Everything You’ll Ever Need Face Scrub
Whatever ails your skin throughout the year, this is sure to cure it. This is my little miracle worker and I swear by it. Brown sugar will exfoliate, and is loaded with alpha hydroxy acids and vitamin B. Apple cider vinegar will clarify, tone, and balance pH levels. Honey is anti-microbial and will dissolve impurities from the pores, making it an excellent cleaner. Honey is also a humectant that will lock moisture in, leaving skin super soft. Cinnamon is rich in antioxidants and tannins, reduces inflammation, and improves circulation. Turmeric works to even out skin tone, lighten dark spots, and reduce breakouts. The combination of all these delicious ingredients provides benefits I have not found from any product I’ve ever purchased. This multi-purpose scrub will leave your skin smooth, soft, hydrated, clear and glowing.
What you need: 2 tablespoons brown sugar, 2 teaspoons honey, 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar (Bragg’s is best), 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon turmeric, 1 small plastic container with a lid for storage.
How to use it: Mix the dry ingredients first, then add the honey and the vinegar. Add more sugar or honey until you have a consistency you like (I prefer it to be thick and grainy). Store the scrub in a plastic container with a lid in your shower and use it after your regular face wash (morning or night).
Age-defying Green Tea Toner
You’ve heard that green tea is good for you, that it’s loaded with antioxidants, and helps to combat both age and disease, and there is a mounting pile of scientific evidence supporting these claims. We now know that green tea is an all around powerhouse when it comes to improving health and combating the effects of aging, and that we should be drinking a few glasses daily. However, while these benefits are well known, what is less commonly known is the amazing effects green tea can have when applied externally to the skin. Recent studies have shown that topical use of green tea is highly effective at protecting skin from sun damage by breaking down free radicals, and reducing inflammation in the skin caused by sun exposure. When applied before sunblock, green tea works synergistically to increase the effects of sun protection and prevent free-radical damage, thereby slowing the signs of aging. This toner is best for combination and oily skin, as the tannins in green tea dissolve extra sebum, helping to control oiliness.
What you need: 1 green tea bag
How to use it: Prepare yourself a cup of tea, take the bag out and let it cool to room temperature. Once the bag is cool, pat or rub it over your face and allow to dry, but do not rinse. Follow with your daily moisturizer and/or sunscreen. (If daily use dries your skin out, reduce usage to 3-4 times per week.)
Honey and Cinnamon Mask or Spot Treatment
This is an age old remedy that has been used in Ayurvedic medicine for hundreds of years to cure a wide variety of ailments. Honey and cinnamon both contain anti-microbial properties, preventing the growth of bacterial and fungi. Honey is an anti-inflammatory that will reduce redness, and cinnamon will improve blood circulation for faster healing. Regular use of this treatment as a mask (2-3 times a week) will help to reduce chronic acne and improve overall skin tone. This can also be used as an overnight spot treatment when pimples threaten to rear their ugly heads.
What you need: 1 tablespoon honey (raw organic honey retains more of its natural properties than processed honey), 1 teaspoon cinnamon powder, one small bowl
How to use it: Wash and dry your face with your regular cleanser, then smear the mixture over your entire face or apply it only to problem areas. Leave on for 20 minutes, then rinse and moisturize as usual. (Can be left on overnight if you can stand the stickiness.)
Chocolate Milk Bath
I don’t think I’d have to say too much to convince anyone that bathing in chocolate is a fabulous idea, but did you know that it can also help to fight the signs of aging and sun exposure? Chocolate contains many powerful antioxidants that work to combat free radical damage, smooth skin texture, and increase hydration and circulation to the skin. This simple decadent soak will please all your senses, and will help keep your skin looking young and radiant.
What you need: 2 cups milk, 1/2 cup cocoa powder, 1/3 cup honey
How to use it: Mix the ingredients in a blender until frothy and add it to a full, hot bath once you have turned the water off. Sit back, soak away, and enjoy!
Coffee Grounds Scrub
Wether you like to drink coffee or not, you will definitely want to indulge in this skin awakening scrub. Coffee scrubs are used to reverse the signs of aging, lighten sun spots, reduce varicose veins and eliminate cellulite. That’s right! Caffeine is a vascular restrictor that acts to shrink blood vessels, reducing the appearance of varicose veins. It also works to redistribute fat cells beneath the skin’s surface and decrease the formation of cellulite. So exfoliate, brighten, tighten and awaken your skin with this super easy, super powerful scrub.
What you need: 1/2 cup (fresh or used) coffee grounds, 2 tbsp white or brown sugar, 1 tbsp olive oil, one small bowl
How to use it: Mix the ingredients in a small bowl, shower as usual, then turn the water off and thoroughly scrub your body with the mixture in the shower, leave on for 3-5 minutes before rinsing.
Apple Cider Vinegar Rinse
Apple cider vinegar is a highly effective hair conditioner and cleaner, and can help to promote hair growth. While vitamins and amino acids nourish hair, the acids will strip away residual buildup left by daily styling products, shampoos and conditioners. The acids in ACV help to regulate the scalp’s pH balance and clear hair follicles allowing for optimal growth and a healthy scalp. This rinse is far cheaper than store bought alternatives, and better than any product I’ve tried.
What you need: Apple cider vinegar (I prefer Bragg’s), water, a large bottle/cup/jar
How to use it: Mix one part vinegar to one part water in your container and take it into the shower with you. Make as much as you need for your hair length. After shampooing and rinsing hair, pour the mixture over your scalp and massage into both your hair and your head. Leave on for 3-5 minutes, then rinse and condition as usual. (Your hair will smell faintly of vinegar while it is wet, but it will not smell once it dries.) I use this every couple of weeks or whenever my hair starts to feel heavy and unmanageable.