Pretty Natural


Dry Spell

I recently moved to Virginia; it’s beautiful, historic, and the winter is so much milder than a Maine one.

I’m told it’s a place for lovers, which is definitely true for me. Little did I know, however, that Virginia would become the driest place I’ve ever called home… meaning that my eczema-prone skin is causing a ruckus – especially in the middle of the night when I’m trying to sleep, or in the morning when I want to shower, or the middle of the day when I’m trying to wear clothes or… well, all the time.

Each person will react to eczema in a different way, so try these carefully and sparingly until you find what works best for you. Not lucky enough to be the one of five people in the country with this problem? These tips cure good old fashioned dry skin, too.

oat-grain-sm

Oatmeal

There’s a reason you bathe in it when you’re a chicken-pocked child. It’s soothing all on its own. A hand-full of oats in muslin or cheesecloth placed in a lukewarm bath (like you’re brewing tea) is so comforting.

Bananas

Last night, I took a banana peel and rubbed it over every itchy spot before bed. It was more soothing than the Aveeno Anti-Itch cream I bought today. Honest. Banana portion on white

Coconut Oil

This natural remedy is easily found in the grocery store and good for every skin type – some even boast that it leaves wrinkles less noticeable… just food for thought. To aid itchy skin, melt it on the stove to give it an easier consistency to work with. Once it becomes a liquid, add the oatmeal. Take it off the stove, place it in a container, and you have a better cream than you could find at a store. Feel free to step up the recipe and add olive oil, like this blogger did.

Whatever you choose to do, remember to relax! Eczema flare-ups can be exacerbated by stress, so put the computer away and treat yourself.

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smorgåsbord of ingredients, one good outcome
March 19, 2011, 19:06
Filed under: beauty, DIY, egg, Hair-care, Honey, moisturizing, oil, olive oil, Organic recipes | Tags: , , , , ,

What are you doing tomorrow afternoon? Homework? Watching TV? If you’re going to be lounging around, then treat your hair to this conditioning mask.

It takes an hour or two to work, but it’s worth it if your hair is fried from being styled all the time or just lifeless from the recent fluctuating weather. And this recipe is from this month’s Marie Claire magazine, so you don’t have to trust me.

Ingredients:

2 small avocados

1/2 cup honey

1 egg yolk (use the egg white for this)

2 tbsp olive oil

Leave in for an hour or two and then shower and condition as usual. Your hair will thank you me.

You’re welcome 🙂



it’s alive!
February 16, 2011, 12:37
Filed under: beauty, bleaching, cleanse, eczema, lemon, moisturizing, yeast | Tags: , , , , ,

I made my very first yeast bread this week – and it turned out perfectly. I’ve always been scared to do it because I’ve been nervous about using yeast. It’s alive – and you have to feed it if you want it to obey you. So scary.

But it’s also great for your skin! It’s a surprise to me too, but don’t be scared. It’s easy and simple and, depending on your skin type, can make your skin less oily or more moisturized.

Dry Skin

Mix one packet of active dry yeast with enough water to make a paste. Swipe some on your skin and leave on for 5-10 minutes. Done!

Oily Skin

Use one packet of active dry yeast and mix with enough lemon juice to make a paste. Use it as a scrub first and then leave on for 5-10 minutes. Perfect!

 



oatmeal

Happy snow day!

Ironically, the rodent who predicts the future said today that spring is around the corner. I don’t know what’s more confusing about Groundhog Day: the fact that we let shadows predict things, or that the men who assist in the ceremony dress like Mr. Peanut? Also, have you ever tried explaining this holiday to a foreigner? Yeah.

Whatever the outcome of today’s rodent forecast, it’s still terribly cold and snowy here – as well as in most of the United States. I am fortunate to have the day off, so it’s time to relax after all the traveling I’ve been doing!

Dry skin is still the topic, since it’s still freezing outside and our skin is still suffering.

Face

Mash one banana and add 1/2 cup of oatmeal. I like to moisten the oatmeal a little first so it is easier to make a mask with. Apply for as long as you can stand and rinse off. I like to do this before bed and skip the lotion I usually use. Instead of benzoyl peroxide (my usual anti-acne treatment) I use the banana peel!

Body

Pack some oatmeal and dry milk in muslin or cheesecloth. Tie it securely and place in hot bath water, sort of like you’re making a big cup of tea. Remember, the lactic acid in milk is a great exfoliant for sensitive skin while the oatmeal is moisturizing and soothing.

 

Enjoy!



hot cocoa for us freezing mainers
January 16, 2011, 19:34
Filed under: beauty, cocoa, DIY, Honey, moisturizing, oil, olive oil, Skin-care | Tags: , , , , , ,

Maine is freezing!It’s like we’re trapped under a sheet of ice – and have been for the past week. You might think I’m exaggerating, but the fact is that I haven’t regained feeling in my toes yet. And I don’t even live in a log cabin.

We’ve had a snow day and many of us have avoided going out as much as possible, staying inside to sip hot cocoa and watch movies. Your skin especially will be hurting from the negative temperatures. So take some of that hot cocoa and put it on your face! Here’s how to make the most of the next snow day.

Dry skin mask: Your skin is so dry and frozen that it hates you. Treat it kindly by blending honey and as much cocoa as needed to create a paste and applying it to your face. If your skin needs even more moisture, use olive oil in place of honey.

Hair help: Cocoa is pretty dark and can easily stain, so this is only recommended for those with dark, frizzy hair. Use whole milk (or coconut milk) and mix with cocoa and a bit of oil. Yes this is a little slimy but it is so nourishing! Use it as a conditioner and leave on for 5 minutes.

Now you’re more prepared for the future storms. You’re welcome.



Glamour’s DIY trick

I get daily emails from countless magazine bloggers. It sounds lame, but it’s fun and also helps me escape from the mundane to focus on me for a minute or two. Shape magazine sends me tips on making my day a little more active. Allure tells me about the best of beauty. And Glamour will tell me just about anything.

This week I received and email from Glamour’s bloggers with a simple DIY trick that I just had to share. Below are the instructions.

 

 

“1. Take 2 whole cucumbers, 2 tablespoons lemon juice and 2 tablespoons olive oil and puree in a blender.

2. Divide the mixture into two plastic baggies. Slide one foot into each bag and massage the cucumber mask all over the foot.

3. Leave your feet in the bags for 5 to 10 minutes. Rinse with warm water.

‘The cucumber is extra refreshing and reviving for tired toes, the lemon helps exfoliate, and the olive oil deeply moisturizes for super softness,’ says [Skyy] Hadley, who relies on this recipe to keep feet smooth for up to a week.”

Remember that acidic fruits like lemon exfoliate on another level than what a traditional scrub would. The acidic nature helps exfoliate sensitive skin without the irritating beads/pieces in a scrub.

This is such an easy recipe. Instead of plastic bags I would just use a foot bath bucket – I’m not a fan of over-using pastic items.

Make today a relaxing Saturday. Enjoy!



back from break!

[Aside from the Christmas stress this past month, there were two birthdays and a wedding. I’m sure now you know why it’s been a while since you last saw a post from me.]

 

But now it’s a new year and I’m back in full swing… with terribly dry skin on my hands. I’ll be focusing on dry skin issues for a while since they are ever present in the winter. Here’s a super simple way to take care of it!

Peanut butter! Today, after I served the classic apple slices and peanut butter snack to one of the kids I nanny, I had some peanut butter left on my hands after digging out the rest from the bottom of the jar. It worked especially well on my cuticles.

I know, it’s a pretty strong and lingering smell. It’s also pretty oily so be mindful of smearing it all over your face if you’re prone to breakouts. I also suggest using the natural kind because it has a grittier texture for extra exfoliation. It leaves behind a soft, moisturizing barrier for the hands.

Face

Face Scrub: As previously mentioned, be aware that this can exacerbate acne prone skin. I have sensitive skin so I can usually only use a very small amount of this at a time, or dilute it to suit my skin needs. Using natural peanut butter means you can apply it directly to the face and scrub lightly with your finger pads. However, I dilute the peanut butter until it is nearly a liquid and use coffee grinds to make it feel more like a scrub.

Body

Body Scrub: I would only use this if I had some time to myself. I’m not particularly into smelling like a peanut butter sandwich. Mix peanut butter with 1/2 – 1 cup oatmeal for a moisturizing and soothing scrub.

Hands

Hand mask: Use as much or as little peanut butter as desired. Use alone or mix with honey or olive oil for added moisture.