Thursday, October 14, 2010

"Green" Skin Care

If you read my post about "green" cleaning recipes then you know that I am on a quest to get toxic chemicals out of my home. And if you read this post, you know that includes skin care. So I have also been doing a TON of research on beauty products and how I can change from the ones that are swimming with crap to more natural ones. Think that our government is regulating these "mainstream" products and the ingredients that go in them? Think again. Most of the ingredients in your skin care products (1) have NOT been regulated or tested by any government agency and (2) are banned from most European countries and Canada. So why are they still being used here? Well, that's the million dollar question.

But instead of getting up on my soapbox and exposing you to my rants, I'll let you surf around the Internet or poke your nose into some books on the subject and come to your own conclusions. Don't let me be the one that spoils your beauty party.

Now for skin care tips for the "green" gals out there.

From the time I moved here to Arizona in 2003 I have had issues with my skin. It's like I rode into town and my face errupted. I almost never have a clear face and always seem to have a blemish popping up here and there at all times. What's even more frustrating with this is that a lot of the time when they do actually go away they leave scars that take FOREVER to fade. It's like I am a 13-year-old teenager again. I have tried everything. Ev-er-y-thing. And while some products have helped a bit here and there, I still have never had a clear complexion. I believe a lot of this has to do with what you eat. And, miraculously, since I have done my 30-day no meat challenge I have noticed a significant improvement in my skin. But I haven't been totally satisfied with just that.

After a ton of research on beauty secrets I found that a lot of people, especially with problem skin, have been washing their face with honey. I know, right!?!??! Honey?!?!? So, I decided to give it a try. And after two weeks of washing my face morning and night with just honey, I am amazed! My skin is softer and smoother and I haven't had a single blemish. One night I felt a pimple coming on so I did a honey mask and let it sit on my face for about 15-20 minutes before rinsing it off and the next day, I'm serious as a heart attack, no pimple! It dried it right up.

Now if you are going to try washing your face with honey here are a few tips:
-Use raw, organic honey. None of this processed honey that comes in the little bear squeezy-do.
-Remove any make-up first (read on for clearing your skin of make-up)
-Add a drop or two of tea tree oil for some blemish protection as tea tree oil will help with acne.
-Add some brown sugar or baking soda to the honey (mix in your hand) for a scrub. (*note* I have read that sugar will tend to invite bacteria so if you have problem skin I would steer clear of the sugar and just use the baking soda)
-Use as a mask at night. Just slather on your face and let sit for 15-20 minutes. Rinse off.
-Make sure you use a headband to pull back stray hair. While the honey is sticky going on, it really gets nice and smooth once on your face....but if it gets in your hair....stick-o-rama.

Coconut oil
Up until about a week ago I was taking my eye make-up off with commercial brands of eye make-up remover. And even though I used 3 different kinds at the same time (yes, three!) to try and get my make-up off, I still would wake up in the morning with raccoon eyes. So, while reading and reading and reading about all natural products I saw that a lot of people were using Coconut oil for make-up removing. I bought a jar and gave it a try. I kid you not, it took all my make-up off immediately with hardly any scrubbing and wiping like I was doing with my store bought stuff. And it conditions your skin like nobodies business.

So, what I do is massage the coconut oil (a small dab will do you just fine) into my face, including eyes. Wipe off with a piece of toilet paper. Rinse with water. Wash with honey! That's it!

I also used coconut oil as a shaving cream. Just slathered it all over my legs and shaved. My skin felt soft and moisturized as well as smelled oh so yummy. You can also use it as a hair conditioning pre-shampoo treatment or use as a moisturizer. Try it as a foot cream and slather on dry feet and cover with socks before you go to bed. A lot of people use it as a eye cream as well. I, personally, think that it is a little oily and find it doesn't penetrate my skin quick enough to use as a daily moisturizer. I have also read conflicting information where some people said it helped wonderfully with their acne while others say that it made it worse. So, for that reason, I have been a little afraid to keep it on my face for an extended period of time. But, I will continue to use it for make-up removal and shaving cream.

If you are going to use coconut oil, again, make sure it is unrefined, extra virgin, raw (if you can find it), organic coconut oil.

Olive Oil
Believe it or not I have been using olive oil as a facial moisturizer. Most mornings I feel like a turkey on Thanksgiving morning getting basted and ready for the oven, but it is a wonderful moisturizer. I hesitated at first putting an oil on my skin, especially my face, but it has so far been really wonderful. It penetrates my skin and doesn't feel oily at all. You can also use it as a make-up remover and takes off eye make-up in a few quick swipes.

I know I am a broken record, but buy Extra Virgin, organic Olive Oil.

Egyptian Magic
I read about this balm in a book and saw some reviews on the Internet and figured it was worth a try. It's a little expensive for the 4oz tub, but a little dab will go a long way. I have been mostly using it as an eye cream at night and, I know that I making everything out to be miracle cures, but really the fine lines under my eyes have significantly gone away. I have also used it as a hand cream and seems to work pretty well. Further reading suggests that people put it on everything...bee stings, rashes, cuts, pimples, etc. and it heals them all really quickly.

Give all my home treatments a try. I am confident that you will find them all really fantastic, really cheap (compared to most "mainstream" varieties) and will be much healthier & toxic-free!

1 comment:

chandy said...

Maybe this could be a little side business for you? You could bottle up your homemade mixtures in cute little containers and sell them on etsy!