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Get the most out of your lemon

March 22, 2010

While in Mariehamn, I bought these beautiful perfume bottles from a second hand shop. Unfortunately they still smelled of the old perfumes (and not really nice ones either). I am now trying to soak them in lemon juice overnight, to see if that removes the smell. If it doesn’t, I’m going to try baking soda and finally vinegar.

But there’s a lot more one can do with lemons than just remove perfume smells. And don’t throw away the peels after you think you’re done! Oldenbuzz has this to say about lemons:

Lemons are full of vitamin C, a nutrient capable of supporting skin when applied topically.  Lemons nourish the skin and are a traditional lightener for freckles and brown spots.  When you’re finished using a lemon for cooking, simply turn the peel inside out and rub it on your face.  If you have especially dry skin, you can follow up with a few drops of cooking oil on your face.  Another idea is to take the peels of lemons (or other citrus fruits), allow them to dry, and grind them into a powder that you can use as a base in skin care recipes.  Here’s an example:  Mix a teaspoon of this powder, a teaspoon of yogurt, and an egg yolk together.  Spread it on the face and rinse it off after 20 minutes.

But as she also points, lemons have a lightening effect, so those who like their tan might not like to use lemon juice as such on their body. Also if you have scars or acne it might sting a bit. But, if you don’t mind the goth style with paleness and suffering, lemon can be very useful on the skin. Apart from the face, you can rub the leftover peels on your feet, elbows, knees or other places with hard skin. My favorite thing to do with left-over lemon peels is to just rub my nails in them after having squeezed out the lemon juice. The juice that is left will brighten and strengthen your nails.

And remember to grate off the zest before squeezing out the juice. The zest can be frozen or dried, and used in for instance scrubs or, as I am going to use it, in homemade perfumes. If you like, you can also leave the zest in some oil for a couple of weeks, straining the oil carefully afterward, to create a lemon oil that you can use in skin care or cooking.

Also, lemons can be used on warts and is a bactericidal – use it to stop bleeding on cuts and bruises.

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