Beauty Hacks or Beauty Quacks?

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By Madge Slack

We’ve all seen them. YouTube videos, Instagram live streams, Facebook tutorials and more. They are the beautiful people showing off their straight up crazy beauty solutions. As a beauty consultant working in a spa and salon, I decided to give a few a try and see how they held up.


What works? You can definitely create your own unique looks and colors by getting a clear gel-based liner and mixing it with pigment from an eyeshadow. Just make a little puddle of the liquid and tap some powder on top and mix with a toothpick. This is also a great trick for fun mascara colors. Be careful mixing blush, foundation, lip, or highlight/contour pigments as they are not necessarily meant to go near your eyes and can cause irritation.

What doesn’t work? The whole tape-on-the-edge-of-your-eye thing. Yes, the tape will help you get a straight line, assuming it is completely flat — a feat I myself have never achieved. However, beware the moment after you create your perfect cat eye when you have to pull tape off your skin. It won’t hurt too bad as long as you didn’t hook an eyelash. As for spoons, they have the same flat problem and you also have to be fairly coordinated and flexible to hold the spoon and control your liner. Again, I have never successfully done this, but good luck.


When you spray your perfume on in the morning it smells great, but a few minutes later it’s gone, and you never know if you have stopped smelling it or if it actually evaporated. Perfumes are made with alcohol, which means they do evaporate fast, but your nose also stops smelling your perfume after a few minutes. If you continuously respray you risk being the person who makes other people cough when they walk by. So, what to do?

What works? Your skin won’t hold the scent for very long, so instead spray your hair or clothes. If you are going somewhere special, like a date, you can put a little on your skin as well for a shorter burst of scent at the end of the day. Wrists only help if you are waving your hands in front of your date’s face a lot, which is a little strange. Instead, put your perfume in the hollow at the base of your neck so they’ll smell it when you kiss. If you think a hug is more likely, try the back of your neck.

What doesn’t work? Putting Vaseline on your skin is almost never a good idea. Yes, it will hold a scent longer, but it’s also sticky and gross and it clogs your pores — hello, breakouts.


This might seem out of place, but go take a quick scroll through Facebook and you will find a plethora of beauty hacks that have lost their fruit loops.

What works? Lemons. They will lighten your hair if you mix them with water, but you aren’t escaping the damage of bleach. Lemon juice bleaches your hair, so if you go that route please use a deep conditioner once a week as well. Apple cider vinegar has a lot of great uses. Keep in mind that it smells absolutely awful and does not evaporate half as well as your expensive perfume. Alternately, mix it with soap and leave it on the counter to kill all the fruit flies your other beauty habits have attracted.

What doesn’t work? Pineapple is better eaten than washed with. It does have exfoliating qualities, but it will also leave you sticky if you don’t wash it off completely, and it is highly acidic, so be very careful which areas of your body you rub it on. Sensitive skins, top or bottom, are not a good idea.

It would be great if beauty wasn’t so painful, both in price and experience. Unfortunately, quality comes at a cost, and cutting corners results in a loss. Here are a few beauty tips from my experience.

  1. Be careful of second hand sellers. When you buy a $90 bottle of shampoo off of Amazon for $15, you aren’t getting a deal. The high-end hair and skin care lines contract exclusively and directly with salons. What Amazon sells are product that were returned or damaged — like a palate left in the sun for too long, a process which alters the chemical composition of the products. They get a deal because the product is compromised, so you get a deal as well. Figure out what really matters first and then decide how much you can spend.
  2. A good place to compromise can be makeup: just beware of silicons, as they will clog your pores and cause the breakouts they are covering up. You can do some research online to find good brands. One of my favorites it called Palladio. It’s infused with vitamins and plants to be more natural, isn’t tested on animals and is mostly gluten free. Additionally, their more expensive products are only $12 — most are around $6.
  3. Sunscreen. Just use it. Your skin is damaged by indoor lighting as much as by the sun. Grab a bb cream or foundation or moisturizer with sunscreen in it and wear it everyday, in or out, warm or cold. You’ll thank me when you’re 40.

At the end of the day, however, beauty is what you make it to be. So take these hacks or leave them, but always remember you’re beautiful simply being you.

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