You should also consider other factors that affect your skin, such as whether your general health is good and what types of food you eat. Taking a holistic approach to caring for your skin helps ensure you face the world looking as good as possible. This means looking at what you eat and making changes to help your skin from within. Some people can eat cream cakes and chips and still have a beautiful figure and lovely skin, but they are in a tiny minority. Most of us need to eat sensibly to keep our bodies and our skin in good condition.
Alongside making your own daily face care products, you can make a few dietary changes. It is important to drink a lot of spring water. This flushes toxins out of the body through the urinary system, which means they don't have to be expelled through the skin. Reducing salt and caffeine and drinking herbal tea also helps. Eating less fried and processed foods, sugar and red meat while increasing your consumption of organic fresh fruit and vegetables and whole grains can help bring a healthy glow to your face.
Another lifestyle factor that affects the skin is exercise. If you work in an office, the chances are you spend little time outside. Taking a daily walk in the park and escaping to the countryside is beneficial. This reduces exposure to air pollution and increases your intake of fresh air. Exercise generally stimulates the circulation and increases blood flow, which sends nutrients through the blood to nourish all parts of the body.
Making and using your own quick and easy daily face products, together with a few lifestyle changes, can improve the appearance of your face within a couple of weeks -- all without expending too much time and effort. Caring for your face in this holistic way not only makes you look good but helps you feel healthy too.
Text and recipes excerpted from Natural Beauty Recipe Book by Gill Farrer-Halls (Quarry Books, 2006). Available in bookstores and from online booksellers. Copyright 2006 by Quarry Books. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.Skin creams and lotions moisturize the skin and can be used daily as part of a skin-care regime alongside cleansers and toners. However, we need specialized rejuvenating treatments once a week or month to keep our face and body looking and feeling in tip-top condition.
Face masks are a major rejuvenating treatment. They are applied to the face and the neck -- take care to avoid the eyes, the surrounding delicate skin, and the mouth -- and left for ten or fifteen minutes to do their work. Masks serve one of several purposes, depending on the ingredients used. Some masks are enriching and nourishing, feeding and hydrating the skin. Ingredients for these masks include honey, almond, and avocado.
Sadly, face masks alone won't transform your skin into the dewy complexion of a model! So, it is a good idea to spend a day detoxifying from the inside as well as from the outside. If you choose a day when you don't have to work, you can really rest and revitalize your whole system. During the day, avoid all caffeine, salt, chemical additives, and alcohol. Drink herb teas and a lot of spring water. Eat a lot of fruit -- melons and grapes are especially good at detoxifying your system. Make a simple vegetable soup for lunch and in the evening steam some organic vegetables and serve them with organic brown rice.
As well as applying one of the face masks that follow, you can thoroughly cleanse and tone your face beforehand and give yourself a face massage. In one teaspoon of almond oil put a single drop of rose, jasmine, or neroli. Massage this gently into your face and neck, avoiding the eyes and mouth. After the massage, rest for five minutes with a warm, damp cloth over your face. Then, apply your chosen face mask and rest for ten or fifteen minutes before washing it off with warm water.
Skin benefits from regular exfoliation, and a recipe for a body scrub is also provided. This is important in the spring, as your body has been swathed in thick clothes and subject to the drying effects of wind and central heating. However, regular exfoliation year round keeps the skin in good condition, vibrantly glowing, and healthy.
The feet benefit from a coarser scrub than the rest of the body as the skin is thicker. Use a handful of sea salt, and rub firmly in circular movements, targeting the areas of hard skin. Wash off the salt with warm water and then apply the Peppermint Foot Lotion or Coconut OIl Hand Cream [see pp 53 and 46 of the book for recipes], or give yourself a foot massage with a few drops of an essential oil of your choice mixed into a teaspoon of almond oil.
Text and recipes excerpted from Natural Beauty Recipe Book by Gill Farrer-Halls (Quarry Books, 2006). Available in bookstores and from online booksellers. Copyright 2006 by Quarry Books. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher. Honey and Almond Moisturizing Face Mask
The combination of honey and ground almonds makes this mask smell good enough to eat! Although it feels very sticky, and takes a lot of washing off, this is nonetheless a wonderful face mask, and worth the effort. The honey and almond moisturizing face mask is particularly good for mature, sensitive, or dry skin, but is suitable for all skin types.
1 large tsp honey
1 tbsp ground almonds
Enough warm water to mix to a spreadable paste
1. Warm the honey in a small bowl immersed in hot water until it becomes liquid.
2. Put the ground almonds into another small bowl. Add the melted honey and mix well, adding a little warm water to obtain a spreadable consistency.
3. Immediately apply the mask to a cleansed face and rest for ten to fifteen minutes.
4. Finally, wash off the mask with warm water and apply a toner and moisturizer.
Yogurt and Oatmeal Deep Cleansing Face Mask
Yogurt has been used for centuries for its health-giving properties. Here, live, organic yogurt is mixed with finely ground oatmeal and a little honey for an all-purpose face mask. This face mask is suited to all skin types, and is both cleansing and rejuvenating. If you have any doubt about which face mask to use, this is the one to go for.
1 tbsp finely ground oatmeal
1 tbsp live, organic yogurt
1 small tsp honey
1. Place the oatmeal in a bowl. Add the yogurt and mix to a spreadable consistency.
2. Warm the honey in a small glass bowl. Pour into the yogurt and oatmeal mixture and blend the ingredients thoroughly.
3. Immediately apply the yogurt and oatmeal mask to a cleansed face and rest for ten to fifteen minutes.
4. Finally, wash off the mask with warm water and apply a toner and moisturizer.
Rejuvenating, Exfoliating Body Scrub
This rejuvenating treatment is based on a traditional Indian body scrub for brides. The bride is scrubbed all over with a traditional mixture of finely ground grains, fruit peels, spices, and oils, and then she is massaged with sweet-smelling oils. This is performed daily for ten days, so at the wedding she looks wonderful with smooth, sweet-smelling skin. Using this body scrub will leave you with glowing skin.
2 tbsp fine ground oatmeal
2 tbsp ground almonds
1 tsp dried, finely ground orange peel
1 tsp rosehip granules
5 drops jasmine
Enough warm water to moisten the mixture
1. Place all the dried ingredients in a large bowl and mix thoroughly.
2. Add the jasmine and a little warm water to make a fine, crumbly mixture. Don't use too much water or you will end up with a sticky mess.
3. Stand in the bathtub or on a towel spread over the floor. Take a small handful of the body scrub and scrub vigorously with circular movements all over the body. Be systematic; do the legs and arms first as they are easiest, and then do as much of the rest of your body as you can reach.
4. The scrub dries quickly, and most of it will fall off your body. When you have finished, use a soft body brush to brush off any leftover crumbs.
Text and recipes excerpted from Natural Beauty Recipe Book by Gill Farrer-Halls (Quarry Books, 2006). Available in bookstores and from online booksellers. Copyright 2006 by Quarry Books. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.