Thursday, May 8, 2008

You tried it, you hated it. Now what?

Now that Wisconsin finally seems out winter, spring cleaning is upon us! While cleaning out my bathroom cabinets, I found several open bottles of health and beauty items that for one reason or another I no longer use. Throwing them away would be wasteful, both for the environment and for my checkbook. Here's a list of ways I've come up with to deal with these products:

Re-purpose it
-Mediocre conditioner works well as shaving cream. Be sure to rinse your skin well afterward. (I can't speak for whether it would work to shave your face, but it seems like it might clog pores.)
-Bar soap can be made into laundry detergent, if you're feeling adventurous. The Simple Dollar gave some detailed instructions recently. (You must check this out!)
-Liquid body wash makes great foaming hand soap, as I recently discussed.

Mix it
Combine a so-so product with a different brand (of the same type of product) can stretch the good one. I did this with a toner that left my skin feeling tacky. I mixed it with a different toner, and ended up with twice as much toner that I did like. Do a small amount of this at a time. You don't want to send good product after bad, and waste an entire bottle of something you really like.

I also used to do this frequently with nail polish. When a color lost it's appeal, I mixed it with other colors to create something one-of-a-kind and really fun.

Change the scent
Add some soap fragrance to liquid soap. This works best with lightly-fragranced soaps or by adding a compatible scent. As with mixing it, try this with a small amount before pouring an entire bottle of fragrance into something stinky. I last did this with a generic brand body wash, which smelled vaguely of toilet paper (kind of dusty, not bad, but not what I want my skin to smell like). I was able to cover that smell easily with citrus soap scent.

Pass it on
If there is nothing really wrong with the product, but you just didn't like it, there's no reason you can't give it to someone else. One caveat, be sure you know the person won't take offense. And offer the item in the right way. You don't want to come off as sounding like, "I can't stand this product, but it's good enough for you," or worse, "I thought you could use this anti-wrinkle cream." I'd stick to family and very close friends for this.

I hope the above tips help you clear out some cabinet space in your bathroom. Plus, you can act like a mad scientist, which is always fun.

No comments: