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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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!

 



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.


 




even more nutmeg

I posted last time about nutmeg being good for eczema. Turns out, though, that nutmeg is even more the superhero than I thought. After posting about it last time, I continued my research on nutmeg because it couldn’t hurt to do more with the sweet-smelling spice. And my research was not in vain.

Last night I tried a nutmeg paste as a blackhead remover. And wow. I really thought it was too good to be true, but it worked. And it smelled lovely. And my skin glowed.

So really, this one needs to be tried. BY YOU. Here are some great facials using nutmeg. Enjoy!

For Oily skin:

I made a paste of water and nutmeg until I reached the desired consistency. But it was still difficult to keep the nutmeg on. Instead I probably could have used egg which is pore-constricting and cleansing. You could use it as a scrub first and then leave on.

For Normal skin:

For normal (or delicate skin) I would use whole milk. It’s gently exfoliating and refreshing.



go mango

I’m kind of a fruit addict. I find the natural sugars in fruit far more scrumptious than those in sugary candy. Maybe if I had developed this fine taste for fruit over candy earlier I wouldn’t have gotten circa 20 cavities. I guess we’ll never know.

Lately, people have been buying a lot of mangoes. I work at an enormous store whose name I will not divulge for fear of being visited by people, and that is where I do all my research. So you can trust me when I say that people are buying mangoes at an alarming rate. Maybe it’s because they’re exotic and you can imagine yourself in a warm, far-off place while you eat them. Or maybe it’s their rich iron, vitamin C, and vitamin E content (which is great for the skin, especially now that it’s getting colder).

Face

Mango Mask: SO easy! 1/2 mashed mango, 1 or 2 tsp of plain greek yogurt (it’s thicker than regular yogurt) and some honey. Leave on for 20 minutes. Add sugar if you want it as a scrub!

Mango Body Butter: If you don’t make this, I will. And I’ll sell it. Because this sounds incredible.

(Taken from www.vitamin-supplements-store.net)

2 oz mango butter
1 oz olive oil, almond oil, kukui nut oil, macadamia nut oil, etc…
1 TBS(or more) cornstarch (to make it less greasy)
6-8 drops of Fragrance of your choice (try vanilla, lavender, or mix your own)

Melt the mango butter in a double boiler or you may use the microwave. When using the microwave, set the temperature on medium and check every 45 seconds. When the mango butter is completely melted, add oil and cornstarch and stir until it is a nice creamy consistency. Add essential oil or fragrance last. Allow your butter to set in the refrigerator for 2 hours.

So, if you can keep yourself from eating the mangoes you buy to do these skin tricks, then whip up some of this goodness.



post gym remedies

Now that my busy schedule has become a routine, I can get back to some of the things I love: blogging and going to the gym. I’ve been on hiatus from the blogging (yes, again) and from the gym (want these!) because I have to actually buy a membership now that I’m a grown up and can’t use the university gym for free. Bummer.

I’m not exactly a gym-lover, I just love the way a work out feels. I also love pretending to be good at running and always exit the gym with a tomato-red face while avoiding the pretty, skinny girls at the desk.

When I return home I promptly take a shower (even before speaking to people. I don’t want anyone to recognize me post- gym) and do a few things to restore my energy and ease the occasional muscle/joint pain.

Cold

DIY Ice Pack: So easy! Fill a heavy duty zip-lock bag with three parts water and one part rubbing alcohol and freeze it.

Hot

Salty sock: No, really. Heat as much salt as desired in a heavy pan and pour it into a clean, heavy sock. Tie the end and use it on strained or sore muscles.

Mask

I like to follow my work outs with a deep- cleansing mask because sweat and oil settle in pores to create blackheads and infections. Sometimes I use Korres Cinnamon Mask because it has unexpected ingredients and it’s not DIY so I can use it in a hurry, but if I have more time I’ll do this one: 1 tbs heavy cream, 1 tbs honey, and enough baking soda to make a paste.

Remember to replenish precious water lost from the body. I like to add lemon for extra cleansing or cucumber for even more hydration. I hope this entry inspires me to get a membership soon!