Replace soaps with homemade cleansing grains that polish and protect all skin types.
Create gentle and effective beauty treatments with Herbs for Natural Beauty (Storey Publishing, 2014) by respected herbalist Rosemary Gladstar. With more than 30 recipes using herbs, essential oils and other common ingredients, you'll have everything you need to let your natural beauty shine. The following excerpt introduces you to cleansing grains, and includes a simple recipe for a homemade scrub.
A perfect soap replacement, cleansing grains are mild, nourishing, and suitable for all skin types, and can be used daily. A well-blended cleansing grain formula lightly polishes the skin, removes dead cells, and nourishes and soothes, all without upsetting the normal protective coating of the skin. I’ve tried many cleansing grains on the market, and though some are quite nice, my own simple Miracle Grains recipe remains my favorite. I can mix and blend it to suit myself, it’s inexpensive enough that I can use it as a total body scrub, and it’s totally biodegradable and even quite tasty — I could eat it in a pinch!
Many of the commercial cleansing grains are far too harsh; they feel like sandpaper on the skin. Teenagers with acne or “troubled” skin often use these rough cleansers, thinking that somehow they can scrub that acne away. Not so! Blemished skin, especially, must be treated gently. Harsh cleansers will only further irritate the already inflamed condition. By contrast, the light Miracle Grains are perfect for blemished skin. They gently cleanse, distribute excess oil, remove dead cells, and improve circulation. I have had many people tell me over the years that my Miracle Grains have “saved” their skin!
You can use these cleansing grains on your face, as described here, but also in the bath or shower to cleanse and scrub your entire body. If you’re using them in the shower, store them in a plastic, not glass, container.
• 1 cup oats, finely ground
• 2 cups white clay
• 1/4 cup almonds, finely ground
• 1/8 cup lavender flowers, finely ground
• 1/8 cup rose petals, finely ground
1. Combine all the ingredients and mix well. For convenience, store a weeks’ worth of the grains in a container next to the sink, but keep the remainder in the refrigerator or other cool place to preserve their freshness. A shell makes a nice scoop. A spice jar with a shaker top also works well as a storage container.
2. To use, mix 1–2 teaspoons of the cleansing grains with enough water to make a paste. Gently massage onto your face. Rinse off with warm water. Follow with a light facial astringent and then a little face cream for a perfect morning cleanse!
Excerpted from Herbs for Natural Beauty (c) Rosemary Gladstar. Used with permission of Storey Publishing.