With social media seemingly taking over the world, it’s no surprise when people become what we like to call “internet famous” or “going viral” over a simple video. It’s this era’s “15 minutes a fame.” One moment, they’re damning Daniel, the next they’re on Ellen. I’m not going to lie, at first this whole phenomenon really rubbed me the wrong way. Nowadays, I’m *kinda* okay with it. Maybe I’m just used to it, or maybe I’m just accepting that this is the new norm. The only thing that still lands a spot on my pet peeve list, though, is when it’s so obvious that they are *trying* to be “internet famous” rather than just sharing a funny moment with their family and friends on Facebook and next thing they know they have 4.7 million views from strangers across the WWW.
One of the videos I see all the time and frankly never get tired of are the ones of parents giving their babies lemons for the first time. All the easily offended, overly sensitive people of the world typically decide that THIS is the perfect time to come out of their cave and make a comment of “bad parenting.” Insert eye-roll here. It’s funny, it’s cute, and it’s harmless; and best of all, it’ll be something you can all laugh at when they’re 18. I’ll spare you the time spent reading a whole section on those videos in this list of things lemons can be used for, so instead I’ll just link one here courtesy of BuzzFeed. Bookmark and save for a rainy day.
Now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to the good stuff. While I haven’t eaten a lemon by itself since I chose “dare” in our weekend sleepover parties in 3rd grade, I do incorporate them in my routine almost every day. Lemons are chock-full of nutrients and health benefits. For one, it’s a great source of vitamin C, which has a long list of benefits. Visit this full list to learn more.
Not only are they healthy for your body, but they’re also great for your skin and not to mention they smell damn good too. They’re not just for tequila shots anymore, folks. Here are some of my favorite ways to use lemons:
1. Lemon water or tea:
- I’m sure this isn’t the first time you’ve seen this tip. If you’re not a big water drinker, adding a little lemon juice is a great way to add some flavor and gain both hydration and little nutrients, as well. Take it one step further and add some to sparkling water if you’re trying to cut out soda. All the fizziness without the sugar and calories—a win-win!
- Lemon is the perfect addition to hot tea. I am a tea ADD. My roommate will tell you herself, I tend to have at least 7 or 8 cups of tea a day..and that’s BEFORE I get home from work. It’s my favorite way to maintain my daily water intake. Green tea and earl grey are perhaps my favorite teas to add lemon to.
- Not only does this help provide nutrients, but it’s also been shown to help with weight loss, digestion, clear skin, and your mood.
2. Lemon cubes
Another way to enjoy lemon in your water is to squeeze and freeze the juice from a lemon into an ice tray and freeze overnight. Use in place of ice cubes and it’ll help to chill your drink while bringing in those flavors and nutrients. If you don’t feel like going through with juicing, just slice up a lemon and throw it in the freezer and call it a day—it works just as well!
3. Face mask/scrub
Lemon is known to not only brighten your skin, but help shrink pores as well. This mask really makes me glow! It’s easy and it doesn’t taste half bad either if you accidentally get it in your mouth. The sugar will help exfoliate while the lemon will help tighten the skin and fade scars. Do this no more than 3 times a week.
- 1 whole lemon
- 2 tablespoons of brown sugar for exfoliation (brown sugar tends to be gentler on the skin than white)
- 1 Tablespoon honey
- (optional) 1 tablespoon of olive oil for a thinner texture. Olive oil is great for restoring moisture and smoothness in skin and also contains anti-inflammatory properties.
- Cut lemon in half and squeeze out as much juice as you can.
- Mix ingredients together in a small bowl.
- Carefully distribute mixture over skin, avoiding the eye area. This can get a little messy so keep a towel on hand.
- Leave on for 5-10 minutes.
- scrub in circular motions and rinse with lukewarm water. Pat dry and follow up with your favorite moisturizer.
4. Rosemary Lemon Room Freshener
If I remember anything from middle school, it’s the simple concoction on the stove my best friend’s mom always had going every time I came over. It’s something that I have enjoyed making in my own home as well. This gives off such a fresh and inviting scent and is SUPER easy to put together:
- 1 lemon, sliced.
- 3-5 sprigs of fresh rosemary.
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Fill a small spot about 2/3rds of the way with water
- Add lemon slices, rosemary, and vanilla to water
- Let simmer all day, checking back every once in a while to add more water (i burned/ruined a pot by forgetting and letting all the water evaporate.
5. Keep foods from browning
Let’s be real.. pulling out the apple slices you prepared that morning for lunch and seeing that they’ve already turned brown isn’t exactly appetizing. Neither is that other half of the avocado in your fridge you just cut yesterday. Brushing them with a little bit of lemon juice will help slow down the browning process. You can do this with guacamole by adding as teaspoon of lemon juice to your dip before mixing. No matter what food you are doing this with, be sure to tightly wrap it in plastic wrap after brushing with lemon juice and keep it chilled.
6. Whiten nails
Help discolored nails by soaking in lemon juice or rubbing with a wedge. Tip: soak cotton pas in lemon juice and wrap each nail followed by tin foil. Let soak for 10-15 minutes and rinse nails.
7. Deodorize the disposal
Your garbage goes through a lot— literally. After using a lemon, throw your scraps down the disposal, turn the faucet on, and let it do its thing. It does a fantastic job refreshing it!
8. Make a cake
Because who doesn’t love lemon pound cake.
9. Or better yet…
Make limoncello 😉