Simple Effective Pantry & Garden Ingredients to Enhance your Weekly Skincare Routine

Simple Effective Pantry & Garden Ingredients to Enhance your Weekly Skincare Routine

Posted by Fernanda da Silva Tatley on

 

20 minutes read

 

Masks & Exfoliators

 

This week we will focus on how to use household ingredients to whip up masks and exfoliators that complement the products in your skincare routine, whereas next week’s article the spotlight will be on homemade peels and compresses.

 

 

The drive behind this article was to help a few friends and connections that are being challenged by their pre-teen kids under peer pressure to be more grown-up and use skincare, especially masks
 
Of course, you can purchase of the shelf masks from your favourite retailers, or from Azurlis, but there is an element of fun and satisfaction in creating products that are made with ingredients from your garden, or from your own pantry and local food suppliers.


For those that enjoy using less synthetic skincare, there other advantage in that you’ll know that the ingredients selected are fresh and that the active ingredients are definitely natural.
 
Also, you can make these products in small quantities enough to use over 1 – 2 days before discarding. This is less wasteful as you’ll make fresh batches as needed.

There is an additional advantage in that you can vary the composition of the products as many times as you like experimenting with what feels best for your skin, achieving different textures, and you can have fun with your teenage kids that are getting into skincare without having to break your budget. A win-win for all involved!

 
You will have to check that you have guar gum that will serve as the gel-like substrate to hold the ingredients, in some of the products. Guar gum is normally found in the baking section of supermarkets.


Since there are commonalities in the Method of Preparation and Application of these products, you will see similarities in the recipes, but I will include notes for each specific product should steps require adjustments or changes.

 

No Madness in the Mixing Method and Application – Just Common Sense

 

Basic Mixing Method:

 

  • Sprinkle the gum onto the water and gently mix, whisk, or blend till you have the consistency of a clear slightly sticky slurry. Sometimes a fork is more useful for this step.
  • You may have to add a few teaspoons of water if the slurry is too thick or if undissolved lumps remain. A fork can help to blend/whisk more efficiently.
  • Introduce the “active ingredient” into the slurry. Mix to blend the “ingredient” into the gum and leave the mix for about 30 minutes on the kitchen bench to allow the “ingredient” to hydrate and soften.
  • Mix again and adjust the water level, if necessary.
  • Add the “aromatic ingredient”, where applicable and blend.

 

Application:

 

Masks

 

  • Apply to cleansed skin covering the face and neck areas. Leave for 5 – 15 minutes, or longer as time permits. It helps if you can lie down while the mask is on, so you are relaxed and not worried about dropping some of the mask onto your clothing. Besides, a restful state is much more conducive to maximise the benefits of the product.
  • To remove, use a damp face cloth (warm or tepid) and wipe away with upward movements. Repeat until the mask has been completely removed.
  • Finish with a few splashes of tepid water, and pat dry using a clean face cloth.

 

Exfoliators

 

  • Apply to cleansed skin covering the face and neck areas. Leave for 5 – 15 minutes, or longer as time permits. It helps if you can lie down while the mask is on, so you are relaxed and not worried about dropping some of the mask onto your clothing. Besides, a restful state is much more conducive to maximise the benefits of the product.
  • Using your fingertips push gently on the exfoliation product while using small circular movements to “lightly rub” the granular texture of the product over your skin.
  • To remove, use a damp face cloth (warm or tepid) and wipe away with upward movements. Repeat until the mask has been completely removed.
  • Finish with a few splashes of tepid water, and pat dry using a clean face cloth.

 

Benefits & Texture of Masks and Exfoliators:

 

  • The product benefits will be a function of the properties of the “active ingredient” used. The texture will be largely a consequence of the interaction of the guar gum and the active ingredient.
  • The thickness of the mask can adjust with water depending on the degree of fluidity preferred. This means that the more water you add, the runnier the mask will be, so you must identify what is right for you, as the quantities below are guides.
  • The action of “gently rubbing” the exfoliator helps to sluff off old skin cells that may be dulling the complexion, while promoting even and softer skin.

 

Masks 

 

Oat & Lavender

 

Benefits: Oat proteins are soothing, have mild anti-inflammatory as well as oil balancing properties. Lavender is calming, with mild anti-septic healing properties.

Skin Types: Normal, Combination, Oily and Sensitive

 

Ingredients:

 

  • 1/2 cup of freshly boiled water, cooled to body temperature
  • 1/4 cup oats – the active ingredient
  • 1 teaspoon of guar gum – gelling ingredient
  • ¼ teaspoon of finely crushed lavender leaves and flowers – aromatic ingredient
  • NB No water and gum are necessary when the active ingredients are rich in moisture.

 

 

Follow the Basic Mixing Method and Applications, adjusting the consistency to your preference.

 

 

Brown Rice & Rose

 

Benefits: Brown Rice proteins are soothing, have mild antioxidant, restructuring, regenerating as well as exfoliating properties.

 

  • This is particularly true of brown rice flour as it is composed of bran (the outer part of the grains – the shells), the germ and the endosperm.
  • The bran contains antioxidant and anti-inflammatory as well as exfoliating properties.
  • The germ contains some growth factors, and the endosperm is the source of starch that feeds the seed to become a plant.
  • In white rice only the starch component is left.

 

Rose petals contain molecules that can enhance cell proliferation and healing, while providing a beautiful rose aroma.

 

Skin Types: Mature, showing sign of Ageing such as fine lines and wrinkles.

 

Ingredients:

 

  • 1/2 cup of freshly boiled water, cooled to body temperature
  • 1/4 cup brown rice flour – active ingredient
  • 1 teaspoon of guar gum
  • ¼ teaspoon of finely chopped rose petals – aromatic ingredient

 

 

Follow the Basic Mixing Method and Applications.

 

Yoghurt & Citrus

 

Benefits: Yoghurt’s creamy consistency provides hydration, is toning, and improves elasticity reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. 

 

Helps to control the inflammation in acne lesions, and in other skin conditions such as sensitivity and dryness.

Skin Types: All Types, but especially useful for skin with break outs, including Oily types, but also for Sensitive, Dry and Ageing skin.  For Normal and Combination, the mask choice is totally a function of personal preference.

Note on Yoghurt selection: Use plain, unflavoured yogurt, preferably Greek yoghurt because it has a thicker consistency that makes it easier to apply to the skin.

Also, if you have a cow’s milk allergy, consider using plant-based yogurts made from almond and coconut milk, as well as goat’s milk yogurt.

 

 

Ingredients for Inflamed or Oily Skin:

 

  • 1/2 cup of Yoghurt – the active ingredient
  • 1/2 a teaspoon of Turmeric - complimenting active ingredient
  • 1/2 teaspoon of finely grated orange peel – the aromatic ingredient

 

Ingredients for Brightening Skin:

 

  • 1/2 cup of Yoghurt – the active ingredient
  • ½ teaspoon Lemon Juice to lessen the impact of hyperpigmentation - complimenting active ingredient
  • 1/2 teaspoon of finely grated orange peel – the aromatic ingredient

 

Ingredients for Inflamed or Sensitive Skin:

 

  • 1/2 cup of Yoghurt – the active ingredient
  • ½ teaspoon Coconut Oil - complimenting active ingredient
  • 1/2 teaspoon of finely grated orange peel – the aromatic ingredient

 

Ingredients for Dry and Ageing Skin:

 

  • ½ cup of Yoghurt – the active ingredient
  • ½ cup of grated Cucumber – complimenting active ingredient
  • ½ teaspoon of finely grated orange peel – the aromatic ingredient

 

Follow the Basic Mixing Method and Applications.

 

 

Exfoliants

 

Brown Rice Flour

 

Benefits: Brown Rice proteins are soothing, have mild antioxidant, restructuring, regenerating as well as exfoliating properties. This is particularly true of brown rice flour as it is composed of bran (the outer part of the grains – the shells), the germ and the endosperm.  

  • The bran contains antioxidant and anti-inflammatory as well as exfoliating properties.
  • The germ contains some growth factors.
  • The endosperm is the source of starch that feeds the seed to become a plant.
  • In white rice only the starch component is left.

 Chamomile is calming, soothing and relaxing.

 Skin Types: All skin types.

 

Ingredients:

  

  • 1/2 cup of freshly boiled water, cooled to body temperature
  • 5 tablespoons of rice flour, preferably brown – the active ingredient
  • 1 teaspoon of guar gum
  • 1 tablespoon of coconut oil
  • 1 heaped teaspoon of finely crushed dried chamomile flowers (from a tea bag) – aromatic ingredient
  • NB The water and gum may need to be adjusted to the desired consistency.

 

 

 

Apple or Pear Skins

 

Benefits: Using crushed Apples or Pears supports healthy skin. These fruit skins are great sources of vitamin C, vitamin K, potassium and copper, enhance brightening of the completion, are hydrating as well as being gentle and effective exfoliants.

Lemon peel, beyond its crisp citrus aroma, has great brightening properties that help with hyperpigmentation, and mild exfoliation of old cells.

Skin Types: All types of skin 

Ingredients:

 

  • 1/2 cup of freshly boiled water, cooled to body temperature
  • 1/4 cup finely crushed or mashed apples or pear peels – the active ingredient
  • 1 teaspoon of guar gum
  • ¼ teaspoon of finely grated lemon peel – the aromatic ingredient
  • NB Adjust the water and gum for the desired consistency.

 

 

 Take Home Message

 

By now, you must have realised there is a huge number beneficial food types ideal to create your own masks and exfoliants. So, give these a go!

They are fun to make them with a friend or your kids, as you can help each other apply the very products you made.
 
Of course there a price to pay in having to spend time to make these, but the benefits of using fresh ingredients cannot be underestimated.
 
And if all fails, there is always the option to peruse physical and online retailers or visit your favourite beauty salon. Have fun!
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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