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How to make use of food scraps in your beauty routine

Keepers of Cool

Save these items from the bin to create good skincare!

Potato peels
Chances are this is a waste item produced almost on a daily basis in your household. Rather than chucking the peels in the bin, keep them to banish puffy eyes and dark circles. Potatoes are rich in starch, minerals, vitamins, and enzymes that promote blood circulation, reduce inflammation, and have astringent properties that help nourish and tighten the thin skin around your eyes. Potatoes also contain the powerful vitamin C, well known for its skin brightening benefits and antioxidant properties. Chill some peels in the fridge and place over your eyes for a few minutes to minimise your tired appearance.
Photograph: jcomp /

Orange peels
The peel from this humble fruit can work wonders for your skin. It can help treat acne, pigmentation, and blackheads, and boost your skin’s health. With its anti-microbial properties and anti-bacterial properties, a paste made from orange peels can help stop the growth of acne-causing bacteria and promote the growth of new cells. Packed with vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant, the paste also protects the skin from damage caused by free radicals (like premature ageing), aids in skin regeneration, and combat pigmentation. Dry some orange peels in the sun and then powder them. You can combine this powder with water or other base ingredients like honey, rose water, etc to create a paste and apply as a face mask.

Avocado seeds
There’s no doubt that avocados are good for your health, but did you know the seeds, which we all discard, can boost skin health? The antioxidants in the pits can nourish dry skin and help repair skin damage, giving your complexion a radiant glow. The pits antibacterial properties make it great ingredient for making masks to deal with acne and dandruff. You can also use avocado seed powder to make a natural exfoliator for your skin, to remove dead skin cells and impurities clogging up your pores. You can grate the avocado seeds to create a paste or create a fine powder by breaking the pits into pieces and letting them dry for a few days. Blend the pieces into till you get a fine powder and mix with olive/coconut oil, yoghurt, or coffee grounds to create a body scrub.

Tea bags
Make the most of the black, green, and herbal tea bags you’ve used to steep your tea. With their anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-ageing properties, the tea bags can be reused to combat a host of skin problems. The caffeine in tea helps deal with dark circles, while the tannins help reduce puffiness, soothe sunburn, and diminish blemishes. A tea bag can also be used as a quick-fix toner, thanks to tea’s astringent properties. To use, wet the tea bags and place over the affected area.

Coffee grounds
A common food waste, coffee grounds make for a great natural scrub. They are packed with antioxidants, B vitamins, magnesium, potassium, riboflavin, niacin, and a host of other nutrients that boost blood flow, fight varicose veins, reduce inflammation, decrease the appearance of fine lines, and sooth sunburned skin. To make a coffee face mask, mix equal parts coffee grounds and olive oil. Gently pat the mixture on to your skin, without rubbing. Let it on for 15 minutes and then rinse off.

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