UPDATE: This post originally ran on April 21st but we wanted to share the benefits of this amazing fruit again!
The lemon is such a kitchen staple. We use it to flavor our morning tea, to add a kick to a glass of water, and to liven up recipe upon recipe, but the lemon’s uses go far past just that. Today I want to shed some light on a few you might not be aware of — and I ask you to do the same! Here are ten of my favorite uses of lemons, and some benefits, too.
1. As an exfoliator. Lemons are a natural exfoliant, meaning they help to slough off dead skin from the topmost layer, leaving your skin smooth and refreshed. I love concocting a homemade body scrub using olive oil, granulated sugar, and a little dash of lemon juice. You can use this as a lip scrub, too! Always be very careful when applying lemon to the skin, as it can cause irritation or photo sensitivity. Just a tad is all you need!
2. To lighten and brighten nails. Lemons are a necessary ingredient when giving yourself an at-home manicure. Add 4 tablespoons lemon juice and 2 tablespoons honey into a bowl of warm water, and soak your fingertips for about 5 minutes. For added brightness, follow by rubbing a lemon-soaked cotton ball over your nails a few times. Then rinse.
3. As home decor. I love the way a bowl of lemons looks sitting atop a dining room table. I wouldn’t recommend buying lemons just to use as decor, but it’s a lovely added use for them in the interim before using them for something else!
4. To freshen breath. If you’re in need of a quick freshener and don’t have access to a toothbrush, a lemon should do the trick! Simply swish a bit of water mixed with lemon juice in your mouth for 30 seconds, or chew on a lemon slice. Easy as that.
5. As a face toner. Lemon is a refreshing ingredient to add to a face toner, like this awesome lemon fennel face toner. Just be sure to dilute it with enough water, as lemons can cause irritation or photo sensitivity.
6. To brighten your white clothes. Lemon is a great way to get the cleaning affects of bleach naturally on your white clothes. Just add a cup of lemon juice into your washing machine along with your normal detergent, and watch it work its magic.
7. To aid digestion and support immunity. Drinking a glass of warm lemon water first thing every morning does wonders for digestion and immunity, as well as to detox the body, and so much more. Read more about the benefits of lemon water here!
8. To eliminate odors. If you’ve got a strange smell in your refrigerator or other contained space, place a lemon peel or a lemon-soaked cotton ball in the area. The air will be refreshed in no time. Here are some other ideas for natural air fresheners, too!
9. To keep your guac from browning. The citric acid in lemons can help slow the oxidation process in certain fruits and vegetables, so add it to your guacamole! I also like to soak apple slices in lemon juice before adding them to a salad for this very reason.
10. To highlight hair. Lemons have long been used as a way to bring out natural highlights in the hair. Here’s some more info on how to lighten hair naturally, and look out for Jana’s recipe for a natural hair lightening spray coming to the blog this week!
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