3 Other Uses For Cranberries This Season

I have a fear of peeing in motion, which means any bus or airplane ride is going to have me squirming in my seat, crossing and uncrossing my legs until we stop. As soon as I've arrived at my destination, I'm immediately stopping for cranberry juice, which has always been my go-to for preventing urinary tract infections, a common occurrence when you find yourself holding in your desperate need to go to the bathroom. What I didn't know when I was frantically chugging my beverage was that these berries weren't just a popular cure for UTI's — cranberries are also a skincare remedy for acne, aging, and a boatload of other skin problems.

You may be familiar with the crazy amount of antioxidants in just one cup of cranberries, but these delicious treats are also filled with vitamins C, B6, E, and K. These are all great vitamins to be planting into your pores on the regular, and it doesn't hurt that cranberries have flavonoids and salicylic acid that many companies try to synthetically produce for the perfect acne creams. They are plentiful in calcium, potassium, and proteins that can also enrich hair follicles and regenerate skin cells. That's the jam for any aging beaut looking for an all-natural way to keep that youthful glow.

Cranberries run low on the pH scale (they have a level of acidity ranging between 2 and 3) but according to sources like Get Fit, the acidity in cranberries will not cancel out alkalizing compounds. For those seeking the perfect pH diet for skin and hair, combining cranberries with alkalizing ingredients can help you get the benefit of the antioxidants that our bodies crave.

For the best results, purchase 100 percent cranberry juice that's preservative-free to avoid additives and extra sugar — these berries are already high enough in natural sugars. Ideally, crushing your own organic berries is the best way to ensure what you know exactly what your pores are about to seep up. Here, three cranberry juice beauty recipes just in time for the holidays.

1. Cranberry Face Mask For Acne

This delicious, edible face mask is the jam for any acne-prone babe. Mash cranberries thoroughly to get as much pulpy juice as possible, then add raw honey and a teaspoon of nutmeg to form a paste. This is going to significantly bring down inflammation while brightening dull complexions. Cranberries are an antiseptic that is known to fight off free radicals, so this mask is perfectly safe to use daily on a make-up free face.

2. Cranberry Juice Toner

To use cranberry juice as an effective toner, use one part cranberry juice, one part of rose water and witch hazel combined. This recipe will seriously tone skin, smooth wrinkles, and of course, those annoying frown lines.

3. Cranberry Hair Rinse

This hair rinse is especially great for any ladies with red hair or undertones, but you don't have to be ginger to profit off this vitamin packed rinse. Giving your hair a fresh rinse with cranberry juice and apple cider vinegar will remove oily build-up, give your hair extra shine and slight color, while strengthening locks. You can do this in lieu of a shampoo or conditioner, but don't forget to put a nice hair sealant in to keep those nutrients working longer and keep your hair from losing moisture.

Image: Bruce Foster, mrbanjo1138, Rachel Tayse, Julie Falk, Stephen Mackenzie/Flickr