“Beauty & Wellness begins from within” ~ Organic Contessa
We are getting our hands deliciously dirty and taking our focus on “Beauty Foods” a little further this month in exploring DIY beauty recipes, to tr(eat) your skin healthy. Mother Nature is a very wise ole’ gal and not to be underestimated, for she has provided us with so much nutrient rich foods, botanicals, herbs, spices and natural remedies to heal, build and beautify our bodies. For centuries our ancestors have known this secret and lived by that naturalistic code… it’s time for us to get on board.
Restore that inner glow and take to the kitchen beautiful ones, here are some of my favourite DIY beauty recipes incorporating “Beauty Foods” that aren’t just delicious to eat but truly work serious magic on your skin, hair and body. In case DIY isn’t your thing, next month I’ll be sharing some personal favourite skin care brands that harness the goodness of Mother Nature by incorporating some major plant-power into their formulations and ingredients deck.
DIY Beauty Recipes I’m serving up today that you’re sure to love
Tropical Facial Mask:
½ fresh cut, & diced papaya (skin & seeds removed)
2 tbs. oats
1 tsp. organic coconut oil
Fresh squeezed juice of a ¼ lemon
Blend (by hand or mixer) Papaya, Coconut Oil and Lemon until smooth. Separately grind Oats (I use a hand grinding spice bowl) until fine in texture, fold Oats into the Papaya blend until well mixed. Apply to a freshly cleansed face (necessary to remove dirt and bacteria and also to open pores) leave on for 15-30 minutes, rinse.
Rule of thumb: never rinse and/or cleanse your face with hot water as it dries the skin out – cool water is best.
Why This Works Tip (WTWT): Papaya is a natural antioxidant due to the high Vit content. It also contains papain, which breaks down inactive proteins, and therefore helps to remove dead skin cells and has been said to have good anti-aging properties due to the high content of alpha-hydroxy acids. Both papaya and oats exfoliate, coconut oil is naturally both antibacterial & anti-fungal, and lemon contains Vit. C, citric acid and B vitamins – great for acne, scarring and exfoliation.
The Natural Hair Mask:
½ (half) avocado
¼ cup egg white (whisked)
1 tbs. organic coconut oil
1 tbs. olive oil
1 tbs. honey
2 oz. filtered water (cool, not hot)
Blend all together, apply to hair and allow to sit for at least 20 minutes. Rinse, shampoo and condition hair as you would usually. Viola!
(WTWT): Both avocado and coconut/olive oil add luster and shine to hair and helps with scalp irritation and dandruff. Egg whites provide great moisture whilst honey is naturally packed with vitamins & minerals – great for hair follicles and cells + it’s an emollient and humectant which means it naturally retains water = healthy, full , shiny hair.
Rule of thumb: steer clear of using hot water… It makes hair dry/brittle and strips it of it’s natural oils.
Simple & Pure Facial Toner:
¾ cup filtered water (cool)
¼ cup Apple Cider Vinegar (Recommendation: Bragg)
Whisk together and apply to freshly cleansed face with cotton ball. Sweep upwards and out, delicately across face and décolleté.
(WTWT): Personally I live & die for Bragg’s ACV. I drink it, cook with it, use it as part of my beauty regimen and for multiple home remedies, bathe in it from time to time… I simply can’t get enough of it. Why it works so well applied topically as a toner is that ACV naturally balances the skin pH, minimizes pore size, draws toxins out of the body, and contains alpha-hydroxy acids.
Zest Filled Body Scrub:
½ used coffee grounds (Recommendation: an organic blend free of pesticides)
½ cup honey
1 tbs. fresh orange zest
Mix ingredients together in a container and rub mixture with hands or washcloth, using upward strokes, for at least 3 minutes.
(WTWT): Coffee has been my natural saving grace for combating cellulite. For years I have been teased for having that hint of lingering coffee essence to my skin or better yet, the small glass jar of grinds that lives in my shower. We know why honey works so well as a beauty ritual, and orange zest invigorates the senses, but why coffee? Caffeine is a natural diuretic, and when applied directly to the skin, has been said to reduce water in the cells. Caffeine also increases blood flow which improves circulation and facilitates lymphatic drainage. Add to this that the grinds act as a super exfoliant, sloughing dead cells off the body.
Rule of thumb: use caffeinated coffee only.
Natural Eye Boost:
(2) chilled cucumber slices
(2) brewed (then chilled) caffeinated tea bags
For a quick fix, while laying down place either beauty food remedies of your choice directly on your eyes, closed of course. Sit for 15 minutes.
(WTWT) Cucumbers are rich in B vitamins, zinc, folic acid and phytochemicals which help to smooth collagen along with tightening and firming. High percentage of water content delivers hydration and ascorbic acid reduces water retention; great for puffiness & under-eye fatigue. Caffeine in tea bags has been shown to temporarily tighten skin around the eye area by drawing out excess water, while tannins in tea fight inflammation.
Rule of thumb: The area around our eyes is the most sensitive and delicate of anywhere else on the body. In saying this, our eyes deem the sweetest of care. Treating them with natural remedies, non-toxic crèmes and serums (which we will talk next month) along with staying hydrated, getting enough sleep, avoiding too much alcohol along with eating right – all contributes to healthier & brighter peepers. There’s no one solution for anything, especially when caring for your eyes. Also, make sure cucumber slices are carefully washed before applying as not to contaminate the eyes with dirt, bacteria, etc.
The key to plump, hydrated skin is truly found in an extra serving of fruit and vegetables. Water that’s encapsulated in food provides us with a slow and steady infusion; we’re not only taking in more hydration but also wonderful antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and other vital nutrients essential to skin health. So let the pampering begin and enjoy!
Be well & live beautiful! Organic Contessa xo
Have more DIY recipes to share? I’d love to hear from you.