Getting ready for the holidays also means getting ready for holiday parties. I've always struggled with my skin, but I've found this treatment process to transform it from dry and irritated to soft and glowing. Enjoy the experience of using materials designed by nature, to restore and nurture your beautiful face.
Step 1: Exfoliate
A brown sugar scrub or a powdered grain scrub is a great way to exfoliate the delicate skin of the face gently and effectively. The scrubs remove dirt and excess oil from the surface of the skin, and prepare the face for treatment. Apply the scrub in a circular motion using your ring fingers; this will help you maintain the soft pressure suitable for delicate skin.
Step 2: Steam
Herbal steams are a great way to treat the face as they warm the skin, open pores, deliver healing herbal properties, and hydrate the skin. Tea tree, rose, lavender, chamomile, and calendula are great herbs to use in a steam.
Add the herbs and/or essential oils to 8 cups of boiling water and simmer for 2-3 minutes. Remove the water from the heat source. Carefully lean over the bowl draping a towel over your head to direct the steam towards your face. Do not get too close to the water at first, once the towel is over your head the steam may be a little intense so you'll want to start about a foot away from the bowl, and you can get closer if you feel comfortable.
The herbs will treat the skin and the aromatherapy will treat your mind. Let the steam and the scent relax your body and mind… maybe even smile. Enjoy this moment.
Step 3: Mask
Cooling, moisturizing, and therapeutic, face masks are a lovely treat for the face. There are a plethora of ingredients you can use to make a mask that treats your skin and leaves it feeling soft, toned, and healthy. It doesn’t matter if yours skin is dry, oily, sensitive, or acne prone - there is a mask for you! Some of my favorite ingredients for face masks include are:
Clay: white clay is good for most skin types; red clay is great for oily or acne prone skin; green clay is great for dry skin.
Powdered herbs (grind dried herbs in coffee grinder until they’re a very fine powder).
Essential oils: lavender, frankincense, and ylang ylang have great restorative properties.
Apply the face mask while your skin is still warm from the steam. Use the ingredients you think will give your skin the nourishment it needs, spread the mixture on your face in a thin layer, avoiding the eyes, and let it dry for about 5-10 minutes; rinse with warm water. Mixture can also be added to a bath for a full-body treatment.
Step 4: Moisturize
The last step for any facial treatment – even if your just rinsing your face before bed - is to moisturize. Replenishing your skin with moisture is an essential part of any restorative process. It is important to use a moisturizer containing ingredients that will nourish your skin, not harm it. Avoid products with alcohol (especially if you have dry skin), mineral oil (which comes from petroleum), and parabens (any word listed in the ingredients ending in “paraben” for example: benzylparaben).
Oil can be a great moisturizer for many skin types. Sweet almond oil and grape seed oil are very light oils easily absorbed by the skin, and they work well for most skin types. Add a few drops of healing essential oils like those used in the steam for additional benefits.
Got milk? Legend suggests that Cleopatra bathed in milk to maintain her immaculate skin. Milk works wonders for dry skin and even helps fight wrinkles. You can simply add several cups of milk (whole milk works best) to a bath, soak a cloth in a bowl of milk and apply it directly to your face, or my favorite, use powdered milk and add it to your face mask.
Step 5: Feel Beautiful
All of the best skin treatments in the world can't restore a blemished perspective. The body follows the mind, so feel beautiful. Self-love and confidence make you more beautiful than anything you put on your face. Let your inner beauty shine and your skin will do the same.
Wishing you a beautiful holiday season!