Kitchen Pharmacopeia for Skin

Satisfying Adventures

Perhaps you remember your mother working an egg into your hair when you were little to give it more body and shine. Somehow this loving treatment seemed extra-special and maybe even more effective than a bottled conditioner from a drugstore. Maybe you remember other home-based beauty care rituals from your teenaged experimentation years. These were always very satisfying adventures that resulted in softer skin and silky smooth hair.

Custom Skin Care

It doesn't take much to create new skin-care routines from items in your kitchen pantry. It's about going back to basics and using the simpler things in life to restore luster to your hair and skin. It's easy to create your own recipes for natural skin care based on food items, but it's good to know the properties of these homey ingredients. Use your imagination and a blender or food processor to tailor-make skin care products customized for your complexion and hair type.

Here are some common ingredients and how they can contribute to your personal skin care regimen:

*Milk-Milk is a natural cleanser. You can use milk on a cotton ball to clean your face.

*Yogurt-If you've been following all the hype about Alpha Hydroxy acid (AHA) and looked at a few price tags of creams with this product, you'll be glad to know that AHA can be found in plain yogurt. Yogurt exfoliates and refreshes your skin, while evening out your skin tone.

*Lime juice-Lime juice can control sebum production and help to remove blackheads.

*Honey-Honey moisturizes and softens your skin. The sweet stuff has anti-oxidant and anti-bacterial properties and also acts as a humectant: it draws moisture to the surface of your skin. Some studies suggest that honey aids in the skin's renewal process.

*Cucumber-Cucumbers contain a natural astringent to tighten your pores. The green vegetable also has a cooling effect on skin. If you wake up with puffy eyes, try laying some cucumber slices on your eyes for 20 minutes. You'll see a noticeable difference.

*Oatmeal-Maybe you remember having an oatmeal bath during a childhood bout with chicken pox. Oatmeal is a great skin soother. You can make a homemade loofa sponge by placing dry oats in a hand towel; tie it up with a rubber band, and soak it in a bowl of milk until the oats soften up. Use this instead of a sponge and soap in the shower.

*Eggs-The yolks can be used to cleanse the skin. They can help to eliminate blackheads. The whites are good for absorbing excess facial oil (sebum) and they heal and renew skin due to their high protein content.

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