Saturday, September 12, 2009

Homemade cosmetics. Part 6. Problematic skin. Blemishes and blackheads. Acne treatments.

12 September 2009

Hi ladies and gents!
This is Svetlana. Time to discuss the stuff everyone hates: problematic skin. Some of the skin problems, such as severe cases of acne, for instance, should be treated by a dermatologist. Do not mess up with those. Minor problems, however, are quite manageable at home. It's cheaper and does not involve any harsh chemicals which may potentialy make a skin problem worse.

Blemishes and Blackheads

Treating these monsters will definitely require methodical skin cleansing, regular gentle exfoliating, as well as regular use of facial sauna.
 Never ever over squeeze the blackheads because this may cause permanent skin scarring. The rule of thumb is: be gentle to your skin, do no harm. If you squeeze those blackheads, you may accidentally introduce skin infection, and the whole thing can turn pretty ugly (literally and figuratively). Also, do not try to scrub your face too vigorously, like if it was a greasy frying pan. Too harsh a scrubbing will cause skin irritation and subsequent compensatory increase in facial oil production. Here are some great home solutions for blackheads. Cleanse and exfoliate face first.

1. Potatoes. They work against pimples, wrinkles, whiteheads and blackheads! Just grate one potato and apply it directly on the problem area for 10-15 min every day. Rinse off. Follow with a toner or a pH balancer for oily skin. DO NOT apply moisturizer. It is that simple!

2. Honey. Great natural peel for blackheads. Heat a teaspoon of honey slightly in a microwave and apply to face tapping the skin gently. Leave for 10-15 minutes and rinse off. Follow with a toner or a pH balancer for oily skin. DO NOT apply moisturizer.

3. Grandmother’s baking soda and water recipe. The old and time-proven blackhead extraction method. Mix baking soda and water to a paste-like consistency. After a shower or a facial sauna, rub the paste gently into affected areas for a couple of minutes using your fingers or a cotton ball. Be careful to avoid the overzealous rubbing which can cause skin damage and irritation. Rinse off. Follow with a toner or a pH balancer for oily skin. DO NOT apply moisturizer.

4. Tomatoes. Rub blemishes-affected areas with a slice of tomato for several minutes, then rinse off.Follow with a toner or a pH balancer for oily skin. DO NOT apply moisturizer.

5. Grandmother’s oatmeal, honey, and egg white recipe. Grind two-three tablespoons of oatmeal using a coffee grinder (do not use instant oatmeal). Mix with a raw egg white and half teaspoon of honey. Massage into the skin for about 10 min, and rinse off with lukewarm water. Follow with a toner or a pH balancer for oily skin. DO NOT apply moisturizer.

6. Grandmother’s oatmeal applications. Mix ground oatmeal with water to a paste-like consistency. Apply on blackhead-affected areas for 10 min, and rinse off. Follow with a toner or a pH balancer for oily skin. DO NOT apply moisturizer.

Acne treatments

1. Make an infusion of fresh parsley, cool it down, and use regularly to wash your face.

2. Peppermint is an antiseptic. Use fresh peppermint infusion to wash your face.

3. Wine applications. Use white wine applied with a cotton ball for fair skin and red wine for darker skin to control breakouts.

4. Dilute lemon juice with water and apply on pimples.

5. After cleansing the skin, rinse the face with any of these herb infusions: chamomile, calendula (marigold), lavender, and thyme (all have antiseptic properties).

6. For the most adventurous of you: garlic face mask! Garlic has strong antibacterial properties, but smells like hell and should not be used several hours before you leave the house, unless you work at the garlic processing factory or live in Gilroy, California. Peel and mash several cloves of fresh garlic, apply on the face, carefully avoiding the eye area. Leave on for 10-15 min, and wash off with warm water. Finish with pH balancer for your skin type. Seriously, if you don’t mind to stink to high heaven for several hours, this is a great recipe! Be sure not to apply garlic on your face for too long as it can cause slight skin burns and reddening. There are some people who are allergic to garlic so be sure you are not one of them. If this mask helps acne, but still causes a mild skin irritation, try to mix crushed garlic with some honey and then apply.

7. Tea tree oil is especially great. It is a powerful antiseptic, and can be used for acne full strength or (safer) diluted. Once my mom brought the whole bottle of it from Ukraine to the United States, in order to treat my older daughter's pubescent acne. By that time my then 15 year old daughter tried everything from Clearasil to Proactive and except leaving her skin peeled and flaky like afflicted by some horrible disease, those commercial remedies did absolutely nothing. Victoria was desperate. Well, the grandma’s little bottle of tea tree oil did wonders. In about a week after regular use (we had to dilute it with water for gentle use) my daughter’s skin cleared almost completely, and since then any mild breakouts could be easily controlled. We were very impressed.

The next post will be about my favorite: body scrubs!

Keep reading!


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