Our kitchens are stocked with wonderfully delicious fresh foods that can do wonders for our skin. In fact, some of the finest all-natural beauty remedies can be found in our kitchen cupboard and fridge!
Women have been using strawberries in face masks to brighten the skin for centuries. We now know that the main skin-pleasing ingredient in strawberries is alpha-hydroxy acid (AHA), which helps to ex-foliate the skin and slough off dead skin cells. This brings forward the newer skin cells to the surface, thus brightening our complexion.
Yoghurt naturally contains high amounts of lactic acid, which is an AHA. Using yogurt as a face mask helps refine pores, ex-foliate the skin and stimulate collagen production.
Using honey on your skin helps it retain and balance moisture. It’s also thought to help soothe the hair follicle and keeps your hair soft and shiny when it’s used as a hair treatment.
Oatmeal is great for soothing and ex-foliating the skin. This soothing action is due to the natural mucilage in the oats which helps retain water in the skin. Oatmeal scrubs are a quick way to remove dry, dead skin cells and help to regulate oil production.
Cucumber is often used topically for swelling under the eyes (or as they’re often known ‘bags under the eyes’). Did you know that cucumber slices were also traditionally used to soothe sunburn? It’s the vitamin C and caffeic acid in cucumbers (as well as the soothing coolness of refrigerated cucumber slices) that help reduce the puffiness under the eyes.
Eggs contain an abundance of nutrients which help to tighten the skin and provide nourishment as well as seal in the moisture. Lightly beat the egg and apply to face and neck and leave for 10 minutes.
Coconut oil has a wide array of uses in your natural beauty toolkit. It can be used as a hair treatment, especially for flaky scalp, dry frizzy hair, and split ends. You can also mix it with baking soda and use it as a natural toothpaste. It makes a rich skin moisturiser or a face cream to reduce bags, puffiness, and wrinkles. You can even use it as an itch ointment or a makeup remover, and it works magically as massage oil.
Tea, especially green tea, is fantastic for reducing puffiness around our eyes due to its astringent properties. Simply apply a cold tea bag to the eyes and leave for 5 to 10 minutes.
Papaya’s flesh contains vitamin C, E as well as high levels of enzymes that gently exfoliate and smooth the complexion. Mash the flesh and apply to face, or smear the fleshy side of a papaya peel over skin and leave on your face for 5 to 15 minutes.
Apple cider vinegar
Apple cider has a long history of use. It is an excellent hair rinse, especially for a flaky scalp and has been used as dandruff remedy for centuries, as it helps restore the proper acid/alkaline balance of the scalp Bicarb soda Bicarb soda, or sodium bicarbonate is a very effective natural and gentle abrasive that pulls off dead skin cells and makes skin glow! Bicarb soda can also be used as toothpaste and can even be used as a deodorant when rubbed into the armpits.
Avocados are packed with mono unsaturated fats and vitamins. These nutrients will help nourish the skin as well as provide excellent moisture. Simply mash the flesh and apply liberally to the skin.
Rice water is simply the water that comes from washing uncooked rice. Many Asian women are admired for their beautiful, clear and flawless skin. One of the secrets to keeping their complexions smooth, translucent and youthful is thought to be that the women from some Asian cultures wash their faces with rice water. It is amazing how many of the foods you put in your body for healthy hair and skin could do the same good on your outside too.
Because everyone’s skin is different, before testing any of these natural beauty ideas, we do suggest a test patch on your skin, especially if you have allergies or sensitive skin. Here is a recipe for a Berry-oat Face Mask including some of the ingredients listed above that you might like to try:
Berry Oat Face Mask
- 6 strawberries.
- 1 tablespoon oat bran.
- 1 tablespoon raw organic honey.
- 4 tablespoons yoghurt.
- Puree all ingredients in a blender until smooth.
- Apply evenly to freshly washed face and allow to dry for around 15 minutes.
- Rinse well with warm water to remove the mask, then follow it with a cool water splash.