The cool weather and dry air of the fall can be tough on skin. Between things like artificial heat indoors lowering the humidity in the air, cooler temps changing our diets to include more hearty and less water-based foods, and the lack of moisture-giving green plants outside, our skin tends to dry out easily in cooler weather. Dry skin not only looks ashy and dull, but can lead to cracks and tiny cuts. Regular exfoliation with body scrubs keep your skin fresh, healthy, and smooth.
Oil-based scrubs condition your skin and help seal in moisture, while also removing dead, dry surface skin cells. Although there are many amazing body scrubs on the market, you can make a quick one yourself at home. Homemade single-use scrubs can be mixed up in just a few minutes, and you probably have plenty of scrub ingredients in your kitchen already.
You'll need just a few basic ingredients, and kitchen items: a bowl, a spoon, and some measuring cups or spoons.
The most popular basic body scrub ingredients are white granulated sugar and oil. Lighter oils like coconut or jojoba work best, but you can also use olive oil, or other botanical oil you have at your house.
Start by following this basic ratio: 2 parts sugar to 1 part oil.
How much you want to make will depend on what you want to use it for. For example, try 3 tablespoons sugar to 1.5 tablespoons oil if you want to exfoliate just your legs. Or, try 1/2 cup sugar to 1/4 cup oil if you want to exfoliate your whole body. Add extra ingredients a little bit at a time and feel it as you go. The more you experiment, the more you'll get the hang of it.
Here are a few extra ingredient ideas to get you started:
This is one of my favorite sugar scrub recipes:
Some important things to remember:
Whenever you exfoliate, always let the exfoliants (in this case, the sugar and other optional ingredients) do the work. Don't scrub, gently massage them over your skin. Scrubbing will lead to red, irritated skin, letting the exfoliants do the work will lead to soft, healthy skin.
Only mix enough to use right away. Although just oil and sugar together won't grow mold, once you introduce your wet hands and drips from the shower, all bets are off. Plus, it's just nicer to use a totally fresh mix, one to go with the mood you're in, and it only takes a couple of minutes to do.
Adding dried herbs will seem like a good idea, but it's not. Not dried, leafy herbs anyway (ground ones are ok). They will stick to your skin, to your tub, to the floor when you get out of the shower, to your towel, you get the idea.
Oil-based scrubs can be slippery! Use with caution.
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Two years ago, I was browsing in a bookstore, and I picked up a book on their bestsellers table. I liked the way the book looked and felt in my hands, and I made a split second decision to buy it just before they closed, completely unaware that what I felt was what the book was about - an item sparking joy in myself. The book was Marie Kondo's The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up
Though the KonMari Method is about following your heart, not necessarily your instincts, I'm so glad I picked up that book!
I love stuff. I love to collect things, especially old things. I love the memories they hold, the connections they remind me of, and the history they contain. I am comforted by always having useful things around in case I need them. It's rare I ever leave my house without a bag (although I do try to challenge myself sometimes).
Over the last couple of months, I've been joining new groups and meeting a lot of new people, especially other women in business. When asked what I do for work, I usually end up stumbling over my words a bit, unable to decide between a few different ways to answer.
I make lip balm is a good, basic answer but not the whole story.
I'm a herbalist* and aromatherapist and I make products is a better description of what I do, but it feels like I'm selling my brand short.
I own a small natural skincare and aromatherapy company is my favorite straightforward answer, but it's often met with questions like these:
"Like day creams and night creams?"
"Do you make under eye serums?"
"Do you have something for these wrinkles, haha?"
I love aromatherapy inhalers.
If you've never heard of them, they are little lip balm-sized tubes with essential oils inside, and they are really cool.
They are my method of choice for using essential oils (for anything that doesn't require topical application). I started making them for myself over a decade ago, using metal refillable tubes with a salt chamber - I'd add the essential oils to the salt and the salt would help "disperse" them**. These were easy to refill, but messy and annoying to clean, so I would end up buying new ones for each blend I made.
I was using a particular blend to shorten a bad cold during a trying time (I was a full-time student, worked part-time, was planning my wedding, and trying to build Wunder Budder on the side - not an easy time for my body to fight illness), and found the blend so helpful that I had to share it...
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