Some of the most gentle and most effective skincare ingredients are probably waiting in your kitchen right now. Many of the expensive, natural beauty care products use all-natural ingredients, including natural oils — so why not try spoiling yourself and use these natural beauty hacks with raw ingredients?
The ingredients you select will depend on your skin type, which could be oily, dry, or a combination. It depends really on what your skin needs most.
Your skin changes with the four seasons and with age
Right now, I’m using a night cream I made for myself that is just a mix of olive oil, coconut oil, and beeswax. I love it! The beeswax holds it together and makes it thick, not runny.
There are many other ingredients to try as well that are probably in your kitchen cabinet.
Natural ingredients for dry and aging skin
- Avocado — a great moisturizer to use as a face mask, mashed up in your hair, or applied just about anywhere you could use a little extra hydration.
- Egg white — use uncooked as a classic way to improve tone and texture. Spread evenly over the skin, and leave on for 10-15 mins.
- Raw honey — a natural antimicrobial that soothes and draws moisture into the skin. Use it in masks or as a spot treatment.
- Green tea — full of antioxidants and helpful for reducing redness. Rinse your face in cool green tea for a great way to gently soothe your skin.
- Cucumbers and kiwifruit — great for sensitive skin, and for those who need cooling. These are often used over the eyes to relieve puffiness and brighten them. Leave on for at least 10-15 mins.
- Watermelon — good for dry skin and age spots. You won’t need much for it to benefit, and washing off is optional.
- Oatmeal — a wonderful fast-acting soother with major anti-inflammatory properties. You can drop it in the bath, slather it on your face, or even use it as a gentle scrub.
- Extra virgin olive oil and extra virgin coconut oil — both of them keep the skin’s connective tissues strong, which prevents sagging and wrinkles. These are especially good to apply in the early evening and be sure to gently rub in well. They can reduce fine lines, and are great after sun exposure.
Natural ingredients for combination and oily skin
- Tea tree oil — is a great skin cleanser, and is useful as a natural cure for blackheads. This is a must-have in your cabinet, as it is also good for cuts, insect bites, and a few drops put into a spray bottle with water works well in kids’ hair if they have lice (i.e., nits).
- Banana — the inside part of a banana peel is good to rub on blackhead-prone areas. Look at the banana peel when you finish rubbing, and you’ll be surprised at how much comes off.
- Lemons or limes — great for oily, acne-prone skin, or skin with a build-up of dead cells. Don’t leave citrus on for more than 10-15 minutes, and avoid sunlight immediately after applying it. Lemons in particular can cause photosensitivity (and lightening of the skin) — avoid use on broken skin.
- Papaya — a really good skin decongestant due to the enzyme papain. Apply evenly and leave on for 15 mins for one of the best enzyme masks around.
There are also foods to eat to improve your skin from the inside, which I will cover in my next article.
Try some of these hacks next time you’re at home, traveling, or even staying in a hotel. Just have fun experimenting with them, as well as with fruits or nut oils, bearing in mind some of the tips above.
I’d love to know how you get on.
Sheridan Genrich is a naturopath and nutritionist who received her health science degree from Charles Sturt University, and also received the Dean’s award for academic excellence. Sheridan mainly works with over-stretched professionals, entrepreneurs, and executives who struggle to be in their best health. For more information, visit her webpage.