07/10/2009

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Eco-friendly DIY Spa Treatments I saw this article and immediately thought of all you brides out there. This is a natural, inexpensive and eco-friendly DIY spa treatment you can do before your big day! Hopefully it will relieve some stress and allow you to relax a bit. Enjoy! Spa treatments and luxury products have a way of making us feel like a million bucks. Unfortunately, we don't always have the time, money or inclination to indulge ourselves on a regular basis. Whether you want to pamper your face or soothe that dry, itchy skin, we've got easy, effective and natural ways to treat yourself in the privacy of your own home. So go ahead and take that time out for yourself regularly. No one will be able to tell that your radiant skin is the product of an inexpensive visit to your kitchen and bath. To treat dry, rough, itchy skin, try these bath add-ins: · - -Half a pound of sea salt and one pound baking soda. Soak until the water is cool to detoxify your skin and soothe the itch. · - -Two cups Epsom salt. In addition to soaking in it, while your skin is still wet, rub handfuls of Epsom salt on the rough areas to exfoliate skin. · - -A few bags of your favorite tea. The tea provides antioxidants as well as a delicious scent. · - -One cup uncooked oatmeal tied into an old stocking or muslin bag. Oats are not only wonderful for your inner health, but provide a healthy glow on the outside as well, leaving a film on your skin that seals in water. · - -Equal parts of apple cider vinegar, wheat germ and sesame oil. Apple cider vinegar is both antibacterial and alkalinizing (meaning it helps maintain the proper acid balance), while sesame oil and wheat germ add moisture. · - -One cup powdered milk with one tablespoon grapeseed oil. The lactic acid in the milk will exfoliate your skin, and the grapeseed oil will give your skin a powerful dose of antioxidants. Have a homemade facial scrub: Prepare a homemade oat scrub and use on your face every other day. Oats moisturize and exfoliate your skin at the same time. Grind enough rolled oats in a food processor or coffee grinder to fill 1⁄2 cup. Combine with 1⁄3 cup ground sunflower seeds, 1⁄2 teaspoon peppermint leaves and 4 tablespoons almond meal. Mix 2 teaspoons with a small amount of heavy cream. Scrub your face and neck with the mixture, then rinse thoroughly with cool water. Make your own cleansing, moisturizing masks at home: · - -Mix 1 tablespoon plain yogurt with a few dashes of sesame oil. Leave on for 15 minutes, then rinse. · - -Mash a banana well and mix with a little honey for an instant dry-skin fix. Leave on for 15 minutes, then rinse. · - -Mix 1⁄4 cup whipping cream, 1⁄2 teaspoon olive oil, 2 tablespoons ripe mashed avocado, and 1 teaspoon calendula petals. Leave on for 5 minutes, then rinse. (A study completed at the Department of Food Engineering and Biotechnology, Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, found avocado oil significantly increased the collagen content in skin, maintaining its youthful look. Not only does the oil in avocado act like an emollient, but the fruit also contains moisturizing vitamin E.) · -Another good avocado mix is 1 tablespoon mashed avocado, 2 egg whites and 2 tablespoons honey blended until smooth. Leave on for 15 minutes, then rinse. · - -Lightly scramble an egg and apply to your face while still warm, leaving it on until it hardens. To remove the egg, place a warm, wet washcloth on your face and allow the moisture to soften it. Eggs are great for tightening wrinkles and smoothing skin. If you have oily skin, apply an egg white only; if you have normal skin, use the whole egg. · - -Simmer an apple covered in water just until soft. Remove from the water, mash, then add to the apple 1 teaspoon lemon juice and 1 teaspoon crushed peppermint leaves. Apply the mixture to your face, leave for 5 minutes, then rinse. This works great on oily skin. · - -Mash peeled mango flesh until it turns soft and pulpy. Then massage into skin, leave on for a few minutes, and rinse. This helps clean and tighten pores. · -Add 1 tablespoon of peppermint, yarrow, sage, or hyssop to 1 cup boiling water. Steep for 30 minutes, then strain and cool before dabbing it on your face. This makes a great skin toner for oily skin. -Kate Hughes

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