Easy Homemade Eye Masks

The delicate skin under your eyes is one of the things that influences your beauty the most. If you have dark circles or puffy eyes you immediately look tired and sickly. On the contrary, if your skin there looks bright and healthy, your whole face appears fresh and glowing.

There are many commercial products which address the problems related to the eye area. But if you prefer to try natural, free of chemicals and cheaper remedies, here are a few out-of-fridge masks which will soothe and nourish the skin around your eyes.

Homemade Masks Against Dark Circles

The under-eye discoloration is a very common problem. The thinner skin under the eyes shows trough tiny blood vessels which makes it appear darker. This can be either inherited or something that comes along with age. So what can we do about it?

Coconut Oil Mask

Get some organic coconut oil and apply it gently using tapping motions on the skin under your eyes. Let it over night to moisturize your skin. This will rejuvenate the skin.

Cucumber Mask

Cut two slices of organic cucumber and add to your eyelids. Relax for 20 minutes. The cucumber will brighten the skin around your eyes and even reduce puffiness.

Homemade Masks Against Eye Puffiness

Because the skin around the eyes is the thinnest skin on your body, the flow of fluids in your organism is most visible there. Too much salt or allergies can be the cause of water retention in your body. If puffy eyes are common occurrences, do check what causes it in your case. If you just need a quick fix, here are a few masks that will help:

Potato Mask

Cut two round slices of a potato and apply to the eyelids. Relax for 20 minutes then wash off. The potato juice will help reduce water retention around the eye while its coolness soothes your eyelids.

Camomile Tea Mask

Make some camomile tea, then put the used tea bags in the fridge for a few minutes. Apply to your eyelids and let the camomile and the coldness of the tea bags soothe your eyes.

As with most natural remedies, it is important to make the masks regularly. But as they are so easy to make and cheap, diligence should not be a problem.

Homemade Body Scrub

Homemade body scrubs are extremely inexpensive and have the benefit of being all-natural and handmade. Add a beautiful container and a ribbon and you have a pretty and practical present for your friends and family. You can also make the preparation of scrubs a good fun activity for you and your children, and perhaps even a way to teach them the value of handmade goods.

How to make a Body Scrub?

To make a body scrub you need a base, or otherwise said the “scrubbing agent”. Then you need a carrier oil which will make the scrubbing less harsh so it doesn’t irritate your skin. The carrier oil can also be a moisturiser, thus adding additional benefit. Lastly, as an addition, scents and colours can be added to give the body scrub bigger appeal.

Base

The most common base for a body scrub is sugar. We all have it in our pantries and it gives nice texture to the end product. You can use plain white sugar, brown sugar or a combination of the two. Another base can be epsom salts. Salty scrubs rejuvenate the skin wonderfully.  Baking soda and ground coffee can be added as an addition to the salt or sugar, for extra scrubbiness and nicer texture.

Carrier Oil

You can use any edible oil as a carrier. However, it would be better if the oil is as little processed as possible. Cold-pressed olive oil or organic coconut oil are great choices, but you can also use canola, avocado or almond oil. Anything you have in the pantry. Note that if you use solid oils such as coconut oil, you’ll need to melt it before you combine the ingredients.

Additions

Add a bit of scent and colour to make the body scrub more fun. You can colour the scrub using food colouring. For scent you can either add a few drops of your favourite essential oil or some spices and herbs such as cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, rosemary, lavender, etc., or even some lemon or other citrus juice.

Assembly

To make the scrub, stir together your dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Add as much oil as needed for the base to absorb. The end result should be a crumbly mixture. Spoon the scrub to your containers of choice and enjoy next time you take a shower.

And if you do make yourself a scrub please tell me: which is your favourite combination? Do you make yourself a simple sugar vanilla scrub or do you prefer more exotic smells?

How to Improve Your Health Easily

We all want to be healthy and live long. But how many of us are willing to change their way of living to achieve this goal? Change is hard. In our minds the pain of changing our comfortable lifestyle is more than the long-term goal of being healthy. This makes us struggle with our diets, promise ourselves that we’ll quit smoking tomorrow and give up on our resolve not to snack between meals the moment we see the free donuts in the office.

I believe that the single mind shift which will make a real difference in our lives is to realize that we don’t have to completely change and give up out little comforts right now. New year resolutions hardly ever help. A decision to completely change yourself in one day rarely works. Change has to be gradual – little baby steps, every single day.

So what do you think is the best first step to improve your health painlessly? The following video will show you.

As it turns out a simple 30 minute walk every day will help you keep your weight in check, give you a better fitness level, decrease your risk of diabetes and hearth disease, decrease anxiety and depression, increase your energy levels and improve your general quality of life.

Now, if this still does not motivate you enough on daily basis, here are some suggestions:

Get a dog. As suggested in the video, having a dog will make go out for a walk several times daily. Another research shows that dog owners not only have improved blood pressure and cholesterol levels but better chance to recover from serious diseases.

Buy a pedometer and walk 10 000 steps per day. Having a pedometer gives you a measurable goal for each day. The 10 000 steps goal started as a marketing campaign, but recent research shows that 10 000 steps a day is indeed a healthy goal. You can buy a pedometer for just a fiver online. If you prefer a fancy gadget-y one instead, you can get a piece of the new generation wearable technology. Get a FitBit, Nike Fuel Band or Jawbone Up.

Another, simpler motivation method could be just establishing the habit of walking with your significant other every evening.  Make this time feel like a treat. This will give you the opportunity of sharing your day and enjoying a conversation much better than if you are together in front of the TV.

You can also just start to alter small habits such as using the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator; go to work by foot, if possible; in a rainy day don’t just stay at home but go to a museum or a mall where you can walk indoors, etc.

And remember: every beginning is difficult but once you establish the habit and feel the results you will enjoy walking and the improved quality of life that comes with it.

3 Homemade Masks for Blackheads

If you are one of the very few people who have never experienced the annoyance of having a blackhead, stop reading now. Appreciate how blessed you are and move on. The rest of us will explore the problem of having blackheads and discover a few helping recipes for fighting the offenders.

Blackheads are a primary sign for acne vulgaris but even if you don’t have other signs of acne you might have blackheads. What causes is excess oils, such as keratin and sebum, which get stuck in a hair follicle, oxidize and gather bacterias. The oxydation of the oils darkens the top of the clogged follicles and therefor the spots appear black.

So, how do we get rid of them?

Blackheads Face Mask with Oats

Use about a tablespoon of oat flour and add just as much rose water as to make a thick paste. Wash your face with gentle cleaner and apply the mask while it is still wet. Let it rest for 15 minutes, then wash out.

Blackheads Face Mask with Honey, Sugar and Baking Soda

Mix equal parts (1 tablespoon each) organic honey, sugar and baking soda. Gently massage your clean face with this peeling mask for a few minutes. Let rest for about 10 minuts and wash off with cool water.

Honey and Oatmeal against blackheads

Blackheads Face Mask with Potato

Grate a small potato and rub on your face. Keep the mask for 15 minutes until the stark in the potato has dried on your skin. Wash your face with cool water.

Note that natural remedies work slower than commercial products (but therefore contain no chemicals). These masks work wonderfully if you use them regularly (1-2 times a week) because they help regulate the oil production of your skin. However, they can only slightly improve your skin if you have a more severe kind of acne.

Crystal Deodorant

The first time I saw a crystal deodorant in a store it looked very strange to me. I was suspicious if this piece of stone will work at all. If you don’t know much about it you might feel like me back then, so let me share what I know.

What is crystal deodorant and how does it work?

The crystal deodorant is basically a smooth piece of crystal, which contains Ammonium alum, natural mineral salts. It is a hypoallergenic deodorant, paraben free and contains no aluminium or fragrance.

We humans sweat in order to regulate our body temperature. It is a normal physiological process. Our sweat contains mostly water but also small amounts of minerals, lactate, urea and trace elements. Mainly what makes sweat smell unpleasant is the impact of the natural microorganisms that live on our skin. These little bacterias produce enzymes that combined with the lipids from the sweat creates acids, which smell.

The natural salts in the crystal deodorant have antibacterial effect. By adding a thin layer of mineral salts on the skin the bacterial growth is prevented and thus, the odor.

Why use it?

The normal drugstore deodorants contain a lot of suspicious chemicals. Almost any antiperspirant contains aluminum chlorohydrate. There is no definitive research proving this particular aluminium compound is harmful or harmless. However, aluminium chloride is proven to be a neurotixin and high doses of aluminium itself can cause DNA damage .

The link between antiperspirant deodorant and breast cancer is being researched, but so far no conclusive reports have been made. It is suggested, that the parabens, such as alumiinium chloride, used in antiperspirants get into the blood stream (for example, if you spray yourself after shaving). Then they accumulate in breast tissue causing estrogen-like effects, which stimulate the growth of cancer cells.

The Crystal deodorant, on the other hand, is not an antiperspirant. It does not fight the sweating process, because after all sweating is healthy. What the natural deodorant does is it stops the unpleasant smell by using the effects of the mineral salts.

How to use it?


To use crystal deodorant simply make it wet and rub on the clean skin under your arms. It doesn’t feel as if something is transferred to your skin at all, but in fact the salts from the crystal create a thin film on your underarms which will keep you fresh the whole day. It really does decrease body odor.

After using the deodorant, quickly rinse the stick and pat dry.

Note that if you do not like to fuss with wetting the stick before each use, there is also a spray version of the crystal deodorant.

Pros and Cons

The Crystal deodorant is natural and healthy to use. It is extremely cheap, one crystal can be used for up to a year, and it costs just about $3. It does not feel sticky, does not leave marks on the clothes. It really does work. It is fragrance free which is good if you want to add your favourite perfume with it.

It is not as easy to use as a spray deo (but it does have a spray version too). The crystal deodorant has to be used on clean skin, so if you want to use a deodorant for extreme sweating after hiking in the mountains, this is not the one. However, if you use it every morning after shower it will keep you fresh for the whole day. It does not have fragrance and I consider this can be a minus too. If you are just-spray-and-go person and you are used to products with fragrance, you might find this inconvenient. However, there are spray versions of the crystal deodorant that have added fragrance too, so you can look out for this instead.

Overall, the crystal deodorant is a very good alternative to chemically infused deodorants. It is all natural, cheap and healthy solution for everyday use. If you want to give it a try you can buy it online here or here.

So, do you consider trying the crystal deo, or have you already? What do you think about it?

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