Homemade facials, cleansers, and exfoliating treatments are so vogue right now. But which ones get proven results and which ones are just hot air? We scrubbed down the internet and found out which home beauty care ingredients are worth your time and effort.
Honey is touted as having moisturizing, exfoliating, and antibacterial properties and it’s all true according to this interview with a real dermatologist. Honey has been used as a beauty product for millennia, ever since ancient royalty wanted to show off their glamour by spreading the rare treasure over their skin. Now that honey is available everywhere at a reasonable price, us plebeians can get in on the sweet action too! Try gently applying a honey mask after cleansing. Leave it on for ten minutes and rinse with warm water. A treatment fit for a queen!
A popular beauty product in India, rosewater is making its way around the world as a beauty staple. Rosewater is a byproduct of the steam process used to extract oil from roses. The resulting water is said to have anti-inflammatory properties which can help reduce blemishes. Since rosewater is used in cooking you can find it in most grocery stores, often in the imported foods section. Gently pat your face all over with a cotton ball dipped in rosewater to feel its refreshing effects and enjoy the added bonus of smelling fantastic.
Probiotics aren’t just for your gut anymore. Anti-inflammatory probiotic yogurt can do great things for your skin from the inside out and now dermatologists are saying it may be worth using topically as well. The great thing about yogurt is it already has the consistency of a face mask. Simply pat a generous layer onto your skin and rinse after fifteen minutes. Since it binds so well you can even mix it with other natural skin care foods. Honey goes especially well with yogurt.
In addition to doing good things when ingested, antioxidants are easily absorbed through the dermis which means you can apply their skin boosting properties directly to the target area. Teas of all kinds are famous antioxidants but green and white tea are some of the best. Apply tea as an astringent or place a cold tea bag on each eye to reduce puffiness. The caffeine will also play a role in soothing inflamed skin.
Another anti-inflammatory, oatmeal is also a great itch treatment and mechanical exfoliant. Brand name beauty products have been incorporating oatmeal for years and a single luxurious oatmeal bath should be enough to make anyone understand why. Add a cup of finely ground oatmeal to a hot bath and feel your skin soften like butter.
4) Coconut oil
It’s no secret that oils are nourishing and hydrating to the skin, but coconut oil is especially good because it’s non-greasy and fast absorbing. It also acts as a great carrier oil for essential oils which are potent and should be used in small amounts. Coconut oil is solid at room temperature so it can be whipped in a blender for a more lotion-like texture. Use it sparingly though, as a little goes a long way. A good technique is to mix coconut oil with an exfoliant like almond meal or oatmeal, gently rub it on your face in the shower and rinse. By the time you’ve dried off the remaining oil will have absorbed into your freshly exfoliated skin.
3) Tea tree oil
Tea tree oil has been used medicinally for centuries for its antiseptic and antifungal properties. This makes it a perfect astringent and toner, but don’t apply it directly to the skin. Tea tree oil is very potent and can cause a burning sensation if it’s not diluted. Cut it with some coconut oil or add a few drops to a hot, damp facecloth and lay it over your face like a mask for a few minutes. If used correctly, tea tree oil should create a tingling sensation.
Another oil rich fruit, avocados make a great moisture mask because of their consistency. Like coconut and other oils, avocado nourishes and moisturizes the skin and because you’re using the whole fruit instead of the refined oil, it won’t leave your face feeling too greasy. For an avocado face mask, simply mash up half an avocado or puree it in a blender. Mix in some honey if you want to add a little extra kick. Then apply it to your face and eat the other half of the avocado while the mask does its thing.
1) Things to watch out for
Not every professed home skin care miracle is the real deal. Lemon is a common ingredient in many a DIY facial and it may have some benefits especially for oily skin, but be careful when using any citrus fruit as the acid may cause irritation. Cinnamon is another one that pops up a lot but there is no known benefit of using cinnamon on the skin and with its spicy properties, it may be an irritant. Scrubs made from sugar, sea salt, nut shells, and coffee grounds are said to exfoliate and freshen skin, but they could end up hurting your face if rubbed too roughly. When used on the rest of the body they are most likely fine.
As with any product, always do your research before starting a new DIY skin care regimen. Remember that everyone’s skin ph is different and what works for others may not work for you. The best course of action is to read up and then get experimenting. Spot tests and online testimonials can save your face a lot of grief and in the end you’ll find the perfect match for your skin.