As the new year begins a lot of women (and men too) resolve to take better care of themselves, both physically and spiritually.
Today we’re dealing with the physical self-care, and one way to start is with a good facial. It’s important to put your best face forward, and taking care of your skin will help!
I’ve listed DIY formulations that I like as well as links to professional products that I’ve used recently. Products that I use and recommend tend to have a high concentration of natural/botanical ingredients. I’m a huge fan of using products that have a basis in nature! Facials are a fun thing to do as part of a Ladies/Moms night in!
For your Ladies/Moms night in, have every one can bring their favorite product to share, or a quick trip to the beauty supply and the grocery store can get you everything you’ll need for a soothing facial.
1: Cleanse your skin using a gentle cleanser in order to remove surface oil, dirt and germs. If you have oily or combination skin, use a foaming gel cleanser; if you have dry skin, look for a creamier blend that won’t dry out your skin. I like Dermalogica UltraCalming Cleanser
2: Exfoliate. Exfoliation helps remove dead skin cells that clings to your skin. You can either use a mechanical exfoliator (something that is rough/ scrubby like oatmeal), or a chemical exfoliator (something that dissolves the oil and dirt that holds the dead skin cells to your skin, like the acid in pineapple or dairy products).
Natural exfoliatants include: Ground oats and pineapple. Grind oatmeal in your food processor and add 3 T. oats to 2T. Plain natural yogurt (I like greek yogurt because it’s nice and thick!) Apply to the face and remove after 10 minutes with a warm towel. Or put ¼ cup pineapple and 3 T. plain yogurt into the food processor and pulse. Once combined apply to the face and remove after 10 minutes with a warm towel.
If you don’t want to muss with mixing up your own, I like Valentia’s Eternal Youth Exfoliating Scrub.
At this point, you may wish to apply a serum (I like this vitamin C serum, it’s got all kinds of botanicals and humectants in it to help moisturize your skin) or spritz the skin with a nourishing toner. I like this Vitamin C Toner. Remember to use anything that stings, burns or causes discomfort. That means NO SEA BREEZE OR ALCOHOL BASED ASTRINGENTS!
3: Mask. If you have oily or combination skin, try a clay-based mask; for dry or mature skin, look for a hydrating mask (with a creamy or gel texture). Peel off masks are better suited for oily or combination skin (They can be a little harsh for those with sensitive skin). Most beauty supply stores or drug stores sell masks in small sachets (like these) if you do not already have a favorite mask. Apply mask to the skin, being careful to avoid the eye area (this can lead to sagging skin). Leave mask on for 10 to 20 minutes or as directed. Do not allow clay masks to dry completely. The active ingredients only work as long as the mask stays moist. Sprtiz the mask with a spray bottle of water to keep it moist once or twice. Remove the mask with warm towels and follow with a light spritz of toner.
Most facials end with a special moisturizer or lotion applied to the face. Look for a moisturizer with SPF 15 or higher in order to protect your skin from the sun’s harmful rays. Don’t forget to apply moisturizer to your neck and décolleté. You can use SPF moisturizer in the evening too if your budget is too tight for two moisturizers. If you use a moisturizer that contains retinols (they are vitamin A derivatives), it’s imperative that you use an SPF during the day. Vitamin A can thin the skin and sensitize it, so you need extra protection from the suns rays.
If you wish to apply an eye cream, use only a pea sized amount and apply it with your ring fingers in a gentle patting motion. Don’t drag your fingers across the gentle under-eye tissue. It can damage the delicate skin in that area.
Here is my photo collage of my recent Spa retreat. Ok, so I was in the spare washroom after the kids were sleeping and hubs was vegging out.None the less, it’s nice to take 30 minutes or so out of your day once a week and pamper yourself!