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Make Firming Eye Cream with Essential Oils

Smiling, laughing, and many facial expressions are natural causes of lines around the eyes that cannot, and should not, be avoided. They add character over time, and make us human. However, achieving smooth, blemish-free skin is a sign of healthy skin. Consider making firming eye cream at home to improve the health of the skin around the eyes.

The delicate skin around the eyes is far thinner than skin anywhere else on the face or body. It is prone to signs of aging, including fine lines, crow’s feet, and deep-set wrinkles as we grow older. Natural oils are pure and can be absorbed into the skin safely and effectively to help the areas around the eyes retain moisture and, therefore, reduce the appearance of wrinkles. This firming eye cream allows nutrients and proteins in essential oils, like frankincense oil to encourage the regeneration of cells.

Firming Eye Cream 1

Commercial skin care products often contain chemicals that clog pores, feel heavy, and can potentially damage the skin. They are typically water based as well. Water based creams may make the skin initially feel moisturized, but they are drying over time. A waterless eye cream you can make at home has many benefits including:

• Improving skin texture
• Reducing puffiness
• Lightening dark circles
• Smoothing wrinkles
• Moisturizing
• Nourishing
• Repairing sun-damaged skin
• Improving discolorations

Firming Eye Cream 3

With this formula, shea butter stimulates collagen to increase skin firmness and improve the appearance of wrinkles around the eyes. It also reduces inflammation to combat puffiness. Coconut oil boosts circulation to reduce dark circles while keeping connective tissue strong and supple. Beeswax helps retain moisture to prevent wrinkles. The addition of multiple essential oils combines to create a firming eye cream designed to support the healthiest skin possible. Plus is smells delightful!

DIY Firming Eye Cream Recipe

Ingredients

• 1/4 cup body or shea butter
• 1/4 cup coconut oil
• 1/8 cup beeswax or soy wax
• 1 teaspoon raspberry oil
• 1 teaspoon Neroli oil
• 1/2 teaspoon Vitamin E oil
• 5-10 drops bergamot essential oil
• 5-10 drops rose essential oil
• 5-10 drops geranium essential oil
• 5-10 drops lavender essential oil

Instructions

1. Add body butter, coconut oil and beeswax to a small pot or microwave safe bowl. Use a water bath to gently melt if using a pot. If microwaving, heat in 30 second intervals until completely melted.

2. Add Vitamin E Oil.

3. Add neroli oil.

4. Add raspberry oil.

5. Add essential oils.

6. Whisk ingredients together.

7. Using a dropper, move mixture to a small, airtight container. Allow to harden overnight.

Firming Eye Cream 2

Gently apply the firming eye cream under and around eyes, twice per day, with your fingertip. The cream is light enough to use morning and night. It is rich and fluffy so that the cream absorbs quickly and penetrates deep into the skin. It works well under make-up too.

Evening primrose oil is another great carrier oil that offers anti-aging properties. Try using half coconut oil, half primrose oil for a variation. Containers of homemade eye cream, lip balm, and body scrub make lovely gifts for birthdays, holidays, teacher appreciations and more.

Photos courtesy Heather Mayes.

Essential Products for Your Skin-Care Routine

When it comes to skin care, it's not about using the best and most expensive brand. It’s about the ingredients and what they do to the skin. By following a good skin-care routine, you can really change the surface of the skin. It does take time for certain ingredients to work in the skin, but with enough patience and dedication you have the ability to repair and improve your skin. If you have no skin concerns for now, you can start a preventive skin-care routine that will make sure your skin stays looking good for longer. Because the reality is that our skin does age, just like our body. It takes 10+ years for sun damage effects to show up on the surface of our skin—brown spots, fine lines, wrinkles, and broken veins. Check what is already in your cabinet and see which things you need to add to your routine. Start making more time for your skin today!

skin care products
Photo courtesy Katie Guerin

Cleanser: To cleanse the skin and pores, lift off dirt & makeup, and prepare skin for further product absorption. Gel cleansers are best for normal/oily skin types; milk cleansers for normal/dry skin types. Oil-based cleansers can be used for all skin types, especially when used as the first cleanse in the evening, removing makeup, and prepping the skin for second cleanse.

Toner: To make sure all remains of cleanser are off the skin and brings the skin back to natural pH level.

Serum: The most penetrating product due to molecule size, serums are usually where you will find active ingredients such as vitamin A and C, peptides, hylauronic acid, AHA, and BHA. Choose a serum with ingredients that are best for your skin type.

Eye Care: The eye area is the most delicate part of the skin and needs to be treated with care. Apply a pea-size amount of eye cream or eye gel around the eye bone with ring finger.

Moisturizer/SPF: If your moisturizer doesn’t contain SPF, make sure you use one on top of it, or apply makeup containing sun protection. SPF blocks the UV radiation from the sun, which is present all year long.

Night Moisturizer: Specific night moisturizers contain more active ingredients than day creams. As your skin is sleeping, it is regenerating so what you apply before bed does count.

Exfoliator: Once or twice a week its important to slough away dead skin cells that have built up on the surface of the skin. By removing these dead skin cells, the skin becomes brighter and smoother.

Face Masks: Once or twice a week, apply a mask. There are clay masks for oily/acne-prone skins, and cream or gel masks for drier/aging skins. They really plump and refine the skin, leaving the skin glowing. For best skin results do an exfoliation before applying a face mask, and leave the mask on for as long as possible or sleep with it on overnight.

Thanks for reading! You can read more about skincare on The Beauty Mind blog and my social media pages Instagram & Facebook

#SKINISIN Katie

How to Go All-Natural With Your Hair Care Regimen

Are you tired of the store-bought products for hair? Are you planning to try an all-natural hair care routine for yourself? Have you tried witching your hair care products and still can't find a perfect solution for your hair type? Then this article is for you.

The three steps for a perfect hair care routine are: 

  • Cleanse
  • Condition
  • Leave-in conditioner


girl with dark hair in face blowing in wind
Photo by F on Unsplash

Cleanse

In order to maintain beautiful, healthy hair, cleanliness is very important. Oil your scalp at least twice a week. Instead of store-bought oil, with artificial ingredients, prepare your own nourishing hair oil at home.

How to Prepare an All-Natural Herbal Hair Oil

Here coconut oil acts as a base for the hair oil.

Ingredients:

• Triphala powder - 250 g + 100 g
• Water - 4 liters
• Coconut oil - 500 mL

1. Preparation of Triphala decoction: 250 g of Triphala powder is added to 4 L of water. Boil and reduce it to 1 L. Now the decoction is ready. The general rule for making ideal decoction is always maintain a low flame, stirring continuously and always use a wide mouthed vessel.

2. Take 100 g of Triphala powder in a small bowl, add some water and make it a smooth paste. 

3. Add 500 mL of coconut oil to this paste and stir well. Add this to the decoction and boil it till only the oil part remains.

How to know when you should stop heating the oil?

Initially while boiling bubbles will be appearing, at the end stage no bubbles will be there, and froth sets in. The muddy formed liquid in the initial stage starts getting clearer indicating it's time to stop heating. It may take up to 3 hours for the full procedure. You will get about 400-450 mL of final yield of oil. 

Use this oil twice a week and wash off with an herbal shampoo after one hour.

Make an All-Natural Herbal Shampoo Powder

Ingredients:

• Aritha (Natural Cleansing agent) – 1 tbsp
• Shikhai powder – 1 tbsp
• Hibiscus powder – 1 tbsp
• Water – quantity sufficient to make a smooth paste
• 2 drops of essential oil (I prefer rosemary)

1. Mix all the ingredients together in jar and leave it overnight. The next day when you are having a shower, apply this mixture to oiled hair and scalp, leave in for 20 minutes. Wash thoroughly in running water.

Most commercial hair cosmetics contain chemicals that have side effects on our body, in the long run. For example, constant use of some hair products could predispose one’s scalp to some diseases and skin allergies. Natural shampoo and conditioner tackle every hair concern you might have.

Now that the cleansing part is over. We will see what should be done for natural hair conditioning.

Prepare Natural Hair Conditioner

Ingredients:

• Ripe Avocado mashed – 1/2
• Olive oil – 1/2 tsp
• Rose Mary Essential oil – 2 drops

1. Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl. Apply to wet hair, focusing on ends and leave for 10 minutes. Wash with cold water for silky smooth hair.

It is good to use a leave-in conditioner after using shampoo and conditioner. How can a leave-in conditioners help your hair? They can help provide extra moisture, as well as detangle strands, which can help make styling easier.

Homemade Leave-In Conditioner

Ingredients:

• 1 cup aloe vera juice
• 2 cups coconut water
• 2 tsp. jojoba oil

1. In a spray bottle, mix all the ingredients together. Spray it onto towel dried hair after shower.

Jojoba oil mimics your natural hair oil, while aloe vera and coconut water help lock the moisture in your hair. After applying a leave-in conditioner, you can style your hair as usual.

These are simple, easy-to-prepare herbal remedies for healthy hair, which has natural moisture and glow in it.

What are your favorite herbs for hair? Let us know in the comments below.

Make Organic Vanilla Peppermint Lip Scrub

Lips can become dry and flaky during the hot summer or cold winter and need a little pampering. Make an exfoliating, organic lip scrub with delicious vanilla and peppermint flavors to keep your lips silky smooth. It takes less than five minutes to make, and you probably have everything you need in your kitchen right now!

Exfoliating your lips is not only useful for appearance, it is also important for your health. Lips lose moisture more easily than the rest of your body since they have a thinner layer of skin. Regularly using a lip scrub twice per week to remove dead skin will ensure a beautiful smile and prevent a few health concerns.

Flaky, cracked lips can trigger cold sores in and around your mouth. Lips that are chapped long term can lead to discoloration too. They are also an indicator that you aren’t drinking enough water. Chapped lips are a sign of dehydration that can lead to a myriad of serious health issues.

Keep your lips healthy by drinking plenty of water and exfoliating with this easy and organic Vanilla Peppermint Lip Scrub. It will leave your lips feeling smooth and perfectly conditioned. Follow it with a moisturizing lipstick or lip balm for the perfect pout.

homemade organic lip scrub
Photo by Heather Mayes

Organic Vanilla Peppermint Lip Scrub

Since you are making the lip scrub yourself, you can rest assured it is safe enough to eat. Use only organic or natural ingredients to ensure your lip scrub is free from parabens, sulfates, chemicals, artificial flavors, and artificial coloring. 

Ingredients:

• 1 tbsp Organic White Sugar
• 1 tbsp Organic Brown Sugar
• 1 tbsp Organic Coconut Oil (soft)
• 1/8 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
• 5 drops Peppermint Essential Oil

Directions

1. In a medium bowl, combine white and brown sugars.

2. Add coconut oil. The coconut oil should be soft but not melted. Soften by heating it a few seconds at a time.

3. Stir in vanilla extract and essential oil. Combine well.

4. Store the lip scrub in an airtight container at room temperature. Coconut oil will melt above 78 degrees. If that happens, allow the lip scrub to cool then stir it again.

How to Use Organic Lip Scrub

Place a small amount of the lip scrub on your fingertips or a clean, dry toothbrush and exfoliate the lips by moving in a circular motion for one minute. Lean over a sink or trash can during scrubbing since the sugar can get a little messy. Wipe off excess with a wet, warm wash cloth. Follow with a moisturizing lipstick or lip balm if desired. Use once or twice per week to keep your lips soft and healthy.

This recipe can be easily customized by switching out the extract and essential oil. Try using lemon extract instead of vanilla or spearmint instead of peppermint. Cinnamon would be fun for the holidays too.

Small containers of lip scrub are wonderful for gift giving, especially when paired with other self-care items. The all-natural formula is great for women, men and children. It’s a favorite for little girls. Nothing says “I love you” like the gift of a healthy smile.


Heather Mayes is a blogger at Happiest Camper who creates crafts and projects designed to make your home happy inside and out, no matter the size.

Ayurveda Skin-Care Routine for a Glowing Complexion

Practice of Ayurveda and herbal medicine has been prevalent for 5000 years in India. Now, due to its immense benefits on body and mind, Ayurveda is gathering importance in the west as well.

Ayurveda Skin Routine

What exactly is Ayurveda?

The word Ayurveda has been derived from two Sanskrit words—Ayu means Life, and Veda means Science. In simple words, Ayurveda is a life science which balances Mind, Body, and Spirit.

Ayurveda gives importance to preventive aspects of medicine rather than the curative aspects. If you check the ancient classics in Ayurveda, you will notice that the initial chapters cover the topics like daily regimen, seasonal regimen, and good diet practices.

Summer is near your door steps and is the time when you have a dominance of Pitta dosha. Pitta is a combination of fire and water and is responsible for proper metabolism in the body. Pitta, when disturbed, can create a variety of skin problems like rashes, inflammation, redness, acne and more.

The direct relation between summer and Pitta might cause a variety of skin conditions in the season.

A perfect Ayurveda skin-care routine can help you this summer. The secret behind healthy glowing skin is Cleanse, Moisturize, and Nourish.

Cleanse

When I say cleanse, it doesn’t just mean washing your face frequently with water. Of course, you need to wash your face in cold water every time you come back from scorching sun. But here CLEANSE means to clean internally and externally.

Do a Panchakarma detox once every 6 months to get your body free of toxins. You can even plan a purgation program at home.

  • Begin your day with 1 teaspoon of melted ghee. Ghee pacifies Pitta and Vata and it penetrates deep inside the tissues to lubricate and soften the hardened tissue that builds as we age. Practice this for 5 days.
  • Remember to have a healthy diet during these days to ensure good digestive fire, and proper digestion and metabolism.
  • On the days 5, 6 and 7 do an Ayurveda self-massage with coconut oil.
  • On day 7, drink a cup of warm prune juice on an empty stomach. You may get multiple bowl movements on the same day. Drink water boiled with dried ginger throughout the day. Have moong bean Kitchdi or rice gruel as diet.

What I have mentioned above is the internal cleanse. In addition to this, external cleansing is also important for skin. While an internal cleanse detoxifies the body and purifies the blood resulting in nourishment and cleansing the body, external cleanse helps in maintain healthy skin with a glow.

As I already mentioned wash your face frequently.

Don’t use harsh chemical soaps on face and skin. Instead use chickpea flour or organic skin-care products.

Remove your makeup before bed. Use soothing rose water to cleanse the face at bedtime. Rose water also helps in pacifying aggravated Pitta.

You can also apply cucumber juice as a cleanser over face and neck.

Also, remember to have a clean diet. Avoid spicy, acidic foods. Include digestive spices like cumin and fennel in diet. Eat healthy, whole foods. Include greens and lots of water in diet.

Moisturize

Practice the art of self-massage with an appropriate oil daily. Ayurveda advises Abhyanga (massage) as a daily regimen. According to Ashtanga Hridaya—an Ayurveda classic—a proper oil massage gives a beautiful skin, rejuvenates, nourishes the eyes, increases the longevity of life, and ensures good sleep.

You can either use an oil as per your constitution or coconut oil can be ideal for skin.

Apply aloe vera to your skin and you can even drink aloe juice for proper moisturization.

Along with proper moisturization, remember to exfoliate your skin at least once a week. You can use oatmeal as a natural exfoliant. It is very gentle and is ideal for sensitive skin, it also helps in moisturizing the skin.

Nourish

Try to avoid refined sugars and fried or processed foods to as much as possible. Instead go organic. Have plenty of seasonal fruits and vegetables.

While Abhyanga or oil massage helps to nourish your body and skin, yoga and meditation nourishes your mind. Practice yoga and meditation. Exercise and good sleep are also important for a healthy complexion.

These are simple and powerful practices for healthy glowing skin. It’s really easy to implement these practices into your daily life for a healthier, even more beautiful version of you!

 

Natural Underarm Maintenance

There are several reasons to care for armpits, but summer time is when we bare ‘em! Whether you’re looking to improve the smell, well-being, or the attractiveness of your underarms, here are natural beauty methods to keep them healthy.

girl with arms up fixing ponytail in floral summer dress
Photo by Bekir Donmez on Unsplash

Aroma

I start any skin regimen with the question, “What are you eating?” Everyone’s body reacts differently to foods, including how it makes us smell. Some foods can alter that. The healthier the diet the better we digest and use the nutrients appropriately; unhealthy foods can cause an imbalance. Foods that naturally work with the body are leafy vegetables, sprouts, fresh fruits, and raw nuts. Drinking plenty of water keeps your body functioning properly as well. Water hydrates the lymphatic system and helps boost sweat glands. Yes, sweating is a good thing, it expels toxins and cleanses pores from within.

Without getting too funky here, the smell coming from under there isn’t sweat, it’s bacteria. Deodorant is another funk-fighter, but it only contains a small amount of anti-bac that eliminates those stinky bacteria; D.O. is mostly masking the smell. To assist, there are many organic deodorant sticks and pastes. If you’re someone just switching from commercial antiperspirants to the natural thing keep in mind there is a “detox stench” period. This is a time when the built-up chemicals are being released and unblocking sweat glands and increasing bacteria. Usually this purging lasts two to three weeks. After that, onward with useful ingredients that are gentle on the body like charcoal, vinegar, green tea, and essential oils.

Give those pits some air! Being trapped in clothes in a dark, damp place increases the unfavorable scent. Wear clothing made from breathable natural fibers. Additionally, after a shower or a workout put your arms over your head and let the fresh air calm and cool the area.

Clean

Keeping armpits clean starts with a good scrub. I suggest exfoliating once a week to slough off dead skin cells and residue. Exfoliating shower gloves or an organic body scrub work well.

Nothing is more effective than good ol’ soap and water to keep your underarm area clean and remove some bad bacteria (there are good bacteria doing upkeep so over-washing isn’t ideal). Read your labels on body washes, especially when going the all-natural route. Stay away from harsh chemicals and known allergens. Find products with vinegar, tea tree, or coconut to use as an antibacterial.

Beauty

You may be someone who lets the underarm hair grow or you’re considering it. Good news, not removing hair keeps hair follicles intact and prevents possible infection or dirt and debris from entering the body. So, feel free to let those hairs go!

If you’re a hair-free person, I recommend waxing. It’s quick and the hair doesn’t grow back for a few weeks. Plus, over time there’s less hair regrowth and the ones coming in are softer. Be sure to find a reputable salon or spa for hair removal services. After any type of hair removing don’t apply deodorants or lotions, this could cause irritation. Allow 24 hours for the hair follicle to shrink and skin to heal.

For the shavers, find a chemical-free shaving cream or something with coconut oil that helps to nourish the skin while creating a sleek surface for smooth shaving. Don’t use soap, it can cause itching and inflammation. Always use a new blade to remove hairs in one swoop, over-shaving the same spot can cause irritation. Be sure to position your arm in a way that opens up the pit and creates a flat surface to limit cuts. Rinse the area well, before and after. Don’t apply deodorant for at least half a day since shaving removes the superficial layer of skin and anything applied can irritate fresh skin.

Health

By keeping the underarms free of any harsh and questionable chemicals you lower the risk of infection and disease. Avoid products that do not work naturally with the body and can cause residue buildup and block precious lymph nodes and sweat glands.

There are other techniques that aid in underarm wellness. Dry brushing removes dead skin cells. Applying organic lotion softens and soothes. An underarm massage stimulates blood and lymph circulation; a healthy lymphatic system helps to remove waste and regulates the immune system.

Now grab your summer gear and bare those healthy, attractive underarms confidently!

Sources:

https://lactobacto.com/tag/armpit-bacteria/

https://www.webmd.com/

https://schmidtsnaturals.com/the-natural/5-pro-tips-for-your-armpits

Ayurveda on the Use of Dry Shampoo

Though dry shampoo has been in use for ages, it gained prevalence recently due to the advice of hair stylists and hair experts. Beauty experts recommend washing your hair less frequently to keep it healthy.

As an Ayurveda practitioner I would like to say classical Ayurveda describes hair washing as a dinacharya or daily routine. But the fact that water in ancient days was purer and easily available should also be taken in to consideration. Nowadays, the high chlorine or bleach content in water can give rise to various hair problems including dry scalp and itching. So, skipping your hair wash once or twice a week is always fine.

What exactly is dry shampoo?

Dry shampoo is a dry substance that cleans your hair without the use of water. Dry shampoo works by absorbing oil from your scalp and hair, thus making it look and feel freshly washed again. Dry shampoo absorbs excess sebum and other oils from your roots, freshens up the rest of your hair, and leaves it smelling fresher.

Benefits of Using a Dry Shampoo:

• Saves time: Whenever there’s no time for a proper shampoo and blow-dry, dry shampoo is your friend and savior.
• It gives a silky texture to your hair
• It makes your hair look to have more volume
• It eliminates odor
• It conserves your hair color
• It also soothes the irritated or itchy scalp

homemade dry shampoo
Photo by Adobe Stock/kazmulka

Preparation of Dry Shampoo at Home

This homemade dry shampoo not only cleanses your hair of all the dirt but also leaves it smooth, shiny, and silky. It can be used for all hair types.

Ingredients:

• Acacia concinna or Shikakai powder – 1 cup
• Amla or Indian goose berry powder – 1 cup
• Hibiscus powder – 1 cup
• Reeth or soap nut powder – 1 cup
• Lavender essential oil – 4 drops

Directions:

Combine all ingredients well and store your all-natural, homemade dry shampoo in the container of your choice.

How to Use Dry Shampoo on Your Hair

Dry shampoo is always applied at the roots of the hair. Use a brush or a comb and separate sections of your hair, shaking the powder onto your scalp. Massage it into the surrounding hair and let it sit for approximately two minutes—just enough time to absorb all that oil! When you’re finished brush the dry shampoo through your hair until it is no longer visible.

Therapeutic Benefits of This Homemade Dry Shampoo

• The above recipe is simple and inexpensive.

• The Reeth or soap nut powder used here is a natural cleansing agent. It is highly recommended for oily hair and improves volume.

• Shikkai powder Is both a cleanser and mild conditioner. It promotes hair growth, strengthens hair roots, improves dandruff, and can help add volume and shine. It is ideal for dry hair.

• Hibiscus powder promotes healthy hair growth, prevents hair loss, and thickens hair. It will impart a burgundy to black cherry color, so may not be suited for lighter hair colors.

• Amla powder stimulates hair growth, prevents graying, and strengthens hair at the root.

• Lavender oil is nourishing and gives a pleasant smell to the dry shampoo powder.