DIY facial moisturizer
A couple of months ago, on sale from drugstore.com or something, I bought a lovely little bottle of Little Twig brand “Nurturing Families Organically” baby oil. (Just to be clear–my babies aren’t babies any more; they are 4 and 6. This was for me.)
It is a 4 oz. pump bottle. Drugstore.com doesn’t appear to carry it any more, but this site is selling it on sale for a little over $10 (it lists at just under $14.)
The ingredients: Helianthus annus (sunflower) seed oil*, Prunus amygdalus dulcis (sweet almond) oil, Lavendula Officinals (Lavender), Citrus Limonum (Lemon), Melaleuca alternifola (Tea Tree), Tocopheryl acetate (Vitamin E acetate).
If you really look at these, they are fairly simple, which is a good thing for those of us wishing to not put Weird Stuff onto our or our babies’ skins, right? On the other hand–the ingredients are basically a combination of two cooking oils you can buy in the grocery store (sunflower and sweet almond) and three of the least expensive essential oils, easy to buy at your local Whole Foods (Make sure you’re getting theraputic grade oils!) or from awesome sites like Mountain Rose Herbs or Natures Gift. Tocepherol, or Vitamin E, is usually added to these things as a preservative; if you are making something yourself you can pretty much take it or leave it.
I will say, right up front, that this little bottle of oil is absolutely wonderful–they’ve achieved a really nice scent blend that lets the lavender dominate but keeps just a little citrusy astringency. I love it. I use it daily just after I step out of the shower and dry off, while there’s still a little moisture on my skin. But on the other hand, knowing I can easily make my own at a fraction of the cost, I probably won’t purchase it again.
We’re sort of programmed to believe that there’s this huge divide between Stuff For Food and Stuff For Cosmetics. But when you come right down to it, it’s a fairly silly divide. One of these days I’ll post my recipe for a lovely smooth skin cream, which is fun to make, can be done in your kitchen, and works beautifully, but for those of us who don’t have the time to gunk up our blender, just a little bottle of some lightweight cooking oil (sweet almond, grapeseed, or apricot kernel are best for facial use) and a few drops of some nice essential oil (lavender and/or chamomile are wonderful; tea tree is a good antifungal/antibacterial; lemon or other citrus oils should be used very sparingly if at all, and with caution, as they can irritate or cause sensitization.) Especially in summertime, a little oil on moist skin is the perfect moisturizer.
And so easy. Hey, isn’t that what I’m about? Trying to be healthy on a low budget without putting any more time or effort than absolutely necessary?
…now that I think about it, why did my mother spend so much time when I was young giving me a hard time about not wanting to do any more work than I absolutely had to? Efficiency is only a happy marriage of perfectionism and bone-deep laziness anyway…
OTHER NICE IDEAS:
Other nice blends: for tired or icky or scaly feet, try a mixture of a lighter oil with olive oil, and some lavender and peppermint essential oils. Make a little foot bath and soak your feet in it…or mix a little of your oil blend with coarse Epsom salts or raw sugar, and rub it all over them, and then rinse. (Er…but be careful when you stand up so you don’t slip and crack your skull on the sink or tub, okay?) This oil-with-sugar-or-salt thing can work as an all-over body scrub too, just use lighter essential oils…
Heat up a little olive oil (if it’s too hot to dip your fingers into, it’s too hot) in the microwave, just a quarter-cup or so, put a few drops rosemary or lavender oil (are you beginning to see how versatile lavender is?), and massage it into damp hair. Leave it on for a few minutes, then shampoo as usual.