Editor's Note: This story is part of an In-Depth Report on the science of beauty. Read more about the series here.

Scientists now know that sleep helps to keep hearts healthy and waists trim, but can it also help refresh tired skin? And what about that old ritual of cucumber slices on the eyes: ineffective or innovative?

As budgets tighten and cosmetic labels boast increasingly complex chemicals, more consumers are looking to remedies that are more affordable and natural. And despite the millions of dollars companies are investing in R&D for high-tech skin treatments, some of the common-wisdom cures may still do the trick, and are the very foundation of maintaining—or recapturing—a healthy glow.

But, cautions Leslie Baumann, director of cosmetic dermatology at the University of Miami's Miller School of Medicine in Florida and author of The Skin Type Solution published in 2006 and the blog Skin Guru, "Natural's not always best." Some homemade remedies are ineffective and can even be detrimental to skin.

With summer just around the corner, Baumann and Diane Madfes, a clinical professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City, give us the facts and fiction about 10 home skin therapies.

Slide Show: How 10 Natural Skin Helpers Work—Or Don't