5 Things You Never Knew Could Be (Awesome) Beauty Products

Now that colored-pencil eyeliner is out of the picture.

Coquelicot, Peach, Circuit component, Cable, Diode, Plastic, Office supplies, Passive circuit component,
(Image credit: Getty)

Was anyone else bummed when Crayola issued a statement (opens in new tab) that basically said "stop putting our colored pencils near your eyes because they weren't tested for that and you could get gooey discharge that spreads into the cornea, blinding you if you don't see a doctor?" Not because you actually thought it would work better than *actual* liner but because it seemed kind of MacGyver-ish and exciting? Oh. Um. Us neither.

That's always the risk with makeup experimentation, but if you're smart about storage (refrigeration, refrigeration, refrigeration) and whipping up Hobbit-size batches you can use up quickly, these five beauty DIYs should be A-OK. And who knows? Some of them might *actually* be able to hold a candle to their commercially available equivalents.

Cornstarch as foundation

A really glam Dangerous Liaisons-themed wedding (opens in new tab) happened this weekend, so all the socialites and minor nobility in attendance powdered their faces. For real life, mix in (opens in new tab) some spices and cocoa to match your skin tone and some nourishing oil (opens in new tab) to make it all adhere better. Skip the cinnamon, though—you'll see why soon. Of course, this could be a literal recipe for disaster—rainwater slurry!—so perhaps stick to your regular liquid formula on wet days.

Tea as self-tanner

Here are the only situations I could think of in which somebody would need to do this: 1) to even out a bad farmer's tan last-minute before a Special Occasion surrounding a holiday during which even retail stores close (so...Christmas?), 2) while suffering from extreme boredom, and 3) after discovering one's aversion to being hosed down with shimmery brown paint. The internet is super into this one (opens in new tab), in any case, and recommends brewing a super-strong batch of black tea, spritzing your limbs with it, and letting it dry. It does stay—as long as you don't sweat.

Burnt matches as eyeliner

Characters named River in YA books do this all time, and apparently,so did Dolly Parton (opens in new tab) when she wasn't allowed to wear makeup. For a slightly less analog method, here's a tutorial (opens in new tab) that combines activated charcoal, aloe vera, and beauty MVP coconut oil (opens in new tab). Caution: It will move, which is excellent for a sooty, smudgy look (opens in new tab) but far less so for girls who want to buy your fitting-room rejects (if you don't follow these tips (opens in new tab), that is).

Kool-Aid as lip stain

Ultra matte, concentrated lip color for less than 20 cents? Sign me up! (Except when I've got any broken skin around my mouth because citric acid really stings, man). To use, open up a packet, wet your finger, dip, and pat on carefully. Let sit for a few seconds before you wipe/lick it off, then go back with a damp Q-tip to clean up the edges and any clumpy bits.

Cinnamon as lip plumper

And this is why you couldn't put it in your foundation. Cinnamon irritates the skin, which is just swell (heh) if you're going for a temporarily inflated pout (opens in new tab) and aren't prone to food allergies. Stir a few dashes into some of your favorite salve, paint on with a brush, wait 3–5 minutes, then BAM—slightly swollen lips that last a few hours. And you didn't even need to make out with anybody. (Full instructions here (opens in new tab).)

Chelsea Peng is a writer and editor who was formerly the assistant editor at MarieClaire.com. She's also worked for The Strategist and Refinery29, and is a graduate of Northwestern University. On her tombstone, she would like a GIF of herself that's better than the one that already exists on the Internet and a free fro-yo machine. Besides frozen dairy products, she's into pirates, carbs, Balzac, and snacking so hard she has to go lie down.