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Shampoo as makeup remover? Toothpaste as zit cream? If you're in a pinch, here's a list of home remedies you can use as a temporary substitute.

By MarĂ­a Eugenia Miranda

WebMD Feature from "Marie Claire" Magazine

5 Quick Beauty Fixes (Using Products You Already Own!)

Marie Claire magazine logo

Shampoo as makeup remover: It's not ideal, but this will do until you can make it to your beauty supply store to pick up makeup remover. Baby shampoo with water will help remove thick layers of makeup from your face, and it won't irritate your eyes.

Conditioner as shaving cream: You may have forgotten to put shaving cream on your shopping list, but no worries. You probably have conditioner, which will do the job for now. Its moisturizing ingredients should help the razor glide over your skin smoothly and help avoid razor burn. Body wash is also a common emergency remedy.

Clear nail polish to ward off eczema: Ever have eczema outbreaks on your stomach when you wear your favorite jeans? Dr. Jeanine Downie, a dermatologist in Montclair, NJ, says that painting clear nail polish onto the back of the buttons on your denim gear can keep your skin from being irritated. "People have an allergy to nickel," she says.

Petroleum jelly as a soothing agent: Washing your hands with rings on your fingers can cause soap to build up under the jewelry, which leads to skin irritation. A quick fix for this is applying petroleum jelly at night to the affected area. To get to the root of the problem, Dr. Downie says, "Take off your rings when you wash your hands!"

Toothpaste as acne medication: It's the night before a momentous occasion, you've noticed an evil mountain of oil forming on your face, and you don't have time to run to the drugstore to pick up a zit-zapping cream. Fear not: A home remedy is right at your fingertips. First, wash your face with a mild soap and pat it dry with a towel. Then, dab a bit of toothpaste on the pimple and wait for it to dry. By morning the toothpaste will have dried the sucker out. Only plain toothpaste that is low in fluoride should be used for these emergency situations, because whitening toothpastes contain hydrogen peroxide, which will irritate the skin, and gels aren't as effective. But this home remedy is not for everyone, says Downie. People with dry or sensitive skin should stay away from this quick fix because it could dry them out too much.

Originally published on September 20, 2010

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