Dear Readers: You’ve been shampooing your hair for years, but how much do you know about it? Here are some hints to help:

Washing your hair every day is probably not necessary; washing it too often can strip the natural oils from hair.

Choose the right type of shampoo for your hair. Ask your hairdresser if you’re not sure of your hair’s texture and type (dry, oily, etc.).

Gently massage shampoo into your scalp — don’t scrub your scalp with your nails.

Consider conditioner. Apply to the middle and ends of hair only, and don’t rinse it right away; it takes time to work.

Hot water is bad. Warm is better. A final rinse in cool water is best to seal in moisture.

Dear Heloise: I always try to give something to charity. I love the tablets, pens, calendars, stickers, etc., that charities give out as thank-yous. What I can’t use, I give away.

The actual money spent by the charity for these items, purchased in bulk, may be far less than we think, and some of these items may be made by clients that benefit from the charity.

The charity requests are a day-brightener for me!

Jan S., Harrisburg, Pa.

Dear Heloise: To extend my mascara, when almost used up, I put a few drops of saline solution in the tube of mascara. Used for cleaning contact lenses, saline can be purchased at the discount store.

Marcia B., via email

Marcia B.: Good hint, but be sure to use a tube for only six months after purchase, then replace. Some other mascara hints:

● Make sure lashes are clean and completely dry before application.

● Be careful with the lower lashes — smudges are likely.

● Wear the shade of mascara that you like — experiment with blue!

● A dab of petroleum jelly can condition lashes overnight.

Dear Heloise: Can I use hair conditioner that doesn’t work well on my hair as a body lotion?

Kathy B. in Houston

Kathy B. in Houston: Hair conditioner is not right for a skin moisturizer, but try it on bare fingernails and bare toenails. It can moisturize and strengthen cuticles and rough skin on your heels, too. Rub in at bedtime (then put socks on feet) — the conditioners typically have a lovely fragrance, too. Bonus!

Dear Heloise: I enjoy your column and all the ideas for thrifty living. Recently, when a roll-on deodorant bottle seemed dry, I inadvertently lay the bottle on its side on my sink counter.

Lo and behold, I got many extra applications out of that bottle, as the liquid settled in the bottle closer to the application ball.

Jan M., Colorado Springs

Heloise’s column appears six days a week at Send a hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, Tex. 78279-5000, or email it to

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