Our lives are exceedingly busy, and it seems like it gets harder to get things done as the years pass. One excuse we should never use when it comes to our skincare routine is “I’m too busy”. You don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars or spend more than two minutes to have magnificent skin all day long.
Let’s take a look at what a 2-minute morning skin routine looks like.
Step 1: Cleanser
A good cleanser is the start of it all. You want one that removes dirt and makeup but doesn't strip your skin of natural oils or moisture. With that said a good cleanser doesn't have to cost an arm and a leg. I moved away from fancy cleansers a few years ago and started using a natural bar soap. Bar soap on your face, what! Yes, not all bar soaps are created equal. A good bar soap with nourishing oils and minimal ingredients is key. You want it to clean and not dry out your skin. One of the many reasons I started making my own and now offer them to you. My favorites for the face are the Chamomile Tea and the Calendula Facial Soap.
Step 2: Toner
Using a toner after washing your face benefits your skin in many ways. Add a bit of toner to a cotton ball or reusable cloth and apply to your face, paying particular attention to your problem areas. The toner removes any dirt or oil that your facial soap may have missed. However, is it necessary? Not always, especially if you have a good cleanser. Depending on your skin type a toner can do wonders but try to limit to once a day or every other day. Many toners contain alcohol that can dry out your skin. So look for one with a limited amount of alcohol.
One of the great things about toners are that if used consistently, you will see a drastic reduction to blackheads and overall acne breakouts.
Step 3: Serum/Moisturizer
It is essential to look for a high-quality serum or moisturizer that contains the right ingredients for your skin type. Serums/moisturizers have a big job. They soak deep into the skin to moisturize, condition, clean, as well as tighten the skin to make it look firmer and younger. It is even said to reduce and prevent wrinkles. It is a definite must in your daily routine.
There are many options out on the market and they can be expensive. Remember just because it's expensive, doesn't mean it's the best for your skin. Read the ingredient labels. More ingredients on the label doesn't mean it's actually better. Look for items by skin type. Oily, sensitive, dry skin all have different needs. I usually change up my serum in the winter since my skin gets a little dryer. With my combination, acne prone skin I use Face Potion #9 during the summer and switch over to FP9 Advance the rest of the year.
Step 4: Sunscreen
Don't forget the sunscreen. Sun damage is one of the best ways to age yourself prematurely. Protect against UV rays and wear sunscreen – even in the winter.
There are many ways to get sunscreen in these days. One of my favorites is in foundation or tinted moisturizers. Also make sure it has at least and SPF 15. SPF 30 is even better, especially if you are going to be out in the sun all day.
It doesn’t take much to have gorgeous skin, but you must be consistent. A skincare routine can take fewer than 5-minutes out of your morning, and your skin will look radiant, reduce/prevent wrinkles, and have fewer acne breakouts.
The benefits of treating your skin nicely in the morning far outweighs the time it takes.
Summer is nearly over, and we have been cruising around in our sandals all season. We tend to take more care of our feet during the seasons when they are exposed, but I believe a year-long foot routine is necessary for proper foot health. I have some tips to keep your feet looking summer-fresh all winter long.
Epsom salt soaks
Soaking your feet in Epsom salts helps in numerous ways. The magnesium in Epsom salts is absorbed into your skin and reduces inflammation, assists in healing irritation and skin conditions, and controls foot odor.
Remember to use lukewarm water for your foot soaks to prevent drying out your skin.
If you suffer from dry, cracked skin on your feet, you will benefit from exfoliating your feet at least twice a month. There are many ways to exfoliate: you can use a loofah, pumice stone, salt scrub, one of those wild grinding devices that spread dead skin everywhere, a washcloth or just use Alluvium Scrub (a soap and scrub in one).
Exfoliation removes dead skin from the feet and prevents more damage from occurring in the form of calluses and painful cracks.
You can also use Epsom salt as a scrub to exfoliate dead skin from your feet.
Do not exfoliate more than once a week, or you risk further irritation.
One of the most important ways to keep your feet looking beautiful is to moisturize often. Your feet will profit from a daily moisturizing routine right after a shower. The skin is warm; pores are open and receptive to moisturizer.
You can use lotion or body oil to moisten and nourish your peds. If your feet are especially dry, you may benefit more from a thick shea based cream, or body oil.
Our shoes are the main culprit (along with age and genetics) that cause dry, irritated skin. There are ways to protect yourself from this shoe damage. Along with all of the methods mentioned above, using a salve on your feet, like MB Soothing Foot Balm, before putting on your socks or dress shoes will keep your feet safe from blisters and calluses.
With a little extra attention to our feet through these dark and dismal days of fall and winter, they should be in tip-top shape for the next sandal season.
It’s finally summer – the days are hot and the nights are warm. You are probably spending more time outside and enjoying trips to the beach, the park, neighborhood BBQ’s, and walking the dog. With the warmer weather and the stronger sun, we need to alter our skincare routines to keep up with all that sun time. Following are some tips for keeping gorgeous skin during the summer.
Never forget to apply sunscreen before heading outdoors. While sunscreen is vital year-round, it is especially imperative during the summer months while the sun is at its strongest. Not only does the sun cause sunburns, cancer, and contributes to early aging of the skin, but it also causes embarrassing discoloration.
Invest in a daily facial lotion that contains SPF to protect your face throughout the day. If you are especially active, apply your moisturizer more than once.
If you plan to have an active day outside, look for a waterproof sunscreen and reapply every two hours to get the most protection. You should also use SPF 30 at the least.
Hydrate your skin
Hydrate your skin both inside and out during the summer. Make sure you are drinking plenty of water throughout the day, and eat foods rich in water – the majority of these are fruits and vegetables. Look for melons, grapes, celery, and lettuce.
Body oils work well to add a lot of moisture to your skin. You will also want to apply lotion to your face and body after showering. Post-shower is the time when your pores are most receptive to moisturizing.
The summer is the best time to exfoliate your skin. Sugar scrubs work wonders at removing dry skin and dirt lodged deep in your pores. Due to excessive sweating during the summer, you tend to have more buildup in your pores that can be difficult to remove with just a typical facial wash.
Vitamin C, Collagen Peptides, and Omega 3’s
Don’t forget to take your vitamins. Vitamin C contains collagen to help you have healthy, youthful skin. Vitamin C also combats free radicals that make our skin age prematurely.
Collagen Peptides also help keep your skin young and firm. They come in powder form that can be dissolved in coffee or tea easily.
Omega 3’s are the perfect way to add healthy fats into your diet if you don’t eat much fish or avocado. Healthy fats help our skin look radiant and soft.
You can enjoy all of the summer activities and protect your gorgeous skin at the same time. Put together a summer skincare routine and stick to it to have radiant skin all year long.
Perhaps you’ve heard of bergamot, and perhaps you haven’t. Bergamot comes from the rinds of the bergamot orange tree. It is used in Earl Grey tea, many perfumes, as well as skin care products. It has a spicy citrus scent and is a great option for beautiful skin and hair.
While bergamot has many healing properties which include reducing depression symptoms and increasing digestive functions, this article will focus more on the skin care aspects of bergamot.
Like so many other herbs and essential oils, bergamot contains antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that can benefit skin irritations and acne.
Bergamot is a great skin cleanser. You can find beauty products that contain bergamot or add some oil drops to the products you already own. It is best to use at night as bergamot can increase your skin’s photosensitivity.
If you suffer from oily skin and clogged pores, bergamot can help. It will remove the icky buildup in your pores and even out the oils in your skin.
Due to cicatrizant (a property that encourages healing) in bergamot, it is a natural scar healer. It can reduce the appearance of scars and works well to even out skin tone. If you have acne scars or dark spots on your skin, using the bergamot oil can make your skin tone even and youthful looking.
Bergamot is also an excellent oil for taming wild curls or frizzy hair. The oil will soften the hair and leave a gentle scent behind.
Add a few drops of bergamot oil to your shampoo and wash and condition as normal.
Always dilute bergamot oil with a carrier oil. Never apply directly to the skin. Some people can have a sensitivity or an allergic reaction to the oil.
It is always a good idea to spot check a small area on your arm before applying to the face to ensure you do not have a bad reaction to the oil.
Spot treatment for Acne
Mix bergamot oil with a carrier oil of your choice. I recommend Jojoba oil as it is great for Acne prone skin.
Apply bergamot mix directly to the pimple or blackhead.
Leave this on your skin overnight.
*Using it during the day can have ill effects if you expose your skin to sunlight.
Sweet orange oil comes from the peel of the orange, not from the fruit of the orange. It contains heaps of vitamin C, as well as many other healing properties. All of that and it smells delicious too. Sweet orange can heal wounds and skin conditions, relieve pain and depression, sanitize your kitchen, and increase your libido. If you don’t use orange oil around your home, you might want to after reading what it can do for you.
There are numerous ways to use orange oil. You can add drops to a diffuser to relieve depression, anxiety, and help ease you into sleep. You can add it to a carrier oil to use as a massage oil, add it to your shampoo to add shine to your hair or use it in skincare products to improve your skin. Mix orange oil with water to clean your kitchen or add to the dryer to add a crisp clean smell to your clothes.
Sweet orange oil can help with acne, increase collagen, protect against sun damage, and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. It is a great addition to any skincare routine.
Look for skincare products that contain sweet orange oil, or make your own. Add a drop or two to aloe vera and apply to your skin. Always use a carrier oil, and make sure you spot check before applying to your face for the first time.
Diffusing sweet orange oil in your room before bed can help calm you into a peaceful sleep. It can help treat insomnia by lowering your stress levels and calming your mind so you can fall asleep easily.
Orange oil can decrease swelling in the body’s tissue providing you relief from muscle and joint pain.
Orange oil increases blood flow and increases a person's feelings of contentment. Try combining orange oil in a carrier oil to make your own massage oil, or diffusing it to boost a lethargic libido.
As a natural disinfectant and antiseptic, orange oil works wonders on disinfecting and healing wounds.
Depression and Anxiety Relief
The next time you are feeling depressed or anxious try diffusing sweet orange. It reduces the pulse and naturally reduces the body’s cortisol levels. You can also add orange oil to a carrier oil and dab it on the wrists – just inhale the scent when you need a calming breath.
Gas and Constipation Relief
Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, orange oil works great for stimulating the bowel to relieve constipation, and to reduce gas in the digestive tract.
Orange oil contains antibacterial properties so it works great as a natural cleanser – with the ability to prevent many bacteria, including E. coli.
It also works well to get rid of ants. If you have ants crawling across your kitchen counters, spray an orange oil solution to remove their scent trails.
Combine orange and bergamot oils to a spray bottle of water to make a powerful, and chemical free, kitchen cleanser. It can be used on any kitchen surface, and it will smell amazing.
Immune System Boost
Orange oil boosts the immune system with its antioxidants and free radical fighters. It’s like drinking orange juice when you start feeling sick, with way less sugar. Diffuse the oil nearby or add to a carrier oil and rub on the bottom of your feet and/or your chest.
Sweet orange boasts so many beneficial properties, it is a great addition to any home.
Do you use sweet orange oil for any of the above uses?
Do you use it for something not listed above?
I would love to hear about it.