How to Use Baking Soda as a Face Mask


How to Use Baking Soda as a Face Mask


I've already mentioned that I think baking soda is the perfect face and body exfoliant; it's a cheap and natural alternative to commercial exfoliants, does the job well, but doesn't feel as if you're rubbing coarse sand over your skin.

Well, I've also discovered that baking soda works as a great face mask, leaving my skin feeling very soft and smooth even without any exfoliating action. It seems to draw all the impurities out, eliminating any blackheads and helping bring annoying pimples to a head. This a quick and easy treatment for your face if you don't feel like going through the trouble of exfoliating, or if you think exfoliation is too harsh for your skin.



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What You'll Need:

- baking soda
- warm water

Directions:

How to Use Baking Soda as a Face Mask1. Pour about a a tablespoon of baking soda into the palm of your hand.
2. Add a few drops of water into the baking soda until it becomes a soft paste.
3. Spread the paste over your face, being careful to avoid the eyes. It'll sting!
4. Leave the paste on your face for at least 5 minutes before rinsing off with warm water. If it starts to feel uncomfortable or sting before the time is up, feel free to rinse it off sooner.

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A simple paste of baking soda and water works fine, but I personally like to make a face mask out of baking soda and honey instead. I also like to do this in the shower to avoid making a mess, and also so I can steam my skin a little before rinsing the mixture off.

How to Use Aloe Vera Gel as a More Natural Makeup Primer


How to Use Aloe Vera Gel as a Makeup PrimerUsing a makeup primer on your skin helps create a smooth surface for easier makeup application, but most makeup primers are either very expensive or loaded with chemicals. This is why I switched to using aloe vera gel as a makeup primer instead. It works just as well as most store-bought makeup primers and contains fewer chemicals that could possibly be bad for my skin or toxic to my body. It also work as a fantastic barrier against outside elements, such as pollution, which means healthier skin.

Not only does aloe vera gel fill in the small wrinkles and pores in your skin to create a much smoother surface for makeup application, I've found it is also very affective in controlling oily skin and shine. As a result, makeup looks a lot more even and lasts longer throughout the day. Aloe vera also has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, and those characteristics combined with its ability to control sebum production makes it a great primer for those with oily or acne-prone skin.

To use aloe vera gel as a primer, simply spread a thin layer over your face as you would a regular makeup primer. I find a few large drops is enough. Wait a minute for the aloe to dry before applying your makeup. It may feel a little tacky on your skin, but makeup still goes on pretty smoothly.



Of course, unless you're using aloe vera squeezed directly from the plant, most aloe vera gels are not completely chemical-free, and will contain a few preservatives to keep it from going rancid too quickly. In this case, do some research and try to find a brand that has as few extra additives as possible, or at least chemicals that aren't known to cause irritation or other adverse side effects.

My aloe vera gel of choice is Fruit of the Earth Aloe Vera 100% Gel, 24 oz (680 g), which does contain a few preservatives, but nothing unnecessary such as added fragrance or coloring.

How to Use Oil to Naturally Moisturize Your Lips


How to Use Oil to Naturally Moisturize Your LipsMost store-bought lip balms and moisturizers just don't work on my lips — even the most expensive kinds that are advertised as being "all natural." My lips are so sensitive to any kind of chemical that they often become drier after I use store-bought lip balms, to the point of becoming so chapped they would sometimes peel and bleed. Other times, the area around my mouth will break out in a rash.


So, I decided to go back to basics, like the rest of my skin-care and beauty regimen, and only use extra virgin olive oil on my lips instead. Now, not only are my lips incredibly moisturized, but just a couple drops of oil are enough to do the job, and it's much cheaper than buying lip balms. I prefer using extra virgin olive oil, but feel free to use any natural vegetable oil of your choice. I hear jojoba oil also works wonderfully on your lips.



Don't worry about figuring out a way to carry the oil around with you. Simply buy one of those small, roll-on containers and fill it up. These containers, like the one pictured below (18 Empty Glass 10ml Roll On Perfume Bottles), are available on Amazon.com, but you can probably find them at your local container supply store as well.


I like using the tinted glass containers to keep the oil from getting too much sun exposure, but that is just an extra precaution, as the container spends more time in my purse than out in the open anyway.

Although commercial lip balms and moisturizers come in pretty packaging and fun flavors, I highly recommend switching to only using oil if you want to reduce the amount of chemicals your lips are exposed to and to save a few dollars as well. If you prefer using solid lip balm instead, check out my post on how to make lotion bars and lip balm with coconut oil!

How to Use Oil to Naturally Moisturize Your Lips

How to Make an Acoustic Pop Filter


As I've said in my previous post, I tinker around with audio recordings at home, which is why I made my own acoustic-absorption box. So I saw no reason why I couldn't also make a pop filter for my microphone.

There are plenty of websites out there that will show you various ways you can make your own microphone acoustic pop filter just by using things laying around the house. However, I will also post my own version here, because I think it serves as an excellent example of how you can save money and reduce waste by reusing things to make something functional.



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I Used:

How to Make an Acoustic Pop Filter
A flat-tip screwdriver, pliers, electrical tape, a left over coil of wire, an old hose clamp, a basic wire clothes hanger, and an old (clean) pair of nylon socks.
How I Did It:
How to Make an Acoustic Pop Filter
1. I used the pliers to cut a section out of the wire hanger, then bent it into an L shape to create a base for my filter. I also bent a short section of the end so it ran parallel to the long side of the L.

The acrylic layer around the hanger wire was easy to remove by simply cutting shallow notches in it with the pliers and twisting the pieces off.







How to Make an Acoustic Pop Filter
2. I attached the thin wire coil to the hanger wire simply by twisting the ends around each other until it held firmly. Then I wrapped the hanger wire with electrical tape to make it more aesthetically pleasing.

I wanted it in black, but I only had grey tape, so I just painted over it with some left over back acrylic paint.








How to Make an Acoustic Pop Filter
3. After the paint dried, I slipped both nylon socks over the wire coil. I then secured the "filter" with a ribbon around the base of the coil, and cut off the excess fabric. Securing the filter with a ribbon probably doesn't make it look that professional, but I don't mind. It works, and it allows me to easily change the fabric later on if I want to.

One sock may be enough, but I tend to speak rather forcefully, so I thought an extra layer couldn't hurt. Also, you may recognize the ribbon as left over from when I made a cork board out of wine corks.






How to Make an Acoustic Pop Filter4. I secured my new pop filter to the base of my microphone by tightening a hose clamp around it using the flat-tip screwdriver. First I taped some paper around the base of the microphone to protect it from scratches.

Can you believe this hose clamp has been in the tool box for over 20 years? Whoever left it in there probably never thought it would later be repurposed to be used with audio equipment.
How to Make an Acoustic Pop Filter
Adjusted the height of the filter and microphone a little, and I was done!

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An average pop filter is only about $15-$20, but why spend money when I had all the tools at home to make my own for free? Again, don't be so quick to throw things away, you know never what they can be used for later on.

How to Make a Portable Acoustic-Absorption Box

How to Make a Portable Acoustic-Absorbing Box

If you need to record things into a microphone at home, like I do, but sounds are annoyingly bouncing off the walls, there is a cheap and easy way to block out most sounds and muffle the echoes in your recording by making your very own acoustic-absorption box.

You can actually buy pre-made ones like the The NEW Porta-Booth Plus or The Porta-Booth Pro - Your Recording Studio At Home and on the Road, but if you can't afford them, or want to save some money, you can easily create your own.



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You'll Need:

- 1 Dröna storage box from Ikea (comes in black, green and pink)
- acoustic foam

Directions:

1. Set up your Dröna storage box. If you can't get one, try to find something similar to it that is made out of sturdy cloth. Don't use something made of plastic or metal because such surfaces tend to contribute more to reverberations back into your microphone.

How to Make a Portable Acoustic-Absorbing Box2. Cut up a piece of acoustic foam so that it fits snugly into the bottom of the the box.

3. Cut up four more pieces of acoustic foam so that they fit into the sides of the box. Keep in mind that they won't necessarily all be the same size, because you need to take into account the space that will already be taken up by pieces already inserted into the box.

3. Make sure all the pieces fit snugly, but not so much that they pop out of place, then you're done!
How to Make a Portable Acoustic-Absorbing Box
Takes only about 10 minutes to make.

To Use:

Hook up your microphone and place it into the box, then you're ready to record.

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How to Make a Portable Acoustic-Absorbing Box
If you were wondering, the microphone I use is the Blue Microphones Snowball USB Microphone (White)
The sound and quality of recordings will be different depending on how deep the microphone is placed inside the box, or how tall you've adjusted it, so remember to experiment a little with placement.

The great thing about this easy project is that it cost me no more than 12 bucks. And if you went with the Dröna storage box, it's collapsible, so if you need to put it away or travel with it, you can simply take out the foam pieces and flatten the box.