by Irene Zundel
Oats for Beauty
My Story: Homemade Masks and Scrubs
Spa Beauty for Pennies
I remember my Grandma well, with her beautiful, soft skin. She had a peaches and cream complexion, and she barely wrinkled, even in her 80s! She was a simple, immigrant woman of modest means. She couldn't afford trips to a spa or pricey cosmetic products. Yet she had the skin of a movie star. Her secret?
She knew what natural skin potions to whip up from stuff in her kitchen cupboards. She used ingredients that were healthy, inexpensive, and free of dyes and chemical irritants. She used salt, sugar, corn meal, oatmeal, yogurt and honey!
Do you have the desire to look like a goddess, but the budget of a working girl? No problem. Just use the tried and true recipes my grandmother did! Why not experiment and give them all a try?
Salt and sugar scrubs are a great way to exfoliate and stimulate the skin. Their coarse texture helps to slough off dead skin cells on the surface and give an invigorating massage to the new layer of skin underneath.
To make a simple skin exfoliant, combine:
1 cup of raw sugar
1/2 cup olive oil
Mix the sugar and oil together to make a paste. Rub it into your skin using a soft wash cloth, bath sponge, or loofah. Rinse well with warm water. If desired, you can add one teaspoon of your favorite kitchen herb. Try ground ginger for a nice oriental scent, or thyme or rosemary for a nice herbal smell.
For a fragrant salt scrub, try this one containing lavender:
Mix together into a paste:
2 cups coarse sea salt
1 cup almond oil
1 tsp. vitamin E oil
5 drops lavender essential oil
Rub it into your skin with a wet cloth, bath sponge or loofah. Rinse well with warm water. Pat the skin dry.
Oatmeal and corn meal are good to use as mild exfoliants and for facial scrubs. They are less abrasive than salt, and less irritating to sensitive skin. Yogurt is wonderfully hydrating and makes your skin silky smooth.
To make a mild facial scrub, combine:
1/2 cup honey
2 cups oatmeal
1/3 cup corn meal
Spread the paste gently onto the face and throat area. Rub it in with a soft, damp wash cloth. Rinse well with warm water.
For a fragrant, hydrating facial scrub, mix together:
2/3 cup finely ground almonds
1/3 cup plain oatmeal
1/3 cup plain yogurt
1 tsp. crushed, dried lavender
Apply the paste gently to the face and throat. Rub it in with a soft wash cloth. Rinse well with warm water.
Honey has three wonderful properties that give you beautiful skin. It is anti-microbial (germ killing), non-irritating (so it is ideal for babies and those with sensitive skin) and it is a humectant (it keeps the skin hydrated, or moisturized). To soften your skin overall, add 1/4 cup of honey to your warm bath water and soak for 15 minutes.
To make a liquid skin cleanser, mix together in a small bowl:
1/4 cup honey
1 Tbsp. liquid soap
1/2 cup glycerin
When the mixture is fully blended, pour it into a clean plastic cosmetic bottle, and cap it tightly. Pour it onto a wet, soft washcloth or face sponge and rub it gently into your skin. Rinse thoroughly.
To make a firming facial mask, whisk together in a small bowl:
1 Tbsp. honey
1 egg white
1 tsp. glycerin
1/4 cup flour
Smooth the paste over your face and throat. Leave it on for ten minutes. Rinse with warm water.
To make a smoothing skin lotion, mix together in a bowl:
1 tsp. honey
1 tsp. vegetable oil
1/4 tsp. lemon juice
Rub it into hands, elbows, heels and other dry spots. Leave it on for 10 minutes. Rinse off with warm water.
Do you need aromatherapy supplies to make these recipes at home? Look for them online at Glenbrook Farms Herbs and Such www.glenbrookfarm.com.
Ms. Zundel is a freelance writer, home schooling parent, and publisher of an educational newsletter.
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