by Debbie Alford
Each Generation seems to create subcultures of their own and sometimes it can be hard to relate to their wants and needs, especially when buying a gift.
Other generations grow up experiencing things that we have only heard of or are just beginning to understand. Although we might not join in their passion for all things electronic and technological, we do want to give them something that they will appreciate and enjoy.
These days most music is downloaded via the internet, and an iTunes voucher or a credit at any similar online music and application store has replaced the record voucher we used to give.
Gen Y also seem to be more aware of their health and diet so a subscription or vouchers for home delivered organic produce or natural personal care product ranges are often well received.
There is a definite trend to move away from wine or confectionary related gifts, with more of a focus on vouchers for massage and alternative therapies and anything that promotes a cleaner, healthier lifestyle.
With more television cooking shows than ever, including reality shows like Master Chef, young people are encouraged to experiment more with their cooking. Recipe books by celebrity chefs or spice and gourmet food baskets will tantalise their tastebuds.
Still on the cooking theme, good quality cookware or kitchen appliances or any nifty new kitchen gadget that you come across will also work, as would a bench-top herb garden or bean sprouting kit.
Books are still a popular choice for gifts, and there are many choices depending on the individual interests of the person you are buying for.
by Debbie Alford
There are plenty of reasons to make your own skin and body care products at home: you know exactly what is going into it, you can avoid certain ingredients you might be sensitive to, you can save money and you can use things you already have in your fridge, kitchen cupboard or garden.
Here are some easy and simple ideas, many based on the good sense of earlier generations:
Oatmeal: mix with water to form a paste and apply as a facemask. You can also add honey and/or yogurt instead of water. This is great for oilier skins.
Lemon juice: as a hair conditioner – combine ¾ cup olive oil, 1/2 cup raw honey and 3tsps of lemon juice. Comb through after shampooing then cover hair with plastic cap, leave for 30 mins then shampoo and rinse.
Honey: smear on face and leave 15-30mins then rinse off. You can also mix honey with some warm water and use as a cleanser. Honey is moisturising and has antibacterial properties.
Cornmeal: take a tablespoon and add a 1tsp of olive oil and drop of lavender oil as a face exfoliant.
Sea Salt: use as a body scrub added with any kind of oil, a drop of lavender oil and rose oil
Apple Cider vinegar: Apple cider vinegar gets rid of residue build-up on hair, leaving it soft and shiny. Use as a final rinse after shampooing. Mix 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar with 4c of water.
If catch a little too much sun you can add a cup of apple cider vinegar to a bath and relax for 10 minutes to take the sting out. (Not really for us Melburnians at present, unless you are going on holiday to a warmer climate!)
Try these at home and you won’t want to visit the department store or chemist for expensive beauty products ever again!
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