skin care

WELLNESS

Lazy Winter Skin Tips


Well – I spent a solid two hours writing this blog, then the entire thing disappeared (thanks Squarespace). So, here is a less informative version!

  

Moving back to New York has completely shocked my skin – and I’m fully understanding the term “ Alligator Skin” at the moment. Between setting up the studio, batching products and moving – I have been really lazy with self care, especially exfoliating. So – it’s the perfect opportunity to write a short list of easy dry skin remedies.

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HYDRATION

I could say this one a thousand times - it’s hard to stay hydrated but it’s so crucial to skin health. Hydration helps skin stay plump, perform/function better and keep exfoliated.

Drink herbal teas, water, broth - anything, make sure youre drinking a little more than your recommended amount!


LOOFAHS + DRY BRUSHING

Keep a dry brush hanging in the shower, before you turn the water on, get in and gently brush your body in long upward strokes (ALWAYS TOWARDS THE HEART!). Dry brushing a couple times a week is good for increasing circulation, brushing off excess dry skin, and preventing varicose veins.

Loofahs are a great way to get a similar benefit to dry brushing – switch to using a loofah instead of a shower poof or your hands .



BODY SERUMS

Body serums should be light weight so it absorbs easily into the skin post-shower. I love the Tropical Healing Serum because it’s light, scent free and sprayable to its easy to use. It contains Tamanu, Kuikui and Coconut Oil to deeply nourish + heal.

Plus, every bottle purchased donates $10 to ReForest Hawai’I + lasts for a long time!

HERBAL MILK BATHS

Natural ingredients added to a bath is one of my favorite things – herbs can be used for a variety of health and cosmetic issues. My favorite herbs for dry skin are: lavender, calendula, oats, chamomile. I also love adding ½ cup of ginger to Epsom salt to take a heat inducing bath – this helps your body to sweat out a cold/flu (take precaution if youre pregnant or have sensitivities).

*tip = place plant material in a muslin / cotton bag to prevent a mess, and use as a bath tea*

Milk is super moisturizing and beneficial for your skin, Cleopatra took milk baths as part of her beauty routine – so, that’s a pretty sign it works 😊

Coconut milk is nourishing and moisturizing.

Whole milk is exfoliating with natural Lactic Acid, an AHA that helps keep skin soft.

Oat milk is calming, soothing and can help if your skin is irritated or itchy (a cleaner way to use oats in a bath)


SCRUBS + MASKING

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I love mixing a batch of scrub and leaving it in the shower to use (precaution, if water gets into the scrub discard after 1-2 weeks because oil + water = mold, yeast and yuck).

You can use what you have in your home, like olive oil, coconut oil, sesame oil, sugar, coffee grinds (used or fresh), brown rice flour, etc.

Masks can be used to gently exfoliate too - clay, flour, powered herbs and more can be used. The Tropical Coconut Mask + Plant Lovers Mask are both gently exfoliating



EXFOLIATING LOTIONS / WASHES

You can also use an AHA  /  BHA lotion or body wash daily – Be careful if you have sensitive skin and always do a patch test!

PLANT REMEDIES

How to Make a Glycerin Tincture

I love infusions, tinctures and decoctions - essentially concentrating the medicinal benefits of a plant. Tinctures are a great way to preserve a plant for medicinal use, or for skin care, food and flavoring. 

The glycerin tincture is a great alternative to the grain alcohol based solutions - especially for skin care since alcohol is irritating.  You can make this recipe two ways, cold and hot. 

Cold Infusion - Soaking herbs in solution for 1-2 weeks.

Hot Infusion - In heat safe jar place in double boiler slowcooker for 4 hours (or on a stovetop, on medium heat).

All of the ingredients should be super easy to find from your local grocery store, I got everything at Down to Earth in Honolulu. 

Ingredients / Materials

Vegetable Glycerin

Distilled Water

Herb of your choice (Calendula, Lavender, Rose Buds, Licorice Root, Turmeric)

Cheese Cloth

Funnel (optional)

Lots of hand towels + sink access!

 

Steps

1. Gather the ingredients + materials

2. Add the herbs to the jar

 

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3. Mix the glycerin + distilled water in a 3:1 ratio (3 glycerin : 1 distilled water) + add to jar, make sure to fully submerge the herbs.

 

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4. Cap + Shake the herbs - make sure to agitate and shake them up daily if you choose to do the cold infusion method.

 

 

5. Label it! Write down the name of the herb, date, ratio of ingredients (3:1 glycerin to water with herb name).

 

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How to Strain Your Tincture

1. Use a clean ball jar, a funnel and cheesecloth!

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2. Place the cheesecloth in the funnel for straining - pour the infusion (depending on the herb it may be thicker after infusion) onto the cheesecloth - it will now slowly strain through to the jar.

 

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3. if it gets stuck or wont drain, fold the sides and lift the saturated cheesecloth just a bit to work the infusion through.

 

4. The herbs are now ready to be composted or thrown away - or you can turn them into a body scrub if they are granular!

 

5. Pour the herbal glycerite into a dry glass container or dropper bottle and use this internally in food / drink recipes or as a face mask / cleanser booster!

 

I love pairing these glycerites with my cleansers or to add to a clay or botanical mask (a couple of drops!). Generally glycerin is a mild ingredient, it's a cleansing + toning emollient, so it draws moisture to the skin and helps remove excess dirt + oil - essentially it's gently cleansing without being a detergent. Due to its cleansing properties, it could be drying when it's overused - so if you are cleansing with glycerin make sure to tone and moisturize.