Food For Your Face: Choosing the Best Facemask for your Skin

Facemasks are like ice cream; you can never choose just one kind. Facemasks are also treats for our skin like ice cream is a treat for our taste buds, but the similarities really end there. See, facemasks are healthy, detoxifying, glowy, nourishing “food” for our face and ice cream, well, let’s just say it doesn’t quite do all that for us.

Facemasks are truly wonderful tools to help us supplement our skincare health and daily routine. They help us zero in on, and target, our specific needs, and concerns. However, the most wonderful thing about facemasks is also the scariest (I use the term scary lightly here). You can never have too many masks; you really can’t. There are a hundred different masks for a hundred different uses and we can have them all, well, the ones we feel we actually need anyway. Let’s not get greedy. It’s useless and wasteful to buy a facemask, or really any skincare product for that matter, just for the sake of buying it or for the hype, the almighty and powerful hype. Because not every facemask is designed to help our skin, it can become very easy to go a bit crazy and one day find yourself staring at a shelf entirely filled with facemasks (this is a real-life example from my own life).

Facemasks fall under several different categories (Calming, Moisturizing, Detoxifying, Acne Fighting, Brightening and Anti-Aging) and I think it’s safe to say that having one mask in each category, or several masks that fall under multiple categories, is a reasonable, and dare I say, a sensible thing to do. It’s important to do some research and find the best mask for our skin type and needs. If we have sensitive, dry, or acne prone skin, etc., we need to take these factors into consideration when choosing a mask.

I will say that many masks have multiple functions and benefits. If we’re tight on cash, or just don’t want the clutter of so many products in our medicine cabinet, it’s easy to choose just a couple masks that have multiple uses and benefits. Multifunctional masks can be great, healing and combating multiple problem areas at once is both time efficient and smart. There is no one cure-all mask for anyone; we need to test and research to find the right combination for ourselves.

Advanced Hydration Mask – Josh Rosebrook

The Advanced Hydration Mask is a wonderfully hydrating mask that will nourish even the driest of faces with super hydrating ingredients including Aloe Vera (regenerates skin), mango seed butter (moisturizing and tightening), senna seed extract (hydrates and repairs) and blue tansy oil (calms irritation). This mask is like a cool drink of water for our parched face. It even looks like water with its blue color, from the blue tansy flower oil, and silky texture. Packed with rich plant oils and botanicals it helps replenish and retain skin cell hydration. The mask helps to lock in moisture, plump, condition and improve skin circulation, which protects and supports healthy skin function and slows signs of aging in the skin.

Nutritive Greens Mask – Aster & Bay

Aster & Bay describes their Nutritive Greens mask as a green smoothie for your face, and I think they hit the nail on the head with that one. This mask contains nutrient-dense natural herbs and superfoods like peppermint, matcha, spinach, and spirulina, which are all blended with French green clay and raw wildflower honey, creating a facemask that detoxifies, tones, and nourishes. Packed with chlorophyll and amino acids, the mask also helps fight free radicals, which can cause premature aging in our skin.

The raw honey inhibits bacterial growth and can help heal many skin conditions such as acne, inflammation, and redness. The honey also helps to nourish and protect skin, making it an excellent choice for all skin types.

Clearing Mask – Indie Lee

The Clearing Mask helps purify clogged pores and congested skin with its gentle, yet effective detoxifying formula. The mask leaves skin feeling tightened and firm, but still nourished. This is most likely due to the hyaluronic acid in the mask, softening the face and enhancing circulation.

The Clearing Mask is ideal for congested and acne-prone skin. The clay and fruit acid formula helps eliminate dead skin cells and removes toxins from our pores, helping to reduce inflammation and redness, while helping to promote healing from acne scarring.

The mask can also be used as a spot treatment for those stubborn breakouts we want to get rid of fast. The mask is both detoxifying and hydrating, so it won’t dry out our skin if we leave it on for several hours, or even overnight.

Clarifying Mask – Tata Harper

The Clarifying Mask is a great mask for almost any skin imperfection. This mask is great for helping our skin get back to looking healthy, balanced and clear. The mask has an enzymatic peel effect that helps reduce the appearance of breakouts, redness, and excess oil without drying or irritating the skin.

The mask also contains chlorella, which nourishes and hydrates the skin; it also gives it a vibrant green color. When washing off the mask, warm water activates the effect of quartz sand crystals in the mask, which exfoliates and soften our skin as we gently massage it off of our face. This is an amazing added bonus that I really love; it leaves the skin feeling smooth and soft as well invigorated.

3-Minute Flash Mask – Ursa Major

The 3 Minute Flash Mask is a gentle but effective “flash” enzyme face treatment that quickly exfoliates dead skin built up on the surface of our face. It also helps to accelerate skin cell turnover, enhancing the appearance of skin tone, brightness, elasticity, and firmness.

This mask is very gentle and gives the same amazing effects as an intense scrub or light chemical peel without the irritation. The gel-like texture and amazing tropical pineapple and orange fruity smell only help to elevate the amazing benefits of this mask.

This mask has really helped to brighten my skin and gives me a wonderful glow, thanks to brightening ingredients like pineapple and hibiscus. Other natural ingredients that work wonders in this mask are pomegranate enzymes that help remove dull, dead skin cells, leaving behind smoother softer and brighter skin.

The Flash Mask is gentle enough for all skin types, even those with sensitive skin that might be a bit wary of an enzymatic mask should give this one a try.

Buchu Botanical Enzyme Polish – African Botanics

The Buchu Botanical Enzyme Polish is an amazing and gentle facial polish that deeply exfoliates and purifies the skin by lifting off dead skin cells leaving skin clean, soft and radiant without irritation.

A combination of dried Buchu plant and crushed Baobab fruit are combined with healing micro-algae and fine granules of volcanic minerals to improve texture and soften the look of fine lines and dark spots by buffing away dead skin.

The polish is also loaded with papaya and pineapple enzymes to clear pores while minimizing their appearance and improving radiance. Essential oils of Bergamot, Rose Geranium, and Tea Tree are stimulating and soothing, which helps to detox and calm the skin with their anti-inflammatory properties.

I love using this polish in the shower; you only have to leave the mask on for around 5 minutes to reap all the amazing benefits. I massage it into my face right when I get in and wash it off after I finished all of my other shower tasks. Multi-tasking in the shower, while getting a smoother, plumper more radiant complexion all at the same time, that’s what I call a true win-win right there folks.

Healing Manuka Mask – La Bella Figura

This hydrating Healing Manuka Mask works wonderfully for dry, irritated and mature skin conditions. The mask is formulated with mineral rich manuka honey, which nourishes and calms the skin with its antibacterial properties. Manuka Honey can also help fight acne and acne scarring and reduce redness and inflammation in the skin. The mask also contains Aronia berry extract, an excellent source of antioxidants and Vitamin C, as well as rosehip seed oil that helps in speeding up skin’s regenerative process which can help combat the signs of aging.

This is a hard-working and powerful mask that has a very potent formulation. While this is wonderful for revealing radiant and fresh looking skin, it can cause a strong reaction and therefore isn’t recommend for those with sensitive skin.

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DIY: Lavender Coconut Oil Sugar Scrub

A few months ago I was staring at a huge tub of coconut oil that was sitting on my bathroom counter wondering how I was ever going to use all of it when I thought to myself; maybe I can make something out of this that will get rid of a bunch of it. That is when I decided to create a body scrub.

Ingredients

Coconut oil is very moisturizing and nourishing and sugar is a great exfoliator, and I had run out of soap; it seemed like a great idea.

What you will need:

  • 1/2 cup of Organic coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup of Organic sugar
  • 3-8 drops (I used 5) of Essential oil
  • A container to store it in

Coconut Oil

Add a ½ cup of softened coconut oil into a bowl (You can put it in the microwave for a few seconds to soften it, but you do not want it to be completely melted as the sugar will settle at the bottom of the jar separating from the oil. Once the liquefied oil hardens, the two ingredients will not be combined well).

 

Then add in your sugar and essential oil. I used lavender but you can choose whatever you like, orange or lemon would be very refreshing for the summer.

Mix until everything is combined well.

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You can put it in the fridge for 10-15 minutes to help the oil harden up faster for immediate use, or just put it in your shower and use it tomorrow!

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Book Review: Skin Cleanse

I just recently finished reading Skin Cleanse by Adina Grigore, the founder of S.W. Basics of Brooklyn. Along with being smart, witty and an easy read, this book was very informative and straightforward. I thought that Adina did an amazing job at breaking down the different elements and steps to living a healthier and cleaner lifestyle.

The book is broken up into 8 chapters, each focusing on a different, yet interconnected, part of cleansing your skin from the inside out.

The beginning of the book talks more about the food that we eat and figuring out which foods are good, and not so good, for us to eat. If you’re like me and have already done this on your own before reading this book, these sections might be a bit tedious, but don’t just skip over them. Even though I knew a lot of the information and had done many of the things she suggested when it comes to our food choices in this section, I still did come across many helpful recipes and information about food and supplements that I did not know before.

The most interesting part of this book for me was the later chapters about our skin, and the Skin Cleanse, as this book is so aptly named. I have started to use more natural skin and beauty products in my day to day routine, but I was still wary that something that was “natural” still had so many ingredients in them. I have wanted to start experimenting with making my own skin and beauty products, but I have always been too scared. What if the recipes I make up don’t work, or worse break me out? I was just too chicken to make up concoctions on my own. Enter the last half of this book, Adina has created and tested tons of recipes for natural, minimal ingredient, recipes. I was so excited and a bit nervous to try them out. They seem easy and interesting and a great alternative to buying natural products at the store. I probably won’t open up an apothecary in my kitchen and start making every beauty and skin care products from scratch, but it will be great to supplement with these more natural and simple products and hopefully begin to incorporate a few of them into my daily routine.

I have just finished step 3:Detoxify, in Adina’s “beauty rehab” which basically meant that I cut myself off from all beauty and skincare products, literally everything besides toothpaste, for three days. It was a bit hard and a bit gross at times, but this step is supposed to detoxify our skin and help us to pinpoint products that might cause flare-ups and irritation when we go back to using our products again. It is also cleansing our skin in preparation for a more natural skincare routine.

Skin Cleanse

I would say though, if you are new to the natural skin and beauty care lifestyle you might want to check out No More Dirty Looks first. It is another natural beauty book, but it goes into more detail explaining the harmful and dangerous chemicals that are found in our products and how to avoid them. The book provides lots of more natural alternatives that are available easily online or in stores. No More Dirty Looks is more helpful when you are just beginning your journey to a more natural lifestyle, Skin Cleanse is more for people who already know that they want to make a lifestyle change, and have already, but not necessarily, begun trying to make the switch.

Overall I found this book to be very informational and inspiring. I will definitely be creating some of the food and skincare recipes provided in the book.

 

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