Unexpected ways you can use whiskey to help your skin and hair

Whiskey is no one's idea of a health food, and, when liberally applied internally, it has been known to have a certain, er, detrimental effect on your personal appearance as well as your health, your demeanor, and quite possibly your social standing. What's more, whiskey most definitely won't still love you in the morning, since the darker the liquor, the worse the hangover.

Surprisingly enough, though, whiskey can have some beauty benefits for both your face and your hair — at least as long as you stick to using it on the outside of your body.

Using whiskey to clean your face

One of the not-so-fun things whiskey can do to your body is to dehydrate it. While this effect won't do your innards any good, it can actually be quite beneficial to your skin should you happen to have been cursed with an oily, acne-prone complexion. 

The Boozeeat blog suggests that whiskey plus lemon juice can be used as a skin cleanser: just mix two teaspoons of whiskey with a teaspoon and a half of fresh lemon juice, and apply it to your face with a clean cotton ball. It may smell, look, and even taste like a whiskey sour, but it's actually a powerful pimple-fighting potion.

Whiskey can tighten your pores

Not only can whiskey dry up your skin's excess oil, but it can also work wonders to tighten up your facial pores. In order to make a whiskey pore-tightening mask, you will need whiskey, an egg (actually just the white part) and some powdered milk. Gently beat the egg white until just slightly foamy (no need for meringue-like peaks), then mix in two teaspoons of whiskey. 

Thicken the mixture with a tablespoon of powdered milk and apply the resulting paste to your clean, dry face. Once the mask has dried, rinse it off with cool water.

Whiskey as a skin exfoliant

Whiskey can help to exfoliate your skin, too, getting rid of the dead skin cells and leaving you with a brighter, fresher complexion. In order to make an exfoliating whiskey mask, you'll only need two ingredients: whiskey and honey. 

Mix two teaspoons of whiskey with a teaspoon and a half of honey until smooth, then apply this mixture to your face. Gently massage the exfoliant into your skin for a few minutes, rubbing just hard enough to loosen the old skin cells but not so hard as to cause irritation. Once you've massaged your entire face, rinse off the whiskey and honey with cool water.

Making a whiskey-based hair conditioner

While the idea of using beer as a hair product has been around for a long time, not too many people are familiar with using whiskey for the same purpose. As it turns out, whiskey can also make quite a decent hair conditioner. 

If you'd like to give it a try, just beat one whole egg, then mix in a few teaspoons of whiskey. Apply this concoction to your hair before you shampoo it, and leave it in for 15 minutes. Once the 15 minutes is up, wash and condition your hair as usual. You'll no longer smell like whiskey, but your hair should have extra body and shine.

Using whiskey to help your hair grow

Whiskey is also said to have the ability to promote hair growth, as in a hair mask recipe which calls for a teaspoon of whiskey mixed with an egg yolk and a little warm olive oil. The mask is meant to be applied to the scalp, which is then covered with plastic wrap. The plastic wrap is secured with a headscarf, and the hair mask should then be left on the head for up to one hour before being washed off. 

While The Belgravia Centre hair loss clinic warns that a DIY whiskey treatment is unlikely to regrow hair on a head that has gone bald, they do note that the alcohol content in the whiskey may help to promote blood circulation in the scalp. Increased blood circulation, in turn, could possibly help to stimulate hair growth. What's more, the egg and oil in the hair mask will work to condition what hair you do have, so this whiskey treatment won't do your hair any harm even if it's not exactly the next best thing since Rogaine.

So there you go — even if your New Year's resolution was to give up drinking (or will be, should you wake up in bad shape after a particularly rough New Year's Eve party), you don't have to pour that whiskey down the drain. Instead, pour it over your head. While a whiskey used as a beauty product may not transform you into a supermodel, at least it won't give your face or hair a hangover.