Kiss­ing good­bye to the groom­ing bill One Kiwi’s fight back against the per­sonal prod­ucts in­dus­try cost­ing us all an av­er­age $1300 a year.

Waihi woman Lucy AitkenRead is sav­ing money by giv­ing up toi­letries,

Sunday Star-Times - - BUSINESS - by Su­san Edmunds

Ditch­ing all cos­met­ics and beauty prod­ucts has saved one New Zealand woman thou­sands of dol­lars – and she says if other peo­ple re­alised how easy it was to make your own, they would prob­a­bly do the same. Lucy AitkenRead gave up sham­poo five years ago as part of a quest to save money when she and her hus­band first had chil­dren. She wrote a book about the ex­pe­ri­ence, which be­came pop­u­lar around the world. Now, she has been a year without any com­mer­cial beauty prod­ucts, in­clud­ing things such as shower gell, tooth­paste, sun­screen and de­odor­ant. Her new book, Free­dom Face, of­fers a how-to guide to help oth­ers who want to do the same.

She says she used to be a ‘‘bit of a cheap­skate’’ when it came to toi­letries but would still have spent at least $20 a month on sham­poo and con­di­tioner alone.

Now she spends $20 on the in­gre­di­ents it takes to make months’ worth of all her prod­ucts.

‘‘I es­ti­mate I would have spent some­thing like $1000 just on sham­poo in a year. Now, I make all my own stuff and it lasts for­ever.’’

Statis­tics New Zealand es­ti­mates that in 2016. ev­ery per­son in this coun­try spent $1362 on per­sonal groom­ing, in­clud­ing hair­cuts and cos­met­ics.

AitkenRead said a $30 or $40 haul of ba­sic in­gre­di­ents, such as oils, shea but­ter and honey, would al­low her to make every­thing from de­odor­ant to shower gel and mois­turiser.

‘‘It can be costly stock­ing your shelves to be­gin with but when I buy a chunk of beeswax that can last three years.’’

AitkenRead said the idea that more ex­pen­sive prod­ucts were bet­ter was not true. Many of the most ex­pen­sive creams and po­tions were made us­ing

I es­ti­mate I would have spent some­thing like $1000 just on sham­poo in a year. Now, I make all my own stuff and it lasts for­ever. Lucy AitkenRead

sub­stances that were found in na­ture in their most pow­er­ful forms, she said.

‘‘Take urea,’’ she said. ‘‘In its most nat­u­ral form it is found in urine. You find a syn­thetic ver­sion in most ex­pen­sive creams and balms, when we have a very read­ily avail­able form, if you are pre­pared to use it, and you see the same re­sults... it’s in­cred­i­bly ef­fec­tive on cracked heels. It’s a mir­a­cle.’’

She said it did not re­quire any par­tic­u­lar skill to make your own beauty prod­ucts.

‘‘All you need is a blender. If you can make a ba­sic meal and fol­low a recipe, you can do it.’’

The book of­fers home­made al­ter­na­tives to fa­cial peels, mas­cara, face masks, fa­cial serums, hair prod­ucts, deodorants, shower gel, bug re­pel­lent and fake tan.

It also in­cludes a sum­mary of her own re­sults with each home­made prod­uct.

She said many of the home­made prod­ucts, such as face creams, were very like the masspro­duced va­ri­ety.

‘‘You can spend a lot on them and you wouldn’t be­lieve how much like a store-bought prod­uct they can be and a hun­dredth of the price.

‘‘In the shop you buy a lit­tle bot­tle and it’s mega-bucks.’’

Lucy’s shop­ping list:

Pre­vi­ously (monthly): Sham­poo, con­di­tioner, dry sham­poo: $20 Shower gel, face wash, ex­fo­lia­tor: $10 Body but­ter and face mois­turiser and lip balm: $10 Hair spray and mouse: $5 Mas­cara, foun­da­tion, blusher, lip­stick: $10 Tooth­paste: $3 Bug re­pel­lent: $10 Sun­creen $15 De­odor­ant $5

To­tal: $88 Now: Bak­ing soda: $3 Co­conut oil: $4 Beeswax: $4 Small amount of Es­sen­tial oils: $2 Zinc ox­ide: $2 Mica min­eral pow­ders: $2 Cin­na­mon: $1 Ap­ple cider vine­gar: $2 Corn­flour: $1 Rye flour: $1

To­tal: $22


Ev­ery New Zealand man, woman and child spends about $1300 a year on toi­letries and groom­ing, ac­cord­ing to Statis­tics NZ.


Lucy AitkenRead.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.