REWIND 50 years and heading to the kitchen cupboard for a beauty fix would have been par for the course – with sugar used as an exfoliator.
Now, in the height of the cost-of-living crisis, TikTok users are sharing similar, budget-friendly hacks.
Fruit make-up and milk toner are racking up tens of millions of views.
Women are being affected by “she-flation” as the cost of food and household goods rise.
So it is no surprise that little luxuries such as beauty products are being ditched.
Research by Avon UK found that one in ten people has given up their make-up due to rising costs.
But are money-saving TikTok hacks really worth investing your time in?
As a mum-of-two juggling work and childcare, I’m feeling the squeeze.
But I’m also time poor.
I find out if the viral trends are faff or fab, and give them a rating out of five.
Instead of five a day, how about 28.7million?
That’s how many viewers have tuned in to TikTok’s #fruitmakeupchallenge, where the humble cherry does triple duty as a lip and cheek stain you can use anytime, anywhere — including at your next picnic.
TikTokers such as Gabxxrielle, who has 2.6 million followers, explain that one must bite the cherry in half or cut it down the middle, then dab a few times on to each cheek and on lips for an instant burst of colour.
Gabxxrielle also uses the stalk of a banana to create a smoky eye.
While I didn’t quite go that far, I did try out the cherry hack — and it works.
There is a reason fruit was used as far back as Victorian and Edwardian times to warm up cheeks and lips.
VERDICT: Cherries are now part of my weekly shop.
For the first couple of minutes after you have applied the fruit to your face, it does feel a bit wet and sticky.
The flush it gives cheeks is really flattering (lips, less so, they can look dark and uneven).
Scarlett Burton, a London-based make-up artist, told me: “It’s a really natural way to create colour for the skin.
“It doesn’t necessarily have the longevity of real make-up but can definitely look really beautiful.”
But she believes it is best to avoid citrus fruits which can burn skin.
Next time you are having a cuppa, set some milk aside for your face. Yes, really.
This Korean beauty trend is rumoured to help brighten skin and reduce scarring.
Milk is rich in lactic acid, a common ingredient in facial cleansers, and there is even some science to back this one up.
Studies have shown milk can help remove dead skin cells and stimulate new cell growth, according to Harley Street dermatologist Dr Benedetta Brazzini.
It is well known that Cleopatra used to bathe in sour donkey milk.
The modern way to do it is to soak a pad in milk (heat the milk up first if you like) and leave on your face for ten minutes, before rubbing it over the skin like a toner.
Cleanse and moisturise afterwards.
VERDICT: This is not very pleasant.
It feels sticky on the skin, a bit like you have put on a face mask that is slowly hardening.
I was eager to wash this one off and I’m not sure my skin looked any better.
Dr Brazzini agreed, and told me: “I don’t think the effects of dairy milk would be great enough to visibly see on the skin.”
And if you are going to try it, she recommends doing a patch test first, in case you have a reaction.
Ever wished you had a lipstick shade in the same glittery gold or emerald green as your fave eyeshadow?
Well, you can make one. TikTokers recommend that you put the shadow colour of your choice on the back of your hand, take a clear lip balm and rub it along the shadow, before applying to the lips.
VERDICT: The results for TikToker @muireyarios using a standard eyeshadow palette and Burt’s Bees lip balm looked fab, and on our shoot this was easily everyone’s favourite tip. I’m a huge fan.
You can create a lipstick colour you don’t have.
It is great for DIY spooky shades at Halloween (or any time of year), and is a smart way to get around travel restrictions by minimising liquids in your hand luggage.
And, of course, it saves money as you are getting another use out of your eyeshadow. I keep wearing the lipstick I made.
Make-up artist Lisa Coleman advises using a dry brush to collect the product before mixing, to prevent bacteria getting in.
And do not mess with your favourite eyeshadow shade, as once you have got it wet, it probably won’t work as shadow again.
It works both ways, as lipstick can be used on your face, too.
This eye-catching hack involves applying different shades of lipstick all over your face as a blusher and contour.
It looks a little bonkers when you watch TikTokers such as Jasmine Chiswell do it.
But expert make-up artists tell you to use one lipstick (try a nude or brownish colour) and draw under cheekbones, on the jawline, around the hairline and on the sides of the nose, keeping it simple.
Add a brighter pink or red shade under the eyes if you want a brighter blush look.
VERDICT: It feels like you are doing a crafts project on your face — in a good way.
While I worry this will wreck my good lipsticks, I like how dewy my cheeks turn out.
Frederic Letailleur, YSL Beauty National Artist UK, explains that though cheeks have different needs to lips, you can try this trend if you are in a tight spot and need instant blush or contour.
Use a matte lipstick and avoid long-lasting formulations, which can be trickier to remove from cheeks, as well as fragranced lipsticks, which can irritate the skin.
VASELINE FACE MASK
This trend, also known as “slugging”, has 429.1million views.
It is a South Korean-inspired skincare suggestion, but Marilyn Monroe was also reportedly a fan in the 1950s.
While no slugs are involved in the process, the trend is named after the slime-like trail of product left on the skin after you slather on a thick layer of moisturiser, shea butter or petroleum jelly, like Vaseline.
It is meant to lock in moisture and keep skin hydrated, resulting in a gorgeous glow and skin that is super-soft.
Slugging could not be easier. After you have finished your nighttime skincare routine, apply a thick layer of moisturiser all over your face.
Leave it on overnight and wash off with a gentle cleanser the next morning.
VERDICT: I tried this trend out using moisturiser and separately, with Vaseline.
The Vaseline left my skin feeling heavy and greasy the next day, and I’m pretty sure it caused a few spots to appear overnight.
The moisturiser, by contrast, was soothing and my skin did seem softer.
I have started to integrate what I think of as slugging-lite (more moisturiser than usual, but not as much as in the vids) into my evening routine before bed.
Dr Brazzini, who is founder of Kivu Skincare, urges anyone wanting to try slugging to avoid Vaseline.
She said: “If this bizarre practice works, it can only be temporary, as petroleum jellies can’t be absorbed deep into the skin.
“If the user had acne-prone or deeply oily skin, it’s likely it would provoke irritation,” she said.