hair when I spend time in the sun to create natural highlights. Lemon juice is also good at helping remove the yellow stains dark nail polishes leave on nails.
Oranges – If you squeeze your own orange juice do not throw away the oranges instead use them to slough dry skin from heels, knees and elbows. All you have to do is rub the oranges on the dry spots. You can also add a couple drops of olive oil and sugar to the orange peel and whatever is left of the flesh to use as a scrub. Voilà, in no time you’ll have smooth skin.
Honey – In my community garden, we have bees and soon we’ll have honey. If you’re making your own honey, you can also use it as a scrub by combining it with sugar. Use it on your lips to prevent flaky lips. Careful not to overdo it or you will have chapped lips.
For more all natural beauty recipes, check out the book “Return to Beauty”. If you know of more uses for things that grow in your garden, share it with us.