Saturday, July 20, 2013

The secret to Beautiful skin is Gentle Care, Good Products and Pure Natural Care

The secret to Beautiful skin is Gentle Care, Good Products and Pure Natural Care

However you can always improve what you were born with even if it's not just what you wanted.
Take care of your skin, don't use lots of chemicals on it and don't I repeat DO NOT go out and spend hundreds of dollars on products that you do not know what is in them!!!
I hardly buy a thing these days from the cosmetic section I buy natural products and make my own skin care, household cleaners and laundry soaps.
I am going to share many recipes I have tried and used and some I have made myself.
ALWAYS remember be Gentle to your skin, give it some devoted time each day and best of all find something that de-stresses you each day, take the time it will show on you.
5 Simple Ingredients for Homemade Beauty Products
I love it when I know exactly what's going into and onto my body. When I can name every ingredient in something, without resorting to phonetically sounding it out. When the stuff that goes on my lips (or in my mouth) is actually edible. When the oil that soaks into my skin comes from olives, rather than petroleum. When my cleanser smells nice because part of it was once real flowers. 

So now I make a lot of my own beauty products. And actually, it's so easy and really fast, too. Faster than running down to the pharmacy for another tube of whatever. Make a list, go get these things, and try some recipes out!

Here are 5 fantastic and cheap ingredients to get you started: 

Organic coconut oil 
Coconut oil contains lauric acid, which has antimicrobial properties (and which babies get a good dose of in mum's milk). It's a good saturated fat, but got a bad reputation from the hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated varieties found in processed foods. So stick to the extra virgin or minimally refined versions. 

*cook with it - it doesn't break down at high temperatures, it lasts ages, and it's creamy at cool temperatures
*use it for creams like deodorant or chest rub
*use it for cleansers and make up removers
*use it as a conditioner for hair or a moisturizer for skin

Um, just looking at all these cross links and you can see how much I love coconut oil! I actually have two varieties - the extra virgin (which is less processed) and the refined (which is more subtle, when you don't want a strong scent).

Organic extra virgin olive oil
Olive oil is rich in vitamin E and is known as a heart-healthy fat.

*cook with it
*use it in cleansers and make up removers
*use as a natural furniture polish
*use as a moisturizer for skin or lips or hair

NOTE: store out of direct light if possible

I love when I rub olive oil into something I'm cooking - my hands get so soft!! You can also used olive oil to get rid of cradle cap when she was a baby - just rub some onto the scalp and then use a comb to remove the flaky bits.


Organic lavender essential oil (you only use a few drops at a time!)
Lavender can provide relief from insomnia, headaches, and also has antihistamine properties.

*put a few drops in your bath for extra relaxation
*add a few drops to your laundry rinse cycle to make your clothes or linens smell amazing
*add a few drops to homemade moisturizers or cleansers
*add a few drops to 10 mL apricot kernel oil for a relaxing massage oil

NOTE: store essential oils out of the reach of children and out of direct light if possible

I love the smell of lavender. Though it was one of those smells that repulsed me during pregnancy (along with coffee! what a nightmare that was!) so it took me awhile to get back into it ...


Good raw honey-buy good honey
Raw honey hasn't been heated to high temperatures, so it retains all its natural goodness. Honey has antiseptic and anti fungal properties, and is soothing on the throat. A truly natural sugar.

*cook with it (or just use it raw!)
*use for mild cuts or burns or fungal infections
*makes a good face mask
*helps soothe sore or dry throats - try 1 Tbs lemon juice + 1 Tbs honey + 1 cup hot water

NOTE: don't give honey to babies less than 12 months old, or as your doctor recommend

Tea tree oil (a little pricey but like any essential oil it'll last you ages)
Another great antiseptic and anti fungal essential oil. This one comes from an Australian native tree, and has quite a potent smell. So use in moderation! 

*add a few drops to your hot wash cycle as an extra disinfectant for towels and linens
*helps the skin recover from shaving or you can apply a drop or two directly to mild cuts or abrasions
*use in conjunction with white vinegar to clean the house - try 1 c vinegar + few drops oil + a bucket of hot water to mop tiled floors or without the water to clean the toilet
*is a natural insect repellent

NOTE: store essential oils out of the reach of children and out of direct light if possible

I hope this gets you started on good skin care, get some friends or family members together and have an at home spa day!!
Treat yourself this weekend!

Both avocado oil and shea butter are known for their hydrating and moisturizing properties, making it the perfect marriage of ingredients for the delicate under eye area. 

Avocado oil Benefits:

Extremely moisturizing.
It is a natural source of Vitamins A, D and E.
It is easily absorbed into the skin and can help with regenerating and softening of the dry eye area. 
Contains potassium, which can help with the growth of new cells.
Supports skin elasticity.

Shea Butter Benefits:

It is a natural fat that is extracted from the nut of the African shea tree, which is very hydrating.
It is widely used in skin care to reduce the appearance of fine lines, scars and stretch marks. 
It melts when it comes in contact with your skin (if you buy the real stuff you will see what I mean) and it is instantly absorbed, without making you feel like a greasy mess. 
Has anti-inflammatory benefits. 
Restores the natural suppleness of your skin.

DIY Under Eye Treatment:

Avocado Oil 
%100 Pure Shea Butter *Make sure you read the back label before you purchase. You want to make sure the only ingredient listed is shea butter. 

*You can find both of these ingredients at a health food store in the beauty section. Or you can purchase them here and here. 
Take a few drop of avocado oil and gently massage under each eye until fully absorbed. 
Finish by applying a thin layer of shea butter on top. Gently massage into your skin until absorbed. 
So easy and super cost effective!

Avocados are Nutritious
Avocados are fruits which grow on trees which are native to Mexico. Avocado is also known as 'Alligator Pear'. They have green tough skins which are textured and they are pear shaped.
The flesh inside the tough skin is the edible part. It is soft and creamy and very rich. There is also a large stone inside which can be easily removed.

Although avocados are high in fat they are still very healthy. They contain mono and polyunsaturated fats, which are the 'good' fats, as they contain omega 3 fatty acids which are vital for hair, skin and eyes. The good fats are unlike saturated fats which tend to be found in cakes and cheese, as they are less harmful to the arteries and high blood pressure.

Avocado is a versatile fruit, as it is filling and contains many vitamins and minerals.

Eating Avocados

I can't rave on these enough!!!
Avocados are eaten raw with the flesh scooped out and the stone removed. They are enjoyable as a snack or in a salad.
They go well with prawns, fish or melon and they are the main ingredient in the Mexican dip guacamole.
Add lime, chopped coriander, onion, tomato and seasoning to avocados and mash together to make the guacamole. It can be chunky or pureed and served on french toasts or to dip chips or bread sticks.
Avocado can also be a luxury treat in a sandwich or wrap with cream cheese or ham.

Baby Food
Avocado is a soft food great for your growing baby. Mash it down or blend it in baby food as a nutritious meal rich in vitamins and good fats. It is ideal for a developing brain. Although it contains a high level of fats, it is good for baby in small amounts. Check with your family doctor if you have any concerns.

Smoothies are a blended drink full of your favorite fruit. You can make them yourself in a smoothie maker or in a blender with ice and fruit juice. Add avocado, banana, lime or strawberry for a healthy morning drink.

Prepare you avocado plants

Avocado Trees
When I had eaten my avocado, I wanted to know if there was anything to do with the stone (pit) in the middle. I then came across a different way of growing plants from them indoors.
By poking cocktail sticks into the middle of the stone it is then able to balance on a cup of water. As long as the bottom of the stone is immersed in the water they should be fine.

Keep them on a sunny window sill and with any luck they should begin to sprout in a matter of weeks. Once there are leaves and roots, allow them to grow about 6 inches. They can then be planted into pots.
Ensure that you use good compost and plant them shallow in the pot, with the roots downwards.
Keep them watered but do not saturate them. They need plenty of light indoors to grow. As new leaves grow pinch out the old ones to encourage good growth. You can them keep them outdoors in the summer, but bring them inside in the winter so they are safe from frost.
You may not get any fruit on the tree for the first year or two, but grow a couple of trees together to aid pollination.
Hair mask!

Avocado Hair Mask
Another use for avocados are to use them on your hair and skin! Try a nourishing hair mask every now and again for glossy locks.

Hair Mask Ingredients:
1 Mashed avocado
1 medium egg
1 tsp honey

Mash together the ingredients in a bowl.
Massage the mixture in your hair and wrap in cling film or a plastic shower cap.
Relax for 20 minutes and allow the vitamins, minerals and good fats enrich your hair and scalp. The honey is moisturizing and the egg contains protein. Add olive oil if your scalp is particularly dry.
Rinse out of your hair after 20 minutes. Use a mild shampoo to remove the avocado mixture as it can get messy!

Avocado Face Mask

Avocado is great for dry skin. Add mashed up ripe avocado to a spoonful of runny honey and smear on your face avoiding the nose, mouth and eye areas. Honey has antibacterial properties which can help soothe and skin and fight pimples.
If you have a lot of spots, add a few drops of freshly squeezed lemon as this is antiseptic.
For very dry skin, add plain natural yogurt or coconut oil to your mashed avocado. The natural ingredients are free of nasty chemicals which are found in shop bought face masks, and if you buy organic ingredients then all the better.
Other recipes for your beauty Regime
Buttermilk Bath Powder

This is a gentle, moisturizing bath powder - an interesting twist on the more usual bath oils and salts. Rich in milk fats, this powder will leave your skin rejuvenated, and is safe to use with your baby too.. You need:

1 cup nonfat dry milk
1 cup whole dry buttermilk
4 tbsp cornstarch
5 drops lavender or chamomile oil
Mix the ingredients thoroughly and store in an airtight container. Use 1/4 cup in the bath, or a tablespoonful in a baby tub.

Peppermint Gel

The aloe and peppermint in this work to relieve tired muscles and reduce swelling in the legs. You need:

1/2 cup aloe vera gel
1 & 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 tbsp witch hazel
5 drops peppermint oil
Mix the aloe vera, cornstarch, and witch hazel in a container and heat on high in the microwave, stirring every 30 seconds for 1-2 minutes. Let cool, stir in the peppermint and store in an airtight container in the fridge.

Rose Face Mask

Roses have the wonderful ability to cleanse and soothe both oily and dry skin, making them ideal for combination and problem skin types. Pregnancy often results in hormonal changes to the skin and this mask is ideally suited to deal with that. You need:

1 rose
1/4 cup hot water
1 tbsp rosewater
1 tbsp natural yogurt
1 tbsp honey
Strip the rose petals into the hot water and let soak for 20 minutes. Crush with a fork and mix in the rosewater, yogurt and honey. Apply the resultant paste to face and neck and leave for 5-10 minutes before rinsing off. This makes a very relaxing mask while soaking in the Buttermilk Bath. Rinse the mask off into the bath and let the vitamins and minerals work their magic on the rest of your body. Finish off with a brief rinse in warm water to remove any leftover petal fragments.

Moisturizing Lotion for Dry Skin

Rough and itchy dry patches are a common bane in pregnancy and summertime - worse when the two are combined. This lotion makes an effective instant cure-all. You need:

1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tsp lemon juice
5 drops lavender oil
4 drops rose oil
Mix all ingredients and apply as needed to dry patches. Massage into the skin and leave for 10-20 minutes before rinsing off with warm water. Do not scrub while rinsing.

Belly Balm

1/4 cup cocoa butter
1 T wheat germ oil (or I sometimes use shea butter)
3 T apricot kernel oil (or any other rich oil - avocado, almond)
1 T grated beeswax (about 10 grams)

Melt all together gently in double boiler. Stir every now and then as it cools. You could add some lavender oil if you wanted - 12 drops for every 2 T of base oil. I make this for some midwives at the hospital where my friend works. They tell me if nothing else, it does ease the itching.

Herb Facial
4 Tablespoons Chamomile Flowers
2 Cups Distilled Water
Bring flowers and water to boil, remove from heat. Cover to use with towel as a steamer. Steam face for 5 to 10 minutes. Splash face with cool water to close pores

Cleanser for a Dry Complexion
2 Ounces Aloe Vera Gel
1 Teaspoon Vegetable Oil
1 Teaspoon Glycerine
1/2 Teaspoon Grape seed Extract
8 Drops Sandalwood Essential Oil
4 Drops Rosemary Essential Oil
Blend the ingredients. Shake well before each use. Apply with a cotton ball, then rinse with warm water. Gently pat face dry.

Herbal Face Mask
1 Tablespoon Dry Milk
1 Teaspoon Honey
1/4 Teaspoon One Of The Following:
Chamomile Flowers -- finely chopped
Fennel -- finely chopped
Parsley -- finely chopped
Lemon Grass -- finely chopped
Mint Leaves -- finely chopped
Combine with whisk or in blender on low speed 2 or 3 minutes or until creamy. Apply to the face and throat, it will form a mask as it dries. Leave on 5 minutes, then rinse with cool water.

Orange Flower Cleansing Cream
2 tablespoons soy oil
2 tablespoons almond oil
1 ounce cocoa butter
1 tablespoon beeswax
2 tablespoons orange flower water
1/8 teaspoon borax
5 drops essential oil of neroli
Mix and warm the oils. Melt the cocoa butter and stir it into the oils. Melt the beeswax, then beat it into the oil mixture, a little at a time.
Warm the orange flower water and dissolve the borax in it. Beat this into the main mixture. Leave to thicken and cool.
As the mixture starts to thicken, stir in the essential oil. Once cool, spoon into prepared jars and label. For dry and normal skin.

Chamomile Cleansing Milk
1/2 cup Half and Half
2 tablespoons Chamomile flowers, fresh or dried
Heat together in a double boiler for 30 minutes. Do not let half and half boil or form a skin. Leave to infuse 2 hours, then strain. Keep refrigerated and use within one week. For dry and sensitive skin.

Buttermilk and Fennel Cleansing Milk
1/2 cup Buttermilk
2 tablespoons Fennel seed, crushed
Gently heat the milk and crushed seed together in a double boiler for 30 minutes.
Leave to stand and infuse for 2 hours. Strain, bottle, refrigerate and use within one week. For oily skin.

Toner for Dry Completion
2 Ounces Aloe Vera Gel
2 Ounces Orange Blossom Water
1 Teaspoon Vinegar
6 Drops Rose Geranium Essential Oil
4 Drops Sandlewood Essential Oil
1 Drop Chamomile Essential Oil
1 Drop Jasmine Essential Oil
800 IU Vitamin E Oil
2 400 IU Vitamin E Capsules
Combine ingredients (if using vitamin E capsules, pop them open, and squeeze the oil into the mixture). Shake before using. This toner can also be used as an aftershave.

999 Emergency Hair Treatment
2 Tablespoons Sesame Oil
1 Large Egg Yolk
1 Teaspoon Mayonnaise
1/2 Cup Heavy Cream
Mix all ingredients in a blender until they reach a creamy consistency. After thoroughly washing hair with a deep-cleansing shampoo, towel-blot, then distribute mixture evenly onto hair; wrap head completely with aluminium foil to retain heat. Leave on 30 minutes. Remove foil; wash hair again with deep-cleansing shampoo until all the mixture is removed. Should be done about once a month.

Caribbean Rum Conditioner
3 Tablespoons Rum
1 Large Egg
Whisk together egg and rum. After shampooing, pour mixture onto hair and leave on 1 to 2 minutes. Rinse well with the coolest water you can stand, for extra shine.

Herbal Hair Rinse
1 Pint Boiling Water
1 Tablespoon Vinegar
1 Cup Dried Herbs Such As:
Sage -- * see note
Lemon Grass -- * see note
Pour boiling water over 1 cup of dried herbs. Let steep for about 30 minutes. Strain and add 1 tablespoon vinegar. Pour rinse over hair and leave in.
NOTES : *Sage: boil water and pour over sage in a cast iron pot...sage will darken hair.* Lemon-grass will add blonde highlights to hair.

Crème Bath Oil Soak
3 Large Eggs
1/2 Cup Yoghurt
1/4 Cup Witch Hazel
1 Tablespoon Witch Hazel
2 Tablespoons Melted butter
1/4 Cup Corn Oil
1 Teaspoon Corn Oil
1 3/4 Cups Milk
1 Teaspoon Cider vinegar
1 Cup Peach Juice -- or
1 Cup Apricot Nectar
Melt butter and mix with corn oil. Let stand one hour. Mix eggs and stir gently. Add all ingredients one at a time to blender - adding 1 c of milk last. Beat at low speed. Turn off blender and add last 3/4 c milk unbeaten. Stir and enjoy. Keep refrigerated for freshness. Shake and add 1/2 c to your tub. Makes 3 cups - enough for 6 baths.

Foaming Bath Salts
1/2 Cup Unscented Liquid Soap
1 Tablespoon Light Oil
Food Coloring
6 Cups Rock Salt Crystals
Essential Oils, Such As:
Bitter Orange
Mix together soap, oil, and food coloring. Pour mixture over rock salt in a large bowl. Stir continuously until salt crystals are evenly coated. Spread salts out in thin layer on cookie sheet covered with wax paper and allow to air dry. (This can take up to 24 hours) If you would like to scent your bath salts, add a few drops of the essential oils after drying. Put 1/4 cup of the salts (enough for 1 bath) into a small cotton bag--the kind used for sachets and teas--and tie with a bow for a decorative look. Store in an airtight container. Salts should be poured into the bath under running water. Recipe makes enough for 24 baths.

Fruit Gel Masks For Normal To Dry Skin
1 Envelope Gelatine Powder, Unsweetened
1/2 Cup Apple Juice -- or
1/2 Cup Pear Juice -- or
1/2 Cup Peach Juice -- or
1/2 Cup Raspberry Juice -- * see note
Combine gelatine and fruit juice in clean, ovenproof glass container. Heat gently to dissolve gelatine completely. (Microwave on high for 45 seconds to 1 minute, or heat in a pan on the stove.) Place mixture in refrigerator and cool until almost set, about 30 minutes. Spread a thin layer of the gel mixture over your face and allow to dry. Peel mask off and rinse skin thoroughly with cool water.
NOTES : * choose any one of the above fruit juices.

Fruit Gel Masks For Oily Skin
1 Envelope Gelatine Powder, Unsweetened -- (Knox)
1/2 Cup Tomato Juice -- or
1/2 Cup Grapefruit Juice -- or
1/2 Cup Lemon Juice -- or
1/2 Cup White Grape Juice -- * see note
Combine gelatine and fruit juice in clean, ovenproof glass container. Heat gently to dissolve gelatine completely. (Microwave on high for 45 seconds to 1 minute, or heat in a pan on the stove.) Place mixture in refrigerator and cool until almost set, about 30 minutes. Spread a thin layer of the gel mixture over your face and allow to dry. Peel mask off and rinse skin thoroughly with cool water.
NOTES : *Choose any one of the above juices.

Herb Soap Balls
1/4 Cup Boiling water
5 Drops related essential oil
1 Tablespoon Pulverized Herbs -- * see note
2 Cups Shredded Ivory Or Castile Soap
Plastic wrap
Pour boiling water over herbs. Add 5 to 6 drops oil. Steep 15 minutes. Reheat until bubbly and pour over soap. Mix well with hands and let stand 15 minutes. Mix again and divide into 3 or 6 parts, rolling each into a ball. Place on plastic wrap and dry for 3 days.
NOTES : * Chamomile, lavender, peppermint, rosemary, sage, thyme or a combination of any or all of the above.

Herbal Baths
1 Drop essential oil
1 Cup Oatmeal
Mix oatmeal, herbs and oil and fill bath bags with mixture. Oatmeal is used because it is a natural skin softener and cleanser
STIMULATING BATHS: basil, bay, calendula, citronella, fennel horseradish roots, lavender, lemon verbena, lovage root, marjoram, mint, nettle, pine needles, queen of the meadow, sage, rosemary, savoury, thyme,  vetiver root.
SOOTHING BATHS: catnip, chamomile, comfrey, elder, primrose, hyssop, jasmine, juniper berries, lemon balm, linden flowers, marshmallow root, melilot, mullein, passionflower flowers, roses, slippery elm inner bark, tansy, violet, valerian root, vervain (whole plant).
Sherri Williams

Herbal Mouthwash
Strong Peppermint Tea
Equal Portions Of:
Boiling Water
Chew On Parsley
Combine equal portions of boiling water, mint, anise and rosemary. Let steep until cool. Strain and store in airtight container. Store in refrigerator. 

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