natural skin care

Exfoliate Like a Boss! + Sugar Scrub Recipe

ExfoliateLike aBoss!.png

Dull, dry skin is noticeable because of the layer of dead skin cells on the surface. Exfoliating gently removes this layer and allows your healthy skin to show. Exfoliating correctly can give your skin a much-needed boost with little effort.

natural sugar scrub recipe

Benefits of regular exfoliation:

·      Removes dead, dull skin cells

·      Keeps pores clear and reduces the ability of blackheads to form

·      Helps maintain your skin’s natural functions

·      Reveals healthy, glowing skin

 

There are two types of exfoliating: mechanical and chemical. Mechanical exfoliation uses microderm abrasion, a brush, or a scrub to physically remove the layer of dead skin cells. Chemical exfoliation includes things like a chemical peel or products with alpha and beta hydroxy acids to dissolve the dead skin cells. Microderm abrasion and chemical peels should be performed by a skin care professional in a spa and never tried at home.

For regular at home use, I highly recommend using dry brushing (for the body) and a sugar or salt scrub for your face, neck, chest, and hands.

exfoliate natural exfoliation sugar scrub

Some things to keep in mind:

·      Wash your face and remove any makeup before exfoliating.

·      Always use very gentle pressure and use your two middle fingers to apply the scrub. Use small, circular motions for about 30 seconds.

·      Use warm, not hot, water to rinse off the scrub. Hot water dries out your skin.

·      Don’t exfoliate more than twice a week. Over exfoliating will leave your skin raw and unhappy.

·      Apply moisturizer and sunscreen after exfoliating.

·      Avoid areas that are red or where your blood vessels are very close to the surface. Never exfoliate over open cuts or scrapes.

 

Sugar Scrub Recipe

No exotic ingredients to find, no complicated instructions, just a basic recipe for DIY sugar scrub you can quickly make at home.

DIY sugar scrub for natural exfoliation

Ingredients: ¼ cup sugar

                       Extra virgin olive oil

                       Optional: honey or agave

Directions:  In a small bowl, add the sugar and one tablespoon of honey or agave (if you’re using it) and enough olive oil to make the consistency of wet sand. Apply to clean face and gently rub the scrub in small circles. Rinse with warm water, pat dry. Don’t forget to do the backs of your hands, too!

Other things to add for variety:

·      Coffee grounds – helps reduce a puffy appearance

·      Turmeric – loaded with good stuff for your skin

·      Rose petals, ground – because who doesn’t want rose petals?

·      Ground oats – a very gentle exfoliant, especially for sensitive skin

 

It's a Miracle!

I do a lot of reading about skin care to keep current on trends and new products, and recently I’ve noticed that collagen is making the rounds as the new cure-all for aging skin. It’s being added to all manner of creams and lotions and potions with claims of clearing up crow’s feet and putting a spring in your step.

All About Collegen.png

Now, as a skin care professional I know that there’s really no such thing as a magic elixir that will reverse the signs of aging (no matter what the fancy commercials say) and I thought I’d whip out a little bit of debunking for you guys.

What the heck is collagen, anyway? It is basically the “glue” or framework that keeps our skin firm and resilient. In other words, it is the stuff (OK, technically a protein) that keeps our skin from sagging and bagging. As we age, our bodies produce less and less of it and that’s when wrinkles and a saggy appearance start to happen. Our skin just isn’t as elastic as it used to be. Other factors include diet, lack of water intake, environment, and kids. OK, the kids can’t really be blamed for it, but I’m leaving them on the list.

collagen

So, using a $300 jar of specially formulated collagen cream will put back my natural collagen, plump out my wrinkles, firm my sagging skin, clean the kitchen, and get me a higher credit score, right? Well…… Some products may reduce the appearance of wrinkles – temporarily – but will not reverse aging processes of skin. The collagen used by cosmetic companies is derived from animal bones, cartilage, or skin (massive YUCK factor!!) and the resulting molecules are simply too large to penetrate your skin. It’s just going to sit on top if it. I’m going to pass on the animal parts being on my face, thanks!

If you are looking for a more natural, less animal parts-y help for maturing skin there are plenty of options.

·      Protect your skin from the sun

·      Drink plenty of water

·      Eat plenty of vitamin C

·      Consume a diet lower in fat and carbohydrates – especially refined sugars

Ingredient Spotlight: Avocado Oil

Ingredient Spotlight.png

Avocados seem to have taken over the world of healthy cooking and skin care. They are high in vitamin E and chock-full of nutrients and “good” fats which make them a must-have addition to your diet.

They can also add a lot to your beauty routine, which is why I use both avocado fruit and avocado oil in my soaps and body butters.

Avocado oil is made from the flesh of the fruit, either pressed (organic) or chemically extracted (not organic). The pressed organic oil is what I use as its properties for your skin care regimen are worth every penny. The thick, rich oil is easily absorbed into the skin making it perfect for dry, sensitive, or normal skin. It is even reported to bring some comfort to mild sunburn.

DIY TIP_ apply organic avocado oil directly to clean skin as a stand-alone moisturizer. It’s lightweight and you avoid all the extra chemicals and preservatives of store bought moisturizers. My “mature” skin loves it.png

 

My Avocado bar soap is made with both avocado oil and fresh pureed avocado fruit. While neither the oil or avocado color the soap (it remains a natural creamy color), the monounsaturated fatty acids smooth and soften skin. Combined with the other oils and shea butter, the Avocado bar is perfect from head to toe and is unscented for even the most sensitive user.

 

Bonus Recipe: Avocado Facial Mask

Ingredients: 

·      1/2 cup oats (not instant oatmeal)

·      ½ avocado

·      1-2 tsp honey or agave

Instructions:

·      Grind oats in coffee or spice grinder until they resemble a fine powder.

·      Mash the avocado with a fork and smooth out any lumps.

·      Combine oats and avocado in a bowl with the honey or agave until blended. You may add a bit of water if you find it is too thick.

·      Apply to clean face, neck, and upper chest (if you like). If you find you have extra mask, apply to the backs of your hands – this is one of the places we really show our age!

·      Leave on for 15-20 minutes, rinse off with warm, not hot, water. Pat dry and apply moisturizer.

Avocado has great properties for your skin, especially in a mask. Try one – or all three – of our dry masks here with fresh avocado and feel how much your skin loves you!