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Eco-Fabulous: Secrets to Every Day Beauty

By Shelly Ballestero
Licensed Esthetician Some of the best beauty secrets have been dated back thousands of years, from Cleopatra’s milk baths to Queen Esther’s beauty treatments of fine oils and cosmetics  (Esther 2:12). Back then they did not have any chemicals or synthetic ingredients to preserve products like we do today. Many cosmetic companies use harsh ingredients and unfortunately they can be toxic to your skin and your overall health. That’s why it’s important to be label conscious… what goes in and on our body. I call it smart beauty.

 Let’s take a look at ingredients to avoid when searching for you favorite cosmetic brand.

  • Parabens--a preservative linked to hormone disruption, and other harmful side affects. Its prefixes are ethyl, methyl, butyl, isobutyl or propyl.
  •  Fragrance--this term is used to mask hundreds of chemical
    ingredients including phthalates (When you see the name, it is hard to pronounce (THA-lates) which can disrupt the endocrine system and may cause reproductive and developmental harm.
  • Talc—a form of asbestos that can irritate the skin. According to the Cancer Prevention Coalition, “Talc is a mineral, produced by the mining of talc rocks and then processed by crushing, drying, and milling. Processing eliminates a number of trace minerals from the talc, but does not separate minute fibers which are very similar to asbestos.”

Now the above mentioned are just a few of the many ingredients to watch out for, however please check out Skin Deep at for further information.

First things first…

Hydrate Inside and Out
Water is the foundation of our bodies. Yes, drinking plain, clear, purified water offers some of the best anti-aging benefits ever. Water makes up two-thirds of our body, so it only makes sense to supply ourselves with clean, pure H20. Water hydrates your cells, flushes out toxins, helps with digestion, and reduces headaches and dizziness, not to mention helping with weight loss and increasing energy. Jazz it up with some fruit & veggies such as lemon, strawberries, orange or cucumber. I love to add fresh mint from my garden or add a bit of fresh ginger for some zing.

Everyday Beauty
Believe it or not some of the most effective beautifying treatments are located no further than your pantry. Here are a few tips I’d like to share from my skin/hair care recipe box that will help you achieve an eco-fabulous glow!

Need A Lift?
Coffee…yes coffee can perk up a tired soul; however it can give an instant facelift when used on your skin!

What you’ll need:
¼ cup dry coffee
¼ tsp. lemon juice
1 tsp yogurt (not fat free or low fat)
Preparation; Mix together to make a paste then use a foundation brush to apply to face and neck using  upward strokes, wait 10-15 minutes and rinse with warm water.

Dry Skin

What you’ll need:
½  ripe avocado
¼  honey
Preparation; mix well into a creamy paste and spread on face. Leave on for 10minutes rinse with a warm washcloth.

Tighten Pores

What you’ll need
½ small cucumber (grated)
½ aloe Vera gel
1 tbsp of apple cider vinegar (optional)
Preparation –mix together and apply with cotton ball. Leave on for 10 minutes rinse off.

Eco-beauty tip…the pimple zapper. Blend one packet of brewers yeast and a few drops of lemon juice and apply as a mask before bed. As the mixture hardens, it pushes away debris clogging your pores.

 Nourish Your Hair

What you’ll need:
 4 tbsp. mayonnaise
 1 tbsp. honey
Preparation; Mix the honey and the mayonnaise well and apply it to hair starting at the roots down. Use a wide tooth comb to distribute the mask and let it sit for 5 minutes. Then rinse with water.

Bee-u-tiful Hands…Our hands take a lot of abuse, whether it’s from sun damage or chemicals that are used for cleaning. One thing is for sure, your hands need some TLC and here are a few secrets to get your hands looking more youthful.

  • Exfoliate with a simple brown sugar scrub (1 cup) made with equal parts of sunflower oil and then, before bed, mix avocado oil and primrose oil in equal parts, apply a few drops to hands, cover with gloves, and go to sleep.
  • After you wash your hands, make sure you apply a lotion that has a sunscreen in it. Keep lotion near every sink, that way you won’t forget to apply—remember the sun ages your skin and your hands are constantly exposed to the sun, walking or driving.

Pretty Lip Tip Take an old tooth brush and dab on some castor oil begin to brush against your lips (this will exfoliate) or mix equal parts brown sugar and olive oil lightly rub and scrub. Wipe off and apply lip balm.

Show some love with those pretty lips and give a smile. It’s free, plus you’ll brighten someone’s day just by showing those pearly whites AND you will look several years younger.

Shelly BallesteroShelly Ballestero is a licensed esthetician, make-up artist, beauty editor of Lifestyle Magazine, and author. Shelly has studied under Emmy Award winner Eve Pearl, head make-up artist for ABC's The View. In addition, Shelly is one of the make-up experts for Jane Iredale cosmetics and participates in the International Esthetics, Cosmetics & Spa conference. Shelly and her husband, Angelo, a worship pastor, live in Windermere, Florida, with their two children. (Photo of Shelly courtesy of Katie Meehan,

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