Homemade Cooling Cucumber Mask for Eyes and Face

So my attic is finally raccoon free in fixer upper #1. These things were tough to get rid of and I didn’t get a wink of sleep, y’all, though I did have the chance to drown my sorrow in homemade salad dressing. You win some, you lose some. Meanwhile, back in Brooklyn, I sleep like a baby through all the sirens and various city sounds. Nature sounds,  not so much. Raccoons in the attic = Many sleepless nights, you guys, so I was sooooo looking forward to finally getting a full eight hours. Sigh. Then the heatwave hit. I can usually get away with no air conditioning because of the way these old houses were built. Thick stone walls and tons of windows make for a well ventilated space.

Sadly, not even old school architecture could save me from this last heat snap. The attic stayed uncomfortably hot until dawn and here I was tossing and turning until eventually having to get up and go on just 3 hours of sleep. My tired eyes have been all the proof the world needs of my sleep deprivation. I’m rocking dark circles and puffy eyes like I have a newborn at home. Not cool. Fortunately, it’s cucumber season and cucumber is the holy grail of summer beauty.

I’ve really been giving my eyes some TLC these past few days, and I just have to share this miracle recipe I’ve been using. When you have dark circles and puffiness around your eyes you probably run to get cucumbers or a cold compress, amiright? Why not combine the two?! Ive been whipping up this recipe and storing it in the freezer. Two birds, one stone. The best part about this cooling eye mask is that if you’re acne prone, you can use it as a facial mask too! So what is that, like three birds, one stone? Whatevs. This recipe is truly miraculous.

Homemade Cooling Cucumber Eye Mask

ingredients

  • 1 large cucumber
  • 2 tbsp unrefined coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup aloe vera gel
  • 8 drops carrot seed essential oil (optional)

Directions

  • In a blender, mix all ingredients together into a creamy consistency
  • transfer mixture to an ice cube tray and freeze
  • to use, take one cucumber ice cube and allow it to thaw (preferably in the fridge so it remains cold)
  • apply it all around your eye (or all over your face if using as a facial mask)
  • let your skin soak up all the goodness for 10-15 minutes
  • rinse off with lukewarm water

 

Source: PaleoMama

My 5 Favorite Natural Beauty Brands at Target

***this post contains affiliate links and a whole lot of awesomeness

A while back I was pretty much addicted to subscription boxes. Getting those awesome little boxes in the mail felt like Christmas morning, like yay! I didn’t even know I wanted that! Only thing is, sometimes the boxes contained things that I really didn’t use. Ever. So in my effort to scale back on the amount of unnecessary  stuff I had, I went paperless on all my bills, I tossed or donated a bunch of things, and I quit my subscription box addiction cold turkey.

One of my favorites was Birchbox, because who doesn’t like beauty supplies?! Birchbox single handedly turned me on to a lot of brands that I would have never tried. I’m all about organic beauty products, so I try to stick to homemade recipes, but isn’t it great when you can find a brand that does the work for you? You guys, we want to know exactly what is going on with the products we use. That shouldn’t be too much to ask, right? Like, seriously, there’s been a lot of scary links made between commercial skin care ingredients and Cancer. Wtf?! No bueno. Fortunately, some companies have heard us crying for safer products that don’t burn bunnies in the process, and now there is an overwhelming natural beauty presence in our local drugstore aisles.

I recently picked up some of those yummy beauty supplies I fell in love with through Birchbox while frolicking through Target. Sometimes it’s easier to just be able to buy an amazing facial mask, moisturizer, or toner than it is to DIY it. Sometimes it’s also more convenient. Like right now I’m planning my toiletry bag for my trip to Europe next month. It was great to be able to just grab what I needed at Target, and trust that I wasn’t doing horrible things to my body, or the bodies of innocent animals, with paraben filled yuckiness. Check out my top natural beauty finds from Target!

Nourish Organic

Nourish Organics makes organic beauty products that are not only affordable, but really effective. I totally recommend the Skin Solve Cream to Oil All Over Treatment. You can use this one product on your skin, your body, and your hair.So versatile and so powerfully gentle! Best part, it’s travel sized so you can plop this in your purse when commuting, or in your carry-on for that long flight.

S.W. Basics

You really can’t go wrong with this brand. From facial cleanser, to exfoliant, to moisturizer, to lip balm, this brand has it all. If you can’t decide where to start, do yourself a favor and get the toner. I absolutely love their toner! With just 5 ingredients (water, apple cider vinegar, witch hazel, clary sage oil, and sandalwood oil, this toner is the real deal. It doesn’t dry your skin out like some other toners do and I just love the smell. Fresh and simple.

W3ll People

I quit wearing makeup a long time ago because cosmetics were at the top of the unnecessary toxin list. I tried some natural brands, but was always disappointed with the clumping and the flaking that seemed to go hand in hand with toxin free make up. Mascara was the worst offender. When I tried W3ll People, I was amazed at how smooth and perfect this stuff is. Try their Expressionist Pro Mascara and bat those beautiful lashes with confidence!

Pacifica

Pacifica products are vegan and cruelty free which already makes them pretty rad. To be honest, I just bought Hot Vegan Probiotic & Spice Rehab Mask because best name ever. It’s as amazing as it sounds, y’all. Pacifica definitely pays attention to superfood trends. They use ingredients like cactus water and kale, y’all. Say word! I also started keeping their Underarm Deodorant Wipes in my purse at all times, because sweat. I’m doing my part in the fight against subway b.o. this summer. I’m looking at you rush hour A train. Again, a lot of these products come in travel size. Perfect.

Acure

 

Acure is another vegan friendly, cruelty free company that actually makes products that work. In fact, their motto goes something like “it’s not enough to be natural, it also has to work” And this stuff works. I use their Seriously Glowing Facial Serum. This stuff is UH-MAZ-ING! I apply it after my toner, but before my moisturizer/sunscreen. A little goes a long way. I also tried the Argan Oil + Argan Extract Leave In Conditioner, but honestly I prefer using just straight carrier oils when it comes to my hair. If you buy any Acure product though, I really think the face serum is the best I’ve tried.

Am I missing anything? Have you tried any of the other natural beauty brands at Target? What’s your favorite product?

All-In-One Homemade Coconut Wash for Face, Body, and Hair

We can’t call this a beauty secret exactly, because everybody knows how amazingly good milk is for your skin. I mean, seriously, Cleopatra was bathing in the stuff like thousands of years ago. Milk + Bath = Silky Smooth, Flawless Skin. But coconut milk? Now that takes your milk bath to a whole… ‘notha… level.

I know what you’re thinking and I totally admit it. DIY beauty recipes can be a little time consuming and sometimes a little bit messy. But yooooooooo! This recipe right here is ready in a snap, has a super long shelf life, and covers all your basic beauty needs all-in-one. An easy recipe that you can use as a face wash, a body wash, and a shampoo? That’s living the dream, y’all. I’m getting my Cleopatra on with this one.

All In One Homemade Coconut Wash

ingredients

  • 1/4 cup full fat coconut milk
  • 1/3 cup pure castile soap
  • 1 tbsp raw honey
  • 1/8 cup organic oatmeal, finely ground (optional)

Directions

  • Mix all ingredients together and store in a squeeze bottle
  • if you’re using oatmeal, place it in a blender and grind it until it’s a fine powder
  • shake before each use

Via helloglow

Homemade Anti-Aging Red Wine Facial Mask

Remember when I put red wine and cherries in my yogurt? Mmm. Totally necessary, because wine for breakfast. Anyway, you know me, it was only a matter of time before I decided to whip up a face mask inspired by that deliciousness. Before you get concerned like you gotta plan an intervention for me, I have to tell you that wine is not only delicious, it’s actually really good for your skin.

Wine contains resveratrol, a powerful antioxidant that fights signs of aging. I like to call it reverse-it-all because when applied topically, resveratrol virtually erases wrinkles and sun damage. You can read more about the benefits of resveratrol here.

The best thing about this beauty recipe is that after you make it and apply it to your face, you can enjoy a nice glass of wine while you wait for the mask to work it’s magic. Win-Win!

Anti-Aging Red Wine Facial Mask

ingredients

  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 1/4 cup kaolin clay (find it here)
  • 2 tbsp grapeseed oil
  • 1 tbsp oat flour

Directions

  • In a glass bowl, combine all ingredients and mix well
  • Apply to your face and neck
  • Let the mask dry (about 10-15 minutes)
  • Rinse with warm water

Just a couple of notes on this mask…

  1. I used CK Mondavi red wine because it’s what I had on hand, but I’m sure any red wine will do
  2. It felt a little drying to my skin the first time I made it so the second time around I added a little bit of honey and a little bit of plain, whole fat yogurt (I’m guessing about 2 tbsp of each, but I didn’t measure, I just tried to keep the same consistency as the original mask)

Chickpea Power: Three Homemade Beauty Recipes

You already know how good chickpeas are for your body. Seriously, hummus ruled my world when I was in college. I couldn’t get enough, and I was reaping all the healthy benefits of those lovely little legumes. Not only are they loaded with protein, fiber, and Vitamins A, B, and K, chickpeas are also known for their anti-inflammatory properties, boosting your body’s intake of manganese and folate.

With a resume like that, it was only a matter of time before I whipped up a chickpea recipe that I could slather on my skin. I started my chickpea beauty experiments by using dried beans I got from the bulk section of the grocery store. Sometimes I’d soak the beans and sometimes I’d boil them then throw them in a food processor to prepare them for whatever recipe I was concocting. Then I discovered chickpea flour.

You guys! I never thought to use chickpeas, let alone, flour in a skin care recipe before, but let me tell you, I’m so glad I did. When applied externally, chickpeas help in the fight against acne, dark spots left behind by acne, wound healing, and even unwanted hair removal. Say what?!! Anyway, chickpeas have been doing some amazing things for my skin, and the best part is that it’s texture lends itself perfectly to homemade skin care recipes. Fall in love for yourself with these 3 chickpea  beauty recipes!

Chickpea Almond Sugar Body Scrub

ingredients

  • 1/2 cup raw sugar
  • 3-4 tbsp sweet almond oil
  • 2 tbsp chickpea flour

Directions

  • combine the chickpea flour and sugar in a small mixing bowl
  • slowly add in the sweet almond oil (the less oil you use, the drier the scrub will be)
  • use as you would any other sugar scrub

Super Gentle Chickpea Face Mask

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of chickpeas
  • 1 tbsp honey

Directions

  • place chickpeas in boiling water for about two minutes
  • drain, but don’t discard that water just yet!
  • put the now softened chickpeas in a blender with the honey
  • blend and apply this paste to your damp face
  • leave on for 5-10 minutes
  • rinse with tepid water

Chickpea Toner

Remember that boiling water you drained from the chickpeas? Well it’s full of antioxidant goodness! To make a simple toner, just add a few drops of rosehip seed oil to about 4 tablespoons of the chickpea water. Apply with a cotton ball or transfer the mixture to a spray bottle to mist your face before moisturizing.