Look after your skin with ingredients from your pantry
The skin is our biggest organ. Whatever we put on it will, inevitably, get inside our bodies. It is interesting to consider this for a moment, thinking about all the creams, sprays and foams that we put onto our skin and leave on for an entire day, such as moisturizer. At some point many of us decide to change from using generic products to more natural – and often more affordable – alternatives.
The aim of this article is not to make anyone feel bad about their skincare routine or claim expertise on the topic, we simply suggest that you take a moment to read the labels AND our fabulous list of pantry skin tips!
Before you go all in, make sure you test the products on your skin to avoid allergic reactions and harming your skin. Please use raw and organic ingredients where possible.
- Bicarb soda – the multitalented pantry staple
Bicarb soda is a great cleaning agent around the house. You can actually buy a booklet where the manifold talents of bicarb soda are listed. But here are our top two bicarb soda tips!
- Bicarb soda exfoliation
Wash you face and sprinkle ½-1 teaspoon of bicarb soda into the palm of your hand. Rub your hands together and massage your face gently(!) with the bicarb for about 30 seconds. Use lukewarm water to rinse everything off. Finish by briefly splashing cold water onto your face to close the pores and apply moisturizer of choice (see below for suggestions).
- Bicarb and apple cider vinegar hair wash
Premix ½ cup/ 1 cup/ 2 cups of bicarb soda (depending on amount of hair, length, thickness, etc.) in a cup of water (the more bicarb, the more water you need). Wet your hair and evenly distribute the bicarb-water mix over your hair. Massage in the bicarb, gently. When satisfied rinse every bit of bicarb from hair and body.
Clean the cup you used for the bicarb mix and pour in 1/3 cup of apple cider vinegar (the natural one that contains the ‘mother’). Fill the cup with water. Now gently pour the mix from the tips of your hair to the roots. Massage in for ½ minute. Rinse completely (see NOTE 2)
NOTE: Bicarb soda and vinegar create a chemical reaction, so make sure you really get rid of the bicarb soda before you the vinegar is involved. It’s the mix that primary school students use for their science project ‘volcanoes’!
NOTE 2: The vinegar smell will last for a bit but fear not, it will evaporate eventually!
NOTE 3: In the first few months you may find that your hair doesn’t look quite ‘clean’. This normally means that all the residue from previous products are slowly getting out of your hair.
NOTE 4: If you have dyed hair this one may not be for you. Bicarb soda is great at stripping away dyes, so be aware of this when you try it out.
- Honey – keep lips protected and moist
Cracked lips? Dry lips? Flaky lips? Tender lips? Or do you just want supple lips? Get your jar of honey (raw and organic) and gently cover your lips with it. Leave for 20 minutes. The honey may melt and drip off, yummy!
- Apple Cider Vinegar (organic and with the ‘mother’)– good for your gut, good for your skin
We already mentioned the hair wash, so here is another excellent apple cider vinegar tip.
Mix 1/3 cup of apple cider vinegar into a glass of water or a spray can. After you cleaned and dried your face, gently dap or spray the apple cider vinegar mix on your face. Keep your eyes closed! It stings! Leave on for a few minutes and rinse off.
Apple cider vinegar is also a great spot treatment. Just dab a soaked cotton ball on the affected area. Keep on for a 30minutes or overnight.
- Oils – all day care
There are two main ways we recommend you use the oils, namely olive, avocado, coconut and almond (try and get cold-pressed and organic!)
- Take off make-up or the days muck with oil. Wash your face with lukewarm water and massage 2 teaspoons of oil into it. When you are satisfied, use a lukewarm soaked facetowel to gently wipe off the oil/muck/water.
- After your shower, don’t dry your body completely, but leave a film of moisture on instead. Use oil of your choice as body lotion. The water and the oil will emulsify through your rubbing motion and create a moist and protective layer on your skin! Voila!
- Oats – yummy skin care
Eating oats has many benefits, none of which we will discuss in this article, because we are talking about oats as skincare!
- Oat and honey facemask
Mix 1 cup of oats with 1 tbs of warm water and 1 tbs of honey. The texture of the honey makes this a bit difficult to mix, but we promise you’ll get there: the warm water will assist you. Once mixed, place the mask generously on your clean face for 30 minutes. Wipe of gently with a soaked warm facetowel and then rinse any last bits of your face.
- Oat and raw sugar body scrub
Mix 2 cups of oats with 1 cup of raw sugar and ½ cup of cold water. Rinse your body in the shower, turn off the water and gently massage your body with the scrub. This will increase the circulation in your skin. Rinse off and moisturize with oils as mentioned above.
Image by Aaron Burden