· Beauty Tips · Skincare Tips · This One Bizarre Ingredient Made My Skin Look and Feel Amazing

This One Bizarre Ingredient Made My Skin Look and Feel Amazing

Ketchup Facial

You know those times when you hear an idea that’s just so weird that you simply have to try it? Well today’s post was born out of that exact type of situation. I was reading through some emails last week, when I came across an idea that I simply couldn’t ignore! A reader of mine named Danita G. had emailed in to share an at-home facial treatment that is supposed to work similarly to a chemical peel. I love a good at-home beauty treatment, so my interest was already piqued! But my interest turned to incredulity when I learned that the secret ingredient to Danita’s facial treatment was ketchup (of all things!)

Ketchup Facial

Using ketchup as a facial treatment? Just when you think you’ve heard of everything. ;-) But I trust my readers enough to know that there must be something to this idea, so I did a little research on my own. And what I learned is that ketchup is actually packed with ingredients that can benefit your skin! It contains citric acid, which provides gentle chemical exfoliation to your skin, which is exactly what you’d want out of a real chemical peel. Ketchup also contains plenty of antioxidants that can nourish your skin while fighting signs of aging.

After finding some promising information on the topic, I decided I was game to give Danita’s ketchup facial treatment a try. Because not only is ketchup easy to find, it’s also WAY cheaper than most at-home chemical peel products! And I ended up being pleasantly surprised at the results! (See below for my review.)

Ketchup “Chemical Peel” Facial Treatment

Ketchup Facial

You’ll need:

  • Ketchup
  • Washcloth
  • Moisturizer

Ketchup Facial


Clean and dry your face, then apply a thin layer of ketchup all over, avoiding your eyes.

Ketchup Facial

Let it sit for 5-10 minutes or so. People with sensitive skin may want to start with short intervals to see how their skin tolerates the ketchup. (Though I will say that my skin is notoriously sensitive, and I only felt a slight tingling during this treatment!)

Ketchup Facial

Afterward, use water and a washcloth to gently clean the ketchup off your face. Avoid scrubbing or wiping too aggressively.

Finally, dry your face and follow up with a moisturizer to keep your skin hydrated. Repeat the treatment once a week for revitalized and rejuvenated skin!

Ketchup Facial

My Experience With The Ketchup Treatment

I was surprised at how well my skin tolerated the ketchup treatment. I expected it to sting a bit, but it was more like a gentle tingly feeling. After washing the ketchup off, I immediately noticed how smooth my skin felt. It did leave my skin a bit red (from the exfoliation, not from ketchup residue. Just in case you were concerned!) Because of the redness, I would recommend doing this treatment at night before bed, so your skin has a chance to recover while you sleep. The next morning, I noticed that my skin had more of a “glow” than usual, and that my makeup went on more smoothly than usual too! Overall, I’m glad I gave this treatment a shot, and I would definitely do it again!

Ketchup Facial

An Alternative To The Ketchup Treatment

If the idea of smearing ketchup on your face is simply too out there for you, I totally understand. So I thought I’d provide another non-ketchup option for an at-home chemical peel treatment! This one uses egg whites, cucumber, and lemon juice to smooth wrinkles, moisturize your skin, and leave your face looking fresh! Here’s how to make it.

Egg White & Cucumber Treatment

Ketchup Facial


  • 1 egg white
  • 1/2 cup de-seeded cucumber pulp*
  • 1 tsp lemon juice

*Note: Use a peeler to remove the skin from a cucumber, then slice it in half lengthwise. Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds from the center and discard them. Then place the peeled, de-seeded cucumber into a blender or food processor and pulse until pulpy.

Ketchup Facial


Add a beaten egg white to the cucumber pulp, along with the lemon juice. Mix well until the mixture forms a spreadable paste.

Apply the mixture to your face and let it sit for 20 minutes or so. Then rinse your face clean with water, and follow with a moisturizer.

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Beauty Tips

  • I noticed three things when I tried this, Jillee: (a) You were right about keeping it away from your eyes (ow), (b) my children thought I had lost it (hilarious, unexpected bonus), and (c) I had a mad craving for veggie dogs for 24 hours. It really worked, though––thanks!

    • I’ve always thought that was the best thing about this site, Jillee covers many different topics/areas and offers great tips in all of them, something for everyone. You don’t have to read the stuff you find “ditsy” and neither do I. What was that our Mom’s used to say…If you can’t find something nice or constructive to say don’t say anything at all…something like that. You never know how many people you are insulting unintentionally.

    • I wish I were so confident in my God-given beauty that I had no desire to look into the “ditsy” stuff!! Guess I’m not, plus I find it fun seeing Jillee actually doing this so that I can rest assured she will “get down and dirty” right there with the rest of us, all for her love of us…her readers! :-) Even the ones who lack appreciation for it! No insult intended…just a comment that could have been left unsaid, like some others.

  • I tried the Ketchup facial today and it is really beneficial. I wondered, however, if the application should be cold from the frig, or would it be better at room temp? Thanks!

  • I love this site. It’s my favorite of all. Such great information and Jille has a wonderful personality. This doesn’t deter me from your site but but! the ketchup is over the top, Hon. Try it you’ll like it, won’t work. Sorry. Love ya anyway. Franci

  • I’ll try the egg white-cucumber-lemon juice mask. Also, readers with sensitive skin, do the ketchup in a small area to see if tolerated before doing on your entire face; I’ll try is a spot area. Jillee, once I saw a kitchen mask featured on Dr. Oz show. It was a cinnamon mask. I got 2nd degree burns on my face from the cinnamon, very painful and took days for the redness and swelling to heal. So I’m extra cautious. I too have sensitive skin, like you, but was really surprised at this.

    • Mary, now that you mentioned cinnamon I did a cinnamon/olive oil treatment for my scalp and when I rinsed it out and washed my hair some of the cinnamon ”residue” washed over my face. Let me tell you my face looked like a ripe tomato!

  • I’m heading to the kitchen now to grab the ketchup and try this!! I may have to compete with my son for the ketchup bottle since he loves it on his chicken nuggets. I would never have thought of this on my own but it makes a lot of sense given the ingredients in ketchup.

    Thank you, Jillee, for informing us about all of the “options” out there, no matter how crazy they sound. I have learned so much from you over the past several years. And, happily, I never feel a need to comment negatively or rudely when your post is not about something I’m interested in. Just saying…

  • I’m not sure if my skin would be irritated by the tomatoes. I love the cucumber one. Our garden is producing a lot. Other facial ideas I’ve tried Pepto facial -leave on 10-15 min for irritated skin..Also milk of magnesia is good to use as a facial if you have oily skin. It helps with the excess oil production. Leave on 10-15 min.

      • I used to do this too years ago. I would put it all my face and let it dry before putting on my makeup on hot and humid days. They were just talking about this a few weeks ago in a magazine I was reading.

      • I actually had to break down and buy Milk of Magnesia again for my face. A magazine recommended it again – for use during the extreme heat. I used a very thin layer. I live in a very humid area , and it was worth it to use as a secret weapon. It helps with the makeup meltdown factor from the heat and humidity.

  • There are a number of common and uncommon fruits and vegetables that made a good facial or mask. Two that I currently have contain papaya and pumpkin (not together!). They leave my skin in great condition! I’m definitely going to try the ketchup. By the way, you look cute with your blouse partway tucked. Very nice.

  • Loved this post and will be something I want to try. My one go to is Bragg Apple Cider Vinegar that I use once a week to super clean my skin. I use it on a cotton ball right before I shower. I love the feel of my skin after I get out of the shower and then a pea size of Vaseline while my face is still wet to trap in the moisture.

  • What is great about most “kitchen facials” is that even if you have only one of the ingredients, you can use just that and still get results. I have always loved using just egg white. I’m definitely trying the ketchup this weekend.

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