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Volume II
October 2, 2009

Uses of Olive Oil
By Camille Rhoades

We all keep a bottle of olive oil in the cabinet, but there are plenty of reasons to get it out and use it for more than just tonightís dinner.

This kitchen staple packs a big beauty punch for very few dollars, and will please the multi-tasker in you. With a little planning, youíll be removing makeup, moisturizing skin and deep conditioning hair as well as a few other body parts that need tending to. Here are some tips to get you started:

Makeup Remover. Out of eye makeup remover? Not a problem. Dab a little olive oil on a cotton swab or tissue and smear away. It even removes waterproof mascara just as efficiently as the store-bought variety. You may find you love it enough to buy a cute storage bottle so you can keep it in the bathroom rather than dragging the big container out of the kitchen every night. At very least you will want to keep a little extra around to wash all that Halloween makeup off the kids.

Skin Moisturizer. In a pinch, olive oil makes an acceptable moisturizer. In fact, thereís an entire line of skin care based on olive oil, so donít be embarrassed to make your own homemade moisturizer from it. Use it straight from the bottle before bedtime on clean skin for an overnight treat, or blend it with a bit of face lotion for a diluted version.

Hair Conditioner. Olive oil shines at this, and so will your hair. Heat up a half cup in the microwave with a bit of rosemary (which stimulates the scalp). Comb it through freshly brushed hair and either let sit or, for a deep condition, wrap hair in a warm towel for 15 minutes. Then wash as usual. Beautifully soft, shiny hair.

Cuticle Treatment. Warm a bit of olive oil and rub into your cuticles. Let sit a few minutes till skin softens, then push back with an orange wood stick. Presto quick nail beauty.

Skin Softener. Add a few drops in the tub along with your bath bubbles and a little baking soda for a great soak that your skin will readily absorb. Soft legs in a relaxing flash.

Condition Scalp on Bald Heads: rub with olive oil and then lay on a hot (not burning!), moist towel. When the towel cools, reheat in the microwave. Be careful not to get too hot. Continue doing this several times.

Remove Paint From Skin. Use it to remove paint from your skin. Rub it on and let it soak a while then wash well with soap. The paint usually comes off without any skin damaging materials. And your skin will be all soft.

Furniture Polish. Use 2 parts olive oil, 1 part lemon juice (or white vinegar) for furniture polish, or just olive oil on a rag.

Leather Conditioner. Melted with some beeswax and poured into a small tin, it makes great lip balm, leather conditioner and wood polish.

Shine Brass. To keep brass looking shinier longer, buff with olive oil after cleaning. Olive oil keeps it from tarnishing so fast.

Treat Cat's Hairballs. A couple teaspoons mixed with a can of cat food will help hairballs.

Ease Snoring. Taking a sip of olive oil before heading to bed can help lubricate your throat muscles, cutting down on snoring Free stuck zippers. Swab a little olive oil on the teeth of the zipper and then ease it unstuck.

Fix squeaky doors. Olive oil can be used as a lubricant in many applications. It's safe to keep around the house, so you donít have to worry about children or pets getting into it. Try it out on squeaky doors, hinges, and anywhere else you might consider using WD-40 or another lubricant. While WD-40 may work well, it's also based on hydrocarbons, so any time we can use less of those we're taking a step toward a cleaner world.

There are many more tricks for olive oil, but this should get you started! If you have any other great uses for this wonder oil email me at and share. I will put it in an upcoming issue to share with other readers. By then we should all have silky hair, soft hands, and polished furniture! Indeed, olive oil is much, much more than just a salad dressing and bread dip.

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