Admit it. We all have uncomfortable physical issues that we want to ask our friends about, but are too embarrassed to see if they have the same problems. Chances are they do and they may even have remedies that work. So, my plan for this article is to answer those concerns without anyone having to ask. If you have something going on like flaky scalp or stinky feet, read on for solutions that you can try and keep to yourself.
Dry scalp, dandruff, and those dreaded flakes It happens to the best of us and especially to brunettes. You leave home with finished hair only to spy several white flakes atop of your hair-styled head! For me, I was only experiencing a few flakes, but embarrassing nonetheless. So, I bit the bullet and asked my salon stylist about it. She told me that my flakes weren't dandruff, but instead what she called "dry scalp" caused by overuse of my beloved hair spray. In the dry climate that I live in, my hairspray dries quickly. The product was accumulating and turning into white build-up that appeared around my hairline. So, I did several things. I now limit my spray to once a day and have let go of the mid-day refresher application. Plus, I tried a very cool hair brush called Goody Therapy Copper Styling Brush which is infused with copper-plated bristles that kill the fungus that cause dandruff and a dry flaky scalp. I bought this brush at Target for just under ten bucks and good news - it works!
For those of you with serious dandruff, I tapped into my Mom's flake-free head. She has battled this condition for years and has always known what natural remedies work best. She told me that she puts a little bit of tea tree oil on a cotton ball, dabs it with water and then applies it to her scalp. When she gets a dandruff flare-up, she uses this tried and true method. Plus she likes Avalon Organics Tea Tree Shampoo with a few added drops of pure tea tree oil. This gives her scalp a double dose to fight the fungus that causes dandruff.
Adult acne For me that unwelcome monthly visitor not only means a trip to the drug store for maxi pads, but also several surprise pimples! It is uncanny that every month a nice big pimple shows up right on the tip of my nose on the center of my chin. Plus, I usually have something scheduled that I want to look nice for.
DDF has a unique line that was created by a dermatologist along with his sister, who is a nutritionist. The product line also checks out nicely at skindeep.org with a favorable rating of safe ingredients in both the foaming cleanser and the gel. I like the DDF Acne Tackle Box Set for several reasons. First of all, the Daily Matte SPF offers sun protection, which is crucial in our Arizona sun. Tea Tree Oil is one of the ingredients in the DDF Benzoyl Peroxide Gel and I cannot overemphasize the benefits of that oil as I described in the dandruff section of this article. I also like that the set is sort of a mini-facial kit that cleanses, protects and treats all in three easy steps. Plus the trio sells for $35, which is not a bad price. Learn more at www.sephora.com.
When you can't hide that it's cold outside I promised that I would cover embarrassing beauty challenges, so I can't leave this one out. In cold climates our bust can indicate our obvious chill factor. Here in hot Phoenix the cold indoor air conditioning can bring relief, but it can also show off just how well the AC unit is cooling your body.
Yep, I'm talking about blouses, dresses and other types of tops that can't hide cold nipples. And yep, there is a product for that and the name is unforgettable. Low Beams Nipple Concealer Adhesives pretty much do what the name claims. They can even be worn under a bathing suit or without a bra. The pretty little pink package contains five pairs that can only be worn once and sell for ten bucks. The company's logo states that headlights are for cars are right on! This is a good one for us gals to know about. You can check out the line's other innovative products at www.herlook.com.
Discreet relief for new mamas Everyone raves about the joys of being a new mother, but they often leave out the post-childbirth pain that your most private areas will endure once you bring baby home. Well, I'm here to talk about it!
First let's stay on the subject of nipples, because I've got news for first-time nursing Moms - it's gonna hurt and hurt bad! But, if you can endure the tender, swollen and sometimes bleeding breasts, take heart it doesn't only get better, breastfeeding after several months releases amazing endorphins that are similar to how you feel after a glass of a good vino! Not to mention just how amazing it is for the baby. Formula companies have tried to emulate Mother's milk, but they just can't create that liquid gold that helps you to protect, nourish and bond your baby to you.
So, one of the most soothing remedies that I found while nursing my first-born son can be found in your grocery store's produce aisle. Cabbage leaves! Yes, cold cabbage leaves relieves your bosom quickly. It is organic and it is cheap! I learned about this in a breast-feeding class that I took with my husband in tow during our first pregnancy.
I also swear by Lansinoh for not only great relief for your nipples, but the stuff also works as an amazing lip gloss. New Moms will quickly learn how to multi-task and stretch the budget! That skill comes with Motherhood. Another plus is that Lansinoh gets the green light from the cosmeticdatebase.com website which checks the safety of product ingredients.
Let's not ignore the bottom half of a new mother's body. I had C-sections and I remember how stunned I was to see how the mothers who delivered vaginally were walking compared to me. Post-surgery recovery of any type is tough and caesarean births are no exception, but some of the moms who had their baby the more traditional way were struggling more than I was to get up and going! So, I was happy to find a cool product called Earth Mama Angel Baby New Mama Bottom Spray. As the bottle describes, this spray provides relief to the area that has postpartum soreness and those dreaded hemorrhoids. I found the line at Sprouts Farmers Market and this toxin-free 4 oz. bottle went for just under $15. It is paraben-free with no artificial preservatives, dyes or fragrances. Try it to soothe your postpartum places so that you can get back to enjoying baby.
Last but not least, let's not forget stinky feet One of my gal pals sent me an email with a ton of all-natural remedies and the most surprising cure on the list was Jello for smelly feet, believe it or not! So, I did some research and I found a lot of articles touting this as a home remedy that works, but not one of those articles explained how or why Jello is the answer for foot odor. So, if I can't explain it, then I can't recommend it.
So, I moved on and researched other ideas for sweet smelling feet. Of the dozens of suggestions, the one that I can explain and like feature staples that you probably have in your pantry right now - tea bags. Multiple home remedy websites as well as a LA Times article support the theory that the tannins in tea work as natural anti-bacterial agents that also reduce sweating. Dr. Oz also shared a tea bath recipe for stinky feet relief on a recent Oprah episode. He told viewers that tea water creates a tannic acid and that regular foot soaks will dry out the feet and slow down the sweating process. Less sweat results in less chances of having foul feet. So, try filling a little tub with cool water and six green tea bags. Then pamper your feet with this tea soak for about 20 minutes. I found endless testimonials that claimed that doing this soak several times a week did the trick. I also found a lot of websites that suggested spraying deodorant on your feet. If all else fails, remember to see your doctor. Any type of sudden body odor could be a sign of something more serious.
So from flaky scalp to stinky feet, I hope I was able to answer some of your embarrassing beauty questions. My best advice is to stop feeling self-conscious and do two things. First make sure that you are getting your annual check-up and ask your doctor about anything. Physicians are the experts who don't find these issues embarrassing, but rather interesting aspects of the human body. If you check out medically, then find a gal pal that you trust, have a glass of red wine together and ask her. Chances are she has a great homemade remedy passed down from her Grandmother or shared with her from a good friend. It is amazing to me how so many old-fashioned cures are making their way back into the mainstream as solutions that work. That is what I call good advice to keep your beauty and life healthy and on a budget.