Thursday, March 22, 2012

Lemony Goodness: What Lemon Can do for You

Hi everyone,

To paraphrase President Kennedy, "Ask not what your lemon can do for you, ask what you can do for your lemon." Well, dear Prez, I can make lemonade, of course!

But wait, don't stop there. Lemon is good beyond making lemonade. And squirting into pho and various kinds of soups. And making lemon pie. And lemon cheesecake. And lemon tart. Well, you get the idea.

So true, lemons are pretty good!
But what you may not know is lemons are good for your nails, skin, and hair, too! Here are 3 ways to make the best out of your lemons:

1. Hair:

When I was a kid, I used to cut up half a lemon and use it as a conditioner for my hair. Conditioner did not exist until I was eight so in order to detangle hair, lemon was the only way to go. After shampooing, I squeezed half a lemon all over my head, used my finger to toss the hair around, and then rinsed it well. My hair was softer, untangled (of course!), and smelled like lemon.

The only down side of this hair conditioning method is since lemon contains citric acid, it can lighten your hair once you go out in the sun. Hence, the rinse well precaution. However, if you want to have some bleach-free highlights, just take out a few strands of hair and soak them with lemon before going outside. Once you shampoo out the juice, you'll have some subtle highlights.

2. Cuticles:

If you have thick and difficult cuticles, please do not throw away your lemon (or what's left of it after you juice it out.) This is a trick a lot of manicurists here use to help cuticle removal easier. I happen to have some tough cuticles on my feet, especially the ones around my pinky toes. They are thick and no matter how long I soak my feet in warm water, them cuticles just refuse to be pushed back.

However, the manicurist who did my pedicure used a small piece of lemon and rubbed it all over my toes. She let it soak for a couple of minutes before using the cuticle pusher to push away that thick layer of skin on my toes. Bam! The cuticles that refused to be pushed were going waaay back! Way to go, lemon!

Again, this has to do with the citric acid that lemon has. It works wonder to remove cuticles as well as callouses. You should give it a try.

3. Elbows:

If you are like me, you'll soon realize there's a price to pay for placing your elbows on the table. They will darken and they will get dry and flaky. Not cute. We all overlook our elbows but once in a while, we get a picture of ourselves with two dark dots at where the forearms meet the arms and we wonder what went wrong.

Well, as I mentioned earlier, lemon can lighten stuff and it can definitely lighten your elbows. I don't encourage you to use lemon to lighten your face since it is acidic and can mess up your skin's pH balance. However, the skin on your elbows are thicker and if you want to lighten them, just rub some lemon, wait, and rinse it out. Then, moisturize the elbows well before going to bed. It works really well but you have to be patient and do it as often as possible (once a day if your skin can take it, otherwise every other day.)

See, you have 3 ways of using lemon already. I specifically love using lemon as a cuticle remover as it works wonderfully. Please give lemon a try and if you have some other tips, please let me know.

With lots of lemony love,
Dao xoxo

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